IT is fair to say that Ford's EcoSport compact SUV met a lukewarm response when it first arrived in the UK market back in 2014.
Ford was quick to recognise that it was not good enough to compete in a sector which is crammed with choice and in the middle of last year carried out major surgery to make the EcoSport more tempting to buyers.
There is no doubt that the improvements have transformed the SUV and it now looks and drives much better.
Gone is the the spare wheel on the tailgate which triggered much criticism and instead the EcoSport now comes with a tyre mobility kit.
The Titanium S model gets black alloy wheels, rear privacy glass, a black painted contrast roof and black door mirror housings.
In addition it boasts silver roof rails,silver scuff plates and silver lower-bumper lips front and rear as well as a chrome-finish front grille, front fog lights and LED signature lights.
These all combine to make the EcoSport look much more attractive.
Inside the changes are also significant. The restyled cabin is now a much nicer place to be thanks to added sound deadening and improvements to the dash and instrument panel.
It now feels pretty much like a Fiesta from behind the wheel, but with a commanding driving position and much more room.
Five adults can travel in comfort as the EcoSport offers more leg and headroom in the rear than most of its rivals.
More importantly the little SUV now drives a whole lot better thanks to a reduction in ride height which has lowered its centre of gravity.
The handling has also been improved thanks to changes to the electronic stability control and the power steering.
Perhaps the biggest bonus is the addition of the 125ps EcoBoost powertrain which is ideal for this car.
The three-cylinder 999cc turbo petrol is linked to a five-speed manual transmission and provides enough puff to tackle the sprint to 62mph in 11.8 seconds.
It has a top speed of 115mph and if driven carefully is capable of averaging over 50mpg with emissions of 125g/km.
The award-winning engine is ideal around town and just as happy on motorways with enough grunt to make overtaking easy.
Standard equipment on the Titanium S is generous and it also features all the latest safety tech, including hill launch assist, automatic headlights and a tyre pressure warning system.
You can add rear parking sensors for £210, a rear view camera at £250, and a winter pack at £230 which heats the fronts seats and adds a Quickclear heated windscreen and heated exterior mirrors.
For a further £400 you can also specify Sony navigation and a DAB digital radio but the screen is only mobile phone size.
Luggage space is more than adequate but the rear door is still side-hinged and while that sometimes can be handy, it can also be a bit of a pain if you are reversed against a wall in a car park.
The EcoSport range starts from £14,645, while the test car cost £17,595 before the added options.