Ford Ecosport, a popular vehicle in the sub-4 SUV segment, is known for its rugged looks and comes with a price which is much less than any other SUV in the automobile market. The vehicle comes with the sub-4 meter SUV segment and is the first such SUV that sold in huge numbers. High ground clearance, rugged body design, black plastic cladding and tailgate-mounted spare wheel/Stepney are some of the elements that give the Ecosport its handsome look. However, recently, an Ecosport owner got into trouble with the police who declared the rear-mounted Stepney on the SUV as an illegal fitment.
A clip shared by Bharat AutoWheels India shows how police mistook the whole case and blamed the owner of the Ecosport for illegal modification. In the 31-second clip, the Ford Ecosport owner is allegedly stopped and asked by traffic cops for the tailgate-mounted spare wheel/Stepney of the SUV. The owner can be seen involved in the scuffle for the same. As the owner records the video of the incident, it can be seen a couple of traffic cops, including a woman police personnel, stopping him from recording the clip so as to contain the matter. The exact reason is still unclear but what can be known from the clips is that the cops were of the opinion that the Stepney on the tailgate of the Ford Ecosport, stopped by them, is an aftermarket modification and so the owner will have to pay fine for it.
The owner of the Ford Ecosport in the incident gets into a heated argument with the cops over the same. In the video, the Ecosport owner can be heard constantly asking why the traffic police officer is telling him to put the Stepney on top of the car. The vehicle owner also sought for the logic behind the same and told them that this configuration of Stepney-fitted tailgate was from the factory itself. The Ford Ecosport owner is also heard explaining to the cops that he hasn't got any sort of modification regarding the Stepney as that was the way how every Ecosport in the country is sold.
It is, however, unclear what happened next as the video just ended abruptly. It may be possible that the Ford Ecosport owner must have gotten through without paying any challan as it was not a genuine reason put forward by the cops to stop him and ask him to pay the fine. Also, in cases where a vehicle owner is wrongfully issued challan, then he/she can always challenge that in court and if successful, the court will also direct the authorities to pay the owner a suitable compensation.
The Ford Ecosport is the only vehicle in the SUV segment to feature a tailgate-mounted Stepney which adds appeal to the vehicle. Also, vehicles which are officially on sale in India have to pass certain tests and certifications in order to be compliant to the Indian conditions. If a vehicle gets approval for sale in India by ARAI (Automotive Research Association of India), police can’t allege of any modifications on the car that come straight from the factory itself. However, getting any sort of modification on the vehicle (barring a few like wrapping) is illegal according to the Indian laws.