Monday, September 24, 2012
Ford Escape's Makeover Should Be a Big Hit
The hugely popular Ford Escape small SUV has gotten a complete makeover for the 2013 model year. And the result will probably be that the Escape remains ... hugely popular.
Among the things to take note of from the makeover are the improved fuel economy, new technology features and increased cargo space.
The more boxy, traditional-SUV appearance is gone from the Escape, replaced by a more rounded, crossover-type look that takes styling cues from Ford's subcompact hatchback models, the Focus and Fiesta.
There are three new engines: a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that makes 168 horsepower, and a pair of Ecoboost engines - a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder that makes 173 horsepower and a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that makes 237 ponies. There is no longer a V-6.
Six-speed automatic transmission is the only one offered and front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive optional.
The base engine gets 22 mpg city, 31 highway, the 1.6-liter gets 23 and 33 with FWD (22 and 30 AWD) and the 2.0-liter gets 22 and 30 FWD (21 and 28 AWD).
On the interior, the appearance of the Escape gets a serious upgrade, with higher quality materials and a more upscale style.
And Ford has brought its recent technology enhancements to the Escape, including its SYNC connectivity system, MyFord Touch and a park assist system that helps in parallel parking.
There's also an intelligent key that works even on the rear lift gate. If your hands are full and you've got the key somewhere on your person, just run your foot under the rear sensor on the bumper, and the lift gate will open for you.
The Escape starts at around $23,000 and ranges to about $34,000.
With its new styling, better fuel economy and versatility, the Escape is a good option among the small SUVs that are on the market.