Ford has debuted the 2020 Ford Escape and it comes with a complete redesign, as well as a hybrid variant.
The company is removing small cars and sedans from its lineup in the United States so there's a lot hinging on this crossover, which appears to be poised for success in a market that has seen similar vehicle types crush it where sales are concerned.
As reported by Autoblog, the 2020 Escape rides on the same new global platform that launched along with the 2019 Ford Focus but will be the first vehicle sold in the US bearing the new underpinnings. It is 200 pounds lighter and gives buyers four options: a base 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder, a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, a hybrid model and a plug-in hybrid.
The hybrid and the plug-in hybrid models boast revamped 2.5-liter four-cylinder engines which run on the Atkinson cycle. The company hasn't presented any official EPA numbers as it relates to the electric range of the plug-in hybrid but it's strapped with a 14.4 kWh battery pack under the rear seats and is expected to go 30-plus miles before requiring a recharge.
The floor is a bit higher on the hybrid and plug-in versions but there's still a lot of usable space as Ford has placed everything neatly. The former has a powertrain producing up to 198 horsepower and 153 pound-feet of torque and the latter goes up to a combined 209 horsepower but delivers the same amount of torque. According to the manufacturers, the battery could reach full charge on a level two charger in around 3.5 hours but there's no all-wheel-drive on the PHEV, unlike the other three models.
A great feature, though, is one in which you aren't forced to use the electric power immediately. You could let the car decide with an "Auto EV" mode or use "EV Now" for exclusive use of electric power. "EV Later" switches to full gas usage while "EV Charge" lets you charge the battery while driving.
Ford says this new Escape will drop this fall in S, SE, SE Sport, SEL and Titanium trim levels. The plug-in will be the only model unavailable initially but will follow up next spring.