In 2001, the design of SUVs began to shift. The popularity of larger SUVs like the Cadillac Escalade and Ford Excursion reflected the "bigger is better" mentality that dominated the industry. However, a noticeable change was taking place as smaller SUVs gained traction and popularity. The Isuzu Amigo was one of the first attempts to introduce a smaller product to the masses. While it did not enjoy sustained success, one particular offering from Ford introduced the world to a scaled-down SUV that sold exceptionally well.
The Ford Escape has been in production since 2001 and remains one of the best examples of a smaller SUV that delivers impressive results. Its most recent descendant, the 2023 Ford Escape, is available in a range of trims and configurations to suit any driver's needs. With the introduction of the performance-oriented ST-Line and the return of the Platinum and Active trims, attention is now focused on the new PHEV trim. The 2023 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid is a remarkable development, marking a new era for the SUV and the power of electricity. We're excited to explore this vehicle that has generated much buzz in the industry.
The 2023 Ford Escape PHEV boasts a combination powertrain of gas and electricity, featuring a 2.5L four-cylinder engine and two electric motors. This powertrain is designed to prioritize fuel efficiency, making it ideal for people with long commutes or those who want to save money on gas. With 210 hp and the ability to generate 155 lb-ft of torque, the Escape PHEV's performance is impressive for a hybrid model. This car has a 10.7-kWh battery that allows for up to 37 miles of electric-only driving, perfect for short trips around town when you don't want to use gas. Overall, the Escape PHEV is an excellent choice for those looking for a fuel-efficient and eco-friendly vehicle.
In the scope of your interaction with this powertrain, your 2023 Escape PHEV is available with Intelligent Access with Push-Button Start and the Remote Start System; these are standard on the highest trims. While push-button start is on its way toward ubiquity, the Remote Start is an innovative new feature that allows you to warm up your engine (and get your climate control into action) ahead of your going outside.
Perhaps the most impressive attribute of the PHEV Escape is its highly conservative fuel consumption. As per the EPA's testing, drivers can expect to get an average of 42 MPG while driving within the city limits and 37 MPG on the highway. Its combined total average is 40 MPG. Unlike other Ford SUVs, the Escape uses a CVT (continuously variable automatic transmission) perfectly suited for city driving's stop-and-go patterns. The results speak for themselves, as drivers can travel up to 558 miles between fill-ups and save $2,750 on fuel over five years.
Numbers don't lie. In today's age, where SUV sales are increasing, Ford has created a model that can travel longer distances for much less than its competitors. The Ford Escape PHEV is perfect for modern families who require spacious transportation with a keen eye on cost.
The 2023 Ford Escape PHEV is a top-of-the-line SUV that boasts a comfortable and stylish cabin. Ford has always been known for their attention to detail in their vehicles' interiors, and the Escape PHEV is no exception. You can customize your Escape's cabin to your liking, with only as much tech and creature comforts as you desire.
One of the standout features of the Escape's interior is its 13.2-inch infotainment interface. This touchscreen is larger than many of its competitors and is compatible with both Apple and Android products, allowing you to use the apps you're familiar with rather than the ones Ford has created. With the latest SYNC 4 software from Ford, you'll always have the most up-to-date technology at your fingertips.
In addition to its impressive infotainment system, the Escape PHEV also offers many other features that you would expect from a Ford SUV, like integrated navigation, an outside temperature gauge, air filtration, and SiriusXM, although you do need a subscription to properly use the latter. The Escape PHEV also comes equipped with a six-speaker stereo system, and you can upgrade to a ten-speaker system from Bang & Olufsen for an even better entertainment experience.
The Escape PHEV's spacious cabin provides plenty of legroom and breathing room for drivers and passengers alike. It seats five across two rows, with upholstery of cloth and vinyl portions. The front seats are heated, as a standard feature, and the rear seats are 60/40 split-fold and sliding, making your potential cargo area far more versatile. With over 60 cu.ft. of rear storage space, you'll have plenty of room for all your gear, whether you're going on a family road trip or just running errands.
Optional features include a wireless charging pad for compatible smart devices—to eliminate cord clutter in your center console—as well as a universal garage door opener and a head-up display (HUD). Perhaps one of the most futuristic innovations in recent automotive history, the HUD projects relevant drive data directly onto the lower windshield so you can gauge your speed and fuel levels without taking your eyes off the road.
When looking for a vehicle, safety should be a top priority. Ford has a reputation for providing safe driving experiences for their customers, and the Escape PHEV is no exception.
The Ford Escape was awarded a five-star safety rating in collision testing from the NHTSA. This yearly testing is conducted objectively and is meant to ensure that every vehicle that goes on the market is capable of enduring a collision. To mitigate the likelihood of that happening, Ford includes various driver assistance features to enhance your awareness and reaction time and provide an added layer of oversight; many of these come standard as a part of the comprehensive Ford Co-Pilot360 suite.
The 2023 Escape PHEV's standard features include Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, BLIS (Blind Spot Information System) with Cross-Traffic Alert, Lane-Keeping System with Blind Spot Assist and Road Edge Detection, Rear View Camera, and Auto High Beams. Features that are standard on higher trims or available options include Rear Parking Sensors, Evasive Steering Assist, and Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go, Lane Centering, and Speed Sign Recognition.
Pre-Collision Assist (with Automatic Emergency Braking, Pedestrian Detection, Forward Collision Warning, and Dynamic Brake Support) is essential in the preservation of reaction time, which can mean all of the difference between a collision and a near-miss. BLIS with Cross-Traffic Alert provides supplementary awareness of your surroundings, particularly in your blind spot and while you're reversing. The Lane-Keeping System (which includes Lane-Keeping Assist, Lane-Keeping Alert, and Driver Alert) helps keep you centered in your lane and alerts you when you're drifting or distracted.
One of the best features Ford has equipped the Escape with is a driver attention monitoring system. Driver fatigue is one of the leading causes of collisions; on far too many occasions, drivers get behind the wheel when they think they're capable of operating a vehicle when, in reality, they aren't. This system can help detect anomalies in your steering patterns and let you know if you've been deemed fatigued. Pulling over and taking a break or letting someone else take the wheel can help save lives; being late to your destination is much better than never showing up at all.
While these safety features are pretty remarkable, it's important to remember that the driver also plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety of passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians on the road.