The Ford Escape is a popular vehicle in Canada, though not as much as it once was. Now in its fourth generation, this compact SUV faces extremely tough competition.
Here are five things you need to know about the 2021 Ford Escape…
- Also: Ford Escape PHEV: Finally There’s Light at the End of the Tunnel
- Also: 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is More Than a Big-wheel Escape
Four Powertrain Options
The Ford Escape offers a diversified lineup of powertrain options. Base models get a turbocharged 1.5-litre three-cylinder engine rated at 181 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is also part of the mix, while AWD is optional.
If you want more gusto, there’s a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder mill. This one generates 250 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque via the same eight-speed transmission, though AWD is standard.
The Escape can be specified with a hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrain, too. Available with FWD or AWD, the former delivers a combined 200 horsepower and achieves 5.8 L/100 km. The PHEV variant has only recently entered production after multiple delays. It’s been announced with a zero-emission range of 61 kilometres according to Natural Resources Canada. However, you can’t have it with AWD, which is too bad.
The numbers can vary a lot since there are so many configurations to choose from. If we look at the gasoline-powered models, the smaller turbo engine burns a combined 7.8 or 8.4 L/100 km depending on the drivetrain, while the bigger unit (featuring one more cylinder) is naturally less fuel-efficient at 9.1 L/100 km.
Now, the hybrids. As previously mentioned, the Escape Hybrid needs 5.8 L/100 km in city-highway driving if you opt for a FWD model. Add just 0.1 L/100 km with the AWD system. Meanwhile, the Escape PHEV has a large enough battery to cover just over 60 kilometres without burning a single drop of fuel, which makes for an average consumption of 2.2 L/100 km. When the battery runs empty, expect to achieve 5.8 L/100 km in regular hybrid mode.
As a compact SUV, the 2021 Ford Escape needs to be versatile and practical. In addition to seating for five, it offers a generously sized trunk. Conventionally powered Escapes boast a cargo capacity of 1,062 litres, while the hybrid variants are rated at 974 litres due to the size and location of the battery. If you fold the 60/40-split rear seats, you can increase those numbers to 1,852 and 1,722 litres, respectively. A hands-free power liftgate is available.
When it comes to towing capacity, the three-cylinder is strong enough to pull up to 907 kilos (2,000 pounds), with or without AWD, while the four-cylinder has the ability to tow up to 1,587 kilos (3,500 pounds). All hybrid variants are rated at 681 kilos (1,500 pounds).
Similar to most automakers, Ford offers a suite of advanced safety and driver assistance technologies. Called Co-Pilot360, it includes a Blind Spot Information System with Cross-Traffic Alert, Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, Auto High-Beam Headlamps, Lane-Keeping System and rear-view camera. Higher-trimmed models add a few more features such as Adaptive Cruise Control.
Infotainment is covered by Ford’s SYNC interface. Unfortunately, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto don’t come standard on all Escapes. To get these systems you must select one that’s equipped with the more modern SYNC 3.
A Wi-Fi hotspot is standard, while wireless smartphone charging is optional. Finally, the instrument cluster incorporates a small 4.2-inch display in entry-level models. Alternatively, the entire instruments can be replaced by a 12.3-inch display. A head-up display is available, as well.
Trim Levels and Pricing
Considering all of the above, it’s no surprise that the 2021 Ford Escape lineup includes 10 different models. And we’re not even talking about the various options and packages that are part of the catalogue.
Prices (MSRP) are as follows:
- S: $28,549
- SE/SE Hybrid/SE PHEV: $30,549/$32,749/$37,549
- SEL/SEL Hybrid/SEL PHEV: $33,549/$35,249/$40,549
- Titanium/Titanium Hybrid/Titanium PHEV: $40,149/$37,649/$43,649