Best SUVs

2020 Ford Escape Review

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The ever popular Ford Escape has come a long way since 2000.
Badged as the Kuga in Europe, the 2020 mid-size crossover has now been given a complete makeover. Now longer, lower, lighter and wider, hybrid and plug-ins have also been thrown into the mix.

fordescape

Driving
The biggest upgrades come from the five powertrains now on offer. For starter the lineup has a turbocharged EcoBoost engine, 3 hybrids and Europe is treated to 2 EcoBlue diesel versions. The top plug-in hybrid version boasts over a 200 mile range, reasonable enough for regular usage.

The extra bundled tech. and driver assists help to make the driving experience more like a regular hatchback than a regular lump of a people carrier.
Lane support and adaptive cruise are added to the list of driver aids with the Ford Co-Pilot 360 doing a lot of the heavy lifting.

Interior
Interior styling and packaging doesn’t match the competition, but there’s now more space and headroom.
At least there’s a cleaner layout inside with nicer materials than before.

A standard Ford Sync 3 infotainment system has added to the very Focus-esque cabin and for a little more luxury you could opt. for the posh ‘Vignale’ model with Windsor leather seats and deep-pile floor mats.

A head-ups display and B&O audio have added to the option list and a rear bench has been included to either boost passenger space or add to boot capacity. Sorry, Hybrids you miss on that feature.


Styling
Being utilitarian usually means a bland design. However, this re-design looks more ‘premium’ than before, especially with options like twin sports tailpipe exhausts and bigger alloys on the checklist.

A smoother and wider design has allowed for more definition in the wheelarches and a sharper looking face. Adopting the wide mouthed front grille and L.E.D. accents from the Focus, looks are more in common visually with the European Focus and Fiesta.

Twin exhausts finish the nicely rounded rear as do the new fog light housings.

Rivals
The Escape doesn’t have it all it own way in this market. The Mazda CX-5 has better base engines, but the Escape pips it for cargo capacity and drive. The Mazda did have the better exterior, but the Escape is much more defined in its new clothes.

The Honda CRV provides practical transportation, with a modern design and definitely the better interior. No Hybrids here, but you still get 22 mpg from the 2.0-liter turbo’ed version.
Just not the same driving experience as with the Escape, but you can’t beat Honda’s rocksolid reliability.

Moving to the VW Tiguan, this is a beefier beast seating 7 passengers and more interior.
Styling is more uniform than the Escape and it has more power. You’re not likely to ever off-road in either of these, but the Tiguan does have more ground clearance.


The Escape has been a consistent top seller in Europe.
So, now with a more streamlined exterior and electrified engine options, could the new design sway more new buyers in this competitive market? Style and convenience are the aim here and the Escape is definitely heading that way.
Now with hybrids joining the party.

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