The Ford Escape is a small sports utility vehicle and Ford has packed this second generation model with many great features. The Ford Escape was launched in 2008 and has many improvements in fuel economy and performance since. There are regular motors available in the Escape, but the Hybrid model has become the consumer favorite in the Escape lineup. The Escape hybrid offers over 30MPG in town and on the highway. For those who are looking for a stronger motor that is fully capable of towing and more, Ford offers a V-6 that will fit the bill.

This SUV is smaller and may look similar to some other crossover models this year, but it does offer much more durability in the off road driving scene. The Ford Edge really offers a lot in a smaller more maneuverable SUV package. This very versatile SUV starts at $21,600 and the hybrid model starts at$29.865. Both models are reminiscent of the older Ford Explorer model which offers a nice looking 4 door truck for anybody that loves the outdoors.

Bodystyles: Crossover SUV
Engines: 2.5L I-4, 3.0L V-6, 2.5L I-4 w/electric motor
Transmissions: 5-speed manual, 6-speed automatic, continuously variable transmission (CVT)
Models: XLS, XLT, Limited, Hybrid

The Ford Escape recently received a cosmetic redesign and engine upgrades, so changes for 2010 are limited to the addition of new features. These include integrated spotter mirrors, optional rear-view camera system, Active Park Assist self-parallel-parking system, and MyKey. Also new is the Sync with Traffic, Directions and Information system that adds GPS functionality and Bluetooth connectivity.

The Escape looks somewhat like an Explorer that’s shrunk in the wash. Hybrid models come with body-color grilles, others with chrome. Limited models get chrome lower fascias.16-inch wheels standard, 17-inch wheels are optional.

At 35.6 inches, the Escape is slightly short on rear-seat legroom but offers up a maximum of 67.2 cubic-feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded down. Limited models come with leather-trimmed seats.

The Escape’s 2.5-liter I-4 makes 171 horsepower and 171 pound-feet of torque and can be had with a 5-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed automatic. Those planning on hauling lots of gear or pulling a trailer should opt for the 240-horsepower V-6, which can tow up to 3500 pounds. Meanwhile, the Escape Hybrid is the most fuel-efficient SUV available.

The Ford Escape comes standard with six airbags including side curtain airbags for both rows of seats plus stability and traction control. Integrated spotter mirrors help the driver see traffic in blind spots.

I-4 FWD: 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway (manual)
I-4 FWD: 21 mpg city/28 mpg highway
I-4 AWD: 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway
V-6 FWD: 20 mpg city/26 mpg highway
V-6 AWD: 18 mpg city/23 mpg highway
Hybrid FWD: 34 mpg city/31 mpg highway
Hybrid AWD: 30 mpg city/27 mpg highway

  • Good fuel economy
  • Lacking rear-seat legroom

Big SUV looks, small size


  • Honda CR-V
  • Subaru Forester
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Suzuki Grand Vitara

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