The next-generation Ford Escape will land in Australia toward the end of 2020 with a $35,990 starting price, new flagship variant and a pricey plug-in hybrid (PHEV) option.
The 2020 Ford Escape will be available in three spec grades including the entry-level Escape, along with the ST-Line and the new Vignale, which replaces the Titanium name at the top of the range.
Powertrains include a 2.0-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder turbo with a choice of front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive, along with the FWD PHEV that’s only available in mid-spec ST-Line guise.
Combining a 2.5-litre four-cylinder Atkinson-cycle petrol engine, electric motor and generator and a 14.4kWh lithium-ion battery to produce 167kW of power, the ST-Line PHEV has an all-electric range of about 50km to help achieve a claimed combined fuel economy figure of just 1.5L/100km.
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It won't be cheap to buy, though, with the ST-Line PHEV FWD the most expensive variant in the range with its $52,940 price tag representing a $14,940 lift over the ST-Line 2.0L FWD.
That price, however, compares well to the lesser-equipped Mitsubishi Outlander ES PHEV ADAS that retails for $47,990, and the up-spec Outlander Exceed PHEV ($55,990).
The Toyota RAV4 Cruiser hybrid is just $41,990 in FWD and $44,990 in all-wheel-drive guise, though it does have a standard hybrid powertrain without the plugin capability as well as a higher 4.7L/100km combined fuel economy.
The Escape's volume-selling 2.0-litre EcoBoost, meanwhile, produces 183kW/387Nm and is coupled with an eight-speed automatic transmission. It’s available across the range as a front-driver in the entry-level variant, and with either front- or all-wheel-drive in the ST-Line and Vignale. Claimed combined fuel economy is 8.6L/100km with either drivetrain.
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The fourth-generation Ford Escape is built on an all-new platform that allows for a longer wheelbase and wider cabin that brings more shoulder and headroom than its predecessor.
It’s also 90kg lighter, which should hopefully improve driving dynamics over the third-generation Escape.
The 2020 Escape’s starting price is $7000 more than the current model, but it comes with a more powerful engine and automatic gearbox as standard along with plenty of extra kit including:
- Push-button start
- Wireless smartphone charging
- DAB+ radio
- SYNC 3 infotainment with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
- Voice-command in-built sat-nav with Australian accent recognition and Traffic Management System
- 8.0-inch full-colour touchscreen
- Reversing camera
- Front and rear parking sensors
- Power windows with global opening and closing via key fob
- Cruise Control with adjustable speed limiter
- Autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection
- Evasive steering assist
- Forward collision warning
- Traffic sign recognition
- Blindspot detection
- Lane keep assist
- Lane departure warning
- Driver impairment monitor
- Tyre pressure monitor
The ST-Line spec adds bespoke 18-inch alloys and upper grille design, sport front and rear bumpers and side skirts, lowered sports suspension, black roof rails and bigger rear spoiler.
The interior is also a bit racy, with a flat-bottomed steering wheel, red-stitching and metallic foot pedals.
Opt for the ST-Line PHEV and you get partial leather trim, 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat and 10-speaker premium audio.
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The luxury-focused Vignale sports its own unique body styling that includes a chrome front fascia, 19-inch alloy wheels and self-levelling LED quad-projector headlights with a dynamic bending function to help is ‘see' around corners.
In addition to the EcoBoost Escape and ST-Line versions, the Vignale comes with:
- Advanced keyless entry
- Heated leather-wrap steering wheel
- Leather accented seating
- 10-way power-adjustable front seats
- Heated front seats
- Heated rear outboard seats
- Panoramic sunroof
- Head-up display
- Hands-free power tailgate
- 180-degree rear-view camera
- Advanced automated park assist.
All versions will also come with the new FordPass Connect system embedded modem as standard that brings remote vehicle functionality and connected services such as remote vehicle lock and unlock, key vehicle information and the ability to schedule your next service, all from a dedicated phone app.
It also has a service called ‘Ford Guide’, who can assist – by phone or email – with any queries about connected services.
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Its part of a new SUV push by Ford Australia, which began with its Endura large SUV last year and will also be bolstered by the small Puma crossover.
2020 Ford Escape retail pricing
- Escape 2.0L FWD - $35,990
- Escape ST-Line 2.0L FWD - $37,990
- Escape ST-Line 2.0L AWD - $40,990
- Escape ST-Line PHEV FWD - $52,940
- Escape Vignale 2.0L FWD - $46,520
- Escape Vignale 2.0L AWD - $49,490