For a vehicle with that sought-after SUV styling that drives a lot more like a car than an ungainly off-roader, we only have to look to today's slew of sporty compact crossovers. And if sporty really is your thing, it's tough to come up with any that are sportier then the Ford Escape. Even though Ford's compact SUV hasn't completely abandoned its truck-based roots as much as some have as it still offers all-wheel drive, only that and the tall stance are the real clues to its heritage. The 2018 Ford Escape is now with us, so let's take a look at what it has to offer.
It's hard to refute the fact the Escape is now getting closer to a sports car than the truck-based SUVs that were its original inspiration, which for the vast majority of buyers is no bad thing at all. But the 2018 Escape still has a strong look of a miniature Edge or Explorer, which is exactly what buyers want. When you then choose to take advantage of the available sports appearance package for the SE and Titanium models, the Escape then easily becomes one of the sportiest-looking models in the entire crossover market.
You can have a Ford Escape these days with any one of three different engines, all of which are excellent. They are all four-cylinder offering, but the spectrum they cover is reasonably wide to justify the existence of each. The base powerplant can only be found in the Escape S model, and it's a naturally aspirated 168 horsepower 2.5-liter engine that's front-wheel drive only. Then we move up to the 1.5-liter EcoBoost turbo-four that develops a useful 179 horsepower, which is then the standard unit in both the SE and Titanium versions of the
Escape. The 1.5-liter EcoBoost can be front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive; the choice is yours. Those top two trims can also be ordered with the most powerful engine on offer, which is a 2.0-liter EcoBoost that puts an impressive 245 horsepower and 275 lb.-ft. of torque at your disposal. Whichever trim, engine and drivetrain combination you choose, a six-speed automatic transmission is standard fare.
Ford has done what most manufacturers are doing these days, which is to make the absolute most out of a relatively compact interior space by using clever packaging. This even goes as far as being careful with how deep the seat cushions are to keep as much space available in the cabin as possible. The seats are reasonably firm as a result, but this also provides the kind of support you need is a vehicle that likes to be thrown around a little when the opportunity arises. It's not opulently luxurious in the cabin of the Escape, but it's very stylish, well put together, and it suits the overall concept perfectly.
Compact crossovers, like other compact vehicles, really do need to offer at least decent fuel economy ratings and the Ford more than lives up to its duties in this important area. Front-wheel drive models featuring the 1.5-liter EcoBoost have the most impressive EPA ratings of 23 mpg in the city, 30 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg combined.* But even 2.0-liter engine and all-wheel drive versions are pretty good with ratings of 20 mpg in the city, 27 mpg on the highway and 23 mpg combined.
The 2018 Ford Escape is available right now, so contact us here at Courtesy Ford for more details and to arrange in a test drive in the latest version of Ford's outstanding compact crossover.
*All vehicle mileage based on 2018 EPA mileage estimates. Use for comparison purposes only. Do not compare to models before 2008. Your actual mileage will vary, depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle.