Updated: December 20, 2012 at 12:00 am
With the release of the 2013 Escape, Ford has made a vast departure from the crossover SUV of it’s past. The new Escape is completely redesigned and offers a significant improvement for compact crossover SUV’s.
According to Ford, this design is generated from the company’s One Ford strategy that aspires to offer the same or similar vehicles globally. For instance, the new 2013 Escape, is based on the Ford Kuga, a European compact crossover that in turn shares its platform with the Ford Focus.
One of the first things buyers will notice is a sleeker and more cutting edge exterior with muscular lines and stylish front and rear fascia leading to a distinctive, less boxy appearance. Among the enhancements is a 2.8-inch longer wheelbase along with being 1.3 inches wider. The longer and wider body gives the new Escape a sportier and more upscale look than previous versions as well as more passenger space.
“By far the biggest advantage of the Escape, compared to others in its class, is the EcoBoost engine.” said Mike Ortiz, New Ford Lincoln Manager from Phil Long Ford. “With the new Escape, drivers get a lot of power along with great gas mileage.”
Ford’s EcoBoost turbocharged, direct-fuel-injected engines are specifically designed to provide the power of a large engine with the fuel consumption of a smaller one, and is available in many Ford models.
Buyers can choose one of the three four-cylinder engines which encompass the Escape's lineup, all equipped with a six-speed automatic transmission. The first is a 168-horsepower 2.5-liter engine (carried over from last year) and is only offered on the base model.
A more popular choice is the new turbocharged 1.6-liter. This gets you 178 horsepower and an EPA-estimated 33 mpg on the highway. Drivers can also opt for the 240-hp turbocharged four-cylinder if they’re looking for more acceleration.
With the 180-degree redesign, the new Escape also gives buyers class leading interior technology supplying the latest version of Ford's Sync system with MyFord Touch. “The 2013 Escape offers a wide assortment of trim packages, including leather upholstery and the addition of the MyFord Touch electronics interface.” noted Ortiz. “The "hands-free" power liftgate is one of the more exceptional new options.”
Buyers can choose from four trim levels for the 2013 Escape.
When choosing the S buyers will get 17-inch steel wheels, an integrated blind-spot mirror, MyKey parental controls, full power accessories, cruise control, air-conditioning, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack. Options for the S can include the Sync voice-command electronics interface (iPod interface and Bluetooth) and steering-wheel audio controls.
If you decide to opt for the SE you’ll get a turbocharged engine, color-keyed mirrors/door handles, foglamps, 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, keyless entry keypad, privacy tinted glass, a four-inch multifunction screen, the Sync system, reclining rear seats, satellite radio and steering-wheel audio controls. Options for the SE can include 18-inch wheels, a power panoramic sunroof, a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control and a navigation system.
The sophisticated SEL consists of heated sideview mirrors, one-touch up/down for all windows, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, the MyFord Touch electronics interface, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, interior ambient lighting, an eight-way power driver seat (with power lumbar), heated front seats and an upgraded, nine-speaker sound system. The many pptions for the SEL can include a Cargo Management System (roof rack, interior tonneau cover, power liftgate), a Technology package (keyless ignition/entry, remote start, hands-free liftgate, reverse park assist and a Sony audio system with 10 speakers and HD radio), a Parking Technology package (automated parallel parking assist, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera and a blind-spot monitor), a panoramic sunroof and a navigation system.
At the top of the line the Titanium brings a more powerful engine, 19-inch wheels, remote start, keyless ignition/entry, ambient lighting, upgraded leather upholstery and the Sony audio system. Options for the Titanium include a Titanium Technology package (roof rack, xenon headlights, interior tonneau cover, hands-free liftgate, reverse park assist), the Parking Technology package, full leather upholstery, a power panoramic sunroof and a navigation system.
Other interior changes include higher-quality materials, a second-row seat that's much easier to fold down,
Although the Ford Escape has been around for eleven years, the only thing the 2013 model has in common with its past style is price. Thankfully, despite the overall refinement as well as impressive performance, Escape remains at the top for affordable crossover SUV’s.