The 2021 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid comes in 3 trims: SE (MSRP: $33,075), SEL (MSRP: $35,815), and Titanium (MSRP: $38,325).
The PHEV is eligible for an up to $6,843 Federal Tax Credit.
The first hybridized Escape arrived in 2004; the latest version came into showrooms two years ago in 2020, with a complete design refresh. The Escape model continues to be one of Ford’s best sellers. Through 2020, more than 4,623,460 Escapes have been sold in the United State alone. 138,146 of those were hybrids. It’s hard to argue with these sales figures. And the car continues to be very popular because of its 520 mile total range.
MotorTrend considers the 2021 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid to be the most fuel-efficient SUV money can buy. It has a best-in-class EPA-estimated economy rating of 100 MPGe combined.
The Ford Escape PHEV is powered by a 2.5L iVCT Atkinson Cycle I-4 Hybrid engine paired with an electric motor and a 14.4 kWh battery pack. Working together they manufacture 221 horsepower. It takes 11 hours to charge the battery with a Level 1 charger and just 3.3 hours to fully charge the battery with a Level 2 charger.
Four driving modes allow customers to select the setting most suitable for how they’re going to drive:
• In Auto EV mode, the vehicle decides whether to run on gas or electric power
• In EV Now mode, drivers can operate on all-electric power
• In EV Later mode, drivers can switch to full gas-hybrid driving to conserve electric miles for later
• In all-new EV Charge mode, drivers can continue to charge the battery while driving and generate electric-only miles to use later
All 2021 Escape Hybrid trims receive an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment display; Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and satellite radio capabilities. There’s an Onboard Wi-Fi hotspot and 2 rear USB ports as well. The entry-level audio system is a 6-speaker setup. Drivers looking for more can upgrade to a 10-speaker B&O premium system.
Standard features for the SE include:
• Electric Power-Assisted Steering (EPAS)
• Post-Collision Braking
• Plug-in Hybrid 2.5L iVCT Atkinson-Cycle I-4 engine
• Curve Control
• Electric Parking Brake
• Front-wheel drive
• Electronic Traction Control
• Four-Wheel Disc Brakes with Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS)
• 18-inch Machined-Aluminum Wheels
• Dual-Zone Electronic Automatic Temperature Control
• Driver's Side Footrest
• Carpeted floor mats, first and second row
• Grab handles, Front Passenger. Second Row-two
• Ice Blue Instrument Panel Cluster Lighting
• Message center and trip computer
• 6.5'' Color LCD Instrument cluster
• Manual day/night rearview mirror
• Urethane steering wheel with cruise and audio controls, manual tilt and telescoping steering column
• Illuminated Visor Vanity Mirrors (Driver and Front Passenger)
• Rotary gear shift dial Open image overlay for Rotary gear shift dial
• Selectable Drive Mode
• Powerpoints – (2) Type A/C USB – (1) Media Bin, (1) back of center console
• Power Windows with Driver's Front One-Touch Down (Driver's Only)
• Autolamp (Automatic On/Off) with Headlamp Courtesy Delay
• Intelligent Access with Push-Button Start
• Outside temperature display
• Center Console with Convenient Media Bin
• Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking
• Lane-Keeping System
• BLIS with Cross-Traffic Alert Open image overlay for BLIS with Cross-Traffic Alert
• 6-way Manual Driver Seat
• 4-way Manual Passenger Seat
• Second-Row Sliding Seats, 60/40 Split-Fold Dow
The PHEV has a maximum towing capacity of 1500 pounds.
The Escape Plug-In Hybrid comes with a Co-Pilot360 suite of driver assist active safety features which include:
• AdvanceTrac w/Roll Stability Control Electronic Stability Control (ESC) And Roll Stability Control (RSC)
• ABS And Driveline Traction Control
• Side Impact Beams
• Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
• Ford Co-Pilot360 - BLIS (Blind Spot Information System) Blind Spot
• Ford Co-Pilot360 - Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) and Ford Co-Pilot360 - Cross-Traffic Alert
• Lane Keeping Alert Lane Keeping Assist
• Lane Keeping Alert Lane Departure Warning
• Collision Mitigation-Front
• Driver Monitoring-Alert
• Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
• Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
• Safety Canopy System Curtain 1st And 2nd Row Airbags
• Personal Safety System Airbag Occupancy Sensor
• Driver Knee Airbag
• MyKey System -inc: Top Speed Limiter, Audio Volume Limiter, Early Low Fuel Warning, Programmable Sound Chimes and Beltminder w/Audio Mute
• Rear Child Safety Locks
• Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -inc: Rear Center 3 Point, Height Adjusters and Pretensioners
• Back-Up Camera
Regarding interior space and cargo volume, motortrend.com reviewer Alex Leanse says: “The Escape Hybrid's cargo area measures between 30.7 and 34.4 cubic feet behind the second-row seats, depending on if those seats are slid forward. Folding the second row expands cargo capacity to 60.8 cubic feet. Due to the trunk-mounted hybrid battery, cargo volume is less than the standard Escape by about 3.0 cubic feet behind the second row, and about 4.5 cubic feet maximum. Front-row headroom measures 40.0 inches in the Escape Hybrid, which compares to 37.7 inches in sunroof-equipped Toyota RAV4 Hybrids. Second-row headroom is closer, at 39.3 inches in the Escape and 39.7 inches in the RAV4. The Ford offers more front legroom, with 42.4 inches compared to the Toyota's 41.0. Second-row legroom is also greater at 38.9 inches against the RAV4's 37.8 inches.”
The Escape Hybrid earns a 5-star safety rating from the NHTSA, the highest score.
WRITTEN DECEMBER 2021
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