2020 Ford Escape First Drive Review


2020 Ford Escape First Drive Review

The 2020 Ford Escape came at an interesting time, following the dropping of its sedan and hatchback lines in the US, Ford is frankly hoping that its lineup of completely re-conceived crossovers and SUVs, like the significantly improved, all 2020 Ford Explorer, will absorb those car buyers and attract new ones and looking more like a jacked-up hatchback than anything that might tackle an off-road adventure. It’s handsome, but it is also the opposite of the direction Toyota took with its sales-leading RAV4, which adopted a more rugged look and feel in its most recent redesign.

By making the Escape even less like a truck and even more like a car, Ford aims to offer its customers the best of both worlds, the driving dynamics of a fun hatchback with the elevated seating position that American buyers want. And for the most part, it’s successful in that mission.

Visualizing the 2020 Escape’s car-ification requires no more than a quick glance at its sheetmetal, particularly at the front. Ford says the trapezoidal shape of the Escape’s grille opening is inspired by the Mustang and that its lower front fascia borrows design cues from the GT supercar, tellingly, there’s no mention of Ford’s sales-leading pickup trucks in the design discussion. The roof slopes dramatically toward the rear of the vehicle, which makes the latest Escape look like a highly aerodynamic lozenge when viewed in profile.


Buyers who want a bit more oomph/cylinders can opt for a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four that offers 250 horsepower and a class-leading 280 lb-ft on premium fuel. It’ll run fine on regular gas but will make a little less power.

The bigger engine is also hooked up to an eight-speed automatic, and while it’s certainly quicker than its 1.5-liter sibling with features rear wheels that disconnect from the rest of the drivetrain until the car’s computer senses slip, even the larger engine option is sometimes caught flat-footed at low RPMs until the boost builds. Once under way, passing power from the 2.0-liter is very good due to its abundance of midrange torque, and it’s rated to tow as huge as 1.6 Million Naira flat.

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