Crossovers and trucks the ve­hi­cle lead­ers for Ford


Ford pre­dicts that crossovers and trucks will make up 86 per­cent of it’s pro­duc­tion in a cou­ple of years. In prepa­ra­tion, the com­pany is dis­con­tin­u­ing most of its sedans, and in­creas­ing the num­ber of trucks, util­ity ve­hi­cles and crossovers on of­fer.

The mid-size Ranger has joined the truck line, and will re­port­edly be fol­lowed by a new small truck. The Bronco name will be res­ur­rected within a year, for a new sport ute. The Ex­pe­di­tion and Ex­plorer have re­cently un­der­gone se­ri­ous makeovers. A new Es­cape is in the wings, to be fol­lowed by a Lin­coln ver­sion called the Cor­sair.

One of five Ford SUVS and crossovers with a name start­ing with “E”, the Es­cape is the com­pany’s sec­ond best-seller, after the F150. The Es­cape first ap­peared for the 2001 model year. A hy­brid ver­sion came along in 2005, and the third gen­er­a­tion came to mar­ket for 2013. To date, Ford has sold more than 4.5 mil­lion Es­capes in North Amer­ica.

Ford showed the 2020 Es­cape early this month, with si­mul­ta­ne­ous reveals in Dear­born and Europe where it will be called the Kuga.

The 2020 Es­cape will ar­rive at deal­ers this fall in S, SE, SE Sport, SEL and Ti­ta­nium trim lev­els. Ini­tial units will roll on 17, 18 or 19-inch wheels off the Ken­tucky as­sem­bly line with two dif­fer­ent gaso­line en­gines, and front or all-wheel-drive. A pair of hy­brids will fol­low next spring, in­clud­ing a plug-in ver­sion.

The fourth gen­er­a­tion Es­cape is based on the global C2 small car plat­form, which made its de­but be­neath the cur­rent Euro­pean Fi­esta.

The new Es­cape has a trape­zoidal grill sim­i­lar to that on the Mus­tang. It will be longer, wider, lower and al­most 100 ki­los lighter. An up­dated sus­pen­sion, im­proved aero­dy­nam­ics, new driv­e­trains and a to­tal­lynew in­te­rior are the high­lights.

The base model will have an all-new 1.5-litre tur­bocharged three-cylin­der en­gine pro­jected to pro­duce 180-horse­power. Stan­dard on S, SE and SEL mod­els, it is ex­pected pro­duce 180 horse­power and 177 lb.-ft. of torque on pre­mium fuel, slightly less with reg­u­lar. This en­gine will fea­ture cylin­der de­ac­ti­va­tion, which can shut off one cylin­der un­der low or no-load con­di­tions. Ford says it can ac­ti­vate or de­ac­ti­vate a cylin­der in 14 mil­lisec­onds.

At the other end, the Ti­ta­nium ver­sion will be avail­able with a 250-horse­power 2.0-litre turbo four. All-wheel-drive will be avail­able on all but the plugin hy­brid. Gaso­line en­gines will be paired with a new eight-speed au­to­matic, the hy­brids with a CVT (Con­tin­u­ously Vari­able Trans­mis­sion).

The SE Sport and Ti­ta­nium ver­sions will be avail­able with the fourth gen­er­a­tion of Ford’s hy­brid sys­tem. The setup in­cludes an all-new 2.5-liter Atkin­son cycle en­gine is pro­jected to put a com­bined out­put of 198 horse­power, and go up to 140 km/hr un­der elec­tric power alone. The liq­uid-cooled lithium-ion bat­tery pack can be recharged in 10-11 hours from a 110-volt out­let and in 3.5 from a Level 2, 240-volt source.

The new sus­pen­sion is mated to an iso­lated rear sub­frame said to re­duce NVH (Noise, Vi­bra­tion & harsh­ness). A se­lectable drive mode sys­tem will be stan­dard on all mod­els. It will in­clude set­tings for nor­mal, eco, sport and slip­pery, plus snow and sand con­di­tions.

The sec­ond-row seats in gaso­line en­gine mod­els will slide fore/aft through a 15-cm range for best-in-class rear seat, or cargo space. This fea­ture will not be avail­able on the hy­brid ver­sions be­cause of the location of the brief­case-sized bat­tery pack. Head, shoul­der and hip room are all in­creased in the new Es­cape.

Avail­able fea­tures will in­clude the abil­ity to park in a par­al­lel or per­pen­dic­u­lar location at the touch of a but­ton, with­out touch­ing the steer­ing wheel, gear shift, gas or brake pedals. A new Eva­sive Steer­ing As­sist sys­tem can help the driver avoid an im­mi­nent col­li­sion. Other driver-as­sist fea­tures in­clude adap­tive cruise con­trol with Stop-and-go and LaneCen­ter­ing. A 4G LTE Wi-fi hot spot for up to 10 mo­bile de­vices will also be avail­able. Ford­pass Con­nect will let driv­ers use their smart­phone to lock, un­lock, lo­cate and start the ve­hi­cle.


The 2020 Ford Es­cape joins the ranks of new ve­hi­cles in­clud­ing a mid-size Ranger and a res­ur­rected Bronco.


The base model will have an all-new 1.5-litre tur­bocharged three-cylin­der en­gine pro­jected to pro­duce 180-horse­power.

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