Ford Motor Co. is planning to unveil the next generation Ford Escape during the press preview at next months Los Angeles Auto, company officials have confirmed. The next escape will come with 4-cyliner EcoBoost engine rather than a V6 engine, Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president, Global Product Development told reporters this week.
Kuzak added the Ford Escape Hybrid will disappear from the company's model line and be replaced in Ford's model line by an all-new C-MAX Hybrid that’s 25 percent more fuel efficient than even today’s Escape Hybrid.
“Customers are prioritizing fuel economy above every other trait when they make most vehicle purchases,” Kuzak said. “Ford is meeting people’s needs by offering a family of fuel-efficient vehicles – from hybrids to electrics to traditional gasoline-powered cars – packed with class-leading technology, giving customers both exciting and greener driving choices,” Kuzak said.
Kuzak said the 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine, which uses turbocharging, twin independent variable camshaft timing and direct injection to deliver the performance of a larger engine and the fuel -economy of a smaller motor. In its North American debut in the new Escape, it is expected to deliver even higher highway fuel economy than the current Escape Hybrid, which is EPA-rated at 31 mpg. The new 1.6-liter engine also is expected to deliver better fuel economy than larger four-cylinder engines such as Toyota and Honda, he said.
The Escape will also be Ford’s first SUV to be available with two versions of fuel-efficient EcoBoost engines, which will be offered as standard at more popular trim levels, Ford officials added. The 2.5 liter Ti VCT has been earmarked as the base engine in the new Escape, which will no longer be equipped with a V6.
Escape’s new 2.0-liter EcoBoost will have better fuel economy than competitors’ V6 engines while delivering unsurpassed performance compared to those larger six-cylinder engines, Ford representatives added.
"Expanding the availability of EcoBoost technology in the all-new Ford Escape will give customers a great range of choices for the fuel efficiency and performance they want in a small SUV,” said Joe Bakaj, vice president, Powertrain Engineering. “This advanced technology in the new Escape delivers on our commitment to provide class-leading fuel efficiency in every new Ford product.”
Since launch, sales of the 1.6-liter EcoBoost in Europe in Focus and C-MAX are exceeding expectations by 40 percent. Ford holds more than 125 patents on EcoBoost technology, a global approach to provide affordable fuel efficiency for millions of drivers that will extend to 90 percent of Ford vehicles by 2013. EcoBoost increases fuel economy up to 20 percent while reducing CO2 emissions by up to 15 percent.
With the addition of EcoBoost engines to the Escape, Ford will offer more advanced technology engines in its utility vehicle lineup than any other full-line manufacturer. By Joseph Szczesny