(Updated 6/16/20 to include pricing and technical information on the 2020 Escape plug-in hybrid. Originally posted 7/19/19.)
The redesigned, re-engineered 2020 Ford Escape will offer two Hybrid trim levels – with a base price that just breaks the $30,000 mark – when it hits dealer showrooms this fall.
A plug-in hybrid Escape, with three trim levels starting at $34,285 will be available in the summer of 2020.
The Escape Hybrid, returning after a seven-year hiatus – will be available with standard front-wheel drive or, for a smallish premium, all-wheel drive. The Escape PHEV will be front-wheel drive only.
Ford says the base Escape Hybrid SE Sport will start at $30,625, with all-wheel drive a $1,320 add-on. The Escape Hybrid Titanium will start at $35,590, and add $1,500 for all-wheel drive. Prices include Ford’s destination charge of $1,095.
The Escape Hybrid has been EPA-rated at 41 mpg overall for the front-whel drive version – 44 mpg city and 37 mpg highway – and 40 mpg overall for the all-wheel drive version – 43 mpg city, 37 mpg highway.
Ford said the Escape PHEV has just been rated by the EPA, also at 41 mpg overall. That puts it at the top pof the heap for combined gas-elecltric fuel efficiency among all plug-in hybrid crossovers and SUVs in today’s market. It also will deliver up to 37 miles of all-electric range, trailing the RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid’s Ford-estimated 42 miles.
The 2020 Escape PHEV caries a roughly $4,000 premium over similarly equipped Escape Hybrid trims.
Much of that technology premium will be offset, however, by the the federal income tax credit for plug-in vehicles. The Escape PHEV qualifies for a federal tax credit of around $6,800. Some states, cities and utilities also offer their own plug-in-vehicle incentives.
Sorry, no incentives available for standard hybrid models.
The Escape PHEV will come in three trims – SE, SEL and Titanium.
Powertrain, Battery Differences
Both the Escape Hybrid and the Escape PHEV will be tow-rated – for 1,500 pounds versus the standard 2020 Escape’s 3,500 pounds.
Both will use 2.5-liter gas engines, augmented with their respective electric drive systems.
Ford claims 198 horsepower for the conventional hybrid and 212 hp for the PHEV.
The Escape Hybrid will use a 1.1-kWh, liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery fitted under the sliding, folding rear seats. That’s enough battery, the automaker says, to permit the hybrid to hit 85 mph in all-electric mode.
The PHEV will use a 14.4-kWh battery – also lithium-ion, liquid cooled and located beneath the rear seats.