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New Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid gets 100 MPGe and 37 miles of all-electric range for under $35,000

The new Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid is a fuel-efficient SUV.

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

Add another model to the fuel-efficient SUV roster. Ford redesigned its Escape for the 2020 model year but it was introduced, three of its four powertrain options were available. Now, the fourth option is making its way to market - a plug-in hybrid electric system.

The 2020 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid delivers best-in-class EPA-estimated all-electric fuel economy rating of 100 MPGe combined and an EPA-estimated 37 miles of all-electric driving range. When running on strictly gasoline, the SUV gets 41 mpg.

MPGe, or miles per gallon of gasoline equivalent, is an Environmental Protection Agency metric to compare the amount of energy consumed by alternative fuel vehicles to what traditional gas-powered vehicles consume.

The Escape Plug-In Hybrid's closest competition is the 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime. It's a PHEV model that achieves 94 MPGe and gets 42 miles of all-electric rage.

2020 Ford Escape The SUV looks the same as every other new Escape, except for its unique badging and power plug door, located on note driver's side near the hood.Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

"The original Ford Escape was the world's first hybrid SUV and the all-new Ford Escape Plug-in Hybrid represents how far we've come in technology and efficiency," said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford chief product development and purchasing officer. "The all-new Escape plug-in has more power and more passenger space than the Fusion Energi plug-in, as well as up to four times the cargo volume behind its second-row seats."

This Escape is powered by a new 2.5-liter hybrid engine and electronic continuously variable transmission (CVT). Its liquid-cooled, 14.4-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery is positioned below the second-row seats.

The Escape Plug-In Hybrid has a Level 1/Level 2 AC charging port. Using a 110-volt Level 1 charger, the estimated time to fully charge the battery is 10 to 11 hours. Using a 240-volt Level 2 charger, charge time drops to roughly 3.5 hours.

2020 Ford Escape The SUV's battery is located under the rear seats so that it doesn't disrupt cargo room in the model.Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

Hybrid models feature four drive modes: Auto EV, EV Snow, EV Later, and EV Charge. In Auto EV mode, the vehicle decides whether to run on gas or electric power. Using 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. Ford's new EV Charge mode allows drivers to continue to charge the battery while driving and generate electric-only miles to use later.

Every Escape comes standard with Ford Co-Pilot360, a suite of driver assist and safety technology that includes adaptive cruise control with stop and go and lane centering. Active Park Assist is also available.

Buyers can get the PHEV powertrain on every Escape trim level except S and SE Sport. The Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid has a starting MSRP under $35,000.

That MSRP is lower than the RAV4 Prime, but the Toyota model's over $38,000 starting price is reflective of the fact that it features mid-grade and higher features and equipment right off the bat.

Other engine options

AutomotiveMap has already reviewed the Escape's other three powertrains as part of a larger 2020 Ford Escape review.

The 2020 Escape's base engine is a 1.5-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder (S, SE, SEL trim levels) that achieves 180 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque.

The available 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder (SEL, Titanium trim levels) is significant peppier getting 250 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque.

Both of those engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The Escape Hybrid is powered by a 2.5-liter hybrid four-cylinder, which is paired with an electronic continuously variable transmission.

Looking for a fuel-efficient SUV that isn't a plug-in? Check out AutomtoiveMap's list of 20 SUVs with the best gas mileage here.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

The 2021 Ford F-150 will come in a hybrid variant

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

If Ford is making anything clear these days, it’s that the future all-electric F-150 won’t just just a mundane street car. The future model will be capable of achieving the same feats as the rest of the company’s family of full-size pickup trucks, if not with more gusto than its relatives.

Ford has confirmed that the battery-electric (BEV) F-150 will be on sale in just a few years. To get to that point, there’s a lot of work that isn’t just going into product development, but also into facilities development. Demand for the F-150 BEV is expected to be high and Ford’s Rouge Complex can’t absorb it as the plant stands now.

Ford Rouge Complex The Ford plant in Dearborn will be the home of the F-150 electric truck.Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

The company will invest $700 million in the Dearborn, Michigan plant to include a new high-tech manufacturing home for the model. The investment will add 300 jobs. This $700 million is on top of the $1.45 billion that Ford is spending to equip its Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Michigan to produce the Ranger and Bronco.

"We are proud to once again build and innovate for the future here at the Rouge with the debut of our all-new F-150 and the construction of a modern new manufacturing center to build the first-ever all-electric F-150," said Bill Ford, executive chairman, Ford Motor Company. "This year's COVID-19 crisis made it clear why it is so important for companies like Ford to help keep our U.S. manufacturing base strong and help our country get back to work."

The all-electric Ford F-150 is expected to come to market in mid-2022. The redesigned 2021 F-150 will come to market later this year and include a new hybrid powertrain option dubbed the F-150 PowerBoost.

Recently, the company captured video of the F-1500 BEV testing in the wild.

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The 2021 Mazda CX-30 2.5 Turbo is joining the company’s lineup

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

The decision to add a turbocharged engine variant to the Mazda3 was met with praise for those who like getting in a little more excitement behind the wheel. Now It has been announced that the Mazda3's crossover counterpart, the CX-30 is getting the same treatment.

The 2021 Mazda CX-30 will be available with a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 250 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque when the tank is filled with 93 octane fuel. The performance drops to 227 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque when owners fill up with 87 octane. Engines with the turbo-four also get standard all-wheel drive.

2021 Mazda CX-30 2.5 Turbo The body styling is pretty much the same as the rest of the Mazda CX-30 lineup, but it does have unique wheels and other attributes.Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

To accommodate the new engine option, Mazda has not had to change the outward appearance of the model In earnest but does add some highlights including 18-inch black aluminum alloy wheels, larger tailpipes, gloss black door mirrors and a "TURBO" badge on the liftgate.

As the most premium Mazda CX-30 model, it comes with a frameless auto-dimming rearview mirror, black upper dash and chrome finishes. The features list includes a Bose 12-speaker audio system and an 8.8-inch infotainment screen..

The CX-30 2.5 Turbo, as the models with the engine will be known. Also comes equipped with Smart City Brake Support Reverse and rear cross-traffic braking technologies that can sense a vehicle coming into the lane of travel when reversing, warn the driver, and apply the brakes in order to possibly avoid a collision. Additional available safety technologies include a 360-degree view monitor, Active Drive Display, traffic sign recognition, and adaptation front lighting.

2021 Mazda CX-30 2.5 Turbo The CX-30 debuted just last year.Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

The 2021 Mazda CX-30 2.5 Turbo is scheduled to go on sale by the end of 2020. Specific packaging and pricing details will be announced in the coming months

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