Ford Escape PHEV - A very nice car/suv with just a couple of drawbacks (but still worth a look)


The test car you see above is a 2023 model even though the 2024s have been out for some time. Basically they are the same, a little tweak here and there but nothing to change my opinion. And my opinion is that it is a darn good smallish SUV. I say smallish because I really don't know what is small anymore. Small to me would be tiny to someone else.

What makes this Escape so good in my opinion? So many things but tops on the list is economy of operation. It is a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle. Now I never plugged it in, I depended on regenerative power generation and it worked just fine. Don't expect much range - 37 miles is the range - but it is fine for around town. US EPA says fuel economy is 40-mpg combine, 42 city , and 37 highway. I got 40.8-mpg combined. 

I am not sure why the world needs a plug-in hybrid; why not just a hybrid? I admit I am biased against anything the increases my use of electricity, something that costs me way too much already. This is the prime reason I did not plug the Escape into any outlet. 

Some people seem to be confused by plug-in hybrids. I met a woman in a plug-in hybrid who was frantically trying to find a working charging station because she was almost out of juice! But back to the Escape PHEV.

The only real problem I had with the Escape is the same problem I have with so many of today's vehicles - TOO MUCH DISTRACTING, HARD TO USE TECH. I happen to believe that driving a vehicle, even if it's just to the corner store, is a full-time job. It is not something you should do while texting your friends, making phone calls, putting on makeup, shaving, or trying to fiddle with a damn touch screen. 

I recently read an article in The Drive titled "Good News: Cars Will Need Buttons to Get Perfect Safety Ratings in Europe" ( Good news indeed. If only it should happen here. Give me a tactile switch any day.

Okay enough of that.


The test Escape was a higher end model. As such it was nicely outfitted, maybe not fit for a King but maybe for an Earl. This did not change the underlying vehicle; a capable, comfortable FWD, smaller, fuel efficient SUV.

For 2024 the total available horsepower for the PHEV is 210, more than enough to sufficiently motivate the 2-ton Escape. This is not a race car folks but it is more than capable for the cut and thrust of todays traffic (and docile enough for the slow commute slogs). 

Ford gives useful cargo measurements, not just cubic feet of storage. There is 36.7" of storage from the back seat to the closed hatch, and 68.3" from the front seats to the hatch. With a $495 tow package you can tow up to 1,500 lbs. 

The Ford Escape PHEV is not a no frills, low cost vehicle. For 2024 it starts at $40,500. Add in the $4,530 Premium package and you have an Escape similar to the test vehicle. 

I was impressed with the Ford Escape PHEV, it is a vehicle I would have no hesitation recommending. 


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