November 2011

Vehicle Profile: The 2012 Ford Escape

The 2012 Ford Escape has been a perennial best bet for consumers looking for a five-seat, compact SUV. More than a million Escape models are on the road today, thanks to a combination of capabilities that continues to be unmatched by the competition.
Thanks to its high-tech features, handsome styling, spirited performance and the impressive fuel economy of both the traditional Escape and the Escape Hybrid, Edmunds.com noted that the 2012 Ford Escape is “a tempting choice in the compact crossover category.”
 
The non-hybrid Escape is available in three trim levels – XLS, XLT and Limited – or choose the Escape Hybrid or the Escape Hybrid Limited. Every trim level of the Escape is offered in either front- or all-wheel drive, giving it an advantage over many competing compact SUVs that only offer a two-wheel drive on their entry trim levels.
 
Adding to the choices, all non-hybrid Escape models are available with a 2.5-liter Duratec® inline four-cylinder engine with advanced intake variable-cam timing technology to maximize performance when it’s needed and optimize fuel efficiency during steady cruising. The Escape XLS offers the engine with a choice of either a six-speed automatic transmission (its increased number of ratios provides low-end acceleration while offering maximum fuel efficiency in overdrive) or a five-speed manual transmission. Both the XLT and Limited trims are standard with the six-speed automatic. The Escape maintains a towing capacity of up to 3,500 pounds with the Class II Trailer Towing Package.
 
The Escape Hybrid operates with a 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle inline four-cylinder, coupled with a permanent magnet, AC-synchronous electric motor. During highway cruising, the Escape Hybrid’s 2.5-liter four-cylinder is in continuous operation, but in heavy traffic or city driving, the electric motor provides much of the motive force until the Escape Hybrid reaches a speed where the gas engine can provide the most efficiency. Power from both the gas engine and the electric motor is channeled to the wheels through an electronically controlled continuously variable transmission (CVT) that keeps the engine turning at optimal speed for increased fuel efficiency. The Escape Hybrid is capable of fuel economy EPA-estimated at 34 mpg city and 31 mpg highway.
 
Regardless of which Escape model you choose, you’re in for some class-leading technologies. The industry-exclusive MyKey® – which allows owners to program a “key limit” to certain vehicle functions like top speed and radio volume to help promote safe driving habits – is especially helpful if inexperienced teen drivers are expected to be behind the wheel. MyKey also includes the ability to set speed alert chimes that warn drivers they’re approaching unsafe speeds, an earlier low fuel warning indicator and a persistent Belt-Minder® seatbelt alert.
 
Escape XLT, Escape Limited and Escape Hybrid Limited are available with Intelligent 4-Wheel Drive that works to provide maximum traction either on the road or off the beaten path. Two hundred times per second, the system senses traction input and automatically adjusts torque distribution to the wheels with the most grip, transparently and without input or interaction from the driver, in wet or dry conditions. The system works in combination with the standard AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control (RSC®) system, which utilizes gyroscopic sensors that measure vehicle yaw and roll motion. If you happen to enter a corner too quickly, or make a sudden evasive maneuver, RSC applies brake pressure to individual wheels and adjusts engine power to help you stay in control.
 
The class-exclusive SYNC® system is available on select Escape and Escape Hybrid models. The system offers hands-free access to a paired and connected Bluetooth® enabled phones. Music is also available through your USB-connected digital media player without ever having to take your hands from the wheel. SYNC Services also include Traffic, Directions and Information, turn-by-turn directions and a business search that operates through the audio system. The Vehicle Health Report allows customers to receive a vehicle diagnostics report online and 911 Assist can connect directly to a 911 operator through the paired mobile phone in the event of a collision in which airbags deploy.
 
The Ford Escape continues to be a fan favorite, and with all the connectivity and efficiency technology built in, you can see why. For a demonstration of all of its capabilities, contact us today for a test drive.

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