The Ford Escape returns for its eleventh model year in 2011. While its styling has not changed, the Escape has received one new addition for 2011, optional HD radio. Active Park Assist, which helps steer the vehicle into a parking spot, and Ford’s Sync navigation system remain optional features. The Escape is built on the same platform as the Mazda Tribute. It features five-passenger seating, unibody construction, and four-wheel independent suspension.
The 2011 Ford Escape is offered in three trim lines: XL, XLS, and Limited. Front-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive is available on all trim lines. The model has two engine choices: a 2.5 liter 171 horsepower four-cylinder engine or a 3.0-liter, V-6 engine producing 240 horsepower. The four-cylinder engine returns 20-mpg city and 26-mpg highway with all-wheel drive.
The Escape is offered with a hybrid engine. However, the Escape Hybrid is actually considered a separate model. It comes in Hybrid and Hybrid Limited trim lines. It is a favorite among urbanites and environmentalists as it gets 34 miles per gallon city, 31 miles per gallon highway, with the size and utility of an SUV. It is a true hybrid engine that uses a continuously variable transmission. The Escape Hybrid has a base price of about $30,000 with front drive. An Escape Hybrid Limited with all-wheel drive starts at about $35,000.
Despite last being significantly revised in 2008, the Escape remains a strong seller for Ford. It is one of the best selling SUVs on the road. The Escape competes in the compact SUV class against the Honda CR-V, Chevrolet Equinox, and Toyota RAV-4.
The 2011 Escape has a starting price of about $21,000 in XL trim. An Escape Limited with all-wheel drive tops out at near $29,000. The 2012 Ford Escape is expected to be significantly revised so prospective buyers may want to hold off on their purchase to await the 2012 model.