2017 Ford Escape features updated turbocharged engine

New EcoBoost® engines – a 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter twin-scroll – give drivers two powerful options.

By Jerry Robbin

The 2017 Ford Escape has been freshened with some major updates for the model year.

It features a new Sync 3 interface, revised exterior styling, some minor interior improvements and a newly available 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. The new 1.5 gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg combined (23 city/30 highway) with four-wheel drive. FWD and the all-wheel drive lowers the mileage by 2 mpg.

2017-Ford-Escape-SE-rear-three-quarterDriving impression
My test drive was the Escape Titanium model with the Sport Appearance Pacakage and all-wheel drive. It had quick responsive steering that felt like a sedan with a higher center of gravity.  The acceleration from the turbocharged 1.5-liter engine was more than adequate and capable of entering the expressway and merging into traffic with ease.

New Ford Escape is available with either of two EcoBoost® engines, both featuring Auto Start-Stop technology as standard equipment.

New Ford Escape is available with either of two EcoBoost® engines, both featuring Auto Start-Stop technology as standard equipment.

Under the hood
The model came with the new standard turbocharged 1.5-liter, four-cylinder engine with 179 hp and 172 lb.-ft. of torque motor, and a six-speed automatic transmission. The new 1.5 gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg combined (23 city/30 highway) with four-wheel drive. FWD and the all-wheel drive lowers the mileage by 2 mpg.

Safety Features
• 4-wheel ABS.
• Front and rear head airbags.
• Dual front and dual rear with head protection chambers side-mounted airbags.
• Child seat anchors.
• Remote anti-theft alarm system.
• Emergency braking assist.
• Ventilated front disc/solid rear disc brakes.
• Rear door child safety locks.
• Engine immobilizer
• Front fog/driving lights.
• Auto delay off headlamps.
• Dusk sensing headlamps.
• 2 front headrests.
• 3 rear headrests.
• Passenger airbag occupant- sensing deactivation.
• Rear center 3-point belt.
• Turn signal mirrors.
• Stability control.
• Traction control.
• Rear height-adjustable headrests.
• Post-collision safety system.
• Tire pressure monitoring.
• Airbag Deployment Notification.
• Adaptive Cruise Control w/Forward Collision Warning and Brake Support.

New Ford Escape offers a redesigned front row with updated center console that increases storage by 25 percent and improves driver and passenger ergonomics.

New Ford Escape offers a redesigned front row with updated center console that increases storage by 25 percent and improves driver and passenger ergonomics.

Inside
The 2017 Escape’s interior uses fresh materials and design elements that give the inside a whole new rich look and feel. New storage areas located in the center console and a redesigned steering wheel are upgrades for the model year.  New tech upgrades include Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration for 2017. Sync 3 is feature-rich and easy to use, with an attractive interface and large virtual buttons.

The interior is very spacious behind the front seats. There is adequate leg room and plenty of head room in the rear seat. Cargo is 34.3 cubic feet behind the rear seat and 67.8 with the rear seat down.

Below is a list of all the features found on my test drive:

Front seats
• Eight-way power driver and passenger seat.
• Multi-level heating driver and passenger seat.
• Driver and passenger seat with power- adjustable lumbar support.
• Height-adjustable driver seat.
• Bucket front seats.
• Leather.

Rear Seats
• Split-folding rear seatback.
• Reclining rear seats.
• Folding center armrest.
• Rear ventilation ducts.

Power Features
• Hands-free entry.
• 4 one-touch power windows.

Instrumentation
• Clock.
• Tachometer.
• Trip computer.
• External temperature display.
• Compass.

Convenience
• Cruise control.
• Front and rear cupholders.
• Front and rear door pockets
• Overhead console with storage.
• Front seatback storage.
• Electric power steering.
• Universal remote transmitter (for garage door, security system, etc.).
• Rear parking sensors.
• Tilt and telescopic steering wheel.
• Transmission, cruise and audio controls on steering wheel.
• Rear view camera.
• Destination guidance (also Turn-by-Turn Navigation).
• Destination Download.
Comfort
• Interior air filtration.
• Dual-zone climate controls – driver and passenger.
• Leather and simulated alloy steering wheel.
• Turn signal in mirrors.
• Electrochromatic inside rear-view mirror.
• Dual illuminating vanity mirrors.

All-new steering wheel on 2017 Ford Escape features easy-to-work buttons to control audio and adaptive cruise control, and to initiate SYNC® 3 voice commands.

All-new steering wheel on 2017 Ford Escape features easy-to-work buttons to control audio and adaptive cruise control, and to initiate SYNC® 3 voice commands.

In-car Entertainment
• Sony premium brand 355-watts stereo system with 10 total speakers, including a subwoofer.
• Video monitor
• AM/FM/CD stereo.
• 6 months of provided satellite radio service.
• Speed-sensitive volume control.
• Auxiliary audio input and USB with external media control.
• Memory card slot.
• USB connection.

Telematics
• Bluetooth wireless data link for hands-free phone
• SYNC is offered through a subscription-based service or requires a compatible mobile device.

Outside
The outside design of the 2017 Escape has not changed considerably. It does feature a new hexagonal upper grille and unique headlamps.
The rear end has a new liftgate that is wider and the taillamps have a blockier shape.
My test drive had the new Sports Appearance Package with black 19-inch wheels and mirror caps, smoked lamp bezels and darkened grille insets.

Exterior Measurements
• Width: 72.4 in.
• Height: 66.3 in.
• Length: 178.1 in.
• Wheelbase: 105.9 in.
• Ground clearance: 7.8 in.

With rear seats folded flat, new Ford Escape offers 68 cubic feet of cargo space.

With rear seats folded flat, new Ford Escape offers 68 cubic feet of cargo space.

Interior Measurements
• Front head room: 39.9 in.
• Front leg room: 43.1 in.
• Front hip room: 54.5 in.
• Front shoulder room: 55.9 in.
• Rear hip room: 52.4 in.
• Rear leg room: 43.1 in.
• Rear head room: 39 in.

If you are in the market for a dynamic and unique CUV, then go to your local Ford dealer to test drive the exciting new 2017 Ford Escape.