Ford Authority

2023 Ford Escape Should Come Standard As A Hybrid: Opinion

Recently, Ford Authority spied a 2023 Ford Escape out and about without any camouflage, finally giving us a good look at the upcoming crossover’s styling. Judging from what we saw, it seems that The Blue Oval is looking to shake things up in the compact crossover segment, since the Escape seems to have partially moved on from its unpainted plastic body molding in favor of body-colored trim. We think there’s something major that could make the Escape even more compelling, though. What if the 2023 Ford Escape was equipped with a hybrid drivetrain as standard?

Currently, a hybrid electric drivetrain, which works in conjunction with Ford’s 2.5L I4 engine, is standard only on the Escape Titanium. Otherwise, it’s optional on every trim level, except for the base S trim. While the Escape S may have been particularly compelling to consumers upon its introduction for the 2019 model year, its appeal has diminished since then, thanks in part to the arrival of the Ford Maverick pickup. The 2.5L hybrid electric driveline is standard on the Maverick across all trim levels, and the pickup is considerably more affordable than the Escape, starting at $21,995 versus $28,620 for the entry level Escape.

2022 Ford Maverick

With a hybrid system as standard, the 2023 Ford Escape could become a fuel-efficient force to be reckoned with in its competitive segment, since no other compact crossover in the segment currently comes standard as a hybrid. With fuel prices still fairly right now, a standard Escape hybrid could make it a highly sought-after vehicle, since it returns 37 miles per gallon under highway driving conditions and 44 miles per gallon city.

Currently, the Ford Escape runs mid-pack when it comes to sales in its competitive segment, so a standard hybrid electric system could be just what it needs to get to the top.

But what do you think? Let us know if you agree by voting in the poll below, and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Escape news and around-the-clock Ford news coverage.

{{ title }}

This poll will begin soon.

This poll has concluded.

Alexandra is a Colorado-based journalist with a passion for all things involving horsepower, be it automotive or equestrian.

Subscribe to Ford Authority

For around-the-clock Ford news coverage

We'll send you one email per day with the latest Ford updates. It's totally free.


  1. MJ

    You have got to be kidding . That emigre has a recall for fluid leakage and fire hazard. The recall does not fix the issue, only drills drain holes and removes a grill shutter fro more air flow. Are they going to fix this engine for the 2023 models? I have a 2021 Escape hybrid and will never buy another Hybrid until they fix the defective engine.

    1. kciwood

      I own a 2020 Escape Hybrid Titanium and love it. I also am concerned about the long term engine reliability due to the engine recall and fix. I have read that the recall date for this engine ended in June 2022 which would lead me to believe they have either solved the problem or are making the recall repair at the factory. I am considering ordering the 2023 PHEV knowing that the delivery date would probably be unknown until shipped and want to know if the engine problem has been fixed properly.

      1. Kmon

        Bought a 2020 Titanium with the 2.0 Ecoboost AWad and love it. Power is impressive and fuel is good. I’m within 1 mpg of what the Mrs gets in her 2018 Cruze 1.4 turbo.

    2. Andrew

      It’s my understanding that the engine does not have a fluid leakage issue. The problem was early on there was a very small batch of engines with a faulty internal component (I forget what) that led to catastrophic failure of those particular engines, during which the engine would dump all of its oil which didn’t drain away quickly enough and caused the fire hazard. The 2.5 engine isn’t problem prone otherwise. My Maverick hybrid engine is solid and I’m thrilled with my 44.7 mpg average since new.

      1. Wally B

        There was a machining error on a batch of crankshafts. Ford says that 155 vehicles were involved.

    3. Wally B

      There is no issue with the engine. The recall addresses venting under the hood. If the engine seizes and subsequently leaks or sprays oil or gas, the lack of ventilation could cause it to catch fire. Kind of an edge case, but enough of a risk and an easy fix. The engine is actually one of the best Ford has ever made (it was designed by Mazda).

  2. Dave

    Yes, standard FWD hybrid. And, how about a lowering of the prices. There’s a whole lot of competition in this bracket and their prices make it harder to justify Escape’s higher entry cost.

  3. BDMull

    I owned a 2018 Honda CRV Touring AWD, a competitor of the Escape, and there isn’t much comparison. The CRV was and continues to be a far better engineered vehicle. It is slightly larger, far roomier, safer in every configuration, with better power options. The same can likely be said of the RAV4. The facelift on the Escape is much needed and if the hybrid system was standard at current price levels it could help the Escape stand out in a very competitive segment. Unfortunately, Ford is doing little to build brand loyalty at the entry level and I really no longer have any idea what Ford envisions for itself in America beyond Broncos, Raptors, trucks, and expensive SUVs, mostly battery powered and beyond the budget of the average American.

    1. Kmon

      Interesting, because I test drove a 2020 Ford Escape Titanium 2.0 turbo two years ago and then drove a 2020 CR-V 1.5 turbo and the CR-V was a dog and was noisy and harsh. The 2.0 turbo and 8 speed blow the CR,-V away. I was being polite when I told the Honda salesman I’d think about it and went and bought the Escape. Interesting part is I’m currently averaging 28-30 mpg over the last 4-5 tanks of fuel. That’s as good or better than the CR-V in the real world from the people I know. The Escape is just as roomy except the cargo area by a little.

    2. Kmon

      Interesting, because I test drove a 2020 Ford Escape Titanium 2.0 turbo two years ago and then drove a 2020 CR-V 1.5 turbo and the CR-V was a dog and was noisy and harsh. The 2.0 turbo and 8 speed blow the CR,-V away. I was being polite when I told the Honda salesman I’d think about it and went and bought the Escape. Interesting part is I’m currently averaging 28-30 mpg over the last 4-5 tanks of fuel. That’s as good or better than the CR-V in the real world from the people I know. The Escape is just as roomy except the cargo area by a little. You also forgot th affordable Maverick.

  4. Mike

    They cannot build enough hybrids/PHEVs now, with the Hybrid/PHEV models they have, with their limited supply chain, what makes you think that Ford is capable of building every 2023 Escape as a hybrid. They would have to cancel the Maverick hybrid to even come close to doing it.

  5. Mrx19

    All of the previous comments are spot on. Between the never-ending push to all EV, which the infrastructure cannot remotely support, to the continuing supply chain issues, now is not the time to purchase a new vehicle.

  6. Mike K

    My understanding is Ford is canceling the Escape for 2024. Why waste all those engines when they can’t build Mavericks that were ordered 10+ months ago.
    Oh and yes I have a 2020 Titanium Escape hybrid. Going to order a 2023 Maverick Lariat hybrid.

    1. Kmon

      Escape isn’t going away for 2024. Plan is for building it through 2025/2026 and a new gen at that point. The only reason it might not is if this facelift doesn’t boost sales.

  7. Ford Owner

    Yes, make more hybrids across all the Ford line, up to the Heavy Duty trucks. I have a 2014 Fusion Hybrid and it gives me over 40 MPG every day. For those who cannot drive an EV due to travel distances and charging facilities, a hybrid is the best alternative. A hybrid reduces gas consumption about 70% over a normal gas engine, and reduces brake and engine maintenance , too. I still have all the original factory parts, except the door latches due to a recall and the oil filter which is changed only once a year for just $45. That is all I spend apart from just $40 a month in gasoline.

    Go for it, Ford! Make all your vehicles electric or hybrids!

  8. William Thomas Kircher

    Ford had a 2.0 L engine in the CMax Energi that was problem-free during its lifetime. The CMax Energi had a combined HP output of 188! However, like the Escape PHEV, it was only in FWD version. Then again, the Lincoln Corsair PHEV (Escape twin) is offered in a 4WD version with the MG3 setup that the Toyota RAV4 Prime uses. The Corsair has a combined output of 266 HP.

    1. Michael

      If they did that to the PHEV Escape, install the MG3 setup that the Corsair has, that would be the smart thing to do, and probably would be a hit in the market, by adding 4WD. But not a lot of companies do the smart thing. Ford wants you to pay $15,000 more for it and upgrade you to Lincoln.

  9. Linn

    And leave it an AWD in all styles!! Us Midwesterner’s like/love the AWD!

  10. Anthony Dantonio

    Stop messing with the Escape. Don’t consider ANY changes until you can fulfill orders ON TIME, with quality, reliable vehicles.

  11. Bayman71

    Went to my dealer to inquire about a Ford Escape Hybrid and was almost immediately that he was going to raise the price of every Escape 10,000. Needless to say I walked out. I am no loner going to buy a Ford because of this crap. I will take my business elsewhere. Greedy no good a-holes. Everyone is having a hard time getting a vehicle, everyone needs a vehicle and these scum know that and are taking advantage of their customers. I hope like hell they go out of business. They have taken over almost every dealer on that portion of highway. I knew there would be trouble when I heard they bought the Ford dealership.

  12. Aldo Iannucci

    Credo sia necessario Escape ibrido , inoltre sarebbe opportuno lanciare il sostituto della Ecosport in forma ibrida elettrica anche AWD , essendo più piccola incontrerebbe maggiori consensi e contrasterebbe la concorrenza.

  13. hot toddy

    I guess Ford is about to learn the same lesson that they learned thinking all they needed to do was put the F150 emblem on their truck and they could just eliminate every other truck in their line up. Price the hybrid at the same price as the entry level EV and let the customers ( if there are any left) decide whet they want.

  14. FlashG

    Agreed, Ford need to do something bold with the new escape that will shock the competition. C’mon Ford, hear us.

  15. Wally B

    I think that’s a great idea, but I suspect that supply problems make it impossible. BTW, the engine in the hybrid is actually a Mazda-design (Mazda “L”) engine (built by Ford). It’s a solid design and arguably the most reliable engine Ford makes. And running it on the Atkinson cycle means even less stress on the unit.

    Ford’s bigger problem is quality control and the relentless cost cutting that’s produced cheap feeling cars that fail often. Ford is spending twice per car what GM does on warranty and recall repairs. That’s not sustainable.

  16. Marjorie Colby

    If they discontinue the keyless entry pad, I will continue with my Lincoln which replaced my edge titanium due to tree falling on it. I like the edge better…more of the features that fit my driving. I miss my lane assist and the front sensors and safety features, as well as the better gas mileage. I started looking at a new edge, but they said no touch pad.

  17. John McCarthy

    Ford has the Mondeo and Zepher in China….why only in China? These are nice vehicles. Keep it up Ford and you’ll be sorry that those of us that like sedans will be heading to the Japanese/Chinese brands. SUV’S are not for all of us. We grew up on sedans and no matter what you say many of your “forever” customers will move on.


Leave a comment