It is time for the mid-cycle facelift. The third generation of the compact crossover is enjoying success in the market, but it is not going to last forever. The competition is huge and the frequency of changes must be shorter. The 2023 Ford Escape is coming with significant modifications. We didn’t see it coming, but the latest spy shots showed the fresh model with heavy covers on the body. There is no better explanation than the facelift.
The competition in the compact crossover class makes all the companies do such things more often. So, the latest Escape introduced the hybrid and PHEV systems. But, it is not enough. Other carmakers are doing the same, while the Toyota Rav4 Prime is above the competition with 300 hp and nearly 40 mpg. The 2023 Ford Escape PHEV should do something similar. The current edition is the same as the hybrid version, only with an option of driving the crossover by using the electric battery.
2023 Ford Escape Spy Photos: What We Know
Spy photographers provided the first look at the 2023 Ford Escape facelift. It seems like the crossover is getting inspiration from the new electric Mach E SUV. The front end is boxier than on the current edition. Camouflage is not hiding everything. The grille is going to be larger, leaving more space for the Ford logo to sit right at the center. Updates of the bumper and headlights are also coming. At the rear end, there are no significant changes. We can spot only new exhaust tips. But, taillights and bumper might bring a slightly different look. Spy photos of the 2023 Escape Interior are not available yet.
Escape vs Kuga
We are also monitoring happenings in Europe, where the crossover is coming out as the Kuga. In this part of the world, the vehicle is available with seven seats. It was the main question about the 2023 Ford Escape, but the US version is not coming out as the three-row model. The company is offering mid-size SUVs with those layouts. Also, Kuga is not the only seven-seat compact crossover in Europe and Asia, while there is no such configurations available in the United States.
While there are changes on the body, the engine lineup stays the same. The base configuration includes a turbocharged inline-three drivetrain. We already got used to this from the Blue Oval company. In every class, there are turbo engines with fewer cylinders. Still, the 2023 Ford Escape is going to offer a four-banger. A 2.0-liter turbo unit is good for 250 ponies and 280 pound-feet of torque, which is a 70 hp/90 lb-ft upgrade compared to a 1.5-liter plant.
The 2023 Ford Escape Hybrid is the most efficient crossover in the market. The main power source is a 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated four-pot petrol engine. In the combination with an electric battery, the system bursts 200 horsepower. It is a perfect fit for the compact crossover segment. More importantly, the gas mileage is getting a huge boost – the vehicle returns 44 mpg in the city with FWD. On the open road, the 2023 Escape Hybrid is rated 37 mpg, with either front- or all-wheel drive. The plug-in hybrid system delivers the same numbers. The only difference between the PHEV and regular hybrid is an option to ride the vehicle by using only electric power. The range is 37 miles.
2023 Ford Escape ST
The facelift might also deliver another cool version. The 2023 Ford Escape ST is a dream for quite a while. A larger engine with more power could push outputs closer to 300 horsepower. A 2.3-liter engine is a reliable and potent engine, available for flagship vehicles. If this happens, we can expect the Escape ST to sprint 0-60 mph in just 5 seconds. An all-wheel drive system is standard on such configurations.
Models and Key Features With Prices
The ST version will top all other setups with the price. The MSRP won’t start below $40,000. But, it can be competitive to the Toyota Rav4 Prime, at least with power outputs. The base version is the S package with 17-inch wheels, an adjustable driver’s bucket, and Android Auto/Apple CarPlay. The facelift will shuffle options and make the entry-level bundle more attractive for only $26,000.
The SE is a $1,500 investment into more features. Alloy wheels replace steel set. More infotainment features are going to be there, including a larger touchscreen display, and an audio system with more speakers. The SEL reaches $30k thanks to fog lights, roof rails, larger wheels, parking sensors. Also, premium features become available as optional selections. Many of those are there on the 2023 Ford Escape Titanium, including navigation, leather upholstery, panoramic sunroof, and B&O sound system. The hybrid drivetrain is not available on the base trim, while the PHEV costs from $33,000 with SE, $36,000 with SEL, and $39,000 with the Titanium packages. A regular hybrid will save about $5,000.