2020 Ford Escape | MotorWeek Quick Spin

Much has been made about Ford getting out of the 4-door car business here in the U.S. and focusing on SUVs and trucks. Well, if that sedan-less Ford future indicates more utilities like this 2020 Ford Escape, we’re totally on board.

For starters, it doesn’t look all that much different from a typical 5-door hatchback; taller, yes, but still sleek, modern and immensely useful.

This is the start of the 4th generation of Escape; and like the previous gen, it will share a platform with the Ford Kuga in the rest of the world, as well as newcomer Lincoln Corsair.

There are three engines; a base 181-horsepower 1.5-liter EcoBoost I3, 250-horsepower 2.0-liter EcoBoost I4, and a 2.5-liter I4-based hybrid with a combined output of 200-horsepower. Turbos pair with an 8-speed automatic transmission; while the hybrid gets a CVT. All-wheel-drive, available with all. There’s even a PHEV arriving shortly after launch.

Depending on equipment, the new Escape weighs about 200-lbs. less than last year, and performs more like a slightly firmer riding car than ever, which is part of Ford’s sedan elimination plan; provide the practicality of a utility, with the familiar driving experience of a good 4-door.

“The last Escape was quietly one of the most fun to drive of all the compact crossovers; they were able to maintain that but also give it a much more refined ride quality overall.”

Space inside grows, particularly for back seat passengers; with more legroom than many larger utilities.

Still built in Louisville, Kentucky, with base prices starting right around $25,000; the 2020 Ford Escape is arriving in dealerships now.