Shopping for a small crossover presents a dizzying array of options, but the Ford Escape is a smart, safe choice among a crop of great contenders. The 2017 Escape receives style and power upgrades, improved small item storage, and an updated tech interface that packs plenty of connected punch.
The Escape offers optional all-wheel drive, respectable fuel economy, a spacious cargo bay and an available hands-free power liftgate. You can outfit the Escape from comfortable casual (the SE trim with no options) to rugged luxury (a loaded Titanium model that can breach $40,000). On the road, its agility instills a level of driver confidence that's rare in this class.
For 2017, Ford has trickled some desirable features such as automatic climate control down to lower Escape trim levels. The old lever-operated parking brake has been replaced by a button, which frees up space for improved small item storage. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration is now available. Finally, there's a new standard 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine in addition to the optional 2.0-liter turbo-four.
- Optional 2.0-liter turbocharged engine accelerates quickly
- New tech interface features advanced voice control, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
- Steering and handling feel more like that of a car than SUV
- More room for small stuff, and more power plugs
- New base engine lacks punch
- Dashboard design looks dated with many small, similar-looking buttons
- Base-model S trim available only with older, less efficient 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine