Like their gas-only counterparts, the Ford Escape
and Mercury Mariner Hybrids
will receive powertrain improvements and more for the 2009 model year. In conjunction with the non-hybrid
models, the gas-electric versions will get a new 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine in place of the current 2.3-liter. Ford also claims to have smoothed the transition from regenerative braking to traditional braking, and will offer the hybrid models with AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control for the first time. It also displayed a plug-in hybrid version of the Escape in conjunction with the announcement, but we won't hold our breaths.