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2012 Ford Escape

Overview
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2012 Ford Escape Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 6.1

Hybrid cars, for the most part, emphasize fuel efficiency over capability. In the real world, however, Americans need their cars to do all manner of chores, which is why so many have switched to some form of CUV or SUV. Believing you shouldn't have to sacrifice one benefit for another, Ford has created the 2012 Escape Hybrid, a rugged, roomy CUV with a hybrid drivetrain that is as easy on the planet as it is on your monthly gasoline budget. Of course, there are other hybrid CUVs out there but almost all are high-priced luxury models, with the closest in price being the Toyota Highlander Hybrid. And, while it is obvious that the Escape Hybrid's highway fuel economy is not all that much better than the gasoline-powered Escape, the hybrid's 34 mpg city rating is nothing to scoff at. Besides, a hybrid isn't just about saving fuel; it's about promoting new technologies and leaving a smaller carbon footprint.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you can't afford to give up versatility or light off-road ability for the sake of going green, you now have a savior. The 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid can do all the things its gasoline-only counterpart can do while achieving the segment's best city fuel economy figures.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If the 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid has one shortcoming, it may be old-fashioned styling, both inside and out. Next to vehicles like the Kia Sportage and Volkswagen Tiguan, the Escape Hybrid struggles to stand out.

What's New for 2012

There are no major changes for the 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid.

Driving the Escape

Driving Impressions From the driver's point of view, sitting behind the wheel of a 2012 Escape Hybrid is very much like driving a standard Escape, that is, until you encounter stop-and-go traffic....

In slow-speed situations the Escape Hybrid's electric motor does almost all the work, meaning the vehicle is emitting zero pollutants as well as very little noise. The ghostly manner in which the Escape Hybrid glides about is a bit unnerving at first, giving the feeling the engine has stalled. But, once you adapt to the Escape Hybrid shutting its engine off at stops and then restarting it once underway, the vehicle begins to feel just like any other car. Of course, once the battery pack runs low or you begin to move at speeds above 44 mph, the gasoline engine comes online full time. Amazingly, even with the gasoline engine engaged, the Escape's fuel economy remains above the 30 mpg mark.

Navigation System
We're always glad for the ability to quickly and easily find the nearest caffeine station.

Active Park Assist
A feature usually found only on super-luxury cars, the Escape Hybrid's Active Park Assist uses sonar and the electric power steering unit to automatically guide the Escape into an open parallel parking spot. Voice prompts tell the driver when to shift gears and apply power.

2012 Ford Escape Details
Interior

Although the interior of the 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid breaks no new ground stylistically, its overall execution is worth noting. Quality plastics have a nice look and feel, and the instruments are backlit in an easy-to-view Ice Blue illumination. Generous use of insulation throughout the cabin returns a surprisingly quiet ride, and clever features, such as the soy-based foam used to construct the seats, validate the Escape Hybrid's status as a cutting-edge green machine. Ford's clever placement of the battery pack under the floor means the Hybrid gives up nothing in the way of interior space, leaving the Escape's roomy rear seat and large cargo area intact. On models equipped with the available navigation unit, the hybrid drive system can be monitored showing when the vehicle is running on pure electric power as well as when the battery pack is being recharged.

Exterior

The 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid doesn't look like the typical hybrid. There is no video game-style instrumentation or funky exterior shapes, just the same squared-off front end and boxy passenger compartment that define so many of Ford's trucks and SUVs. A bold egg-crate-style chrome grille sets off the front end, while thick black plastic runners protect the Escape Hybrid's sides and lower grille. The Escape Hybrid looks almost identical to the gasoline-powered Escape, with only a few "Hybrid" badges and unique 16-inch aluminum wheels to set it apart. The Limited trim adds bright machined aluminum wheels, lower chrome grille extension, chrome liftgate handle, chrome roof-rail inserts and driver's door keyless entry keypad.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Equipped similarly to the XLT gasoline-only model, the 2012 Escape Hybrid includes dual-zone climate control, 4-speaker AM/FM/CD sound system with auxiliary audio input jack, Ford SYNC communication and entertainment system, SIRIUS Satellite Radio, power windows/locks/mirrors, remote keyless entry, cruise control and 16-inch aluminum wheels. Standard safety equipment includes six airbags and anti-lock brakes (ABS), as well as AdvanceTrac traction control with Roll Stability Control. The Limited trim adds 16-inch bright machined aluminum wheels, chrome exterior and interior accents, a 6-disc in-dash CD changer, ambient lighting, leather seating, a power moonroof, the Reverse Sensing System, heated front seats, heated side mirrors and a driver's door keyless entry keypad.

Optional Equipment

Some of the 2012 Ford Escape Hybrid's more desirable options include DVD navigation with 10GB hard drive music storage, rearview camera, MyKey, Active Park Assist, 4-wheel drive, integrated side step bars, remote start, rear-seat DVD entertainment system and roof-rack crossbars.

Under the Hood

As a so-called "full hybrid" the Ford Escape Hybrid is capable of running on battery power alone, at speeds up to about 25 mph. According to Ford, the system delivers 0-to-60-mph acceleration equivalent to that of a 240-horsepower V6. Power is transmitted to the front- or optional four-wheel-drive (4WD) system via a "gearless" continuously-variable transmission. A new electric power steering system requires less effort from the driver to keep the vehicle headed straight on slanted roads or in steady side winds.

2.5-liter in-line 4 Gas/Electric Hybrid Propulsion System
177 net horsepower
155 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
Electric motor: 94 horsepower @ 5,000 rpm
136 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 34/31 (FWD), 30/27 (4WD)

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2012 Ford Escape Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 508 Ratings for the 2008 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.6/10

Excelent, family vehicle

By on Saturday, October 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"4 cylinder engine needs a little more power for driving in hilly terrain or mountains. Otherwise its a great little car that Ford has ruined with the newer model Escapes on smaller platforms that did away with the roominess of the vehicle."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

do you wont depended car? do you wont good price?

By on Tuesday, October 21, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 145,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "pleanty of room ,enjoy driveing it, good priced"

Cons: "no cig. lighter, no ash tray"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"had this car for 3 years, have never had any trouble with it. then this is car for you. would tell anyone that this car is a very good car. very comfort, and handles very good , and i am a short person and i love it because it puts me up high enouth that i can see out very good!!! for this i will say perfeck for short people"

Love this Vehicle

By on Thursday, October 09, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 47,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
Not Rated
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Lots of room, easy to maintain."

Cons: "Gas mileage."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought my Escape new, and have had no problems at all. I keep up with the maintenance religiously, and this SUV has been very dependable. If, and when, I trade, more than likely I will buy another Escape."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Love my Escape

By on Wednesday, October 08, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Handles well, good cargo space, dependable"

Cons: "Newer models may get better gas milage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have a hard time thinking of anything negative, for anyone like me looking for a smaller SUV this is a good choice. It handles well in all conditions, I like the way the back seats fold completely down for cargo, and the heated seats..divine. Newer models may get better gas mileage, I average 21 - 22 with mostly in town driving with the occasional 100 mile round trip to Denver. I've had not trouble at all with this SUV, other than other people backing into it in parking lots,and plan on keeping it forever as I'm an older driver who wants to retire soon. I deliberately chose the Escape as I knew this would probably be my last car purchase, and I needed something for all weather, that is dependable, and that handles well. I prefer the tighter Ford suspension over a comparable Blazer I owned before. My Escape has plenty of pick up and accelerates well, I'm an older driver but not necessarily a slower driver! LOL! The Escape does not handle quite as well as my Outlander did, I notice a tiney bit more sway on corners but not much, and the Escape has had less trouble than my Outlander did. (Although I liked the Outlander a lot too, I ended up selling it because it was starting to have electrical issues, and the warrantee work would have had to have been serviced by a Mitsubishi dealer, and the only one within hundreds of miles is not a dealer I would take my car to for anything, much less service.)"

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Love this vehicle a lot of $$$ savings in gas.

By on Sunday, October 05, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "That is a value for your money."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"After a little invest in maintenance at factory authorized dealer it is works fantastic never have a issue with engine or tansm I did has a lot of driving with my family and works perfectly."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

4 years of trouble free driving

By on Saturday, October 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This was our main vehicle until this summer and has never given us any problems. One recent recall was no big deal and easily taken care of. The handling is like an SUV and not the greatest but adequate. New tires this year seemed to help the steering. All in all I've been very satisfied with this Escape. We had previously owned 5 Ford Explorers so this was a downsize for us. Very similar but like the little brother to the Explorer."

4 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?