Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

People are shown getting into a red 2023 Ford Escape ST-Line Elite.

The Most Efficient Ford Escape Yet!

For 2023, the Ford Escape has had a much-needed refresh year. Many things have changed, including the interior, exterior, and sliding rear seats (more on that awesome feature later!), but don’t let that fool you. Just as many things have changed, many things have stayed the same. Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr may not have had the 2023 Ford Escape in mind when writing that renowned phrase, but it certainly applies nonetheless. The bevy of efficient engine options remains intact, and the updated hybrid powertrain is available on more trims than before! For those who felt the 2022 model might have been a little underwhelming, it’s worth checking out the updated 2023 Escape. Those who were already fans of this efficient compact SUV will be thoroughly pleased with the new updates to this popular car.

Affordable Pricing

The 2023 Ford Escape starts at $28,000––a modest increase over last year’s model. This is a competitive price for this type of car and helps make it a good option for a wide range of drivers. It’s a bit of a family car as it is spacious and roomy. On top of that, the already comfortable interior comes with 40.7 inches of legroom. Some full-size SUVs don’t even get this kind of space to work with! This makes the 2023 Ford Escape a good commuter car for a full stack of friends or family. On a final note, some of the standard features bundled in are exceptional for the vehicle’s price point.

Interior Features

As the saying goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Once again, it might not have been coined with the Escape in mind, but Ford listened all the same. The sliding rear seats present in the previous year were popular enough to make a comeback. We can see why, too; this feature is awesome! With the press of a button, the rear seats slide back up to 5.9 inches or fold in half, doubling the cargo capability to 65.4 cu.ft. This is perfect for anyone that finds themselves running out of cargo space in a smaller sedan or SUV.

It is simple standard additions like this that make the interior of the 2023 Ford Escape spectacularly stupendous. Now, your rear passengers can get as comfortable as they want for a long out-of-town drive. There is also another hidden benefit to sliding rear seats. The driver and front passenger can slide their seats back and stretch out without taking up too much room in the back. Everyone gets to feel the benefit of this fantastic feature.

A close up shows the display gauge in a 2023 Ford Escape.

Modern Technology

The 2023 Ford Escape comes with some pretty handy safety features. Among the standard inclusions is a Blind Spot Information System for identifying vehicles camping in the lane beside you. There is also the addition of Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking. Although not standard, one of the most unique features is Active Park Assist 2.0. This is mighty helpful for parallel parking, which can be a tough task in a fast-paced environment.

Focused up front is the standard eight-inch touchscreen infotainment center. That is already more screen real estate than many competitors provide, but bigger is always better, so Ford offers a 13.2-inch screen as an upgrade. When there are only split seconds to look between the touchscreen and the road, those extra inches come in handy. Keeping with the theme of screens, in case one screen is not enough, there is also a standard eight-inch digital gauge cluster. Overall, the interior feels very modern, like you would expect out of a 2023 vehicle.

Updated Hybrid Powertrains

Gas prices have skyrocketed in the past couple of years. This prompted many manufacturers to develop vehicles with better fuel efficiency, popularizing hybrid engines once again. Ford is one of the leading manufacturers in hybrid technology, and the updated 2023 Escape Hybrid is a very welcomed addition. A hybrid powertrain is now available on four of this SUV’s seven trims, and the top trim comes standard with a unique plug-in hybrid setup that can travel 37 miles on battery power alone.

Both hybrid systems are built around an efficient 2.5L Atkinson-cycle engine that produces an unbelievable 39 MPG combined! Very rarely do vehicles have a higher fuel efficiency for city driving, so if you are an urban dweller, you will really love the 2023 Escape Hybrid’s 42 MPG in the city. This engine makes the Ford Escape the perfect commuter car to save you money as you drive. While its fuel efficiency is the highlight of the hybrid powertrain, it also produces a powerful 192 hp. This is more than enough speed to keep up with the competition on highways and is even enough to offer 1,500 lbs of towing capability. That means the Escape Hybrid is capable of carrying a trailer for a camping trip or jet skis for a beach trip.

A light blue 2023 Ford Escape Hybrid is shown being charged.

Efficient EcoBoost Engines

For those who are seeking a variety of different engine options, don’t worry––that is another specialty of the Escape. In addition to the hybrid drivetrain, there are two EcoBoost gasoline engine options; each one specializes in a specific field, so everyone can have an engine to look forward to driving. The standard engine of the 2023 Ford Escape is the 1.5L EcoBoost Turbo I-3. It is rather fitting that this is the starter engine since this engine is a Jack of all trades. It produces 180 hp and maintains a high fuel efficiency of up to 30 MPG combined. With 2,000 lbs of towing capacity, the 1.5L EcoBoost is capable of doing a little bit of everything. Overall, it is a good in-between engine and the most affordable option.

The final engine to choose from is a 2.0L EcoBoost Turbo I-4. If you want to feel like a ferociously feverish freight train flying down the freeway, this is the engine for you. Its 250 hp puts the Ford Escape in competition against many midsize models (in fact, this is the base engine from the Ford Edge). On top of that, the model’s towing capacity increases to 3,500 lbs with this engine. With the addition of this engine, the 2023 Ford Escape becomes an incredibly capable vehicle. However, opting for the 2.0L engine does come with the downside of reduced fuel economy as it is only rated for 26 MPG combined.

More Stylish and More Efficient

Ford is back with another addition to its catalog of cars in the form of the redesigned 2023 Ford Escape. Coming in at a base MSRP of $28,000, it is part of the same generation as the previous model year. However, the updated model has some new additions to keep things interesting. The sleek, modern exterior is one of the many alterations to the model, giving the Escape good looks to match its efficient performance. Inside, popular features include retractable rear seats and thoroughly updated technology. Standard driver-assist features are bundled in for free as part of the Ford Co-Pilot360 suite. Most strikingly, hybrid powertrains are now available on the majority of the seven trims, making the Escape more fuel-efficient than ever. All of these characteristics, and more, make the 2023 Ford Escape a vehicle to be watched for.