Last October – which feels like both five minutes and five years ago – Ford had to push the Escape PHEV sales date back to this year. The holdup arose because Ford had to recall the Escape's European twin, the Kuga PHEV, over a fire risk thought to center on the high-voltage battery. At the time, a Ford spokesperson said, "We are moving full scale production of Escape PHEV to the 2021 model year. The first Escape PHEVs will be sold next year." With just three months left in 2021, a Ford spokesperson confirmed to Ford Authority that the Escape PHEV has finally made it to dealer lots.
The end of the Escape PHEV's long and winding road comes about a week after the Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring reached dealers. The compact luxury plug-in hybrid debuted at the 2019 LA Auto Show and was intended to go on sale in the summer of last year. But because it uses the same powertain as in the Escape, Ford had to delay the Lincoln as well.
Now that you can finally buy them, here's the quick recap. Both start with a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter inline-4 and an electric motor powering the front wheels, and a 14.4-kWh battery providing juice. The Escape makes 200 horsepower, can go 37 miles on all-electric driving, is EPA-rated at 105 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe), and returns a combined 40 mpg if the battery's dead. It starts at $34,320 before incentives.
The Lincoln adds an electric motor with a single-speed transmission to power the rear wheels, as Toyota has done with the all-wheel-drive Prius, RAV4 Hybrid and Lexus UX250h. Output in the Lincoln is 266 ponies, it manages 28 miles on pure electric driving, is EPA rated at 78 MPGe, and returns a combined 33 mpg on gasoline alone. It starts at $51,485 before incentives.
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