The Ford Escape comes with three different powertrains for 2009, all of them revised significantly from previous years. A 170-horsepower 2.5L 4-cylinder replaces the 153-hp 2.3L, while a 230-horsepower 3.0L ups power by 30 hp in the V6 Escape. The new 2.5L also makes its way into the Escape Hybrid, which pairs it with an electric motor system, battery pack, regenerative braking, and a sophisticated management system to produce 170 hp. Ford claims fuel efficiency has not been affected by the performance boost.
Four-cylinder and V6 models are offered in XLS, XLT and Limited trims, but the hybrid powertrain is only available in a single Hybrid model.
All models, including the Hybrid, offer a choice of front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The AWD system can seamlessly deliver more torque to the back wheels as needed before the front wheels slip, and it also serves to enhance stability when cornering by varying torque side to side as well.
A new 6-speed automatic transmission comes standard on all Escape four-cylinder and V6 models, except the base XLS 4-cylinder, which is also available with a five-speed manual. The Hybrid models come with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) system.