The Escape S comes with front-wheel drive, a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, six-speed automatic with manually selectable gears, six-speaker audio system with AUX and 17-inch steel wheels. Also standard are a full brace of power accessories, air conditioning and front, side and curtain airbags, along with electronic stability control. Jumping to SE gets the 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine with 180 horsepower.
In addition to SYNC, SE includes automatic headlamps, SiriusXM radio, more exterior chrome accents, fog lights, privacy glass and 17-inch alloy wheels. SEL adds MyFord Touch, heated leather seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, auto-dimming rearview mirror and 18-inch alloy wheels. The top Titanium model gets the 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine standard (it's optional on SEL), along with Sony HD radio, remote start and entry, cargo cover, a 110-volt outlet and a power liftgate. All-wheel drive is available on SE and SEL, standard on Titanium and 2.0-liter SEs and SELs.
The Honda CR-V is has more rear seat and cargo room, but its engine is no match for the 2.0-liter EcoBoost. The Chevrolet Equinox has an optional V6 but isn't as fun to drive. The Kia Sportage has a more powerful optional turbo engine, but has a harder ride. And the Volkswagen Tiguan has a nicer interior and more powerful standard engine, but is more expensive.
The Escape comes off well in the face of opposition because it combines the fun-to-drive attributes of a car with the versatility of a crossover. The EcoBoost engines are lively and fuel-efficient, while the available technology features will impress passengers. It's a package that's well-suited to a wide variety of buyers, and will likely continue to be a frequent sight on American roads as the most popular compact crossover.
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