Ford Cutting Prices on 2017 Ford Escape, Lincoln MKC

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Senior Pricing Analyst

As CarsDirect’s resident pricing analyst, Alex offers must-know analysis of pricing & incentives to those looking to buy or lease a car. His consumer-oriented coverage of the latest trends and breaking news has been featured in publications such as Car and Driver, Motor Trend, Automobile Magazine and Autoblog.

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, Senior Pricing Analyst - January 29, 2016

The 2017 Ford Escape will be receiving some key updates when it arrives this spring. However, the popular crossover will also be getting new lower prices to help boost appeal with shoppers. It's not alone- even the related Lincoln MKC will get in on the action with cuts worth up to $1,460. So what will prices look like? Why is Ford making these changes? And where are the deals? Here's what you need to know.

Fresh features, new prices

The 2017 Escape is set to improve its value proposition with a fresh face and updates like stop-start technology on EcoBoost models like the new 1.5-liter base turbo on SE and higher models.

Upmarket bits like LED taillamps and a revamped interior with added storage aim to impress. At the high end, Titanium models will get optional forward collision warning with brake support plus adaptive cruise for the first time.

Starting at $24,495 with destination, the 2017 Escape S will be just $10 more than the outgoing model. Look a bit closer, however, and it becomes clear that Ford has repositioned prices on non-base models.

Official order guides reveal the 2017 Escape SE will start at $25,995, equating to a price cut of $690 compared to the outgoing model. The top-spec Titanium model will now start at $29,995, down $895 from $30,890.

There is a purpose, however- an Escape decked out with the full range of driver assist features will now start $410 less than a 2016 Honda CR-V Touring with Honda Sensing ($32,585 vs. $32,995).

Lower price tag on MKC

The related 2017 Lincoln MKC will be getting price cuts, too. Order guides show the base Premiere model will now start at $33,645, down $540 from the current price of $34,185.

The biggest changes will be coming on mid-range Select models. Equipped with front-wheel drive, those will now start at $36,645, down $1,370 from $38,015. The Select with all-wheel drive will see the largest cut of $1,460 down from $40,510 to $39,050. Top-spec Black Label models will now start at $46,400, down $980.

Big tech, big price

The changes come at an important time. Automakers have been scrambling to update their lineups with premium features and the latest safety tech to remain competitive. However, this has been having some odd effects on pricing.

For example, the updated 2017 Fusion Energi and Hybrid are due to see price cuts of up to $1,610. That may sound nice, but the automaker is actually boosting prices at the top of the range with Platinum variants with the full range of active safety tech aimed at earning a coveted IIHS Top Safety Pick+ award. Prices will now hit as much as $41,995.

Similarly, the updated 2017 Hyundai Elantra that went on sale this month starts $100 less than last year's model. However, accessing the full range of safety tech requires as much as $27,585 for the top-spec Elantra Ultimate with Tech Package.

Important models

What appears evident is that some automakers are opting to keep minimum advertised prices close to- or slightly lower than before to help avoid creating a stir with high-priced versions loaded with the full range of technology.

The Escape and MKC are both hugely important vehicles for Ford. Each was the most popular crossover for their respective brands according to 2015 sales data. We suspect outstanding purchase and lease offers have helped in no small way.

Where are the deals?

The MKC has consistently ranked well when it comes to deals. Did you know the 2015 Lincoln MKC Select Plus is priced at $39,115 but is cheaper to lease than a 2016 FIAT 500c? Factoring the payment and amount due, its effective cost is $7 less per month ($378 vs. $385). Conquest discounts worth thousands have helped lure shoppers coming from competitors.

Deals on the Escape rank well, too. You can lease a 2016 SE from $219 for 36 months with $2,739 at signing. With an effective lease cost of $295, it's cheaper to lease than a 2016 Honda CR-V LX ($298) despite an MSRP that's $2,205 higher. Cash back offers have been fairly strong- Ford is now promoting a $2,000 trade-in bonus in lieu of a standard rebate.

Our take

If you're looking for a deal on a smart crossover, both the Escape and MKC rank very well in their segments. In the case of the updated 2017 Escape, a fresh look, the latest tech and a lower price may be worth waiting for. If the past is any indication, there are bound to be deals once they go on sale.

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, Senior Pricing Analyst

As CarsDirect’s resident pricing analyst, Alex offers must-know analysis of pricing & incentives to those looking to buy or lease a car. His consumer-oriented coverage of the latest trends and breaking news has been featured in publications such as Car and Driver, Motor Trend, Automobile Magazine and Autoblog.

Follow On: Twitter

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