The 2021 Ford Escape PHEV Has Crucial Pros and Cons

It’s time to shed a little light on the 2021 Ford Escape PHEV. It seems like the actual Ford Escape is flying under the radar when it’s being used to do great things. For example, it shares parts with the Ford Maverick and Bronco Sport. Check out the original Escape before newer options.

The 2021 Ford Escape PHEV has secret advantages

2021 Ford Escape PHEV on the street
2021 Ford Escape PHEV | Ford

If you like the Maverick or Ford Bronco Sport, take a step back and thank the Ford Escape for sharing its components with these new rides. Sure, the Escape isn’t a rugged SUV, and it doesn’t have a truck bed, but there are plenty of other great qualities to consider.

Like the Bronco Sport and Maverick, it offers a pretty smooth ride over the pavement with responsive handling. The Ford Escape PHEV also extremely fuel-efficient, gets an EPA-estimated 40 mpg, and has a 37-mile battery range.

That means it goes up to 37 miles before gas kicks in. Most people drive less than 40 miles per day, meaning you could be totally gas-free during your daily commute. Also, the Escape goes about 520 miles between fill-ups. Now let’s consider other pros and cons.

CON: the Escape doesn’t have AWD

This isn’t exactly a deal-breaker, but the 2021 Ford Escape PHEV isn’t offered with all-wheel drive. During my week with this spunky SUV, I faced snow and sleet. I wanted AWD to be there in case I needed it.

But the Escape does have a slippery mode and a snow/sand mode. So, I tested both modes when I was around town with some slush on the streets. I felt the suspension stiffen and noticeably had more control. I didn’t see how the Escape performed with an accumulation of snow, but it handled perfectly fine and confidently over slippery surfaces.

PRO: The Ford Escape PHEV has an excellent interior

The 2021 Ford Escape PHEV has an incredibly upscale interior. It has a clean and simple design that creates a relaxing atmosphere. It’s crafted with high-quality materials such as leather and wood appliques.

My favorite feature is the massive panoramic sunroof that allows plenty of natural light to fill the cabin. It made the space feel more open too. The seats are large and supportive, with plenty of controls to find the best driving position.

Plus, the backseat is pretty spacious too. Four tall adults can fit comfortably. Taller folks may feel as if the seats are a little low to the ground.

CON: The Escape is a little vanilla

2021 Ford Escape PHEV parked in a drive way
2021 Ford Escape PHEV | Allison Barfield. MotorBiscuit

Despite being available in a bright shade of Rapid Red paint, the 2021 Ford Escape PHEV is a little plain. It doesn’t have a unique, attractive look to set it apart from competitors such as the Toyota RAV4 Prime or Mitshubishi Outlander. While the interior is well-crafted, it doesn’t have a striking appeal.

Aside from corning well and having a zippy engine, the Escape doesn’t have any driving qualities that stand out. It’s practical, relaxing, and convenient, which are all positives. However, it could be more engaging.

PRO: The Ford Escape is easy

Everything about the 2021 Ford Escape PHEV is intuitive. This SUV has figured out simplifying each menu to keep things headache-free. It’s fast and easy to access different settings to adjust the stereo system, navigation, ambient lighting, and more.

Phones connect quickly to the 8.0-inch touchscreen, and it only takes a moment to sync Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The system responds well to voice commands as soon as you make them. If you need to switch to slippery or snow mode, you use a button beside the gear shifter.

Overall, the 2021 Ford Escape PHEV is comfortable, practical, and straightforward. It’s an efficient option that shouldn’t be placed on the back burner. Although, it could use some extra spice.

RELATED: Is the Ford Bronco Sport Replacing the Escape?