Is Is Worth Upgrading From the Ford Escape to the Lincoln Corsair?

The Ford Escape was completely redesigned for 2020. The 2020 Escape still has the same sporty driving dynamics and more standard tech. Ford also made a splash by introducing the all-new 2020 Lincoln Corsair, which shares the same platform as the Escape. You might be wondering: is it worth upgrading from the Escape to the Corsair?

What it’s like to drive the 2020 Escape

The 2020 Ford Escape driving down a city street
2020 Ford Escape on the road | Photo via Ford

The Escape distinguishes itself from its classmates with its agile handling and lively powertrain options. For 2020, the Escape comes standard with a turbocharged 1.5 three-cylinder engine that produces 180-hp. Most drivers will find that the base engine provides enough power for everyday driving. Additionally, the standard Escape has an excellent EPA rating of up to 30 mpg overall. 

For a quicker experience, you’ll want to consider the Escape’s available turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that generates 250-hp. The optional engine provides more oomph and still has a good fuel economy rating of a combined 26 mpg. No matter which engine you choose, a smooth eight-speed automatic transmission is standard. If you’re interested in a more eco-friendly option, the 2020 Escape is also available as a hybrid

What it’s like to drive the 2020 Lincoln Corsair 

A grey 2020 Corsair on the track.
2020 Lincoln Corsair | Lincoln

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Unlike its counterpart, the Escape, the Corsair doesn’t stand out in its class for sportiness. Instead, we recognize the Corsair for its elegance and smooth ride quality. The all-new Corsair comes with the same 250-hp turbo-four that’s optional on the Escape. There’s also an available turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder that makes 295-hp.

The Corsair’s more powerful engine doesn’t provide that different of a driving experience. That said, the main advantage of going with the optional one is that it comes with all-wheel-drive, replacing the standard front-wheel drivetrain. Also like the Escape, the Corsair features a sole eight-speed automatic. 

Comparing cabin comforts

Lincoln Corsair Beyond Blue interior side
Lincoln Corsair Beyond Blue interior Lincoln

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There are apparent differences between an entry-level Escape and an entry-level Corsair. As far as similarities go, the Escape and Corsair are both five-seaters that are generous on interior space. Unsurprisingly, the Corsair comes with more upscale features, including faux leather upholstery, a driver’s memory seat, and heated seats.

The Corsair also comes with lots of tech. This Lincoln has a robust infotainment system that includes an 8-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a wifi hotspot. The Corsair has many active safety features, too, including blind-spot monitoring and forward-collision warning. 

The 2020 Ford Escape Titanium trim with ambient lighting.
2020 Ford Escape Titanium interior | Ford

On the flip side, the Escape doesn’t come with lots of frills, but many are available. You can replace the Escape’s standard cloth seats with faux leather or genuine leather to give it more flair. The Escape also comes with comparable safety features to the Corsair. However, you have to upgrade the Escape to get a touchscreen display and connectivity features like Apple CarPlay.

So which should you go with?

The base Escape is pretty bare-bones, but there are many ways for you to make it more upscale. The 2020 Escape begins at $24,885, while the Corsair starts at $35,945. For amenities more comparable to the standard Corsair, consider the SEL trim, which has an upgraded infotainment system and faux leather as Car and Driver highlights. The SEL trim starts at $29,265 and is about $6K cheaper than the base Corsair. 

But if you’re looking at the top-level Escape Titanium model, we’d say it makes more sense to go with the Corsair. The Corsair and Escape Titanium are similarly priced, but the Corsair still provides a grander experience. Furthermore, the Corsair’s dapper looks make it worth the higher price tag.