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Ford Escape Hybrid

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Comments

  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    The Mariner is the Mercury version of the Escape/Tribute which will go on sale right around the same time the hybrid does.

    They are very similar but Mazda and Mercury would want to develop their own custom interiors and exteriors just as Ford has done with the Escape hybrid. Neither one of them sells enough gasoline versions to offset that cost. In fact, I don't think Mazda or Merc sell enough vehicles period to offset that cost.

    Maybe you'll see them with the next gen or after Ford gets completely back above water financially.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Jim: I have not heard, but call a Toyota dealer and ask. It's a *MAJOR* selling point with the Prius, the salesmen in MD bring that credit up right away, before you even ask.

    HOV lane access is not too shabby, though.

    I thought Ford licensed hybrid technology from Toyota, vs. buying it. Perhaps they use some of the same suppliers. If so, I still wouldn't say they're buying it from Toyota.

    -juice
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    you want me to go into a Toyota dealer and talk to those zombies??? eeewww.... When I went to talk to the Ford guys about the Escape hybrid, they could not have been nicer. He even sent me a thank you card for coming in to talk to him. Unbelievable, huh? What's next? Flowers?
    As for the Toyota technology, I'll keep dreaming that there is some there - there. With Ford's track record on reliability, I'll take every bit of Toyota tech I can get. Even if it is in my dreams. Thanks as always Juice.
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    your post is pretty much right on. Mazda says hybrid technology doesn't make economic and brand sense right now.

    http://wardsauto.com/microsites/newsarticle.asp?mode=print&ne- - wsarticleid=2719850&releaseid=&srid=10250&magazineid=- - 1004&siteid=26
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Interesting to note, while Lutz is being active on producing/improving some specific models, and bringing in new vehicles to GM, and clonisizing everything from Saan to Suzuki....They seem to be late on many segments, and have traditionally taken a safer approach.

    This from the first Escalade, where the Navigator just took that segment, and ran and totally shocked them. The same with the small SUV, whereas only now they introduce something competitive with the Escape, Rav4, CR-V,, the Equinox. (I'm not mentioning the Tracker since that was a joke).

    I've been following his words on Hybrid Techonology, and how he continues to deal with fuel cells, when the competition is at least dealing with Hybrids. Another segment he doesn't wish to participate in, is in the CrossOver segment, which includes the Freestyle and Pacific...Just watch 4 years from now. The Nomad concept already HINTS at that type of possibility.

    And I won't even mention their determination over keeping OHV engines....

    SO Hybrids are certainly not something we'll see from GM in the next 5 years.
  • The more Toyota influence, the better I like it. I have been holding off buying a new vehicle, hoping someone will introduce a small hybrid SUV. Otherwise, I will buy a RAV4 as I am impressed by their reliability. However, if Ford can actually get a hybrid Escape on the market soon, I will buy it...but I'm getting impatient.

    I love the 2004 Prius and a friend of mine has one, but it does not fit my outdoors life-style.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Speaking on licensing, patents, etc. This is a site Ford has of all the available techonology of every possible aspect imaginable, which they hold. Some of you will notice some of these "items" are being used in other vehicles as well, which Ford also receives royalties for.

    http://www.fordbetterideas.com/tc/home.html
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    "I thought Ford licensed hybrid technology from Toyota, vs. buying it." - juice #185

    That's actually more it. Ford and Toyota apparently have a deal going where each is licensing components of the other's hybrid technology. In a sense Ford is "buying" it from Toyota, but not how we usually think of it. They aren't receiving a part or some other goods directly from Toyota in exchange for money. They are merely paying a royalty to Toyota so they can modify their proven technology (only software in this case if I'm not mistaken) to fit into the Escape's Ford developed system. Part of the deal requires Toyota to pay Ford for some of their new stuff as well. I think it states all of that in one of the links posted a little ways back.

    Ford has to do it this way because Toyota does hold many many patents on the technology already. Ford ended up developing a similar system but decided to go the safe route and pay Toyota rather than wait to be sued. :)

    Notice that neither of them have gone the route of Honda's simpler IMA system. Probably because it doesn't yield the same fuel savings as the more complex Toyota system.

    On another note, I just got around to reading the MT article in the latest MT last night and noticed something I haven't seen before. They have a full page "sidebar" on where hybrid tech is heading in the next year or so which includes a few paragraphs on the hybrid Escape. They mentioned that the Escape will employ two electric motors to power all of the wheels. However, the second motor will not be specific to the rear wheels like that in the upcoming hybrid Lexus SUV. The hybrid Escape will still use the same electronic on-demand 4WD system found in the ICE version, but I guess it will have a little more help from the second motor when needed.

    Could they possibly be using one motor on each front half shaft?
  • Interesting. Ford licensed THS from Toyota. That is the first generation that was implemented in the classic Prius. It did not have 4WD-i. The software codes were added later during the development of Toyota Estima(4WD-i hybrid minivan in Japan).

    I am guessing that Ford doesn't want to add software codes for the third electric motor to power the rear wheels. Or they did not have enough time to implement and test it so, they went with the traditional 4WD system.

    Dennis
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    Quite possible seawolf. However, I'd guess that Ford was trying to cut costs by not adding the codes and extra motor for the rear wheels. The hybrid Escape is already rumored to cost the consumer about $3500 more than a comparable I4 ICE version. The extra hardware and software necessary to make the third rear wheel motor work would take that number up to around $5000 if I were to guess.

    Lexus can get away with that because they already charge a premium for the ICE version so people will be willing to pay more for the extra goodies on the hybrid version. Hard to do in an entry level SUV. Mid-sized maybe.

    Besides, the hybrid Escape is already going to have performance that is greater than or equal to that of the V6 ICE which is good enough for anyone IMHO. As long as you don't need the towing that is. :)
  • sjtsjt Posts: 3
    When will the escape be available? Any updates?
    -Thanks,
    S
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    I think August or September was the last word. Order banks for most 2005 Ford models begins on May 17th. Hybrid Escape and Mustang included. We should have a better idea of pricing on or shortly after that date.

    On another note, I mentioned that there was no plan for a hybrid Mariner or Tribute. It was just announced recently that Mercury will offer a hybrid Mariner for MY 2007. Still no Tribute though.
  • bnet504bnet504 Posts: 18
    i don't know if this was mentioned before, but how safe is the escape hybrid with the battery pack? Isn't it in the trunk?
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    Just found out from my Ford dealer that some of the west and east coast dealers will only be getting one hybird come August. The southern dealers won't be getting one at all. My dealer will be taking orders in late May, but said to expect a 6-8 month wait for a hybrid. The dealer will also NOT be giving me my buyer's discount, nor will any be given to Ford employees. Now I just need to find out what the hybrid price will be. If it is too far apart from the Maxx, I'll be going back to the Maxx with its myriad of features.
  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    Pardon my ignorance but are you referring to a Malibu Maxx?
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
  • djasonwdjasonw Posts: 624
    Hmmm... in that price range (for that maxx), I can think of some pretty good alternatives. I tend to stay away from GM cars.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    I can think of some great alternatives....for short people....I have never owned a US car before. However, when you have really long legs and refuse to turn a blind eye to the way Japanese auto makers build 2 seaters and put 4 doors on their cars, I have very few options in the low $20k range. And then of course there are those genius auto designers (the same ones who build 2 seaters with 4 doors) who can't seem to figure out that telescoping steering costs pennies to put in and should be standard on every car by this day and age, and you eliminate a whole lot more cars for me. I drove the hybrid escape yesterday, and just like the highlander, had trouble finding a comfortable driving position due to the lack of a telescoping steering wheel. No, the Maxx screams value with all of its amenaties. I surely will have my fingers crossed that the General isn't selling me a bunch of crud. But now that I know that the markup on the Escape hybrid will be a bit unreasonable, I'll have to wait another 8 years before I start saving the planet with a green vehicle. Hopefully by then, hydrogen will be here to stay, and I can avoid the battery thing altogether.
  • rfruthrfruth Posts: 630
    You test drove one (Escape hybrid) !? What did you think ? ((other than the uncomfortable driving position and non adjustable steering)) How was the fit-n-finish ? (was it for sale to the public) ? Do you think Ford is going to give the HH a run or are we going gift wrap it for the Japaneese ?
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    no, sadly I only drove the '05 gas version. The dealers won't be getting their one hybrid until August. Nonetheless, my thoughts on the '05:

    1. nice drive. I read that it is car based, and it handled like a car
    2. nice visibility. I like sitting up high
    3. when I started it, it reved up real high as if it had been sitting on the lot for a few weeks. It did not calm down in the time I thought it should given how warm it was outside, so I decided to throw it into gear anyway: no clunking sound. That's a huge vote of confidence coming from me (I am on my 3rd "Ford 626" transmission).
    4. The fit and finish seemed OK. The back carpet atop where the battery will be installed pulls out too easily. I know this since everyone at an auto show I went to was attempting to find the storage compartment and spare tire. The spare has been moved underneat the vehicle in preparation for the Sanyo battery. Therefore, '05 gas versions give up storage of jumper cables and the like simply because this car is made to accomodate the hybrid's needs. Also, Ford removed the side nets and put a hard plastic part there instead. I'm not sure of the logic, other than to store tools which normally would go into the bin atop the spare tire.
    5. headroom and legroom were excellent for me.
    6. I found the appointments a bit plain jane looking. As a Japanese owner, i was suprised by this. As is the case with Chryslers, I expect the US cars to shine in the interior comforts. Other than the steering wheel, which was very nicely appointed, I thought the interior simply looked plain.
    7. I drove the 6 cylinder since my dealer said they don't stock the 4. I found the power in the 6 to be a bit lagging, or it was because the vehicle is heavy; I'm not sure which.
    8. The oil filter is right underneath the bumper where it belongs. Very easy to change. I only hope it will be in the same place when they mate the electric powerplant to it. I suspect it will.

    As for the hybrid version, despite being Ford, I expect this thing to fly off the shelves. Right now my only negatives are that it does not have a telescoping steering wheel, and it appears as if the mark up will make it a bit unreasonable of a purchase in its first year or two.
  • snowmansnowman Posts: 540
    I talked to my local dealer today in PA. They said Escape is not coming this year, Ford is not giving them a clue for release date and price. Disappointing huh!

    I agree above comments about price, The price difference should higher enough to be covered by the saving on gasoline bill. If Ford asks $3-$5k difference, I don't think it is worthed to buy.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    here's what I suggest:
    lease an 04 Vibe for two or three years, wait for the Escape Hybrid waiting list to shorten, then get on the list and buy the Escape Hybrid.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,340
    I think I will end up buying the Maxx some time this fall, when all the rebates "maxx" out. I received my Supplier's discount number yesterday, which will allow me to get it for a great price. I am very concerned about the road noise people have been reporting with the Escape. I also can't deny that I'm worried about a brand new hybrid technology on a Ford product, which has certainly seen its fair share of repairs in the 01-03 timeframe. I know the '05 has a different tranny, engine and AWD system, but the same people who built the '05 built the other ones too. I have shopped everything possible in the past 8 months; I keep coming back to the Maxx each time.
  • topcoptopcop Posts: 3
    With Ford coming out with an Escape Hybrid, and Chevy apparently working on a Silverado, I think it begs the question of whether the hybrid technology can carry the same towing capacity or cargo capacity of the conventional vehicles. I haven't seen any discussion of this, and wonder if any of you have info on that.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    In relation to towing, the "most" that it can do is just wear down the energy from the batteries. IN certain situations this will cause the gasoline part of the hybrid to turn on and compensate. And because some of these systems make massive torque, I don't see towing to be an issue, but do not expect F-150 astronomical towing abilities.

    I think anyone who tows more than 3000lbs will probably get a larger SUV or truck if it's a regular duty they need it for.

    As for the Silverado, I believe they stated they can improve fuel economy by 4-6% ? IN the end the question would be, is it worth it ?

    Year's ago Ford had plans to build Hybrid Explorer and they killed that idea real quick when they saw it would only increase fuel economy by just 4%. Then again, THAT was year's ago.... techonology has improved 10 folds since then, so it can happen at a feasable pricepoint (for the Explorer that is).
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    Demand:
    http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/2004-05-13-ford-hybrid-suv_x.- htm

    Test Drive:
    http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/reviews/healey/2004-05-13-esc- ape-main_x.htm

    Note that towing is rated at 1000 pounds. The ICE version is rated at 3500 pounds if you want to compare.

    Judging by the first link, if you want one, get in line now! :)
  • daysailerdaysailer Posts: 711
    why would you want to "get in line"?. The review suggests that the Escape hybrid is underwhelming, at best, and that the much hoped for hybrid with "V6 performance" is not the Escape.

    Granted, this is just one reviewer's opinion and there was no quantitative performance data, but it is not encouraging.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    30,000 people showed interest in buying one through Ford's website. Ford only plans to produce 20,000 copies. Is this starting to make more sense now?

    The reviewer used the term "underwhelming" when comparing the Hybrid's performance to the V6 model. However, near the end he commented that it was the most enjoyable hybrid to drive so far.

    For the record I will not be getting in line. I don't care how much gas costs right now and fuel mileage is never on my list of needs when shopping for a new vehicle. I'll stick with the good old ICE until I'm forced to give it up. Yes, I'm one of those guys. :)
  • topcoptopcop Posts: 3
    I suspect that the Escape Hybrid will sell like hotcakes. While my towing needs are just the semester driven exercises of moving my kids back and forth from college, I suspect that above very light weight towing, an ICE would still be way to go.
    I saw an earlier post about seat comfort and wind noise. I must say that my '02 Escape XLT has about the most uncomfortable seats (hard as a rock) as I have ever sat upon. Windnoise is significant. I even tried removing the radio antenna mast and installing an inside mount antenna. That helped some, and in a major radio market the radio works fine. Get out in the boonies though, and I need to switch to CD.
  • michanthmichanth Posts: 38
    FMC's Idea of a Hybrid may go a step further. Sorry if I'm a little off topic but Fords Hydraulic Hybrid Transmission or Hydraulic Launch Assist seems very promising and maybe quickly available and practical to install in new suv's and cars. It recaptures energy lost during braking by accumulating compressing fluid then to be used as a launch assist during acceleration. This maybe the way to go regardless of the powerplant - ICE, Diesel, Hybrid, Fuel Cell etc..

    The bottom line - Projected 30-40% better fuel economy in city driving and lower emissions. And projected cost increase of 600$ over a standard transmission.

    References:

    http://popularmechanics.com/automotive/auto_technology/2004/3/04_- - - sae_congress/index4.phtml

    http://www.iags.org/n033104t3.htm

    http://www.ford.com/en/innovation/engineFuelTechnology/modularHyb- - - ridTransmission.htm

    We may have a new topic here.
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