12/07/2011 // Cambridge, MA, USA // CambridgePRGroup // Michael Wong

When you already have the best-selling SUV in America, it can be difficult to decide where improvements should be made, but Ford has banked on the new technology in its next-generation Escape. Revealed last month at the LA Auto Show, the sleek-looking 2013 Ford Escape features new hands-free functionality and innovative EcoBoost engines designed to save customers at the pump when it arrives next year.

Ford engineers improved on the recipe of the 2012 Ford Escape currently at Ford dealerships by including several features that are unseen in its segment, like a power liftgate that is activated by waving a foot under the rear bumper. Adding to the hands-free theme is an upgraded version of Ford’s SYNC with MyFord Touch infotainment system, which features faster response times and more intuitive voice and touchscreen controls for the stereo, climate control, navigation and phone calls.

“Ford carefully upgraded the Escape to make sure it has the latest technology without changing the qualities that make it a bestseller,” said Bob McCullen, general sales manager of Bow, New Hampshire Ford dealership Grappone Ford. “New Hampshire drivers will still find all the capability they need, but the Escape is now smarter and can make drivers’ adventures even more seamless and efficient.”

Ford will offer the 2013 Escape with three engine choices, including the four-cylinder 2.5 liter powerplant from the previous generation model and two EcoBoost engines boasting big power and surprising efficiency. The 1.6-liter EcoBoost will produce an estimated 173 horsepower, while the larger 2.0-liter EcoBoost mill will churn out an estimated 237 horsepower. Though the EPA has yet to weigh in, Ford says the Escape’s fuel economy will improve by as much as 5 mpg.

Adding to the Ford Escape’s rugged capability is a newly available Intelligent 4WD System that uses sensors to turn the SUV in the direction that the driver is intending. Meanwhile, an optional Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) warns of cars that can’t be seen with alerts in the side mirror, including vehicles coming from the side while backing out of a parking spot. A couple firsts for the segment are Curve Control, which can slow the vehicle when it is cornering too quickly, and Torque Vectoring Control, which makes the Escape handle even more capably.

Gone are the squared-off looks of the previous Escape, replaced with smoother edges and creases that share DNA with Ford’s small cars, the Focus and Fiesta. The new shape makes the vehicle 10 percent more aerodynamic, but doesn’t affect the space for passengers, groceries or gear inside. There is 68.1 cubic-feet of cargo space available with the back seats folded flat, and even with five passengers there is still 34.3 cubic-feet of cargo space available.

“It is clear that Ford did not rest on their laurels when creating the new Escape; there are 11 new features that are exclusive in its class,” McCullen noted. “It will be sad to see the Escape we’ve all come to love leave, but the 2013 model is going to a worthy successor to the throne.”

About Grappone Ford:

Established in 1924, Grappone Ford is the destination for New Hampshire Ford fans from Manchester, Concord and the surrounding communities who demand superior automotive service. Grappone’s friendly staff are experts in all things Ford, and their skilled technicians perform high-quality repairs and maintenance at their state-of-the-art service center. You can browse their extensive inventory of new and used Ford models online at ford.grappone.com, call them at 888-829-8645 or stop by their dealership at 506 State Road Route 3A in Bow, New Hampshire. The Grappone Automotive Group can also be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/grapponeauto.

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