The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid is a mechanical carryover from last, but just like the regular 2008 Ford Escape, the body is updated significantly.
Under the hood though, is the big story. While it’s not new, the hybrid powertrain powering the Ford Escape Hybrid is a marvel. Ford’s engineers hooked up their 2.3 liter 4 cylinder to a slick little 94 HP electric motor. The results are pretty impressive. The regular 4 cylinder Escape gets 20 MPG city / 26 MPG highway. The Hybrid gets 29 MPG city / 27 MPG highway. Like most hybrids, highway mileage is similar to the gas edition. The real advantage is the city mileage – nearly a 50% jump.
Personally, I’m not a big fan of small SUV’s. I think most small SUV buyers would be better served with a sedan, gas or hybrid. However, if you’re considering a small SUV just the same, and you do a fair amount of city driving, the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid may be a great choice. Plus, if you’re a treehugger, then you get to help save the environment – you’ll pump out a lot less nasty emissions with the hybrid.
2008 Ford Escape Hybrid Specs
- 133 HP 2.3 liter 4 cylinder engine
- 94 HP Electric Motor
- Net 155 HP combined ( gas engine / electric motor )
- CVT ( Continuously variable transmission
- Curb Weight: 3638 lbs
- 1000 lb towing capacity
- EPA Says: 29 MPG city / 27 MPG highway
2008 Ford Escape Hybrid Reviews
ArcaMax reviews the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and writes – ‘When driving on the batteries — which you can do up to about 25 mph or so — your main clue about the absence of internal combustion is the tach needle, which dips into the green zone to the left of the scale until either your speed or driving conditions tell the computer to start up the 2.3 liter gas engine for additional power. The gas engine will also sometimes “cycle on” when you’re not moving — to run the AC, for example. Or to to keep the battery pack at optimal charge. But again, your main indication that any of this is happening is the tach readout. There’s virtually no lag time — even when you floor it from a standstill and the system has to quickly switch the gas engine on to meet your urgent need for speed. Similarly, the gas engine goes “dark” so discretely you’ll often not even realize it’s turned itself off — and find yourself creeping along on just the batteries, marveling at the great job Ford did with the exhaust tuning.’
Auto123 reviews the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and says – ‘As we crept away from stoplights at a snails’ pace–remember, we don’t want to needlessly use the engine–you can hear the mechanicals creaking underneath as the vehicle moves forward, something you’d never be able to hear in a conventional car or truck. But since the Hybrid can only run a few kilometres on battery power alone, the combustion engine inevitably comes back to life in order to regenerate juice for the electric motor.’
The Car Connection reviews the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and writes – ‘The front end has been completely redone. It’s now very Expedition-like, with a larger and chrome-plated grille/bumper section replacing the body-colored molded plastic treatment used previously. The bumper’s center section extends down and underneath the front end, giving the appearance of an integrated skid plate. Just above the bumper, the hood’s lip rises almost vertically for an inch or so, then cuts back at an almost 90-degree angle. Larger headlamp assemblies with integrated turn and parking signals, projector-style fog lamps cut into the lower bumper, and a black-out treatment for the B-pillar complete the manly makeover on the outside. ‘
Edmunds reviews the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and writes – ‘Although the gasoline engine makes too much racket during hard acceleration, the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid feels nearly as quick as the V6 Escape, while returning outstanding fuel mileage. Ride quality is acceptable for this class, but handling is a bit of a letdown. With an extra 300 pounds of curb weight compared to a regular Escape, the Hybrid model exhibits considerable body roll around turns and generally feels less agile than most small SUVs. The Escape Hybrid’s regenerative brakes provide solid stopping ability, but can be difficult to modulate due to the brake pedal’s excessive stiffness at the top of its travel.’
Cars.com reviews the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid and has this to say – ‘There’s a slight shudder when the gas engine starts, but the engine’s noise is more noticeable if you’ve been traveling awhile on electric power. The Escape Hybrid delivers acceptable acceleration that gives it enough power to get up to highway speeds safely, but it isn’t a power-oriented hybrid like the Lexus GS 450h. The upside, of course, is better gas mileage. Once up to highway speeds, a fair amount of wind noise penetrates the cabin.’