Ford Escape Hybrid
From Ford press: The Ford Escape Hybrid is still the cleanest and most fuel-efficient SUV in the world, combining the fuel economy and emissions benefits of a full hybrid with the go-anywhere capability, toughness and spaciousness of the Ford Escape – America’s favorite small SUV.
For 2008, The Escape Hybrid combines a fresh new look, inside and out, with infotainment and safety features, a choice of two hybrid-specific upgrade packages and four new exterior colors.
The Escape Hybrid is a “full” hybrid, meaning it automatically switches between pure electric power, pure gasoline engine power or combined operation to maximize efficiency and performance. Its gasoline engine and electric motor work in concert, providing performance similar to that of a V-6 engine.
In less demanding situations, the Escape Hybrid can run on its electric motor alone (at speeds up to 25 mph), its gasoline engine alone or the most efficient combination of the two.
Full hybrids achieve their greatest improvement in fuel economy during stop-and-go driving, when the electric motor is most efficient. In fact, the Escape Hybrid provides approximately 80 percent better fuel economy in city driving than the conventional V-6 Escape and can travel more than 500 miles in city driving on a single tank of gasoline.
The combined output of both the gas and electric motors is 155 horsepower, and the powertrain provides 0-60 acceleration performance similar to the conventional Escape with a 200-horsepower V-6 engine. The generator-motor provides power boosts during heavy load situations, helping Escape Hybrid accelerate briskly to speed. In addition to fuel-free operation, electric motors deliver maximum torque at low rpm, so they are an ideal complement to gasoline engines that generate peak power at higher rpm.
For 2008, Escape Hybrid engineers made revisions to software in the control system to improve transparency, or the transition between gasoline and electric operation. The transition from electric-only to gasoline power to a combination of the two is now even more seamless and virtually imperceptible to the driver. The four-wheel-disc regenerative brakes also have been retuned to provide better feel.