The Ford Escape ST Could Humble The VW Tiguan R and Hyundai Tucson N Line
And guess what: Ford actually likes the idea of an ST-badged Escapeby Tudor Rus, on LISTEN 02:37
As crossovers and SUVs remain crowd favorites, carmakers are looking to further milk the cash cow by offering souped-up versions for their high-riding people and grocery carriers. The latest rumor to hit the internet has to do with Ford and the fact that the Blue Oval believes slapping the ST badge on the Escape is “a fantastic idea.”
Don’t hold your breath just yet, though
The ST badge Ford has been sticking to the likes of Fiesta, Focus, and more recently the Puma, but now we're learning that it might find a way on the Escape as well.
We’re saying might because according to Cars Guide, James Hughes - who is Ford’s global Escape vehicle line chief program engineer - believes such an Escape derivative would make a lot of sense.
“We do have an outstanding legacy and a really good foundation with Focus ST, and we’re always evaluating further derivative opportunities, but as you guys know, I really can’t comment on future products,” said Hughes.
This means Ford is at least exploring a potential Escape ST avenue that would give them an edge in front of Volkswagen’s Tiguan R and Hyundai’s incoming Tucson N Line.
The Tiguan R packs a 2-liter turbo engine good for 316 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. It can go from 0 to 62 mph (100 kph) in 4.9 seconds, but you can’t have it in the U.S. just yet - Volkswagen is still trying to decide if the Tiguan R can make a splash in the States.
We’re going to wait to know more about the Hyundai Tucson N Line. While Hyundai did confirm that such a model is coming, we don’t know much about what sort of firepower it is bound to receive. Car and Driver’s best guess is somewhere in the lines of a turbo-four with around 290 horsepower on tap.
This is where Ford should aim with a potential Escape ST: the 290-300+ horsepower interval. In Europe, the Ford Focus ST makes 280 PS (which is 276 horsepower) from a turbocharged 2.3-liter EcoBoost mill. We’re guessing that Ford Performance would have no issues in squeezing 30 or 40 horsepower more out of this engine.
Moreover, you can have the Escape in the U.S. with a 2.0-liter (also turbocharged) EcoBoost mill with 250 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, which means Ford could turn its attention to this one and perform the extra tuning demanded by the ST badge.
Source: Cars Guide