Recently caught undergoing testing in southern Europe, this chassis testing mule looks nothing like the production model which is expected to arrive in 2020. While it isn’t much to look at, the crossover has been equipped with a modified body that suggests the next-generation crossovers will be longer and wider than their predecessors.
Little is known about the models at this point but their importance is beyond question. Despite getting a little long-in-tooth, Ford sold 308,296 Escapes in the United States last year. Likewise, Carsalesbase data shows the company moved over 150,000 units of the Kuga in Europe in 2017. U.S. sales have remained relatively steady but the Kuga’s popularity in Europe has been surging as annual sales have climbed by approximately 20,000 units for four consecutive years.
Given the importance to the bottom line, there’s little doubt the crossovers are in for some major upgrades. Nothing is official but the models should receive a higher quality and more spacious interior. We can also expect modern infotainment and convenience systems as well as a host of new driver assistance features. However, Ford has already revealed the next-generation Escape will be offered with fewer build combinations in an effort to reduce costs.
Engine options remain unconfirmed but we can expect the model will be offered with the company’s latest EcoBoost options. There could also be a plug-in hybrid variant as Ford has already revealed plans to launch 24 plug-in hybrids by 2022.