The Ford Escape SUV: fuel efficient and tailgating friendly

Submitted by Paula Duffy

The Ford Escape SUV has been named the best in its class for fuel efficiency and with a hands-free tailgate feature, its mighty handy.

The 2012 Escape SUV delivers and EPA-estimated 34 city/31 hwy/32 combined mpg for for a hybrid with front-wheel drive. It features a 2.5L Atkinson-cycle I-4 engine plus electric motor.

Ford trumpets the ability of the vehicle to use no fuel up to 44 mph and when stopped in traffic and one feature coming on the 2013 models that will delight shoppers who approach the Escape with their hands full as well as football tailgate aficionados.

USA Today reported the tailgate feature and what Ford calls its “gesture based” control.

The tailgate control will be on display at The L.A. Auto Show, opening to the general public on Friday November 18 and running through the Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend, November 27, 2011.

Today, Ford Motor Company is officially announcing it as one feature in an option package and while it might be considered a hands-free operation, it requires some touch to operate.

A person with the key fob, standing near the Escape SUV only needs to give a nudge to the underside of the back bumper for the tailgate to open. Another nudge will close it.

It takes the key fob opening feature one step further to improve on the necessity of pressing a button to unlock the vehicle. While announcing this latest upgrade option, Ford wants to impress upon the public the fact that it is a luxury feature on a mainstream vehicle.

The L.A. Auto Show promises to be full of news and introductions from as array of manufactures of autos, trucks, SUV’s, motor homes and aftermarket companies. Afternarket products are big in Los Angeles and the 2011 show promises attendees their fill of exciting products.

Brenden Flynn, the show’s public relations director told media, “the show’s public relations director hyped the exhibitors he knows will draw the crowds:

“Aftermarket is always hot in L.A.,” Flynn said. “We’ve got the Galpin Auto Sports guys coming back. They do the show Pimp My Ride. Of course, DUB is back. We have a lot of really high end tuners. Platinum Motorsports is going to have all of their Porsche’s, Lamborghini’s and Ferrari’s. Lots of aftermarket parts. It’s a huge hall dedicated to that. The consumer here in L.A. is into that whole aftermarket/customization scene.”

A ticket-only public event held on Thursday night November 17 will benefit local Los Angeles charities that focus on the homeless population. It’s a great way to see the show without the usual crowds while helping those less fortunate.

A limited number of ticket holders will enjoy an evening complete with the latest designs from automakers worldwide, while sipping a beverage and nibbling on hors d’oeuvres as they treat themselves to this once-a-year event.

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