2023 Ford Escape Debuts Updated Look, New ST-Line Spec

The revised Escape also features the latest generation of Sync 4 tech with a whopping 13.2-inch screen.

Antuan Goodwin Reviews Editor / Cars
Antuan Goodwin gained his automotive knowledge the old fashioned way, by turning wrenches in a driveway and picking up speeding tickets. From drivetrain tech and electrification to car audio installs and cabin tech, if it's on wheels, Antuan is knowledgeable.
Expertise Reviewing cars and car technology since 2008 focusing on electrification, driver assistance and infotainment Credentials
  • North American Car, Truck and SUV of the Year (NACTOY) Awards Juror
Antuan Goodwin
3 min read
2023 Ford Escape ST-Line Elite SUV in Rapid Red
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2023 Ford Escape ST-Line Elite SUV in Rapid Red

The reshaped headlamps and larger grille are more assertive than the old doe-eyed face.


Meet the new 2023 Ford Escape. The midcycle refresh brings a much-needed update to the compact SUV's appearance, new sporty ST-Line models and a major cabin tech overhaul centered around the latest generation of Ford's Sync 4 infotainment.

The 2023 Escape sees the usual complement of midcycle styling revisions, starting with the resculpted front bumper. The grille has been raised on the fascia and now features an octagonal shape and envelopes the Ford oval badge. The headlamps also look angrier than last year's doe eyes and are now highlighted by an optional "coast-to-coast" LED light bar that runs the width of the Escape's face for certain specs.

New to the lineup is the sport-styled ST-Line spec with its glossy black exterior details and trim, including the chunky black mesh of its grille. ST-Line models also feature unique rear bumper garnish and a larger rear spoiler than their stablemates. Eighteen-inch wheels are standard for the Escape ST-Line, with 19-inch rolling stock coming online at the ST-Line Elite trim level. Inside, you'll find red contrast stitching and a flat-bottom steering wheel completing the sports car cosplay, but also an improved grade of materials.

Ford's 1.5- and 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine options persist largely unchanged for the 2023 model year. The EcoBoost 1.5T still outputs 180 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque and is available in either front- or all-wheel driven configurations. The ST-Line Select spec steps up to the EcoBoost 2.0T with its 250 hp and 280 lb-ft of twist with standard all-wheel-drive.

2023 Ford Escape PHEV Updated, Sport-Styled ST-Line Debuts

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The refreshed Escape will also continue to be offered in Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid flavors, each based on the automaker's fourth-generation, 2.5-liter, Atkinson-cycle hybrid system. Total system output for the standard hybrid is now stated at 210 hp (10 hp more than last year) and 155 lb-ft of torque (unchanged). It's unclear if whatever tweaks Ford made will affect fuel economy as the new Environmental Protection Agency estimates have yet to be released. You'll find the hybrid system powering the Platinum and ST-Line Elite models.

Meanwhile, the Escape Plug-in Hybrid is still rocking a combined 221 hp (unchanged from last year) and up to 37 miles of EPA-estimated electric range per charge. Plugging into a 110-volt wall outlet will recharge the PHEV in around 10-11 hours. At a 240-volt Level 2 station, that time shrinks to 3.5 hours. 

2023 Ford Escape ST-Line Elite SUV in Rapid Red
Enlarge Image
2023 Ford Escape ST-Line Elite SUV in Rapid Red

An optional 13.2-inch version of Ford's Sync 4 infotainment dominates the compact Escape's dashboard.


One of the biggest changes to the 2023 Escape is the move to offering a 13.2 Sync 4 infotainment system with Alexa Built-In. The new generation features web-connected destination search, enhanced voice recognition and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Less visible from the driver's seat are upgrades to the Ford Co-Pilot360 driver aid suite, which now includes updated Intersection Assist 2.0 and Blind Spot Assist collision-avoidance technologies.

The 2023 Ford Escape also sees a simplification of its lineup, dropping the previous S, SE, SEL and Titanium structure and shrinking from 10 discrete trim levels to seven. The new hierarchy includes Base, Active, Platinum, the three ST-Line models and the Plug-in Hybrid.

The Escape Base starts at $28,995, including the requisite $1,495 destination charge. That's only about $315 more than the 2022 Escape S. Further up the totem pole are the new ST-Line, ST-Line Select and ST-Line Elite models, ranging from $31,335 to $39,955 depending on trim and powertrain selected. The Escape Plug-in Hybrid is now its own trim level at the top of the 2023 model year lineup starting at $39,995 -- surprisingly, $2,200 less than the outgoing Escape Titanium PHEV.