Compact SUV vehicle customers will have more choice in plotting their ultimate Escape when Ford introduces a new 4-cylinder model from January 2004.
Complementing the introduction of the 4-cylinder model will be interior and exterior upgrades across the range.
"Ford has previously offered Escape with a V6 engine only," says Ford Australia President, Mr Polites.
"However, the availability of a new 4-cylinder engine has given us the opportunity to offer our customers the choice of either a 3.0 litre V6 engine or a 2.3 litre 4-cylinder engine."
The ZB Escape XLS 4-cylinder engine will produce 108 kW at 6000 rpm and 201 Nm of torque at 4500 rpm.
The ZB Escape XLS 2.3 litre also includes a mechanical brake-assist system, which supplements the driver's pedal effort to minimise braking and stopping distances under hard braking conditions. Interior upgrades for both the 4-cylinder and V6 XLS Escape includes premium cloth trim, a new two-tone dash, a newly styled steering wheel and black finish centre instrument panel and power window switches.
The V6 XLT Escape will now feature accent colour painted bumpers, cladding and wheel arches in either Exceed Silver or Moonlight Grey. A power antenna and a newly styled alloy wheel complete the exterior upgrade.
The interior of the XLT Escape models includes all the upgrades of the ZB XLS Escape and adds plush velour trim and an overhead console featuring a sunglasses holder and reading lamps.
Upgrades to the ZB Escape Limited include a newly styled alloy wheel, body-coloured painted bumpers, cladding and wheel arches, tinted privacy glass on all rear door, rear quarter and back windows, and a power antenna.
The interior of the new Escape Limited also features a two-tone dash and black finish centre instrument panel and power switches, as well as a revised overhead console featuring a sunglasses holder, reading lamps and a sunroof switch. Leather seat trim is standard.
New exterior colours include Sand Dune, Amazon, and Ice. Escape Limited will only be available in Midnight Black, Mediterranean Blue or Sand Dune.
ZB Escape also features new interior seat and door trim colours, Pebble or Flint.
Pricing for the ZB Escape model range will be announced closer to launch.