Hybrids aren’t exactly touted for their towing capabilities.
Automakers prefer to emphasize their reduced fuel consumption and smaller carbon footprint than talk towing.
But Ford has made the Escape Hybrid capable of towing up to 1,500 pounds.
The gas-powered Escape can tow up to 3,500 pounds, making for quite the difference in capacity.
Let’s take a more in-depth look at the Ford Escape Hybrid’s towing abilities and how this stacks up against the competition.
Can a Ford Escape Hybrid Tow A Trailer?
A towing capacity of 1,500 pounds restricts what the Ford Escape Hybrid is able to tow. You can hitch up a 2 Place trailer, boat trailer, flatbed trailer, or a single-axle trailer to the Ford Escape Hybrid. You just need to be cognizant of the weight of what you will be putting on your trailer.
What items can be loaded onto a trailer to be towed by the Ford Escape Hybrid?
Should you consider getting the gas-powered Escape that can tow up to 3,500 pounds? Read on to get those burgeoning questions answered.
The Ford Escape Hybrid’s Towing
As already mentioned, the Ford Escape Hybrid has a max towing capacity of 1,500 pounds.
This puts it in line with a lot of small SUVs, crossovers, and sedans.
Unfortunately, it just is not as beefy as what the gas-powered Escape manages with its 3,500-pound towing capacity.
You will need to be selective with what you load up onto your trailer if you do decide to tow anything behind your Escape Hybrid.
Is a Tow Hitch Included?
Unfortunately, a factory-installed tow hitch is not included on either the 1.5L EcoBoost engine model or the hybrid 2.5L engine.
You will have to buy it as an accessory that can fit onto these models without the tow hitch.
That is the only way you are going to be able to hook up a trailer.
Which trailers can be towed behind the Escape Hybrid?
Let’s talk about which trailers can be pulled behind the Escape Hybrid.
As I said above, it can tow a 2 place trailer, a boat trailer, a flatbed trailer, or a single-axle trailer.
So let’s talk a little more about what each of those trailers is and what they can do.
A 2 place trailer is a small trailer that can house two snowmobiles side by side (hence the name).
They can vary in size, but they typically measure at around 12 feet long by 101 inches wide and 64 inches high in the interior.
They are enclosed and made of strong metal materials, so they are pretty heavy on their own.
Then you have to factor in the weight of two snowmobiles.
Open models generally weigh less, coming in at around 350-400 pounds.
The drawback there, of course, is exposure to the elements.
A boat trailer is pretty simple and usually lightweight enough on its own.
Your run-of-the-mill model will weigh around 600 pounds, but laden with a boat, it could easily surpass the 1,500 pound capacity on the Escape Hybrid.
That’s why you’re essentially limited to a smaller, lighter boat, such as a canoe.
Even on its own, a tandem-axle boat trailer can weigh roughly 1,000 pounds.
Hence the emphasis on being really, really selective here.
Now, a flatbed trailer can have an empty weight of somewhere around 500 pounds, leaving you room to load up about 1,000 pounds onto it.
Of course, as anyone who has pulled a trailer on a smaller vehicle will tell you, aim to go light.
Don’t exceed the max towing capacity; in fact, aim to hit about 100 pounds or so beneath it since you are putting extra strain on your vehicle.
Flatbeds are useful for many things, such as getting your new riding lawn mower home or hauling scrap metal.
They are handy, and when used properly, can be a real asset to an Escape Hybrid owner.
A single-axle trailer can weigh up to 1,000 pounds empty, so if you get one, be mindful of how much you are putting in it.
Weight can add up fast in these trailers, but they are useful for lugging bigger tools and small amounts of lumber around.
If you’re thinking of snagging a teardrop trailer for camping, be careful.
They might look compact, but they can actually weigh close to 1,500 pounds, which puts you right at your max towing capacity.
You will need to be incredibly selective if you plan on buying one to take camping.
What can I load onto my trailer?
If you get the right trailer, you can haul a lot of recreational things, such as snowmobiles, small boats, jet skis, an ATV, or a motorcycle.
You can even haul your riding lawn mower around if you have a lawn care business.
You just need to ensure that you buy the proper trailer for the job and that, combined with the items you put on it, you stay below the 1,500-pound mark.
How Other Crossover Hybrid SUVs Compare
Unfortunately, it appears that the Ford Escape Hybrid falls short of the competition in terms of towing capacity.
Take, for example, the Lexus RX 450h. It matches the regular Escape’s 3,500-pound max towing capacity with ease – and it is a luxury vehicle.
There’s also the new 2021 Subaru Outback Hybrid to consider.
With standard all-wheel drive, 8.7 inches of ground clearance, and a max towing capacity of 3,500 pounds, it is sure to give the Escape Hybrid a run for its money.
All in all, 1,500 pounds is becoming an outdated max towing capacity for crossover hybrid SUVs.
Manufacturers seem to understand that, if you want a hybrid to sell, you have to hit all the same selling points as you do with your gas-powered variants while keeping them fuel-efficient.
It is a difficult balance but it is one that some major competitors are getting in line with at the moment.
Sadly, it seems that Ford is not one of them, at least not when it comes to the Escape Hybrid.
Towing With A Ford Escape Hybrid
Buying a Ford Escape Hybrid can be a money-saving decision.
Ford is likely assuming that people who buy crossover hybrid SUVs are not interested in towing, but they are absolutely mistaken.
While the Escape Hybrid can handle towing some of your smaller recreational toys, it is not meant for anything much bigger than a teardrop trailer.
The more you load it up, the more the fuel economy will lag, and the more burdened the driving performance will ultimately feel.
If you are dead-set on getting a hybrid SUV that has a strong towing capacity, you might want to look at the Lexus RX 450h or Subaru Outback Hybrid.
They put in a stronger performance with a 2,000 pound increase in max towing over the Escape Hybrid.
Carefully weigh your decision and buy based on what you know you are going to need your new hybrid SUV to do for you.