Hybrid Update




March 5, 2006 at 11:40 am

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This entry is also known as Episode II of .

We stopped by another local Ford dealership today. They’re closed of course, since it’s Sunday, but we were there just to check out the various paint combinations in person. The lot has forty or more conventional gasoline engine Escapes and even one hybrid (up on the patio display right outside the sales office).

It’s really difficult to tell the difference between a hybrid and conventional Ford Escape, especially if the hybrid’s interior lacks the hybrid/NAV info screen.

The FEH (Ford Escape Hybrid) is definitely one you’d want a hybrid/”green” bumper sticker on to set yourself apart from all the conventional gas-sucking SUVs.

As you might imagine, with over forty Escapes to wander around, we got to check out all the various color schemes, including the Sonic Blue metallic and Redfire metallic paint in both the ‘plain’ (no extra cost) dark gray plastic body cladding, and in the (”appearance package”) silver metallic body cladding. It both helped and hurt my decision-making process.

How did it hurt?

I’d been convinced that after fourteen years driving a Sunfire Red Pearl metallic Toyota Corolla, my days in a red vehicle were over for at least a decade or so.

I thought I was ready for a change, and maybe I still am. But the Escape in Redfire metallic has grown on me, and may easily supplant the Sonic Blue as my color choice.

The Escape looks a little more “upscale” in the metallic red, and a little more “sporty” in the blue. Either way, it “fits” me, but for the added cost of the hybrid, I think I’m leaning towards it looking it rather than looking like a sporty SUV in Sonic Blue.

That said, I like both colors on the Escape so if I’m lucky enough to have a buying decision hinge upon “the blue or the red, ma’am?” either will make me equally happy.

Today’s visit was also nice to know at least one dealer in town actually has a hybrid on its lot — though the one we saw was a basic/low end model (if there is such a thing in the hybrid’s pricing structure). The one we saw was an ‘06 Ford Escape Hybrid with cloth interior and only one upgrade — the audiophile non-NAV radio. The leather interior is definitely one of my “no flex on negotiation” points, and in the past 24-36 hours, the hybrid/NAV radio option (to the tune of $1,995) has become a pretty strong non-negotiation point as well.

We’re waiting on a price quote we requested *late* on Thursday. We suspect there will be no real wiggle room, at which point we may go to a dealership as early as Monday or Tuesday evening to request the exact vehicle I want. We’ll see how long it actually takes for “my” hybrid to be delivered to San Antonio, at that point.

Added Later: To find certified Escape Hybrid dealers in your area, and browse their current inventory, go to

and enter your ZIP.

Don’t forget to select “Escape Hybrid Certified Dealer” from the dropdown menu.

(It looks like my Ford Escape Hybrid will probably be coming from Austin. All the certified dealers there have at least 10 FEH’s in inventory. San Antonio? Not-so-much…)




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