Ford is emerging as an automotive sustainability frontrunner as they step up their strategy, efforts, and product line. One of their new offerings is the redesigned 2013 Ford Escape which has a new look, a new, green engine, and an array of recycled, reused and reduced impact materials.
Earlier this year, sustainability expert Andrew Winston lauded Ford’s sustainability approach and strategy claiming that they would be the company to watch as they close the gap in Toyota’s previously substantial lead in the race for greener vehicles. Although Ford does have its own EV offering, the Focus EV, its long and short-term sustainability plan also includes developing efficiencies in its existing gas-powered fleet. Ford’s Director of Sustainability and Environmental Policy, John Viera, told Winston that he believes that “the world may save more fuel between now and 2020 through these incremental improvements than through nascent sales of cleaner cars.”
The EcoBoost engine, offered for the first time on the Escape and in the U.S., gives vehicles more power and better gas mileage at the same time. The Ford Escape EcoBoost engine is projected to outperform Toyota’s current RAV-4 and Honda’s current CRV engines, and also provide better fuel economy than both. EcoBoost engines are key to Ford’s long-term sustainability plan. By 2013, more than 90 percent of Ford’s North American lineup will be available with EcoBoost technology.
The 2013 Ford Escape employs not only an EcoBoost engine, but many other green characteristics including materials that are recycled, renewable and reduce impact, including:
- Carpeting made from either post-consumer or post-industrial materials. The source for polyester carpeting is roughly one-third post-consumer and two-thirds post-industrial.
- About 25 20-ounce plastic bottles total are in the carpeting
- Soy foam in the seats and head restraints
- Powertrain undershields made from 100 percent recycled plastics
- More than 10 pounds of scrap cotton recycled from jeans, sweaters, T-shirts is used in sound-absorption material
- Climate control gaskets made from recycled tires
- Industry-first use of microcellular (MuCell) technology in the injection molding process of the instrument panel, reducing weight by 1 pound and contributing to improved fuel economy. This technology injects microscopic bubbles to reduce weight without sacrificing dimensional integrity
While the Escape is created using eco-friendly materials, it also meets the USCAR Vehicle Recycling Partnership goal since 85 percent of the vehicle is recyclable at the end of its lifecycle. Sue Cischke, group vice president, Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering, said, “We are confident that the all-new Ford Escape will deliver outstanding fuel economy and make smart use of materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill. Savvy customers will appreciate how we have made the Escape both greener and smarter.”