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As with the Mazda Tribute, Ford has taken its popular Escape softroader Outback out back and given it a bit of rhinoplasty inside n' out. Debuting alongside its platform-mate at this week's Melbourne International Motor Show, the reworked SUV presents a new front and rear for 2007, along with some drivetrain and interior fettling. And though the update isn't confirmed for Stateside Escapes, it figures as a good bet to reinvigorate what is essentially an older offering.

The AU Escape loses its Jay Leno proboscis in favor of a more restrained and upscale nose, featuring a riff on the Blue Oval's signature three-bar grille. A new hood and revamped bumper, along with chrome-ringed four-element headlamps are also featured. Uplevel XLT Sport and Limited trim levels benefit from reworked circular fogs and a restyled front skid plate, the latter of which receives turn-signal side mirrors.

(Hit the jump for rear-end, driveline and interior details)

At the rear, new LED taillamps take up residence over a new bumper (again, with skid plate on XLT Sport and Limited) and a "new lift gate garnish" completes the revised rump. 2007 Escapes will roll on one of three new wheel designs, including seven and three spoke alloys (XLT V6 Sport and XLT, respectively) or six-spoke steels (base XLS).

Underhood, both the 2.3-liter four and 3.0-liter six have been brought into compliance with Euro III emissions regulations, with the former gaining variable-valve timing (Ford remains mum on power increases). Rear disc brakes will now be fitted across the range, all featuring Emergency Brake Assist.

The Blue Oval also promises an all-new interior (to be revealed later, but likely closely mirroring that of the 2007 Tribute), which should help its fortunes in the growing small SUV fray. Either way, beats traveling in a fried-out Combi.

[Source: The Ford Motor Company]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      This front end is really nothing new... Ford's been selling this version of the Escape in Taiwan for a couple years now, and this does not portend anything for the future Escape redesign for the NA market... Have you seen the Escape test mule photos?
      • 9 Years Ago

      This is a major improvement with the Escape. Ford let Mazda have the good looking version with the Tribute.

      The front of the Escape was the only thing I didn`t like about it. This is great, but the Tribute still looks better. Both are very good vehicles.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Looks nice. I just wish they would hurry up and bring a Common-Rail diesel engine to market in North America.
      • 9 Years Ago
      seems like every vehicle Ford pastes that stupid grille onto is a rip off of some other vehicle. First we had the Fusion which totally ripped off Cadillac and the japs, and now the Escape looks like a kia?

      Ugh... I'm a Ford guy (drive a Grand Marquis) so I hope it sells well, but there's no way I'd buy one...
      • 9 Years Ago
      my familiy owns an escape and i like the vehicle a lot. its comfortable and what not.. (maybe i say this b/c i drive a corolla...). anyways, i think the redesign is ok, specially if they redid the interior as well. i think it would be nice if they moved the gear selector from he steering column to the bottom of the center console. as for the new fron end, i really like the headlight design, looks a lot more upscale. but i think the 3-bar thing just looks tacky on this model. just makes it look like its tryna be a highlander.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Memo to Ford...Ditch the 3-bar grill thing you insist upon for all your vehicles. I know you want it to be Ford's "DNA," but this is not the way forward.

      Question. Looks pretty good for a 2001 car in a 2007 world. Why is the U.S. saddled with this (and I own an Escape), when we could have the AS Territory? The Territory's interior alone would be worth it. And BTW, how much Hp does the new RAV-4 have? Lead, follow, or get out of the way.