2020 Ford Escape FHEV vs. 2020 Hyundai Kona

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/03/31

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Ford Escape FHEV have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Hyundai Kona doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The Escape FHEV has standard Post Collision Braking, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Kona doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Escape FHEV offers an optional backup collision prevention system that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Kona doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The Escape FHEV Titanium has standard parking sensors to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or in front of their vehicle. The Kona doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the Escape FHEV and the Kona have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors and available all wheel drive.

Warranty

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There are almost 4 times as many Ford dealers as there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Escape FHEV’s warranty.

Reliability

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The Escape FHEV has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Kona doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

Engine

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The Escape FHEV’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 53 more horsepower (200 vs. 147) than the Kona’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder. The Escape FHEV’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 25 more horsepower (200 vs. 175) than the Kona Limited/Ultimate’s standard 1.6 turbo 4-cylinder.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Escape FHEV gets better mileage than the Kona:

MPG

Escape FHEV

FWD

2.5 4-cyl. Hybrid

44 city/37 hwy

AWD

2.5 4-cyl. Hybrid

43 city/37 hwy

Kona

FWD

2.0 DOHC 4-cyl.

27 city/33 hwy

1.6 turbo 4-cyl.

28 city/32 hwy

AWD

2.0 DOHC 4-cyl.

26 city/30 hwy

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

26 city/29 hwy

Regenerative brakes improve the Escape FHEV’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Kona doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Escape FHEV’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Kona doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Escape FHEV has a gallon more fuel capacity than the Kona (14.2 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Escape FHEV has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Kona doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

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The Escape FHEV has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Kona doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Escape FHEV stops much shorter than the Kona:

Escape FHEV

Kona

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

133 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Escape FHEV has larger tires than the Kona (225/65R17 vs. 205/60R16).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Escape FHEV has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Kona SE. The Escape FHEV’s optional 19-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels on the Kona Limited/Ultimate.

Suspension and Handling

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For superior ride and handling, the Ford Escape FHEV has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Kona 4x2 has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Escape FHEV’s wheelbase is 4.3 inches longer than on the Kona (106.7 inches vs. 102.4 inches).

Passenger Space

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The Escape FHEV has .4 inches more front headroom, .9 inches more front legroom, 1.9 inches more front hip room, 2.1 inches more front shoulder room, 1.5 inches more rear headroom, 4.3 inches more rear legroom, 1.1 inches more rear hip room and 1.5 inches more rear shoulder room than the Kona.

Cargo Capacity

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The Escape FHEV has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Kona with its rear seat up (34.4 vs. 19.2 cubic feet). The Escape FHEV has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Kona with its rear seat folded (60.8 vs. 45.8 cubic feet).

The Escape FHEV’s cargo area is larger than the Kona’s in every dimension:

Escape FHEV

Kona

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

36.7”/68.3”

28.6”/61”

Max Width

57.3”

48”

Min Width

41.4”

40”

Height

32.8”

30”

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Escape FHEV offers an optional power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or on the Escape FHEV Titanium, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Kona doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

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The Escape FHEV has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Kona has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

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When three different drivers share the Escape FHEV Titanium, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Kona doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Escape FHEV’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Kona has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.

The Escape FHEV Titanium’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Kona SEL/Limited/Ultimate’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Escape FHEV’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Kona SE/SEL/Limited’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Escape FHEV’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Hyundai only offers heated mirrors on the Kona SEL/Limited/Ultimate.

The Escape FHEV Titanium’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Kona doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the Escape FHEV and the Kona offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Escape FHEV has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Kona doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The Escape FHEV Titanium has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Kona doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The Escape FHEV Titanium’s Active Park Assist 2.0 can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The Kona doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/03/31

The Ford Escape outsold the Hyundai Kona by over three to one during 2019.

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