The market launch of the Ford Escape PHEV is finally coming in North America, as the 2021 model year version has reappeared on Ford's configurator.
According to Mike Levine, Ford North America Product Communications manager, the delayed Ford Escape plug-in hybrid is now ready for production (after solving the battery issues), but the company is still constrained by the global semiconductor shortage:
"The global semiconductor shortage is presenting challenges and production disruptions for the global auto industry, including Ford. We plan to start Escape PHEV production later this year but will share more details later as we prioritize key vehicles for production, making the most of our semiconductor supply allocations."
The new 2021 model year starts at an MSRP of $32,650 (compared to $33,040 previously), which after including the destination charge of $1,245 and deducting $6,843 of the federal tax credit, would be effectively $27,052.
In Europe, Ford has almost completed the battery recall of Ford Kuga PHEV (the European version of the Escape PHEV) and restarted production. Comment from Jay Ward, Ford of Europe spokesman:
"We have resolved the issues related to the Kuga PHEV in Europe. These were traced back to contamination in the main battery pack from the supplier. We have identified all vehicles and are nearing completion of the fix for all customer cars which involves installing a new battery pack in every affected car. The Valencia production facility is already producing new cars with no issue and has been doing so since December."
You can see in the European sales stats that the Kuga PHEV is already among the best-selling models (15th in January).
In 2020, the Kuga PHEV had a big chance to become the top-selling plug-in hybrid model, but the battery recall prevented this success.