The American automaker is working on expanding its crossover and SUV range in Europe and recently admitted that the booming segment has resulted in higher-end, luxury variants as well as sportier models. “With the maturing of the SUV segment, increasingly we will see all derivatives come to that segment, and yes some are experimenting with that,” said Roelant de Waard, vice-president, sales, marketing and service for Ford of Europe.
Currently, Ford offers a Vignale sub-brand in Europe that was introduced on the Mondeo (Fusion) and is set to expand to the S-Max. The upmarket Vignale variant could also come to the Escape as buyers in Europe look for more luxurious options when shopping for crossovers and SUVs.
But the interest for U.S. buyers is the prospect of a Ford Escape ST model. The range-topping engine option in the Escape lineup is currently a 2.0-liter EcoBoost with 240 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. That means an ST model would not only be more powerful, but it’ll sport larger brakes, sportier suspension and more aggressive styling. Along with Nissan offering a NISMO Juke variant, MINI is also experimenting with high-performance crossovers with the Countryman JCW and Fiat is expected to release Abarth versions of the 500X.
[Source: Auto Express]
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