2021 Ford Escape Towing Capacity (+Chart)

The 2021 Ford Escape had a maximum towing capacity of up to 3,500 pounds if you had the right engine equipped, along with the optional trailer package that was available for these vehicles.

That was on the high end of the spectrum, as some of these vehicles were only able to achieve a mere 1,500 pound rating, so you really need to know what equipment you needed to have installed on your vehicle in order to get the most out of it. How capable is your SUV?

I highly recommend that you read through your owner's manual as it is the best resource for your vehicle and be sure that you follow all of Ford's recommendations.

2021 Escape Overview

Overall Capacity: The overall towing capacity for the 2021 Ford Escape ranged from 1,500-3,500 pounds, which was the same towing capacity range for the 2020 Escape and even the 2022 Escape, but was only dependent upon one variable and that was the engine that you had equipped in your vehicle. There were three different engine choices in total for the 2021 model years.

Capacity By Trim Levels: I wanted to take the four different trim levels that were available for these vehicles and see what engine options were available for each trim level because I could compare the different trim levels capacity ratings that way.

If we look at the data below, we can see that the S trim levels had a 2,000 pound maximum capacity, while the SE models had a capacity range of between 1,500-2,000 pounds. The SEL trim levels had a range of between 1,500-3,500 pounds and the Titanium trim levels had the same range that the SEL models had, which was between 1,500-3,500 pounds.

  • S: 2,000 lbs.
  • SE: 1,500-2,000 lbs.
  • SEL: 1,500-3,500 lbs.
  • Titanium: 1,500-3,500 lbs.
2021 Escape Trim Levels and Engine Options

By Engine Options: The three different engines that were available were the 2.5 liter engine, the 1.5 liter engine and the 2.0 liter engine and each engine had a different maximum trailer weight rating attached to it.

If we look at the data below, we can see that the 2.5 liter engine had a maximum capacity of up to 1,500 pounds and was the least capable engine out of the three choices, while the 2.0 liter engine had the best capacity, coming in at around 3,500 pounds.

  • 2.5L Hybrid (4 cylinder): 1,500 lbs.
  • 1.5L (4 cylinder) EcoBoost: 2,000 lbs.
  • 2.0L (4 cylinder) EcoBoost: 3,500 lbs.

Let's Take a Look at the Tow Chart:

If we look at the tow chart below, we can see that the maximum trailer weight ratings are listed on the right-hand side of the table and are very easy to read, but you will need to know what engine that weight rating corresponds to by looking all the way on the left-hand side of the table in comparing the two specifications.

In the middle of the chart we have the axle ratios that are listed right next to the engine options and then to the right of the axle ratios we have the gross combined weight rating figures that are listed for both the front-wheel drive models and the all-wheel drive models.

2021 Ford Escape Towing Chart
Ford MTW Definition

Your SUV: What You Need To Know.

In all honesty, the only thing you really needed to know about your vehicle in order to get your maximum trailer weight rating from the chart was what engine you had equipped in your vehicle, and that's about it.

The image below shows where you would find your engine options and then the arrow on the right-hand side displays the maximum trailer weight ratings. I do want to point out that the image I have pictured below is an example image and not the actual chart for the 2021 models.

Escape Chart Explained 3
  • The engine you had equipped - He need to know whether you have the 2.5 liter, the 1.5 liter or the 2.0 liter equipped in your SUV.

If you're not sure how to find out what engine you have equipped in your vehicle, then I would recommend running your VIN through a VIN decoder, which can be found online and it will tell you not only what engine you have equipped in your vehicle but a lot of other details about your vehicle as well. I like to use this website personally and have had fantastic success with it.

The 2021 Escape Trailer Tow Package

I was also able to find the trailer to package chart that lists the equipment that is included with the 536 trailer package and if we look at the image below we can see that a hitch receiver is included, along with a four pin trailer wiring harness, an automatic transmission oil cooler and a trailer sway control option which is either a feature of the vehicle itself or an actual sway control device for your trailer, I'm not sure.

2021 Escape Trailer Tow Package Options

(1) Available with 2.0L EcoBoost® I4 or 2.5L I4 Hybrid/Plug-in Hybrid (SEL or Titanium) only.

Hitch Receiver Weight Limits: The hitch receiver weight capacity chart was also listed in the guide but does not really apply to these specific vehicles because their maximum trailer weight rating was only set at 3,500 pounds and they did not need to use a weight distributing hitch, like some other Ford vehicles do, but I figured I would post a screenshot of what I found anyway.

2019 Escape Hitch Capacities

Trailer Brakes: Ford requires trailer brakes be equipped on your trailer if your trailer and all the cargo in it exceed 1,500 pounds. I was also able to find another note in the owner's manual that talks a little bit about trailer brakes, but specifically the section I wanted to point out is how these vehicle's electrical systems are not equipped to handle trailer brakes, at least electric trailer brakes.

In a nutshell, this means that these vehicles were not set up for having a brake controller or a 7 pin wiring harness installed from the factory, both of which you need for electric trailer brakes. You will either have to install these yourself or have a shop install these for you if you plan on hauling loads over 1,500 pounds and plan on running trailer brakes with your trailer.

2011 Escape Trailer Brake Notes
Escape Trailer Brake Notes

The Certification Label is Helpful Too!

Ford Certification Label

GCWR, GVWR & GAWRs: The gross combined weight ratings were specified in the chart at the top of this article so finding these metrics was really easy and convenient however, finding the gross vehicle weight rating or the gross axle weight ratings were a little bit tougher.

You can actually find these two ratings on the certification label of your vehicle and this label will look like the label that I have shown in the image above. If you look at the top of this label, you will see both the gross vehicle weight rating specifications, along with the gross axle weight ratings for both the front and rear axles. You can find the certification label located on the driver side door pillar of your vehicle, along with another label.

Axle Code: Now, there is another helpful code at the bottom of the certification label that is referred to as the axle code and this will be a 2-digit code that will specify what axle your vehicle uses, or more specifically the axle ratio of your rear axle. You do not need to know your rear axle for the 2021 Escapes in order to know what's your maximum trailer weight rating is for your vehicle. I just wanted to point out where you can find this code if you ever needed it for future reference.

Helpful Resources I Used For My Research:

I use three different resources for the research of this article and to be honest, all three resources gave me more than enough information to put together all of the details about these SUVs.

The brochure was really helpful when it came to what trim levels were available and what options were available for each trim level and then the guide was where I actually gathered most of my information, including most of the images you see.

The owner's manual was the best resource out of the three, as it had everything I needed when it came to towing for these vehicles and it talks about everything else as well, which was an added bonus.

Last updated on May 12th, 2022 at 06:08 pm

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