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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Adding a hitch to my Escape is in my plans for the future. I don't want to use the type that drops down under the bumper, so I'll need to (carefully) cut the hole for the hitch in the bumper cover and add an OEM Ford hitch. Doing so is not a big deal as long as I'm careful. (What tools are recommended for this? I'm told a Dremel can do it, but does it need to be more powerful model, etc?)

I haven't found any templates for the cutout anywhere online, so I figure I can make it myself as long as I have quality pictures of the hole. Maddeningly, almost all the pictures of hitches I find are aftermarket under-bumper hitches, but I'm hoping someone here has the factory hitch and can get a few pictures from directly behind and underneath. (Colors other than black are ideal for better contrast, but if that's all I can get, I'll take it).

Can anyone help? Hopefully these hitches can still be ordered from Ford if I can't find any used ones at local parts yards.
 

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A dremel is your best bet. Just remember: measure twice, cut once
 

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If I'm not mistaken and without going outside to look, I believe the standard bumper cover is scored with an outline of where the cutout is in case it's needed or the hitch option was selected :shrug:
 

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I'll check my 08 mariner, but I don't believe that it is a score mark.
However I found that Fordparts.com and Tasca show different parts for the foam impact absorber forward of the bumper cover. They also have a different base part number.



Also, I don't just noticed in the part pictures, there are lines for where the cutout would be.

I found this on TASCA. it looks like a MOTORCRAFT accessory that mounts in the OEM position
https://www.tascaparts.com/oem-parts/fo ... wtbDQtZ2Fz

Amazon link
https://www.amazon.com/Genuine-Ford-8L8 ... B00HB9MEPC

RockAuto calls it a "truck step"
http://www.rockauto.com/en/parts/ford,8 ... k+step,589
 

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I think with the OEM hitch it replaces part of the steel bumper, and that is why the foam is different right?

I have a current gen Escape, and debated on getting the OEM hitch, and it replaces a lot of the factory bumper. I decided to with an aftermarket one that ends up below the bumper cover, but I do know that in the 2013+ the bumper cover (well...the silly silver part of it) has required cut out marked out.
 

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As long as you understand both hitches aren't the same size.

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My Mariner has an aftermarket class 2 hitch so the picture is hard to get. I put it in self shot mode. The next time I'm in my shop clothes I'll try to get a better shot.


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Just wondering if anybody has had any luck installing a factory tow bar on their Ford Escape. I have one but have not gone through the process yet. It's a 2010 XLT AWD w/ 4 cylinder. Again, talking about a factory one like the OP mentioned, not the aftermarket one that hangs beneath. Thanks.
 

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eddymoney said:
Just wondering if anybody has had any luck installing a factory tow bar on their Ford Escape. I have one but have not gone through the process yet. It's a 2010 XLT AWD w/ 4 cylinder. Again, talking about a factory one like the OP mentioned, not the aftermarket one that hangs beneath. Thanks.
Do you need ford's service instructions for remove and replace?

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thesavo said:
eddymoney said:
Just wondering if anybody has had any luck installing a factory tow bar on their Ford Escape. I have one but have not gone through the process yet. It's a 2010 XLT AWD w/ 4 cylinder. Again, talking about a factory one like the OP mentioned, not the aftermarket one that hangs beneath. Thanks.
Do you need ford's service instructions for remove and replace?

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If such a thing exists, that would be awesome.
 

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Bumper Cover - Rear Removal and Installation
  1. Remove the 2 rear bumper cover lower screws (1 each side).
    - To install, tighten to 5 Nm (44 lb-in). [/*]
  2. Remove the 4 rear bumper cover center screws. [/*]
  3. Remove the 2 rear bumper cover lower pushpins. [/*]
  4. Remove the 2 rear splash shield-to-rear bumper cover screws (1 each side). [/*]
  5. Remove the 2 rear bumper cover upper screws (1 each side).
    - To install, tighten to 5 Nm (44 lb-in). [/*]
  6. Remove the 2 liftgate alignment bumper bolts and the 2 liftgate alignment bumpers.
    - To install, tighten to 8 Nm (71 lb-in). [/*]
  7. Disconnect the parking aid system or trailer tow electrical connector, if equipped. [/*]
  8. Remove the rear bumper cover.
    - To install, reverse the removal procedure.
    - When installing, position the rear bumper cover into the bumper slides. [/*]

Bumper - Rear, With Trailer Hitch
  1. Remove the rear bumper cover. For additional information, refer to Bumper Cover - Rear in this section. [/*]
  2. Remove the 2 trailer hitch-to-back panel bolts.
    - To install, tighten to 40 Nm (30 lb-ft). [/*]
  3. Remove the 4 trailer hitch-to-body bolts.
    - To install, tighten to 90 Nm (66 lb-ft). [/*]
  4. Remove the trailer hitch. [/*]
  5. Disconnect the electrical connector from the trailer hitch.
    - To install, reverse the removal procedure. [/*]

Parts - Bumper - Rear, With Trailer Hitch

ItemPart NumberDescription
1W503913Rear bumper cover upper screw (2 required)
2W503913Rear bumper cover lower screw (2 required)
3W708530Rear bumper cover lower pushpin (2 required)
4W706607Rear bumper cover center screw (4 required)
5W706713Rear splash shield-to-bumper cover screw (2 required)
617D781Rear bumper cover trailer hitch electrical connector
717775Rear bumper cover
8W702256Trailer hitch-to-body bolt (4 required)
9W500633Trailer hitch-to-back panel bolt (2 required)
10-Trailer hitch electrical connector mounting bracket bolt (2 required)
11-Trailer hitch electrical connector mounting bracket
1219D521Trailer hitch
1313A576Trailer hitch wiring harness
 

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These hitches say they're "Not for use with Hybrid Vehicles " -

Is this only because the hybrid shouldn't tow, or is there an actual fit problem? (I want to attach a bicycle carrier that I already own, which isn't quite towing)
 

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(Is this only because the hybrid shouldn't tow, or is there an actual fit problem?)

I had U-Haul install their class three (under bumper) 2" hitch, which came with the wiring harness.
The hybrid is rated for towing, though it is a very light load(1000lb). I haul around my snowmobile on a ramp load trailer with no issues. it is also stout enough for my dirt bike hitch hauler.(I wanted to carry more than a bicycle rack)
it is a snug fit, right on the base of the bumper. Does not hurt departure angle by any more than 3 inches.
Tire Wheel Vehicle Car Automotive tire
 
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