Same Model Comparison of the 2006 Ford Escape  4 door
Extracted from for the XLS style

WheelDrive   EnginePower    Weight             CityMilage
     EngineSize    Transmission      Cost             HighwayMilage
Fwd   2.3l   153hp  5spMan   curb3176 inv18120  24 mpg / 29 mpg
FWD   2.3l   153hp  3spAuto  curb3255 inv18749  22 mpg / 25 mpg
FWD   3.0l   200hp  4spAuto  curb3298 inv21770  20 mpg / 25 mpg

FWD   2.3HYB 155+90? CVTHYB  curb3610 inv25049  36 mpg / 31mpg	

AWD   2.3l   153hp  5spMan   curb3347 inv19713  22 mpg / 26 mpg
AWD   2.3l   153hp  4spAuto  curb3409 inv20342  19 mpg / 22 mpg
AWD   3.0l   200hp  4spAuto  curb3464 inv23362  18 mpg / 22 mpg

AWD   2,3HYB 155+90? CVTHYB  Curb3775 inv26538  33 mpg / 29 mpg

So... the best conventional escape is 24 mpg / 29 mpg (cheapest/lightest)
      the worst hybrid escape is   33 mpg / 29 mpg (expensive/heavyist)

Expect the regular disclaimer about milage, options, financing, availability etc.
If you were going to get an All Wheel Drive V6 unit anyway, the extra 3k is 
probaly worth the hybrid.
Also there is the Plug-in-HEV possiblity.....


FWD = Front Wheel Drive         AWD = All Wheel Drive
l = liter displacement          hp = Hourse power
Man = Manual Transmission       Auto = Automatic Transmission
CVTHYB = constant velocity Transmission with 90hp electric motor
Curb = Curb weight              inv = Invoice price US$
mpg = mile per gallon