By on February 9, 2010

Given the growth this segment has enjoyed over the last year, it’s more than a little odd to see the Escape taking top honors. After all, it’s received a single refresh since it went on the market in 2000. On the other hand, fleets dug Ford last month. [Please note that the outgoing body-on-frame Kia Sorento sold 3,621 units in January 2009]

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33 Comments on “January Sales Snapshot: Compact-ish CUVs...”


  • avatar
    bmoredlj

    With sales like that, it’s no wonder Ford’s in no hurry to make a radical change like replace the Escape with an Americanized Kuga.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      Yeah…because fleets are the way to prosperity. (it sure made Ford’s January numbers appear great on paper though)

      Real people are not buying the Escape. It’s outclassed by everything in the segment. It’s got an unrefined ride, engine, and interior.

    • 0 avatar
      PennSt8

      “Yeah…because fleets are the way to prosperity. (it sure made Ford’s January numbers appear great on paper though)”

      How many times does it need to be repeated that all fleet sales are bad? Do you have hard data indicating that Ford dumped a ton of Escapes on fleet customers with heavy discounts?

      Outside of the Tiguan, Outlander, CRV and Element all of the vehicles listed above probably have a decent take rate when it comes to fleet customers.

    • 0 avatar
      Z71_Silvy

      “How many times does it need to be repeated that all fleet sales are bad?”

      None…I get it.

    • 0 avatar

      The “unrefined engine” really is the same kind of meaningless mantra as “hard plastics”. As long as Escape is cheap, people will buy it. I cannot imagine anyone except a car freak caring about this of that being “unrefined”.

    • 0 avatar
      Norma

      PennSt8:

      It’s apparent that Ford Escape is near the end of its useful life. Isn’t there a new replacement model derived from Focus on the horizon?

  • avatar
    threeer

    It’ll be interesting to see what, if anything, the new Tucson (and for that matter, Sorento) do in the market. But hey, the Escape is a known quantity and folks seem to like it well enough as it is…

  • avatar
    gslippy

    Interesting that the Element is at the bottom.

  • avatar
    PickupMan

    Will also be interesting to see how the Escape vs Equinox numbers sort out, as GM shortages get worked out in coming months.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    The people I know who have Ford Escapes are all single women with big dogs.

    Look how well the Chevrolet Equinox/GMC Terrain did, 14k combined for January, beating the Mariner/Escape combo. The Chevy alone outsold the Rav4 and CRV.

    On the other end, the Dodge Journey, with positive sales growth – a relative “hit” for NEW Chrysler, still sold only 4790 in January, good for only 10th place in its segment.

  • avatar
    forraymond

    @gslippy The Element is priced WAY too high and those crazy back seats take up valuable cargo room when stowed.

  • avatar
    mtymsi

    Wonder why the CRV did so poorly compared to year ago sales.

  • avatar
    Z71_Silvy

    Can someone tell me what the Escape is? Is it a SUV or a CUV.

    Ford doesn’t know what it is as it’s listed on their website as a SUV and a CUV on the sales charts.

  • avatar
    Dynamic88

    I also find it odd that CR-V is at the bottom of the list. What’s going on?

  • avatar
    NickR

    Not surprised about the Journey…I see new ones everywhere. One of Chrysler’s quiet successes.

    What I don’t get…the Tiguan! Who? Why?

    • 0 avatar
      Roundel

      The Journey is flying out of the showrooms north and south of the border, I think its Canada’s #1 selling CUV.
      I said it last time and I will say it again. The Tiguan needs to be looked at and revamped, packages, equipment, price, if they want to sell any.

  • avatar
    colin42

    The real bottom of the pile is the Outlander which sold <900 unit

    I find it odd why it sells so poorly – it's actually a really good car with a "as good as Hyundai" warranty aka 5 years

  • avatar
    hriehl1

    Last month we bought a Forester and in the same (full) day test-drove Escape, Rav-4, (new) Tucson, Equinox, CR-V and Tiguan.

    While small and a bit pricey, the Tiguan beat the others hands-down in an overall sense of being a solid, nicely-appointed drive. It was only the father-in-law’s absolutely miserable ownership experience with his Toureg (sp?) that scared us away.

    The 4-cyl Equinox had good size and nice interior. But even the wife noticed the tall gearing that gives the high MPG… she thought it just lagged in normal driving.

    Why do all these vehicles (Forester & Escape excepted) style the rear quarter windows to deny any blind-spot visibility whatsoever? We’d have bought the Tucson except for that.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    yeah the Outlander is strange – it is literally a decade ahead of the excreble Ford Escape

    it really is a good vehicle – what is causing people to stay away?

    is it the mitsubishi name?

    what really scares me to the quick is the Kia Sorrento

    from 0 to 7,398?

    if this doesn’t scare GM to the core, i don’t know what will

    if you build them, they will come? (apologies to the Kevin Costner fans, all 7 of you)

    • 0 avatar
      CarShark

      What surprises more about the Sorrento’s success is that it appears to NOT have come at the expense of the Hyundai Santa Fe, which also grew to over 7000 units. I am likewise puzzled as to how the Escape and Edge continue to grow when I thought one would cannibalize the other.

  • avatar
    YotaCarFan

    The percent change column makes it appear that Ford/Mercury CUVs gained ~30% at the expense of Honda and Mazda ones. Unless Ford just came out with new models and available Honda & Mazda models are due for refresh soon, perhaps there’s some backlash against the big Japanese names due to the state of affairs with Toyota?

  • avatar
    don1967

    The Ford Escape is a mild surprise, but what’s up with the Dodge Journey? Did a bunch of them fall off the train last year or something?

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    what’s wrong with the jeep patriot?

    it seems like a winner on paper

  • avatar
    revolver1978

    Interesting about the Escape. Having owned and ’04 in the past, I would guess (and it’s only a guess) that the Escape appeals to a certain group of people.

    The Escape looks “trucky”, sounds “trucky”, and handles, well, kind of “trucky”. It’s also well discounted at the dealer. Someone can downsize from an Explorer or move from a Ranger/F150, feel like they got the “butch” looking one and think they “whittled the dealer down some.”

    It is certainly outclassed by newer competitors, but I’ll always have a soft spot for my old ’04 Limited.

    If this is true, the new Kuga-derived Escape for MY 2012 won’t be as successful, even though it’s probably a better vehicle in every way.

  • avatar

    I am also in the market for a compact SUV/CUV, and have been shopping heavily.

    The Escape is compelling because of its squareness and actual utility. It can tow, has usable roof space, and is cheap. In that sense it’s kinda like a Jeep Cherokee. The Escape is one of the last real SUVs in the compact category without 3rd row pretensions.

    The Equinox is a 3rd-row vehicle and too big. The Tucson, CX7, Rogue and other CUVs are too carlike. The Vue is not bad but, again, carlike.

    Ford does a good job defining its identity within categories. It could go head-to-head with the other CUVs, but the truly utilitarian compact SUV subcategory is a blue ocean.

    SYNC goes without mentioning as the best in-car computer that we can all afford. If you care about any of that stuff, you’ve got to see it in action.

    • 0 avatar
      Christy Garwood

      Bryan, the 2010 Chevy Equinox only has two rows of seats. The back seats slide fore/ aft about 8 inches and also fold flat. There is a roof-luggage rack option and trailer hitch option. If you are seriously looking, go test drive one. Or ask TTAC to send your email address to me and I will work with you to test drive an Equinox.

      Full disclosure – I work for Chevrolet’s parent company.


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