By on February 11, 2016

2016 Ford Escape

It’s quite trendy nowadays for auto writers to trash the very notion of the crossover, mostly because it doesn’t fit in with their self-defined image of being a swashbuckling, tire squealing, craft-beer-drinking car guy. Also, the economics of writing about cars tend to dictate a certain set of values and behaviors upon said auto writers, meaning that they aren’t incredibly likely to have families or, you know, own a lot of stuff. Finally, don’t forget that in the world of automotive journalism, anything mainstream is lame and everything that sells in single digits annually is awesome.

Thus, it’s now become incredibly bold for an auto writer to say something that is patently and plainly obvious to the vast majority of people who actually buy new cars. So I will: The 2016 Ford Escape is a good vehicle that fits the needs of a great many consumers, and it represents a fair value in the automotive marketplace.

I know, I know. I’m supposed to hate crossovers and everything they stand for. I’m supposed to lament the fact that Ford could be offering a particularly awesome station wagon. But I won’t, and my week with the Ford Escape in South Dakota is a wonderful example of why you shouldn’t either.

(By the way, Ford already builds an awesome station wagon. It’s called the Flex, and nobody buys it, except for yours truly.)

2016 Ford Escape badge

I picked up the Escape at the Rapid City Regional Airport in South Dakota in the middle of a blizzard. How fortunate, then, that this particular model came equipped with Ford’s Intelligent 4WD, which I put to good use nearly immediately on my drive to the hotel. The Intelligent 4WD system, which is actually all-wheel drive, even comes with this handy graphic to show you just how much power is being sent to each wheel, mesmerizing you at a time when your full attention should be dedicated to driving in the wretched conditions that are causing the system to send power to the rear wheels in the first place.

Ford Escape ntelligent I4WD

South Dakota assumes all who live there know how to drive in snow and ice. After all, it snows there approximately 346 days per year, and plowing is mostly done by other drivers who act as though everything is completely normal when snow is falling at a rate of a foot an hour. Luckily, my rental was up to the task, kicking snow away with ease and maintaining a true course through the squall.

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The most important change for the 2016 Escape is the addition of SYNC 3, which is supposed to be an improvement over the much-maligned MyFordTouch system used in prior incarnations. As you can see, the screen is large and easy to read in both day and night conditions. SYNC is designed to work with several mobile apps, including Spotify and Pandora. However, I found it somewhat frustrating to use the SYNC Spotify app as I couldn’t select individual songs, only specific playlists. I decided to just select my phone as a USB source and use Spotify from the screen of my iPhone 6S Plus.

The interface is a good combination of touchscreen functionality and real life, honest-to-God buttons should you prefer to use them. Stereo sound quality from the nine-speaker system was outstanding, proving to be equally proficient at reproducing modern jazz and old-school hip-hop.

A good example of addition by subtraction can be found in the removal of the auxiliary input jack from the head unit, which nobody ever uses anymore yet was the default input source for previous versions of SYNC.

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The cabin of the Escape is a pleasant place to spend one’s time, even in SE trim. Seating is comfortable and supportive, and everything seems to be located where it should (granted, I daily drive two Fords, so take that with a proverbial grain of salt). The steering wheel is the best I’ve found in a crossover and is similar to the example found in my Fiesta ST, with comfortable handholds positioned at 10 and 2. Gauges are simple and easy to read, and the steering wheel buttons make navigation equally simple to perform.

2016 Ford Escape rear seat

Back seat room is a little lacking for my taste; the smallest in the class when it comes to legroom as well as shoulder room. This photo shows how much legroom there isn’t when there’s a 5-foot-9-inch driver sitting up front. The Escape and others in the smaller CUV segment seem to fit a very particular family — one that’s not quite big enough for a family to carry around everything needed for a toddler/infant, nor for full-sized teenagers to fit comfortably in the back seat. But if your kids are between the ages of 5 and 12 — bingo! — the Escape is for you. Or, you know, if you’re a DINK family with a female driver who just likes to sit up a bit higher. Whatevs.

2016 Ford Escape cargo area

The cargo area is a little more in line with the competition, checking in at 34.3 cubic feet — less than CR-V and RAV4, but more than the Equinox. It had no problem handling my 26-inch suitcase and computer bag with plenty of room to spare.

However, where the Escape shines in comparison to all other small CUVs is in the driving experience. While horsepower numbers are comparable across the segment, the Escape has a little more torque, which was quite noticeable in the winter conditions encountered on my way up to see one of the nation’s great landmarks, Mount Rushmore.

2016 Ford Escape Mount Rushmore

As you can see, weather conditions were best described as gross on the afternoon I made my way through the Black Hills National Forest up to see the visages of Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln (any one of whom I’d rather vote for than the options in the 2016 field, even if they are dead). The highway leading to Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a twisting descent and ascent through the hills, full of sharp turns and guard rails that are entirely not up to the task of preventing you from tumbling to a snowy death should you miss one of those turns.

The Escape handled it all with the facility of one of its little ST brothers. (An Escape ST — now there’s a tantalizing thought! It already uses that same 1.6-liter turbo four from the FiST. Hmmm.) The feedback the Escape provided was also not unlike what I’d expect from from of Ford’s hot hatches — communicative and instantaneous. Despite every survival instinct I had telling me to slow down, especially considering the increasing precipitation I was experiencing, the Escape seemed disappointed unless I drove it harder.

mount rushmore

Here’s a gratuitous picture of Mount Rushmore to prove that I made it to the top. I was the only idiot stupid enough to drive all the way up there in the snow, and the park rangers seemed genuinely surprised to see me when I pulled the Escape into the garage. (Entrance to the park is free, but parking is $11. Sucks if you’re driving solo.) However, standing there alone at the base of the memorial … well, I’ll just say that it wasn’t a moment that I’m likely to ever forget. If you’re ever in South Dakota, you should go check it out.

Now, as far as things I didn’t like much about the 2016 Escape: the gas mileage still sucks, and SYNC 3 can’t fix that. I saw a combined 22.2 miles-per-gallon, which is pretty dismal for a CUV of this size. Let’s assume that I could have coaxed another mile-per-gallon out of it by not hooning around as much, but that still sucks. Still, I owned a four-cylinder Equinox for over two years and never saw anything above 23 combined.

My Escape, optioned out with SYNC 3, eight-inch touch screen, nine speakers, and Panoramic Sunroof (which was quite lovely, by the way) stickers for $30,310, but Ford currently has $2,000 of incentive cash available on Red Carpet Leases, which makes a zero-down, 12,000 mile annual lease around $360/month over 36 months. What a fantastic deal.

Much of that incentive likely has to do with the fact that Ford has announced a new-for-2017 model year Escape, which looks to be an all-around improvement on this aging model. However, the one you can buy today is pretty damn good, and I suspect it wouldn’t be unheard of to get a current Escape for significantly under invoice as dealers try to unload them. If getting a great car at an even greater price is more important to you than having the latest and greatest, I’d swing by your Ford store to negotiate on a 2016 Escape as soon as the 2017s start showing up.

In fact, if they can get me out of my Flex at anything like positive equity, I’ll probably be right there with you.

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153 Comments on “2016 Ford Escape SE AWD Rental Review...”


  • avatar

    Not a bad truck for the global market. Ford’s interiors are flat, lifeless and boring.

    I’d prefer a Cherokee or a Tucson.

    Uconnect Touch 8.4n is still the best infotainment system on the market. REMOVED THE AUX JACK??? WHY? People still do use it. USB, AUX and SD card should be standard while the CD is phased out.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      ” People still do use it”

      rarely. plus the female 1/8″ minijack is probably one of the worst, least durable connectors in existence.

      • 0 avatar

        The ability to tap into the cars audio system using ANY DEVICE that has a 3.5mm jack is ALWAYS good.

        Granted, it’s not digital – it’s good to have it.

        • 0 avatar
          davefromcalgary

          I…agree… WITH BTSR!!!

          Wow that felt strange! Jk, BTSR is cool.

          Anyways, I use my aux jack fairly regularly. My phone pairs automagically to BT but, we have other devices that don’t.

        • 0 avatar
          Fred

          Haven’t used the Aux port since my cassette adapter Audi days. Today I mostly use bluetooth.

          • 0 avatar
            bunkie

            The aux jack has it all over Bluetooth, sound-quality-wise because it’s not limited in bandwidth.

          • 0 avatar
            Fred

            The only time I really want a hi-fi sound I’m sitting in my living room listening to a CD. Otherwise for casual listening MP3/Bluetooth convenience outweighs any fidelity loss.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            Bluetooth v.3.0 and newer have enough bandwidth where they don’t compress/re-compress audio. There should be no difference in quality vs. what’s already on the device, and less noise vs. AUX in jack.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            The Bluetooth 3.0 standard can transmit audio at CD bitrates but most controllers will still be doing compression. Still not as good as the aux jack, assuming it’s not dusty. I wouldn’t buy a car that forced me to listen only over Bluetooth. For me, that’s a deal breaker. Fortunately, USB is also an option with this Escape.

        • 0 avatar
          Japanese Buick

          Count me among the AUX jack enthusiasts. It’s good to have available for when the Bluetooth glitches out and the phone and car blame each other and a don’t have time or feel like troubleshooting. Still happens including with my iPhone with up to date software and both Toyota and Ford head units. AUX jack just works.

      • 0 avatar

        I still use my AUX jack daily, after more than 8 years. It just works, and you don’t have to put up with delays while the system downloads all your songs or locks up or whatever it does.

        • 0 avatar
          Varezhka

          Agreed. AUX input may have its disadvantages, but its dead simpleness and versatility makes it a good option to have.

          Plus, the last two Fords I drove refused to read any media files within my phone’s microSD cards when using the USB connection, making it less than useful for music playback for me.

    • 0 avatar
      Marone

      Not sure I’ve needed a jack output in years, but I get it if that is something you use.

      I guess the infotainment system is personal preference. I like the sync system. I’ve always found the display mroe useful and the responsiveness far better than in Uconnect.

      I rented a Cherokee recently. Not impressed with the interior at all, but I know you are Jeep biased. The recent Escapes I have rented have been higher models and I thought the interior was well done.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        MyFord Touch stunk up the joint when it first came out in 2010, but it was nowhere near ready for public consumption. What it is now is fine, and is how it should have been in the first place. Reviewers who still have to take swipes at the “maligned” or “much hated” system are just taking potshots at an easy target so they can appear to be unbiased.

        • 0 avatar

          I agree. I’ve never had any issues with MFT in my FiST. I do, however, have friends who own a FoST that have had to have it in for service multiple times.

          • 0 avatar
            Buff Monkee

            Bark, as much as I love your writing, I must ask you to please curb yoyt usage of the “… or you know .. ” phrase. It’s far too overused, and reeks of “Duh”.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        I still use an aux jack in the tape deck. To me, that’s the epitome of backwards compatibility.

        • 0 avatar
          davefromcalgary

          When I bought my 02 Alero in 09, I immediately sourced a GM stereo with the tape deck for this reason.

          I recently installed an inline FM modulator into our 02 Accent, and for having an MP3 to listen around town, it does the trick.

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      Re Tucson:

      I picked up a Sport AWD with all the accessories for just a few bucks under $25K. The interior is “meh” as for some odd reason Hyundai decided that only the Limited gets better door panels (when you can get soft touch on the $18K Soul). The infotainment sucks, but I’m not interested in Apple Car Play or Android.

      The seats are quite comfortable with the 3 stage heating becoming “my a** is on fire” when on level 3. I didn’t get that claustrophobic feeling that I did in the Escape.

      The 7 speed with the 1.6T is smooth and you really only notice it during slow parking lot maneuvers. Put it in Sport and it will not shift into 7th until 75+—it moves out nicely off the line when needed. Average is around 28MPG so far with under 2K miles.

    • 0 avatar
      laserwizard

      Well, I have to tell you that your observation is not based on anything – after having sat in one of these at a car show this past month, I found the interior to be one of the best in the segment – everything was within reach WITHOUT stretching – logical in placement. I’ll take function over form anyday and if you want to whine about awful interiors and dashboards, one of the worst FLAT designs is in that Toyoduh piece of garbage that was recently redesigned.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I guess “Good 2 Be A Gangsta” is ok if you are traveling solo but if you had female companionship on the drive I would have expected “Baby It’s Cold Outside.”

    Here in the Teacher Housing there is a couple down the street that has a new Escape (ecobost 4wd) and a CR-V that is a few years old (and AWD as well). For some reason it strikes me as an interesting pair in the driveway. Two vehicles that are roughly the same size with the same market placement.

    • 0 avatar
      davefromcalgary

      It makes sense to me. Two people, each with their “own” vehicle, each liking the same thing.

      No different than a two sedan household (if such a thing exists outside of mine anymore).

  • avatar
    JimZ

    I don’t get it. driving like I normally do I can average 30+ in a 1.5 EB Fusion. what are you people doing?

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Eco or Boost. Some of us get excited when we get pushed back into our seats, some of us get excited when we see an MPG number on the dash higher than what it’s rated for. I drive my V6 Tribute like a grandpa and get 22 MPG when it’s rated for 21 hwy (18 combined). Apparently I got 27 once, but I don’t know how that’s physically possible.

    • 0 avatar
      30-mile fetch

      Dunno. Could be that the Escape is heavier and taller than the Fusion. Anecdotally, I read more complaints about Escape fuel economy than Fusion.

      But even standardized fuel economy tests show that Fords with the 1.6 and 2.0 Ecoboost engines use more fuel than competitors with their 2.5 and 3.5 liter motors.

    • 0 avatar
      madman2k

      It’s all about the wind resistance. Had a rental Elantra hatchback with the same 2.0 direct injected motor as in my wife’s Soul, and the Elantra got several MPG better in combined highway/city driving due to better aerodynamics.

      The taller the car, the more drag so MPG will suffer. Although staying out of the “boost” would have helped some.

      I wonder how a CX-5 would have fared driven the same way? The engine might have had to rev pretty high since there’s no turbo.

    • 0 avatar
      laserwizard

      People who whine about turbocharged engine gas mileage have no business driving – it is a fact that if you drive a turbo like a regular car, you will get awful gas mileage. You need to learn how to drive a turbo and you don’t have to win every green light race or race to the stop light. As someone who managed to learn how to drive a 1985 Lincoln Town Car and got 20 mpgs city and 30 mpgs highway, or my current Escort which average 43 mpgs combined, you have to learn the sweet spots of engines and how to average out mileage. Stomping on the gas should be an EMERGENCY, not an every day. Get that baby to kick up into high gear as quickly as you can and you will get 30 mpgs in an Escape – EASY!

      • 0 avatar
        S2k Chris

        Wait, so I have to relearn how to drive it? And drive it verrrry slowly? And then I get mileage baaarely better than a comparable V6? My wife’s RDX with its 3.5L V6 and relatively antiquated 6spd autobox will do 27-28 on the highway with no special effort and me going WOT on every on ramp.

        How is this better in any way shape or form?

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          let’s be fair, up until recently turbo engines were more or less the domain of performance cars. It’s just recently where they’ve been employed on downsized engines to replace larger-displacement/higher cylinder count engines. But I think for most people, if they move from a car with- say- a 3.5 liter V6 to one with a 2.0T, then it’s going to be more sensitive to the way they drive since it’ll be easier for them to push the engine into boost.

          “Wait, so I have to relearn how to drive it? And drive it verrrry slowly? ”

          I don’t know what your definition of “slow” is, but no. Like I’ve said here and elsewhere, I have no problems meeting or beating the sticker mpg in pretty much any turbo or hybrid car. I don’t hypermile or crawl away from stops. I just try to drive as “steady state” as possible. people bitched about the mileage of the C-Max hybrid, but for the extended time I was able to drive one I was able to get 45-46 mpg. I’ve had a good bit of time with a 1.5T Fusion, and I’m getting low to mid 30 mpg. given where I live I know plenty of people with Ecoboost Fusions, Escapes, and F-150s. If they complain about their fuel economy, I can tell you exactly why after five seconds of riding with them. Jackrabbit acceleration from a stop, late braking, and constantly on and off the gas while supposedly cruising. That’s a recipe for terrible fuel economy in any car, but more so a boosted or alternative-propulsion drivetrain.

          Me? from a stop I get up to the speed limit +5/-0 mph, and keep a steady pace. I watch traffic up ahead to try and minimize the need for quick stops. Lo and behold, I get pretty damn good gas mileage.

          Some people just seem to think “driving gently/normally” means “I don’t smoke the tires from every stop.”

  • avatar
    make_light

    My mother drives a 2015 2.0 AWD escape. It’s nice, but feels tight inside. At 6’2″ I feel cramped in the driver’s seat, and the back is inexcusably tight. There’s also an odd mix of textures/materials that make up the dash, so it never feels as premium as it should.
    On the upside, it’s definitely quieter inside than my new Forester XT and probably rides a tad better. The steering is a bit numb and springy though, and returns to center too quickly.

  • avatar
    Driver8

    I got stuck with one of these in a southern state airport when the agency was out of real cars. The visibility sucks. The infotainment system can get the heck off my lawn.

  • avatar
    PennSt8

    The app itself (Spotify) is to blame, not SYNC. I’ve encountered the same inability to search with iDrive.

    Anyhow, the Escape is a solid contender especially considering its age in relation to the rest of the competition. It’s a 1.5x Focus hatch without the goofy transmission. If I were shopping this segment the Escape and CX-5 would be my go-tos

    • 0 avatar
      sfvarholy

      If you are a Spotify Free user, it’s probably related to the restrictions on functionality that they put on the mobile app.

      Rented a KIA Soul and was really pleased with the automatic integration of my iPhone with the system in the rental-spec models.

      My only worry with these newer software based entertainment units will be that they become obsolete when the auto manufacturer stops providing updates that can accommodate newer phones. Apple, for one now the Steve Jobs is gone, loves to make things non-backward compatible.

      • 0 avatar
        ponchoman49

        You can be sure that these car manufacturers will stop providing updates, patches and repairs to these units once the vehicles are 5 or more years old forcing everyone into the newest even more complicated infotainment setups. It will be an endless cycle.

  • avatar
    energetik9

    I’ve rented these a few times and have always come away with a positive impression. The last one I rented was a limited and it was a very comfortable ride, with just a little bit of sport.

    I have also been happy with the infotainment system on these. Always seemed intuitive and effective, even when it is a rental and not a daily driver.

  • avatar
    carrya1911

    I feel the same way about the Honda Cross Tour…that’s a pretty darn useful vehicle that ticks a lot of boxes but everybody seems to take every opportunity to crap on it whenever they can.

    Vehicles that make your life easier are very much welcomed by the majority of buyers.

  • avatar
    spreadsheet monkey

    You mentioned the possibility of an Escape ST – in Europe, Ford briefly offered the first-gen Kuga with the 2.5T engine from the Focus ST. It was pretty fast, but us Europeans all bought the diesels instead…

  • avatar
    RedRocket

    Mixing modern jazz and hip-hop is like putting ketchup on vanilla ice cream. Don’t do it.

  • avatar
    zip89105

    The only thing I’d argue is the steering wheel. I don’t like how it fattens up at the 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock positions. As for your mpg, it’s actually pretty good, considering you were in freezing weather and climbing mountains.

  • avatar
    Rday

    Just looked at a new RAV4 Hybrid. The RAV4 is a much better choice in these smaller SUV’s and the hybrid system makes it a ‘no brainer’ except for those Neanderthals that you refer to in your article. Better reliability, better economy, better safety crash tests, and world class electronics give Toyota the big edge here and in almost every other class of vehicles. Didn’t mention resale value but that is important too. Detroit companies are just second ‘string’ in most cases except for HD pickups. That is the only market they own at this time but i think and hope things will be changing here too.

    • 0 avatar
      VW16v

      I thought the same about the RAV4. But I couldn’t get past the front seats. Way tooo bolstered for an suv. Driving less than an hour would be OK. But, I couldn’t imagine anytime longer in the RAV4. The Forester, Escape, and CR-V blow the Toyota away when it comes to comfort. We test drove the RAV4 twice and tried to like it. Both salesman even said we were not the only ones complaining about the front seats.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        If you think these RAV4 seats are bad, try the prior generation. That was a great little CUV with personality and surprising nimbleness, but the front seats were terrible. I like those in the current generation far better, they actually have thigh support and a seat bottom angle that doesn’t feel like you are sliding off into the footwell. I spent about 4 hours in the driver seat of a current RAV4, and while not fantastic I can think of numerous cars with worse.

        • 0 avatar
          VW16v

          I’m only 6ft and my shoulders are smashed in and the side bottom bolsters are way to tight. The HR-V is way worse. But, I expect that from a lower end vehicle.

        • 0 avatar
          AK

          Oh man those previous generation RAV4 seats were the absolute worst. Impossibly hard with zero shape and a like you said- and angle that practically pushed you off the seat.

          Pair those seats with a v6 that the chassis couldn’t handle, front suspension and steering that went south around 50k miles and numerous other issues… What an awful vehicle.

        • 0 avatar
          ponchoman49

          My boss got rid of her 2012 RAV4 because of the horrible seats, truck like bouncy and bang bang ride and it’s 4 cylinder was rather agricultural sounding and sluggish. She loves her new 2015 Edge btw and said she won’t be going back to Toyota.

    • 0 avatar
      CaptainObvious

      Is it just me or are Toyota seats in general just terrible? The seats in my 2009 Camry SE are fair at best. Not enough under thigh support. And yet everyone (auto journalists) always say Camry’s are comfortable. I don’t get it.

      • 0 avatar
        VW16v

        The current Avalon seats are like torture chambers. Creases and hard places that are not supposed to be in a seat. Rock hard bottom cushion. I thought it was just that particular car I sat in. So I sat in a few more Avalon’s and they were all the same crap.

      • 0 avatar
        30-mile fetch

        Not just you. Toyota has long been poor at front seat comfort and driving position. The seats in the 2012+ Camry SEs are quite good though.

  • avatar
    Quentin

    Back seat is way too tight compared to the CR-V and Rav4. This is also a model that you have to buy the top trim else the Poverty Flair* fake vents overwhelm the otherwise decent looks.

    *Since you are listening to a song from Office Space, flair seemed appropriate.

  • avatar
    DIYer

    In 2013 I traveled to work at a Ford truck plant in Kansas City, and my company rented Ford vehicles for my use. I drove a variety of Taurus, Focus, Fusion, and Escape vehicles while at the plant, whatever was available at the airport car rental.

    The Escape got the least mileage, about 23 mpg. I wish I had the Escape when it snowed 10 inches, when I was driving a Fusion that became high centered twice on the way back to my motel after they shut down the plant due to the storm.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    “What a fantastic deal.”

    “If getting a great car at an even greater price is more important to you than having the latest and greatest, I’d swing by your Ford store to negotiate on a 2016 Escape as soon as the 2017s start showing up.”

    “In fact, if they can get me out of my Flex at anything like positive equity, I’ll probably be right there with you.”

    ——————————————–

    Crossing over, from “auto-journalist” (alleged), to GO! GO! YOU BUY THIS NEW VEHICLE, YES!? Ford Salesmen,

    With “Bark M.”

    • 0 avatar

      Where do you get the idea that I sell cars, DW? You’ve said this before.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        I’m not *literally* claiming you do; I’m merely suggesting some of your “reviews” could almost be confused for a sales pitch by the unwary.

        I also am starting a gofundme account for you, if you’re amenable, to raise sufficient $$$ for you to by a professionally done, blue oval, “Ford” tattoo on the small of your back.

      • 0 avatar
        VW16v

        Because you don’t always trash American autos in your reviews. Different from most automotive journalist. It confuses people.

        • 0 avatar
          ponchoman49

          Yes that has become quite a trend these days this site included. And the sad part is that many of our vehicles are as good as or better than much of the foreign stuff yet those old perceptions and agenda’s persist.

          • 0 avatar
            VW16v

            Ponchoman, there is also a little anti-American and anit-union views that taint ones perception of what is and is not a good car. Some have only driven a Nissan or Toyota simply because of the environment that they were raised.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “I hate everything” reviewers are no more useful than the “I love everything” reviewers which infest most mainstream publications.

    • 0 avatar
      dartman

      I disagree. I like Bark’s work. It seems genuine, unpretentious and real and written with no agenda; (unlike his Brudda’s; yeah I know-cheap shot) Meh…I have a brother (older) that I adore and I bet if you surveyed all the people that knew us both many would say I was the obnoxious, arrogant jerk and probably none would say the same about him.

      Keep up the good work Bark.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    I like the Escape. Compared to the current RAV4 a family member chose over this Ford, it feels a bit more solid, has nicer interior materials and seats, and a better helm. 22mpg sucks, but that same RAV4 traveling at 75mph through a headwind only pulled 22mpg as well while the Altima following behind managed 10 mpg better. I wonder if the extra weight and frontal surface area make these CUVs more sensitive to conditions and driving style.

    I must be raising my kids in poverty, because our Jetta wagon with similar cargo room and less rear seat space than this Escape could always accommodate what we needed it to on road trips, even when they were infants.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      As a reference point, my fiancé’s ’13 Limited was showing 27.5 mpg driving with cruise set to 77mph across NW Ohio last Christmas (flat as a pancake).

      I will echo other’s sentiments that seat comfort continues to be a sore spot, but the previous gen was TERRIBLE.

      AK captures it perfectly: “Impossibly hard with zero shape and a like you said- and angle that practically pushed you off the seat.”

      It’s a shame, because aside from that and the overly stiff ride, these hit all the right notes of roominess, economy, predicted reliability.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      CUVs with their frontal area really don’t like cruising fast. My Forester (turbo) with the antiquated 4-speed box will get 25+ mpg at 60 mph but quickly drops to 23 mpg at 70 mph and 20 or fewer mpg at 80 mph.

  • avatar
    shaker

    Cramped SUV’s + EcoBoost = Sh!tty MPG

    We’ve come a long way, baby.

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    I own this very same, except for AWD, Escape.

    My first thought is the MPG. I was averaging 24.6 per gallon in the 40 city/60 Ozark area. I switched to 93 for 20 cents more and went to just under 27 MPG…26.9.
    I drive pretty nicely, never really racing, but who does?

    I think the mountain and AWD snow conditions you faced really impacted the car. I am thinking MOST CUVs under similar conditions would make you equally upset.
    Unless they force you to get better MPG simply because no matter how you begged and pleaded, you got no power.

    The one complaint I have is the narrowing of the front window as it comes down to the dash. I understand the need to fight the wind…but this design makes looking out over the dash feel sort of confining and claustrophobic to me.
    I guess there is ONE more complaint…that narrow disappearing rear window.
    Please…bring back the ability to SEE!!!!!! The Forester has it…why can’t everybody give this wagon/CUV the windows needed to live as a utilitarian vehicle???!!!

    However, having driven ALL of the competition many many times before deciding back in 2013, there is no better driving and handling little SUV. The only car I sometimes feel I should have chosen was the Forester turbo. It had the power…just not the interior quality or MPG. I simply do not wish to have full time AWD.

    I loved the CX5…but no matter how I was informed of its driving, that 2.5 is still not powerful enough day in and day out. And I feel the exact same way about all the base 4 cylinders on the better MPG competition.

    • 0 avatar
      VW16v

      I’ve been driving a Forester 2.5I for the past six months now . The XT model with the turbo just didn’t seem worth the price. Both models, turbo and non-turbo seem very similar up to about 40 mph. The 2.5i has a lot of low end power mated to the cvt. We have been avg 24 mpg and we get around 33 mpg going 70 mph. Slow it down to 65 mph and we get 35-36 mpg.

      Visibility is second to none in the Forester.

      • 0 avatar
        rockets

        +1. Similar numbers in our Forester…pretty comfortable too, and cargo no issues. Wifey happy…and it absolutely kicks butt in the snow. We came out of the movie theater on Christmas Eve morning to 10″ of snow by noon here in Nebraska, and just drove through with no issues.

        • 0 avatar
          TrailerTrash

          I just travel a lot with a ton of weight. In mountains as well.
          The base 4 in the Forester just scared be fully loaded and the power needed when required.
          But I do pine after that wonderful square and window design.
          Just nailed it.
          They had better never lose it.

  • avatar
    wmba

    The best thing about this vehicle is that it apparently does not suck.

    Having driven the Forester and Crossdreck, I find that they do.

    Brother has a CX-5. It’s OK and doesn’t suck either. But beyond that, it’s a yawn.

    This all from a the viewpoint of someone who has always had something with a bit of verve to drive, so applicable to nobody else in particular. I really couldn’t care less what anybody else drives.

    As for stuff, I got too much of it. Way too much, including a 1/8 scale gas-powered remote-controlled motorcycle. Italian, you know and just a bit difficult to control. Adjustable shocks ‘n everything. You win the 1/8 gas powered car AWD Canadian championship decades ago, and figure, hey! I’d be good with that.

    Nope.

  • avatar
    7402

    I cross shopped the Escape two years ago. While suitable impressed, the rear seat was as uncomfortable as it looked and there were weird reflections on instruments that I could not avoid on the sunny day when I did my test drive. I ended up buying a Subaru Forester Premium with a manual transmission. Cost me less even after adding the Katzkin leather seats.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    I’ve had rental Escapes identical to this. They’re good vehicles and fit a lot of people’s needs well. I didn’t really have any complaints about it except that the gas tank is tiny. I could go 275 miles MAX on the hwy before I had to stop for gas. In my Q7 I can go at least 350.

  • avatar
    fvfvsix

    I’m LOLing at the Geto Boys “Greatest Hits” album. Reminds me of my wife making fun of me for being too old to have Scarface’s latest album on heavy rotation in my car. I’m like “well, he’s 45, so I’d argue that I’m in the target demographic.”

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      Sometimes I like to pull a Michael Bolton and drive around in my Ranger with “Die motherf***er die motherf***er still, fool!” blasting.

      with doors securely locked, of course ;)

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    Rental Escapes make rental Rogues seem like luxury cars. I don’t know if some combination of options can make an Escape livable, but they’re abysmal in rental trim. I know two people that needed room when they rented, and they hated their Escape experiences even more than I did.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      This the post-Farago The Truth About Cars, where Ford (opposite of GM during Farago’s reign) is to be reflexively lauded, elevated, celebrated & even endorsed.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        GM got a well-deserved bashing. They’d been faking it for so long.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          GM got a well-deserved bashing and they still are worthy of bashing.

          Ford quality sucks (with few exceptions), their prices are insane, they violate the Jack & Mark Baruth sacrosanct rule of “American Made” (instead relying heavily on imports from Mexico to supply the U.S. – more so than FCA, GM, Honda, Nissan or Toyota)…

          …yet Alex Dykes, both Baruths (especially Mark), and some other TTAC contributors dry hump & splooge over anything Ford (shuttering Powershift and Chinese Getrag MT-82 transmissions & Ecosuck motors included).

          This site should be renamed to The Truth About Cars*

          *Except Ford/Lincoln.

          • 0 avatar

            But then what would you have to complain about? I don’t want to steal your sunshine.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            He’d still have Cadillac to complain about.

          • 0 avatar
            CJinSD

            If anyone needed further evidence of Ford-reality-myopia, it is right there in the form of BarkM thinking that DeadWeight’s sunshine is even tenuously Ford-bashing-dependent. I think DW could be forced to never discuss any topic other than how much Cadillac fellates for a year, and he wouldn’t even notice the constraints.

  • avatar
    jonnyanalog

    I like the Escape, in general, but I’d never own one simply because I don’t like the interior all that much; especially all of the grey painted plastic that surrounds the shifter and cupholder section. Not sure how that made it into production…

    • 0 avatar
      N8iveVA

      It’s shiny black in the higher end models. Not sure that’s any better. I’m hoping they’ll do away with that on the soon to be released refresh as i may be in the market in the Spring.

  • avatar
    TDIGuy

    This is the same model they are hawking on the radio ads here in Ontario. The Escape SE that “comes with the options everybody wants already included, like 4 wheel drive, synch 3 and 17″ wheels”. Yes, it is true, 4wd and synch are OPTIONS on that model. Not sure why 17″ wheels is such a big deal, but it seems that everybody wants bigger wheels noadays. They then go on to talk about the lease, but fail to mention they are now talking about the S model.

    Here at least, you can pick from two turbo and one non-turbo engine in the SE model. Anyone got any observations about real world performance and economy of the turbo four versus the non-turbo option?

    • 0 avatar
      N8iveVA

      The non-turbo is only the base model. Plastic hubcaps and all. The turbo all depends on your driving style. I have a friend that gets better than the advertised mpg’s but he drives like an old lady. I’m sure i’d never get what’s advertised.

  • avatar
    bullnuke

    Hah! Mount Rushmore. My youngest boy and I went on a tour of the West several years ago and went to see the “big heads” on the mountain. We got there at 7:45 in the morning; the guy at the booth waved us on through. We were alone there in the parking lot and didn’t get charged that parking fee. The gate guard saw a couple of guys in a plain, white Ford F350 XL coming in early and thought we were part of the morning cleaning crew. Great and magnificent view of the mountain with the hum of the electric floor scrubbers polishing the stonework in the background. The boy was impressed.

  • avatar
    mistermau

    Okay, folks. Since this article has a strong dose of Ford and Escape, with an even bigger dose of Ford Love, and a brief mention of the Flex, riddle me this:

    My wife and are are planning on new cars this year for our 4-person family. Our oldest child is 7. Right now I’m planning on getting her out of her ’05 Saab 9-3, and into a Lincoln MKC. She wants something about the same size as the Saab and she wants to sit higher, but with the luxurious component that the Escape doesn’t have.

    For myself, I’m leaning on swapping my ’07 Passat Wagon for – get this – [deep breath] 2015 or so Transit Connect Wagon (Titanium, natch). My car is the family hauler and I think it could meet our needs quite nicely. Although I’ve really liked it since day one, the Flex is just more vehicle than I think I need at the moment.

    Thoughts?

    • 0 avatar

      I haven’t driven the Transit Connect yet—I saw a whole bunch of them on the Emerald Aisle in ATL last time that I was there, but I didn’t have the need for a MPV. I’ll grab one the next time I see one and let you know.

      I don’t really think that an MKC is any more luxurious than an Escape Titanium, and the Lincoln likely won’t hold its value as well as the Ford (crazy times we live in, no?).

      • 0 avatar
        mistermau

        Hadn’t really thought about the Escape Titanium. I really think she’s looking more at the nameplate than anything else, but she’s a good wife and she doesn’t ask for much, so I’m willing to give the lady what she wants. I will MOST DEFINITELY make sure we look at them back-to-back, though.

        I’m going to require a weekend or so with a Connect rental, also. Just waiting for the right opportunity to present itself.

      • 0 avatar
        davefromcalgary

        Bark, is the MKC worth it just for the 2.3T over the 2.0T?

        • 0 avatar

          Not in my humble opinion, especially if you don’t plan on stoplight racing it.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          I feel like if you were looking for speed out of your CUV then the Edge Sport would be the way to go. It’s priced only like $600 more than a 2.3T MKC.

          • 0 avatar
            davefromcalgary

            Not necessarily speed, just effortless motoring, which more power provides.

            The Verano down I-15 never had to drop gear, and never lost speed on all those grades. Just a bit more whistle and a lot more fuel consumed.

            The MKC is better looking to my eye than the Escape, and so is the Edge, as they both have nicer greenhouse shapes.

          • 0 avatar
            TrailerTrash

            the edge might be a little large for her since she wanted something the same size as the Saab. However, I agree…the Edge 2.0 is certainly gonna get you more for the buck.
            I would…but it wasn’t available in 13 with the better 2.0 than have now. Supposedly much more solid.
            The Edge is heavy.

          • 0 avatar
            mistermau

            I really like the looks of the Edge. If we as a family feel too cramped in the Escape/MKC, that’s where we’ll head next. We’ll stop there though. The MKX is not in the cards.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        But the MKC is soooo much better looking. And somehow the dash doesn’t seem Lumina APV-deep like the Escape’s does….

    • 0 avatar
      krohde

      Rented a Transit Connect Titanium for the Rolex 24 – it’s a lot of car for the money. Tons of interior room, nice to drive (like a big, tall Focus), comfortable for a family. It is very slow and underpowered if you have a full load of people aboard and the in-town mileage sucks accordingly (like 17 even driving very conservatively). Drove it a total of about 300 miles, 2/3 on the highway, and averaged about 23 with it. Not great but not awful. Definitely check one out but it is missing the power tailgate/doors that most vans have, and the third-row’s folding mechanism sucks (leaves the seatbacks at an angle that has stuff sliding against the tailgate and then out the back as soon as you open the tailgate).

      As for the Escape, I rented a ’13 Titanium AWD a couple years ago, drove it 650 miles in bad weather and averaged 25.5 MPG. And that’s with the 2.0 motor, not the 1.6. I didn’t baby it either, so not sure why you couldn’t do better Bark – my review of it is here if anyone’s interested: http://www.kylerohde.com/2014/01/29/rental-review-2013-ford-escape-titanium/

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        @krohde, I’ve never driven a Transit Connect but your comments line up with my thinking that the LWB Transit needs ecoboost, the naturally aspirated 2.5 is about 25 hp less then that sucker needs minimum.

        • 0 avatar
          krohde

          Yep. Definitely agree. Or a tiny diesel :)

        • 0 avatar
          mistermau

          Interesting. Y’all have hit on my major concerns. Power and tailgate. My Passat has a power tailgate and it would be tough living without it.

          Have to see about the engine too. Have to figure that out when I rent one. I’m in Atlanta and I do a mix of city and highway driving. I’m wondering if the engine is tunable with a few extra bits or a software flash!

          I’m just an smitten with my perception of the utility! Also, I’m hard on vehicles so I’m hopeful that the delivery van underpinnings might be more prepared for years of punishment.

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        @krhode – That mileage is pretty awful. My parents’ Town & Country does better than that and has tons more space than the Transit. When my sister was car shopping she originally wanted a Grand Caravan but was put off by the mpg. She looked at the Transit hoping the smaller vehicle would be better and was disappointed to not see much difference. She ended up buying a Honda Fit. She still would’ve liked something larger but loves her Fit’s efficiency.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        The Transit Connect Wagon is one of those things that seems great, but isn’t compared to what else is on the Ford lot. The SWB TCW isn’t as nice as the C-Max and the LWB TCW gets into Flex and Explorer pricing. It needs to be cheaper for me to even consider it.

        • 0 avatar
          krohde

          I wouldn’t say it creeps into Explorer or Flex pricing. The loaded LWB TCW I drove stickered at barely 30K. Yeah, you can maybe get a stripped out Flex or Explorer for that, but most you find will be between 40-50K, I think.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It’s close enough that I wouldn’t consider the TCW. The Flex SEL actually leases out very close to the LWB TCW. At the dealer I go to, it’s about $30 more a month.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            I think it’s important to remember that the Transit Connect is primarily a commercial vehicle. The wagon version is compromised by that; it’s pretty cheap inside. I guess in Europe and RoW it’s competitive since the others on the market like the Doblo (ProMaster City) and Renault Kangoo are also miserable griefboxes. AFAIK the TC is only as expensive as it is since they have to try to make some money on it importing it from Valencia.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It’s a very specific person buying a TCW Titanium. It starts at $29K+, only comes with the 2.5L, and there are no packages, only a la carte options. It’s also poo on the inside as compared to everything else Ford has at that price range.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I just looked it up, and a Flex SEL with the 201A package that has remote start, power liftgate, Sync3, heated seats, dual zone climate control, a V6, and very good cloth seats is just over $32K. A similarly equipped TCW Titanium is $31K. Now that TCW will have leather. Add the 202A package to the Flex and you get to $34K. $3000 is SOOOOO worth it to go from a TCW to a Flex.

          • 0 avatar
            krohde

            Wow. You’re right @bball40dtw. I love Flexes and would do that for sure. I didn’t realize they were that close.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I really wanted a TCW too. I wanted a SWB XLT with the 1.6T. It’s a fine vehicle, but my C-Max is so much more refined. Maybe The TCW would make more sense if I needed to tow a sailboat or jetski, and didn’t have a bigger vehicle.

            You are right about the real world prices of the Explorer and Flex though. I bet it’s hard to find one under $35K.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “Now that TCW will have leather.”

            wouldn’t be a problem for me, leather seats are a “minus” in my book.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            Lowest price for a new Flex that I can find within 300 miles of me is $25,000 but that is an SE model.

            Cheapest LWB Transit Connect Wagon XLT I can find is a hair over $24,000 but it is a 2015 – don’t know how long it’s been in inventory. It has the ambulance style doors which is a plus for me. But like I said I’d still want my horsepower in 200 hp range.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            That’s why I have a C-Max SE instead of an SEL. That and the 203A package gives you more equipment than the base SEL at a lower price.

    • 0 avatar
      Alfisti

      I haz a 9-3 wagon and x1 and we need more backseat space. Looking at an mkc as we need a nameplate, well the wife does.

      Anyone know if the mkc backseat is larger than the escape?

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    I am not fond of the front end on these. But I do like the revised 2017. The fender vents are also tacky. But the Escape honestly has the best combination of driving feel, features and cargo space.

    • 0 avatar
      TrailerTrash

      To me they at least broke the trend for every front look alike.
      This was a good change from all that.
      Perhaps a bit to many fighting lines, but still better than the Ford/Hyundai rectangle/slanted headlight everybody is the same look.

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    Yes, the Escape is probably one of the best driving compact CUVs, but imagine how much better it would drive without the high CoG and lifted suspension. And how much better would be the gas mileage be? Think Focus with Escape space or a Golf Sport Wagon (nearly the same size as an Escape inside with much better real world mpg) with Ford instead of VW maintenance costs. Oh, and the Focus and Golf are a lot cheaper too. It’s still a compromised vehicle that provides something of little tangible benefit in exchange for performance and efficiency compromises. Same could be said for the otherwise brilliant Mazda CX’s vs the non existent (in the US) 3 and 6 wagons.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      There are those of us who appreciate ground clearance and not having to sit in an awkward position over “driving dynamics.”

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        Yes because the suburban parking lots that 99% of these vehicles drive on require such high ground clearance. Far as awkward driving position goes, that’s my exact description of the goofy high seating in CUVs/SUVs. A couple of summers ago I was put on an assignment for work that had me spent hours every day driving. I had a large variety of vehicles from the fleet to choose from, and was initially stuck in SUVs and Pickups and hated sitting up like that. I was overjoyed to discover our lone Transit Connect, as well as the fact that I felt like I was sitting in a car when I was in it. I never took another vehicle after that. I got made fun of a lot for driving the goofy van but I didn’t care.

        • 0 avatar
          heavy handle

          By the EPA’s estimates, an Escape costs roughly $200 more per year to run than a Focus. That’s not much of a compromise.

          The Escape does cost a lot more up front, but that’s because people are willing to pay more. I doubt that it costs more to make. It may even cost less, thanks to higher volume.

          I appreciate your point about ride and driving position, but it’s a mass-market car. People are happy if it starts every morning, they couldn’t care less about handling.

          • 0 avatar
            tjh8402

            @heavy handle – $200/year isn’t chump change. Pretty much every review of an Escape mentions its poor real world fuel economy, whereas the Focus rentals I’ve had have all hit if not exceeded their EPA estimates so the difference would likely be higher. I realize the market does not agree with my position and these vehicles are here to stay, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to bemoan the state of affairs. Last time I was car shopping I would’ve loved a wagon, but I needed something I could reliably average 30+ mpg with, and the only wagon offering that was VW and after my BMW, I wasn’t in the mood for another out of warranty German car (although it still nearly happened except the Jetta sportwagon I found and was going to get sold before I had the chance to buy it). If the Civic or Corolla had wagon versions available (at that time) they probably would’ve been no brainers for me. I had a Civic rental car and found myself cursing Honda for not selling at last a hatchback, if not a wagon, because I would’ve bought it right then.

          • 0 avatar
            Mandalorian

            @tjh804- There will come a day when you fall victim to the human rust known as arthritis and appreciate the ease of access an SUV/CUV/Pickup provides.

          • 0 avatar
            krohde

            When we’re talking about $30,000+ cars, $200 is chump change. But your Escape vs. Focus comparison makes sense since the Focus doesn’t have EcoBoost motors, but just normal N/A ones.

          • 0 avatar
            tjh8402

            @mandalorian – even if we grant that point, it doesn’t explain the appeal of these vehicles to younger and younger middle aged buyers. It also doesn’t explain the appeal of large sedans to older buyers (my grandmother loved her Lexus ES, my mom and her sisters have all gravitated towards Panther platforms, large Buicks, and Cadillac Devilles). For those buyers, its largely an image and maybe a false sense of security issue. @krhode – I doubt a 2.5 escape will be much better and I would be curious to see what a 1.6 Focus EB will do, since the 1.6, from what I have read, actually delivers pretty good mpg in the Fiesta ST and the 1.0 seems to do well too. The 2.5 in both the Escape and Fusion is not a fuel economy champ either. You can only do so much to push a lifted brick through the air. There’s a reason most of these things struggle to exceed 30 mpg on the highway. The one I found to do quite well, although a size smaller than an escape, was a Fiat 500x 2.4, although that was mostly a consequence of the 9 speed’s ridiculously tall highway gearing.

  • avatar
    zoomzoomfan

    We cross shopped the then-new 2013 Escape when we were browsing cute utes back in late 2012. Ended up going with a Mazda CX-5 instead, due to the fact that the 2013 Escape was currently under recall for catching on fire.

    Anyway, our CX-5 was bought with the idea that it’d be a baby-mobile someday. If you can’t fit all of your stuff for ONE infant in an SUV of this size, well, you have too much stuff.

    And, one benefit of the CUV over a wagon or sedan is ground clearance. Our CX-5 is only front-wheel-drive rather than all-wheel-drive, but it’s additional ground clearance means it’s the go-to vehicle for us when the snow gets heavy.

  • avatar
    SomeGuy

    Bark I got to spend a lot of time with the 2015 2.0T Escape Titanium and honestly man I’d just spring the extra money for the bigger motor. MPG already sucks in these things, just get the extra shove to justify it.

    The Escape is a nice car on the inside, like really nice. Not to mention it drives surprisingly good! I remember driving it for the first time and I took one corner and as I crossed over a bump I said:

    “Wow. This makes my SUV (06 Vue) feel like a piece of trash.” Everything was tight as a drum. The power is deceptive and highway manners are good.

    Backseat complaints are legitimate, but the biggest drawback is…well… like Jeremy Clarkson said about the first generation Cayenne: “Just look at it.”

  • avatar
    Shawnski

    We had ’13 Titanium 2.0 eb, and we let it go for something bigger for the faults listed, so-so FE, cramped seating areas, and poor fuel range. However it was/is easily the best driving SUV I have ever experienced. It made a previous X3 we had feel like lumber wagon by comparison, it really enjoyed being hustled. FTD for sure.

  • avatar
    DAC17

    Bark: Glad to see you reviewed this. I have a 2014 SE 1.6, and for what it is, I love it. Great all-season transportation, and it fits everything I need. I was quite impressed with the handling and the transmission/engine programming. Always seems to pick the right gear.

    And I have a C7 Corvette for my fun car, so the comparison bar is not set all that low.

    Thanks for a good, honest review. Now I have to go buy a 2016 2.0 before they’re all gone (just could use a touch more power…)

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    “A good example of addition by subtraction can be found in the removal of the auxiliary input jack from the head unit”

    Brilliant! The only feature I’d want on one of these newer cars, just get-it-out-of-here. Just because.

  • avatar

    First paragraph is the absolute truth. Great review Bark. I rented one of these a couple years back and was very happy with it.

  • avatar
    ttacgreg

    ” drivers who act as though everything is completely normal when snow is falling at a rate of a foot an hour.”

    Ah, if only here in the Colorado snow belt. Here we get mobbed by winter tourists who definitely don’t treat even a light snowfall on damp or even cold dry roads as a driving factor to totally overreact to and do the stupidest risky things they would never consider on a sunny dry summer day.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    The Edge would be my entry point as far as Ford goes because the Escape is just a bit too small and narrow. But then your into close to 40K with the step up SEL version, AWD, V6, option package and leather which is a lot of coin IMO for one of these. Another option I liked after a lengthy test drive was an Equinox LT with the 3.6, AWD, technology and convenience package that stickered for 32885 and was on sale for 31,500. That trick moveable rear seat was perfect giving me the choice of more cargo area or more rear seat legroom depending on the situation and the 3.6 was a hoot with the go pedal down. It was also showing 24 MPG driving down the highway going 70 MPH which isn’t bad considering it was Winter and the vehicle was brand new!

    Another good choice was the Kia Sorrento optioned very close to the Equinox with V6, AWD, cloth seats, convenience package and remote start that stickers for 33770 and was on sale for 32,300 but I really don’t want the 3rd row of space robbing seats that Kia forces you to take in this model.

  • avatar
    kmars2009

    Much like the Fusion, the Escape’s styling is becoming stale quickly. The front end cries for a face lift. The turn signals in the lower bumper, look like an afterthought. I can only hope a facelift is coming soon for both cars. They are almost as boring as the Taurus soon became in the late 80’s. IMO.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      er, yes, the MY17 facelifts for both vehicles have already been unveiled. The Escape will now look more like a “mini Edge” instead of an over-inflated Focus. The Fusion gets some minor styling tweaks.

  • avatar

    I rented one of these. Exactly like this down to the color/trim. I hated its’ guts right up until I realized it was doing everything I asked of it, and fairly well. That being said— I’d never buy one. Like many current Fords, I just can’t get comfortable in them. (Fix one issue another pops up) I’m 6′ 230 and I just…it ain’t workin’.

  • avatar
    dolorean

    “(By the way, Ford already builds an awesome station wagon. It’s called the Flex, and nobody buys it, except for yours truly.)”

    Bark, I’m sorry but you’re wrong. It’s the Ford Mondeo ST Kombi. And it’s been sold only in Europe for years.

    http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=ford+mondeo+st+kombi&view=detailv2&qpvt=ford+mondeo+st+kombi&id=8692DDB3588D374647ABB774E892FFCE73AB4B37&selectedIndex=0&ccid=fZxZmU1o&simid=608049778087038956&thid=OIP.M7d9c59994d68e9e5020e0c2d21ca7a27H0&ajaxhist=0


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