Ford Talks Edge ST Strengths and Weaknesses
Last week, we gave you the lowdown on the new Ford Edge ST. The verdict, according to yours truly, was that it was miles ahead of the Sport trim is was replacing but had a few wrinkles that the manufacturer could stand to iron out. Since the ST occupies a place in the market that is entirely dominated by premium nameplates, these shortcomings were largely trivial. There’s less reason to gripe about its non-showy interior or high price tag when Ford is still offering you more performance and functionality for less money.
However, one aspect stood out as consistently vexing — the transmission. While the eight-speed Ford installed into the crossover was competent on the luxury-minded Titanium trim, its programming was occasionally frustrating when you asked it to blast through gears on the ST. That’s not because it was broken, it simply isn’t set up for maximum hustle.
This was an observation echoed by numerous other outlets and something Ford appears keenly aware of it. In fact, Ed Krenz, chief functional engineer for Ford Performance, said that aspect is one the automaker isn’t yet satisfied with and intends to continue tweaking until it is.
2019 Ford Edge ST First Drive - Finding the White Space
As I shuffled, exhausted, into the airport bathroom, a whistle-shaped fan was attempting to dry its freshly mopped floors — picking up the scent of the urine-soaked tiles and wafting it directly into my nostrils. It was not shaping up to be a good week and I had another 2,000 miles to go before I arrived in Utah to sample the 2019 Ford Edge ST and Edge Titanium.
Ford’s Edge has been a guilty pleasure of mine ever since I used one to follow the PGA tour almost four years ago. That experience ended with me feeling worse about golf but much better about a vehicle I had previously written off as uninteresting. The Edge Titanium I basically lived out of during that period didn’t become more exciting. But every time I had to park it and traverse eighteen holes of nearly consistent boredom under the hot summer sun, I’d look back at its fresh red paint and whisper “take me away from all of this.” And that’s exactly what it did when my time with the tour ended.
I loaded up the massive rear compartment, shuttled a few locals home, and drove it back to New York City under budget on fuel, where I found that it was actually small enough to park on the street. I was damned pleased with it, but thrilling performance wasn’t part of the overall appeal. That’s why I was legitimately excited to try Ford’s new Edge ST — a model that replaces the Sport trim for the 2019 model year and was dubbed by its creators as the quickest ST ever made.
Edging Up the Price: Ford's Edge ST Starts at $43,350
Ford promised a gutsy middleweight crossover that it hopes will satisfy enthusiasts after the automaker finishes eliminating the majority of its sporting passenger car segment. For 2019, the Edge ST replaces the standard Sport trim — resulting in added performance and a higher price.
However, it seems like the inflated MSRP will be worthwhile. At $43,350, the Edge ST plays host to a specially tuned 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 that generates 335 hp and 380 pound-feet of torque — a not immodest improvement over the Sport. It also gets a new eight-speed transmission, all-wheel drive, performance seats, and implements a specially tuned suspension. Considering all of that comes in at roughly $1,500 more than the trim it’s replacing, we’d say the Edge ST is looking like a bargain.
2019 Ford Edge ST: The Unlikely Athlete
With the Focus RS out of production and the Fiesta ST heading off into the sunset, Ford’s attainable performance stable was starting to look a little bare. Maybe it still is, depending on your reaction to the vehicle pictured above.
Regardless of how you feel, it’s happening. For 2019, the Blue Oval is slapping its performance badge onto the midsize Edge crossover, cranking up the power, swapping the transmission, and sending the model to the plastic surgeon for a facelift. It’s 2018, and this is apparently what we want.