— Ford Motor Company finally received good news about their Ford Escape when the 2013 model year Escape was recently named a top safety pick by IIHS – the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
IIHS said the 2013 Escape earned the Institute's top award for good performance in the moderate overlap frontal, side, rollover and rear impact evaluations. According to IIHS, the 2013 Escape improves on the performance of the previous generation model which was rated only marginal (poor for the hybrid) for roof strength in rollover crashes.
A Troubling Few Months for the Ford Escape
The news couldn’t have arrived at a better time for Ford and their Escape, which has taken a beating the past two months in the recall department.
In July, Ford recalled the 2013 Escape because of carpet padding problems. Ford said the problem could cause your foot to hit the side of the brake pedal when trying to switch from the gas pedal to the brake pedal.
Again in July, Ford told owners of the 2013 Ford Escape to immediately park their 1.6L vehicles because a fuel line could split and leak, which could cause the SUV to go up in smoke.
This month, Ford recalled the 2013 Escape because a leaking hose could possibly cause an engine fire. This was their second recall that involved possible engine fires and involved the same 1.6L engine.
The Top 5 Reported Ford Escape Problems
CarComplaints.com has over 1200 complaints on file that cover model years 2001-2013 of the Ford Escape, so we scanned our database to find the top five reported problems with the Escape according to owners.
1. Transmission Problems
Owners have reported major transmission problems across most model years, especially with the 2002, 2006, 2008, and 2009 models. From complete transmission failure to vehicles jerking into gear, Escape owners claim the transmission problems couldn’t be much worse.
“I bought a 2009 Ford Escape in September 2008. The transmission failed in October 2009,” said Dave, from California. “The transmission was completely replaced, and I thought that would be the end of my problem, until Friday, March 18, 2011, when the transmission failed AGAIN, this time at 22,000 miles.”
2. Engine Problems
“I have had many problems with this car but this was the worst. The check engine light didn't come on and the car jumped timing, bent the rods and god knows what else,” said one driver about his 2006 Escape. “Cost me $4,000 to replace with rebuilt engine. Gave the car to my daughter and both motor mounts broke and now needs a new engine again. Can't say I will ever buy another ford again!”
3. Window/Windshield Problems
When we say “window problems” we mean problems, such as when your back window explodes. More apparent in model years 2004, 2005, 2007, and 2010, owners report their back windows exploding into thousands of tiny razor blades.
The 2005 Escape back window seems especially vulnerable.
“Thought someone shot a gun or threw a rock,” said one 2005 Escape driver. “I was stopped at an intersection and as I went through, the back window exploded into the car. Pieces of glass everywhere.”
A Canadian Escape owner said their back glass exploded while the vehicle was turned off and parked.
“We were so sure it was vandalism, police were called. Police officer stated he'd had this same call on at least one other Escape.”
4. Electrical Problems
The 2005 Escape is not only famous for it’s exploding windows, but that model year can experience severe electrical problems, at least according to owners. Primary problems include total computer failure and the power transmission control module going on the blink.
“I took it in to the garage. I had to wait 2 weeks for a re-manufactured computer as they were heavily back-ordered,” complained Nelson, of Kahului, Hawaii. “It would have been over $2800 dollars if parts and labor were charged retail.”
5. Body/Paint Problems
This might seem like a minor problem compared to recalls for engine fires, but owners are absolutely frustrated with peeling paint problems, especially in the 2003 Ford Escape.
Drivers say Ford hasn’t been responsive to complaints because it’s not considered a safety problem. Maybe not, but who wants to drive a car that throws paint to the wind.
“They need to be held responsible for their product and not only for safety reasons,“ said a California Escape owner. “My next car wont be a Ford.”
But Wait ... There's More!
CarComplaints.com has over 1200 owner complaints about the Ford Escape and counting. Check them out before buying an Escape!