I got a job where I needed to carry stuff for work and I also needed to haul our small family around in the winter. The ford escape seemed like a perfect fit. It drove well enough, but the 4 cylinder is just plain lethargic. At low gears it's all right, but in second and third, well, you had better not be making emergency maneuvers. The arm rests are hard and unforgiving. I didn't like the position of the seats relative to the floor. The 4WD, however, was FANTASTIC! I could drive like a complete idiot on snow and ice, and it didn't matter. Ford AWD is much better than the AWD that I had in the Saturn Vue I bought after owning this. My advice: get the nicer trim level with the 6 cyl and 4wd.
Sound system is pretty poor on the base model. Mileage was disappointing with the 4cyl. Why bother with it?