My wife replaced her Sunfire GT with a new 2007 Escape Limited and this was her first new car she had ever purchased. We looked at a Mazda 3 and a G6, but she decided on the Escape. I don't care for SUV's, but it did not take long for me to really start to like our Escape Limited. The fit and finish along with the quality of the interior pieces was very nice. The Escape is also very quiet, and is even fun to drive on twisty roads. Most SUV's have terrible steering feel, poor on-road dynamics, and noisy tires. The Escape has none of those problems. My wife loves her Escape, and I have learned to love it as well. It is the first SUV I have ever liked!
Fit and finish quality is very nice! Comfortable leather seats, very quite, and good handling. Power is good, and it is perfect for getting around in heavy snow. Seats fold down for enough room to haul race tires for my Mustang. Seats up, and room for 4 golf bags. Perfect size SUV for us.
We wish it had Sync and Sirius radio built in, but it wasn't available in 2007. We did not care for the 08 restyle, so we live without Sync. A 6- speed auto would help with mpg, but that came later.