Long-Term Introduction: 2007 Ford Edge SEL

2007 Ford Edge Road Test

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  • Pricing & Specs
  • Road Tests (3)
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  • Long-Term

2007 Ford Edge SUV

(3.5L V6 6-speed Automatic)


With the 2007 Ford Edge, the Ford Motor Company has a lot at stake. It's trying to reinvent itself for the future, and this compact sport-utility is meant to reinvent the American automobile at the same time. We'll soon discover if Ford is standing at the Edge of a bright new beginning or financial disaster.

The 2007 Ford Edge is certainly the kind of vehicle we need in our test fleet. It offers best-in-class horsepower and torque, competitive fuel economy, ULEV-certified air emissions, available all-wheel drive and a treasure trove of safety features.

What we bought
We decided to pass on the base-model Edge SE (MSRP under $26K) and opt for the midlevel SEL package with front-wheel drive. Minimal negotiation knocked $610 off the sticker price and we paid $29,500. Additional options added $2,120 to the bottom line pretty quickly. First, the Seating Flexibility Package ($985) adds leather-trimmed seats, a six-way power passenger seat and a fold-flat second-row seat with a rear EasyFold remote release. Second, the Rear Cargo Management System ($65) includes a storage compartment below the rear floor. Other options include 18-inch painted aluminum wheels, roof rails and Sirius Satellite Radio. Finally, we included the upgraded audiophile radio with six-disc CD changer.

All Edge trim levels feature a 3.5-liter V6 engine beneath the hood that's built to deliver 265 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. Paired with the 24-valve DOHC V6 is a six-speed automatic transmission, which helps achieve a projected 18 mpg city and 25 mpg highway. Our actual observed fuel economy, however, is only 17.8 mpg to date.

Our eagerness to purchase the Edge from current dealer stock meant we had to make some compromises, and in this case it was the color scheme: Dune Pearl Metallic for the exterior with a Camel interior. Yes, that's two humps in the front and a 60/40-fold-flat seat in the back, which means seating for five passengers in total. It will be interesting to see how the beige interior holds up considering our experience with our long-term BMW 330i.

Why we bought it
Crossover-utility vehicles (CUVs) are poised to become the auto industry's largest segment and Ford is betting the farm on this notion. The Edge is arguably the future of the company, and while this alone makes the car significant enough to test, it's not the only reason for our purchase.

Our recent full test of the Edge SEL AWD left us less than completely impressed, and with so much riding on the success of this car we wanted to give it a fair shake over the long term. For one, the extra time allows us to test the aspects of utility for which the car was built that we could not do justice to in a short-term test. Further, this is the only way to test the fuel economy, family-friendliness and durability that consumers carefully consider before they buy. It also gives us the opportunity to see how the Edge holds up against competitors like our long-term 2007 Toyota RAV4.

Track test and impressions
We expected our FWD Edge (4,195 pounds) to perform right on par if not slightly better than the aforementioned (and 335 pounds heavier) AWD variant. We were right.

Both our dynamic tests were limited by Ford's stability control system. A slalom speed of 58.4 mph and skid-pad grip of 0.73g were the best the Edge could muster and the same in both variations. Acceleration from zero to 60 mph arrived in 7.4 seconds, a full second faster than the Edge AWD. The quarter-mile fell in 15.8 seconds at 87.6 mph, a half-second faster than its heavier AWD counterpart.

When it comes to cars geared for family duty, stopping is more important than going fast. In the case of the Edge, stopping from 60 mph in 158 feet is not getting the job done. Relatively low mileage may be a factor in this poor result, but even with only 818 miles on the odometer we expect better.

Over the next year we'll record the durability, cost of ownership, real-time fuel economy and overall utility of our latest long-term test vehicle. Ford has a lot riding on the Edge, and in the coming months Inside Line will have a lot of writing about the Edge.

Current Odometer: 818
Best Fuel Economy: 19.7 mpg
Worst Fuel Economy: 15.6 mpg
Average Fuel Economy (over the life of the vehicle): 17.8 mpg
Body Repair Costs: None
Maintenance Costs: None
Problems: None.

Edmunds purchased this vehicle for the purposes of evaluation.

It was a dark and stormy night when our 2007 Ford Edge SEL pulled out of our garage with a shadowy figure behind the wheel, both not to be seen again for months.

At least, that's the way we want to tell the story. But like most mysteries, the far-fetched conspiracy theories are more exciting than the real explanation. The Loch Ness Monster was a toy boat. Crop circles were some bored British dudes with a wooden plank and a couple of ropes. Sasquatch...well, obviously he's real.

So the disappearance of our 2007 Ford Edge SEL wasn't part of some giant conspiracy to confuse our readership; it simply went into service on the backside of production here at Inside Line. Spent a humdrum life shuttling humans around without complaint and lots of time parked at the airport; not exactly the stuff of blogs.

Why We Got It
Back in 2007, crossovers were still sitting on the fence, poised to be the next big thing. Maybe. But Ford had bet the farm on the 2007 Ford Edge, giving it a sharp design, good interior materials and practical packaging. "The Edge will challenge consumers' assumptions about -- and in some cases, their prejudices against -- the Ford Motor Company," said Paul Mascarenas, vice president of engineering. And in retrospect, the 2007 Ford Edge was the first sign of the profitable, non-bankrupt Ford Motor Company we see today. It paved the way for the 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid and 2011 Ford Fiesta.

Instead of the sleepy 3.0 Duratec V6, the 2007 Edge had a new 3.5-liter V6 rated at 265 horsepower at 6,250 rpm, and 250 pound-feet of torque at 4,500 rpm, and it also featured a six-speed automatic transmission codeveloped by General Motors.

Overall, the Edge represented a big move by Ford. A simple road test wasn't going to sort this one out, so early in 2007, we paid $29,500 for a 2007 Ford Edge SEL in Dune Pearl Metallic for a year of testing as part of our long-term fleet. At least, we thought it was only going to be a year.

Durability over this extended test was good, although the total accumulated mileage was relatively low because of the vehicle's usage patterns. We did encounter a recall for the tires' valve stems -- which were leaking -- while we were having a bad battery replaced under warranty at 28,403 miles. The only major service was performed during this same trip to the dealer and included new brake pads and turned rotors as well as a basic oil change and air filter for a total charge of $301.

There was also a mystery noise and a "Check Engine" light that was never fixed. The light was reset, but no official solution from Ford was ever presented.

A parking-lot incident resulted in bumper damage to the tune of $689.16.

Total Body-Repair Costs: $689.16
Total Routine-Maintenance Costs (over 40 months): $504.30
Additional Maintenance Costs: 0
Warranty Repairs: 2
Non-Warranty Repairs: 1
Scheduled Dealer Visits: 4
Unscheduled Dealer Visits: 1
Days Out of Service: 0
Breakdowns Stranding Driver: 0

Performance and Fuel Economy
Initial testing of our 2007 Ford Edge returned some fairly terrible braking numbers: 158 feet from 60 mph. This performance is well outside the realm of acceptability in a passenger vehicle (a Ford F-450 Super Duty pickup does the task in only 151 feet). When we tested the vehicle again for our wrap-up, the brakes had either magically healed themselves (new pads and turned rotors during a major service), or we had worn off enough of the all-season-ness from the tires in 36,000 miles for some additional grip, because the Edge stopped from 60 mph in 134 feet.

But even so, our test driver wasn't impressed, at first:

"New brake pads? Because the Edge now stops in the same ZIP code from initial brake application. That said, it's a wild ride -- bucking, pitching and lurching with each slow ABS pulse. But when it comes to matters such as [track numbers], there's nothing like a real-life emergency situation to add a sense of perspective. This morning, just such a situation presented itself. I was forced to slam on the brakes, and guess what? The Edge came through pretty nicely. By 'pretty nicely,' I mean I didn't wind up a pretzel wrapped round this guy's bumper. And you know, when you think about it, this really is the best that one could hope for in a circumstance like that. Edge, buddy, you're all right with me."

After our persistent complaints about the Edge's braking performance early in its term with us (and Ford's subsequent attempt to improve the braking performance of the 2008 Edge and its successors), our general consensus about this vehicle's braking performance in daily driving came to be, "acceptable enough to prevent crashing."

Acceleration was good during initial testing with a 7.4-second run to 60 mph and 15.8 seconds at 87.6 mph in the quarter-mile. At the end of its term of service, the Edge ran to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds and passed the quarter-mile in 15.7 seconds at 90.3 mph. While the 0-60 time doesn't quite show it, the reduced grip of the tires helped create some useful wheelspin away from the starting line and thus a better quarter-mile performance.

As we've seen time and again, better straight-line performance due to tired tires means reduced performance when we conduct tests that involve turning the steering wheel. The Edge's performance in the slalom diminished from 58.4 mph to 55 mph as the stability-control system reacted aggressively when it sensed the vehicle sliding around on its worn tires.

The Edge's fuel economy is average for a midsize, front-wheel-drive crossover, and it has an EPA rating of 18 city/25 highway mpg. Unfortunately, we rarely witnessed such thriftiness. Even on long highway drives, we seldom experienced better than 21 mpg, and though a few drivers were capable of matching the EPA highway rating, none surpassed it. In city driving, the EPA somehow managed 18 mpg while we hardly ever cracked the 14-mpg barrier. Incredibly, our average fuel economy was only 14 mpg, largely a consequence of the vehicle spending a majority of its life in the traffic-clogged Los Angeles basin.

Best Fuel Economy: 25.1
Worst Fuel Economy: 9.6
Average Fuel Economy: 14
Longest Range: 329 miles

Retained Value
The True Market Value of our 2007 Ford Edge with 36,000 miles proved to be $17,478. Without much fuss or fanfare, we sold the Edge for $17,500 to one of the first responders to our advertisement. The Edge was one of the fastest, easiest sales we've ever managed. Turns out, people still want this car -- even with the prospect of iffy brakes.

Now, we've never kept a vehicle around as long as the 2007 Ford Edge and as such, we've had to guess a little at the relationship between this vehicle's cash value and that of similar vehicles. The Edge depreciated 40 percent in three years. In similar condition and with similar mileage, our TMV tables indicate the 2006 Toyota RAV-4 depreciated $11,781 and 42 percent. Our 2007 Mitsubishi Outlander dropped down $17,264 for a 52 percent reduction. Overall, this is a good sign for Ford.

True Market Value at Service End: $17,478
Depreciation: $12,012 or 40%
Final Odometer Reading: 36,400

The Edge of Reason

"I need a vehicle to go to the airport. Parking there for three days. Way cheaper than a taxi that way."
"Gotcha. Take the Edge."

"Going on a photo shoot. Need something to shoot out the back of. And then I'm going to the airport."
"Right. Take the Edge."

"Broke my leg. Can't drive stick. Need something that'll hold crutches."

"Vacation. Flyi--"
"Just take the Edge."

As with all of our long-term vehicles, we keep them "on the books" until they're sold. No sense writing them off with a wrap-up only to have the engine explode or unintendedly accelerate, and then have to reintroduce the vehicle to the blogs all over again.

But as you'd expect from a vehicle that recorded so few miles overall after the customary test interval of one year and 20,000 miles, we recorded the majority of our driving in just the first 12 months of our test term. And in that time we were generally impressed. Sure, some of the materials could have been better (especially everything below the centerline of the dash, evidence of clever cost-cutting), but the design itself proved solid and highly functional.

It's no sense to romanticize a crossover and so we never did. The 2007 Ford Edge drove well, did our bidding and never really bothered us. The fact that it depreciated less than other crossovers in its price category and sold within the first month of being offered as a used car indicates that its simple no-hassle practicality is something lots of other people value as well.

Edmunds purchased this vehicle for the purpose of evaluation.

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