Ok, I've been a Ford supporter for 40+ years, all the while enduring the Chevy, Toyota, Honda owners snide comments. As of todayI'll never buy another Ford.
First, the 1998 F150 XLT airconditioning and electrical system began failing at 40k miles (I didn't keep track of how much those repairs cost) so at 80k I finally traded that in for the 2009 Escape. The first Escape under warrenty transmission was installed in 2012, and now at 77k miles I'm faced with another failed transmission. Included in the decision NOT TO BUY FORD is the fact that this Escape cost me about $900 in repairs every freaking year since hitting the 36k warranty mark (sometime in 2013), and I'm good to my vehicles--regular maintenance, don't drive like a maniac. The new tires will outlast the engine/transmission and that's freaking sad and not cost effective. I'm switching to Honda or Toyota.
Purchased new in July 2009, drove 1000 miles to break-in before a trip from Pittsburgh to Oregon. Very comfortable ride for 2 people over a week and a half. Highway gas mileage was 28-32 mpg. Still average 25-30 mpg with my rural driving. Would have liked AWD with a manual tranny, but the one time I drove on an untreated, snow-covered road (~1") the FWD did fine with factory tires. Also glad I went with the stick once I heard stories about the 6-speed auto. No problems with my vehicle 17,000 miles, 1.5 years later. Rides well, though the body pitches up/down excessively when applying power or braking (making smooth uphill stops/starts difficult).
Lots of storage spaces (huge, deep center console, and wet trunk option is handy for containing small, loose, dry things too), lots of room around the 4-cylinder engine. Roof rails allowed Thule racks to be added to carry a canoe or kayak. Rear seats have good leg room for a small SUV.
Clutch is touchy, would have liked a 6-speed manual (or get 1st, 2nd, and 3rd gears closer together and 5th further out), plastic interior panels sometimes rub and squeak, small glove box & no light, could use tie-downs in cargo area and more hard metal on front and rear to tie things like canoes to.
I wanted something like a station wagon, that I did not have to step down into, and did not want all wheel drive. So far the vehicle has performed well, achieving 30 miles to the Cdn. gallon city, and 40 Cdn. Hwy. Five spd a little tricky at first,a taller 5th gear would be appreciated (2500 Rpm at 60 mph). Clutch is a tad heavy, black interior hard to keep clean. Growls during acceleration but quiets down. Some wind noise at hwy speeds or cross winds.I wish they would seal the seams on the body work like Toyota does to prevent salt accumulation. Wife loves it.
Practicality of a station wagon, able to get a 5spd fwd model like this in Canada. Lots of standard options. The final price with all the various incentives I was able to combine brought the price down to a used Toyota Matrix/ Pontiac Vibe.
Taller 5th gear,smoother throws for the transmition, reduce the acceleration growl (sounds cheep), seal the seams on the body work like Toyota,
This is my first and last ford. I wanted to buy an American made car and unfortunately I made a huge mistake. I travel for my work and need a reliable comfortable, roomy and efficient vehicle. I bought my 2009 ford escape in July and now its October and the vehicle has 14,500 miles on it and is broke down 400 miles away from where I live. I live in Birmingham and my transmission went out in Natchez MS and the car is still there. Not only is the vehicle not reliable but ford fought with me on honoring the warranty on the faulty car they sold me! I am disgusted with the way they've handled my situation and will NEVER buy another ford. I would NOT RECOMMEND anyone to buy an Escape or a ford
I have an 09 with the 2.5 and 5 speed manual. I wanted the lowest price and the 6 speed auto is new. I wanted proven reliability and the 5 speed manual shifts very smooth. Good performance and gas mileage combination with the modern 171 horsepower engine and manual transmission. Has an excellent ride and comfortable seats. Nice on the highway and a good handling city car, too. Fun to drive and fun to sit up high. Safer than earlier models. I have the red metallic. Looks great with legal color tinted windows side and rear. Lots of cargo room with the seats down. Has the updates of a Suv from Japan and feels just as good with a lower price.
It is new.
I would prefer a lower fouth gear and a higher fifth gear. Only 500 rpm difference on the highway.