2017 Ford Escape: Monthly Update for October 2017
by Will Kaufman, Associate Staff Writer
Where Did We Drive It?
In October, our metallic pumpkin-spice 2017 Ford Escape handled the scariest of all duties: commuting around Los Angeles. Then it went to its final destination, CarMax. No Edmunds long-termer can escape its fate, no matter how suggestive its badge. We'll have a full rundown of that experience and a retrospective on our time with the Escape in a separate post. In the meantime, we'll treat October like any other month, and go ahead with some comments and observations.
What Kind of Fuel Economy Did It Get?
We only drove the Escape about 780 miles in October since it was listed for sale part of that time. In that time we averaged about 18.5 mpg, which is below our lifetime average. But that's what L.A. traffic does to fuel economy.
This poor showing dragged our lifetime average down by a tenth, to 20.6 mpg. That's noticeably short of the EPA-estimated 23 mpg.
Average lifetime mpg: 20.6 mpg
EPA mpg rating: 23 combined (20 city/27 highway)
Best-fill mpg: 32 mpg
Best range: 408.3 miles
Current odometer: 22,275 miles
Maintenance and Upkeep
"I spent a good portion of the weekend impressed by how much gusto our Escape delivers off the line. But I started thinking it may be a trick. I accidentally shifted to Neutral while making a three-point turn and applied the gas pedal as I normally would. The engine revved up dramatically, more so than you'd expect.
"This behavior makes me think Ford is using a super-sharp throttle calibration, meaning that when you apply 15 percent gas pedal, the engine may receive a signal for significantly more (30 percent? 50 percent?). This would make the engine feel more powerful than it is, which is exactly how I'd describe the Escape before my three-point-turn experience. If true, it's a clever trick, but a trick nonetheless. It might also explain our less than stellar real-world fuel economy." — Carlos Lago, senior writer
"Our Escape has dual-zone climate controls but doesn't have an obvious button to lock them in step with one another, so you only have to turn the driver's knob to adjust both. Pretty much every vehicle I've been in with multiclimate settings has some form of a 'dual' button, except for our Escape. So how do you do it? It perplexed me, literally a professional car reviewer, but not my girlfriend, who simply pressed and held the 'auto' button. That did it. Strange." — Carlos Lago
"The Escape's interior feels large, but something about the design rubs me the wrong way. It could be the materials, especially the cheap-looking and cheap-feeling stuff around the steering wheel. It might also be the squeaks and rattles I've heard emanating from the center console. Either way, there's this rental car sensation I can't quite shake." — Carlos Lago
"I can definitely put my finger on one of the interior design choices that bothers me: the expansive dash. I don't think it's any bigger than the dash in our CR-V, but it lacks the contours and other design elements that would break it up visually. I wind up very aware that I'm looking out at the world over a slab of hard plastic that's big enough for me to sleep on." — Will Kaufman, associate staff writer
"Ford's Sync 3 entertainment system remains the best in this segment that I've experienced. It boots quickly and connects to Android Auto without any serious glitches. It's as smooth as the advertised experience. My only complaint is that it defaults to radio when you don't have your phone plugged in, so the stereo can surprise you with loud volume during startup." — Carlos Lago
"The Escape is one of the few vehicles in our long-term fleet that regularly drops the satellite radio connection, which really kills the mood of my commuting karaoke sessions." — Carlos Lago
"Just like Brent did last month, I managed to lock us out of the Escape in October. We were using it as a shuttle to get around the track, so when I parked it temporarily I turned off the engine but left the key in the ignition. Then I hopped out of the car and the door locked behind me. I have no idea how that happened; the door was unlocked for me to exit, and I didn't press the lock button on my way out. At least one person claims that's a feature, but I didn't test it.
"I did learn that we still don't know what the numerical code is for the door. That's two locksmiths in as many months for the Escape." — Will Kaufman
"Our Escape had reached the end of its tenure with us and it was time to pay a visit to CarMax. I went on a rainy morning and in about 20 minutes I was presented with an offer of $18,000. This was within a hundred dollars of Edmunds trade-in TMV, so we decided to take the offer. I came back with the necessary paperwork a couple days later and bid farewell to the Escape." — Ron Montoya, senior consumer advice editor