2015 Ford Escape Ecoboost
Recently we went to one of our favourite lake campgrounds in central Alberta. Pelican Point is nice because you can camp right on the water, just be prepared for swimmers itch and the potential for strong storms. Ford Canada lent us a 2015 Escape with Ecoboost engine it $42,000 list price as tested. Originally it was mean to tow our tent trailer but then we went an bought a small expandable so it was outside of the towing range of the Escape. Since Brian wasn’t staying with us for the week he took the Escape to commute around Calgary. Here are his thoughts on the small SUV with a few of mine mixed in.
It’s a sharp looking vehicle that fits well in our carport. The day time Led running lights are a nice touch and the 19’ rims add a lot of visual appeal.
Ford has this seemingly great foot kick that opens the hatch hands free but the foot kick hatch opening often needed several attempts to open. Once when I (Leslie) was loading groceries I accidently activated it for closing and then slammed my head into the half closed door. We wonder how it would work in winter with snow and ice coverage or with cold hydraulics.
Ford My Key keyless entry and locking was nice. But you have to be more mentally aware of where you are putting the keys so as to avoid losing them. I would like keyless entry for my house!
Lots of cargo room, especially with the seats folded down. We fit golf clubs and 4 Ikea bags of wood plus a small cooler no problem,
In terms of the dash and gauges the touch screen was out of reach of the driver and pressing certain buttons especially in the bottom corners was difficult due to dashboard layout. On a couple of occasions Brian inadvertently turned on the hazard button while reaching for controls. Ford should consider placement of this button in future models, I don’t remember it being an issue before. I (Leslie) found that the gauges weren’t fully visible, no matter where I put the seat I could not see 90km/hr. Brian did not find this to be an issue but he has a shorter torso. Brian still doesn’t like the giant SOUND and SOURCE buttons. A climate control button needed a DUAL option to sync driver and passenger.
The panoramic sunroof is a beautiful option and really adds tonnes of natural light to the vehicle and the perception of interior space. But why is there two buttons to open and close roof shade? I was always hitting the wrong one? As well some of the buttons seem to be opposite from the way you would intuitively push them.
Ambient lighting was a neat feature, nice to be able to change dimness and colors. Stereo has a nice sound and lots of power. Wireless gateway is an interesting feature although I have yet to figure out how to fully access or understand its functionality.
The seats quite comfortable, I like that the memory button are now in a visible location versus on our 2013 F-150 they are on the side of the seat; I also that there are 3 memory options which is great for families that have teens who are driving. AC seats would be a nice option but unfortunately are not available. I (Leslie) didn’t like that buckle stopper flap was higher up. I found my arm was always rubbing against it.
The whole purpose of having a leather seat is to reduce wear on fabric yet the fabric was in the primary wear areas on the leather/cloth combo seats. Leather in the center does make sense for reducing messes from spills while driving so why not just have fully leather seats rather than the strange cloth, leather combination?
In general I think that is interior layout is somewhat improved over the 2013 model
Ford has sold Brian on the use of Forced induction in engines. The torque available and overall performance is superior to naturally aspirated engines, although the fuel economy improvement over other engines is questionable.
Brian really enjoyed driving it, especially on the highways. It had plenty of passing power, maybe even too much! It tracked really well and had a great on center feel, perhaps in part due to the 19” wheels. I felt like the 4 wheel drive system was more seamless than the 2013 model previously tested.
It felt more like driving a car than an SUV, although when you push it around corners you definitely feel the center of gravity more at level consistent with SUVs. Commuting was nice, it was a good drive. I especially liked the backup camera.
We didn’t use park assist often but it did work very well. The car was very easy to park even without the assist, like parking a car.
Steering had a nice feel and it gave road surface feedback quite well. Why no adaptive cruise control? Previous models have it
Getting in and out of the vehicle was easy. Even for people with mobility issues who find other vehicles difficult.
I like that Ford has done away with their experimental turn signals from previous years. I don’t like that it didn’t give you a positive stop when the signal is on but that is no longer an issue.
Overall it is a great little SUV and would be a strong contender if we were looking for a vehicle of that size. Let of space for a family of 4 or less.