The third generation of this highly competitive crossover SUV was introduced to the world back in 2013. And, it hasn’t changed much since then, despite the company’s efforts to make it more tech-savvy (and, thus, more attractive for the modern-day drivers). Now, while Ford Escape 2019 might not be any different in terms of body work, voice control and Smartphone integration are some of its highlights.
Steering and handling, in turn, are better than in all the previous editions. They make the vehicle feel more like a sedan than an SUV, which is good news for people that hate the so-called “bored driving mode” that most crossovers are famous for. Add an impressive trunk and tons of space in the cargo, and you’ll get an all-around excellent pick for this year. The cons include a poor interior build quality and hunger for fuel.
Which Trim Level Will Suit You Best? Pricing.
Ford Escape 2019 is available in four trims: S, SE, SEL, and Titanium.
While the ultimate configuration is a bit too expensive (Titanium costs 32.6K on the US market), SEL seems to me like the best pick. It will be yours for 28.4K, and it’s worth every single penny you pay. SE is available for 26.5K, while S, the entry-level trim, costs 24.1K. Let us talk about each trim in more details to help you make the right choice.
The S configuration comes packed with a 2.5-lit 4-cyl engine, good for 168HP and 170 lb-ft of torque, paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission and FWD (front-wheel drive). Cruise control, a height-adjustable front (driver’s) seat, and automatic headlights are some of its highlights. On the techy side, you’ll find a 4.2-inch screen, Ford’s Sync infotainment system with Smartphone compatibility, a 6-speaker sound system, and more.
SE, in turn, features a turbocharged 1.5-lit engine, 179 horses-strong and with 177 lb-ft. Keyless entry, dual-zone (automatic) climate control, chrome exterior trim, cloth upholstery, satellite radio, and an 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat are part of the deal. With the Sync 3 package, you’ll get an 8-inch screen, better voice controls, 2 USB ports, and 3 more speakers. The Sport Appearance package adds leather upholstery, 19-inch wheels, and LED lights.
What Are SEL And Titanium Capable Of?
SEL bundles all that SE has to offer, plus premium cloth upholstery (great for when it’s hot outside), rear parking sensors, and heated mirrors, among other things. The Sport Appearance package is also available. Titanium is the most powerful trim, thanks to its 2.0-lit turbocharged engine (245 horses, 275 lb-ft of torque). Plus, it has xenon headlights, 19-inch wheels, 10 speakers for the Sony audio system, HD radio, front/side parking sensors, and navigation.
If you want to be as safe inside Ford Escape 2019 as possible, I would highly recommend the Safe and Smart package.
It adds FCW (forward collision warning), blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and more. It doesn’t cost much and will definitely be money well spent.
How Does The Car Feel On The Road?
Every single engine from the line-up is fast and snappy. Braking and steering are unusually strong for a car in this segment, and that’s exactly why it feels great to be behind the wheel of Ford Escape 2019.
TheCarConnection.Com: “With the Escape, Ford found a way to graft hot-hatch limbs on a crossover body”.
Sadly, the steering wheel is a bit dull, but it doesn’t take much of the fun away.
When getting into tight corners, it will feel like you’re being electrically assisted by the car. I for one would love to see better steering from a vehicle that’s pretending to be sporty. But, again, compared to the competition, this model still feels amazing. Mazda’s CX-5, for example, is a comfier ride, while not that different from Escape in terms of handling.
Checking The Insides
The engines are quiet, the seats are comfortable, and climate control is on point. However, because of the sporty handling, ride quality isn’t as smooth as in some of the rivals. The cloth seats are very cozy and won’t make you feel cramped up after hours of driving. The front seats might be a bit uncomfortable because of the narrower-than-average seatbacks and cushions.
The interior is probably this car’s biggest downside. The edgy and sharp angles look outdated and even a bit weird. The good news is – the controls are all right there in front of you, with easy access. The seat height is ideal: you won’t have to bend down to get in and out of Escape. Thanks to the power adjustments available for all seats, people of all height and weight will find a comfortable setting.
Cargo Space And Techy Features
With Ford Escape 2019, you get 68 cubic feet of cargo space (that’s with the 2nd-row seats down; 34 with them up). For a car of this size, that’s quite impressive. The bad news is – for smaller things, there isn’t much room. The door pockets are only good for tiny bottles, nothing else.
Edmunds.Com: “The Escape once set the bar for voice-controlled technology in this class, but now it’s only midpack. Ford’s Sync 3 infotainment software improves on the earlier Sync/MyFord Touch systems, but the utility is still limited”.
Sound quality is solid, but the radio is horrible: get ready for constant signal dropouts. Voice control, thankfully, is decent.
EPA estimates for the S trim are 29 miles per gallon hwy/21mpg city. Both turbocharged engines are quite economical, thanks to direct injection and the stop/start feature.
The Bottom Line
The mighty engine and sporty handling turn it into a fun car to drive, even if you’re just trying to get some groceries at the store.
This model is all about utility and performance.
The team behind this model did a great job of making it as flexible and versatile as possible.
If not for the outdated design and slightly compromised ride quality, I’d be recommending the latest Escape to every crossover SUV fan on the planet.
Still, the car holds its own against the strongest rivals in the segment – Honda’s CR-V and Toyota’s RAV4.
Watch this Ford Escape 2019 video review: