Although the Escape was freshened for 2008, still more changes came for 2009. Both the four-cylinder and V6 engines received more power. Performance is adequate with the new 2.5-liter, 171-hp four-cylinder engine, which also returns 21 mpg overall. Stability control became standard across the line. Long stopping distances, a major shortcoming of the 2008 Escape we tested, were improved.
There are 5 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"It responds we'll on hills and flat land"

Anonymous, CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Reliable - roomy"

Anonymous, ON (2008 Ford Escape)

"Acceleration is immediate which may be due to front wheel drive. Very responsive to driving, which makes handling very easy."

Robert K., MO (2008 Ford Escape)

"good handing and ride, but seats are not the most comfortable."

Ann M., WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"Acceleration to enter traffic pattern was weak."

Paul P., TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"it still handles very well. still have problem with alignments on all 4 wheels."

Michele G., SC (2008 Ford Escape)

"No acceleration. Acceleration peddle sometimes sticks. No turning radius. Feel like you are driving a large lawn mower."

Anonymous, TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"Quick response, holds road"

Richard E., PA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very underpowered 2.3l and needed another gear in the transmission which was added in the later years"

Tim C., AZ (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very stable and easy To maneuver ."

Anonymous, UT (2008 Ford Escape)

"GOOD: it was cheap to obtain. BADS: Significant noise and vibration harshness from engine during cold starts. Acceleration: it is easy to overpower the traction limits of the front tires in a straight-line acceleration and VERY easy during cornering. Wet pavement makes it EXTREMELY EASY to overpower the front tire traction limits. Braking: it is easy to make the tires skid, and stops feel long. Too much weight up front makes the car feel like it is diving forward during braking. Routine cornering feels like there is excessive front end body lean. I have an inline 4 cylinder with under 68,000 Kms."

Wilson M., BC (2008 Ford Escape)

"Has great handling, good pickup, good acceleration, comfortable ride and lots of room. I can't complain about anything. I bought it used and still enjoy it very much. The interior is clean, looks very sharp, and fun. I would recommend t his vehicle to everyone."

Bill B., FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"Excellent handling"

Anonymous, NC (2008 Ford Escape)

"I like that it is very easy to handle and accelerates to my satisfaction."

Anonymous, WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very peppy and responsive to corners an acceleration, but is quite stiff in the suspension which results in a fairly rough ride."

Chris M., MI (2008 Ford Escape)

"it \\It is a fun car to drive. Plenty of pep and quite confortable."

Don N., WI (2008 Ford Escape)


Anonymous, IL (2008 Ford Escape)

"Excellent traction in icy conditions"

Anonymous, CT (2008 Ford Escape)

"Handles great and good acceleration for a 4 cyl. I might opt for a 6 cyl but don't want to give up the great mpg."

Anonymous, FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"the escape has great passing ability"

MARCY E., MI (2008 Ford Escape)

"It handles really well with really good turning radius."

Anonymous, HI (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very good in snow"

THOMAS L., NY (2008 Ford Escape)

"Goes anywhere reliabily - snow, rain, hills - up and down, curves, freeway, emergency stops / maneuvers."

ARTHUR F., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very fun to drive - quick and excellent handling !"

BRADLEY L., KS (2008 Ford Escape)

"the acceleration is flakey many times you have to really slam on gas to get it to react on even small inclines .. NOT as comfortable as my previous 1999 subaru forester which was manual .. not as confident with escape in snow. was happy last winter was mild. IF I was to get another escape, they had better fix its handling in snow/ice and acceleration in highway and even slight inclines."

Anonymous, NY (2008 Ford Escape)

"Bad; Have had several unintended accelerations occur while braking when my foot was removed from the accelerator and on the brake. Once was on a snowy/icy surface while cornering. Dealer was unable to find or repeat the condition."

JIM-JULIE C., OH (2008 Ford Escape)

"Slower acceleration with noticeable lag time to full acceleration. Handling is fine/average."

BRANDON B., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"This model came out before "ecoboost" so I opted for a 6 cylinder model. I did sacrifice some gas milage for this but it is worth it to gain the added power and acceleration. There is no way I would consider towing anything with the 4 cylinder model but I feel reasonably confident towing a small trailer with the added power a 6 cylinder engine provides."

KIMBERLY B., WI (2008 Ford Escape)


Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"I'm 6'4" : Excellent comfort and ride. Also, the 4-speed transmission shifts flawlessly unlike our 2012 with the 6-speed that revs over 3.000 rpm on an easy acceleration."

Dean R., MA (2008 Ford Escape)

"acceleration is really good. Seats have stained even from water, and are uncomfortable and hard. Terrible on long drives"

Michele G., SC (2008 Ford Escape)

"You sit upright, like in a comfortable chair. Cars with lower seats and bucket seats, where your hips are flexed are uncomfortable. I also use a molded pillow behind my back because the seat is too deep."

Anonymous, OR (2008 Ford Escape)

"My passengers are always commenting on how quiet my car is and how comfortable they are."

Emily J., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Somewhat noisy ride. Cooling system is inadequate in stop & go traffic. Dash around radio did not hold up well."

Paul P., TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"The seats have seat warmers which help my aching back. The driver's seat has been very comfortable for me on long road trips: 300+ miles. It fits me well. I am not happy with the noise level. I have had the car for 11 years and it is starting to ride a little rougher: slower on take off and a bit more bouncy."

Tammy B., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"My 2008 Ford Escape Limited edition vehicle has a V6 @ 200HP. I love it. The ride is still comfortable, smooth, quiet, and has some power. It has a leather interior, which I have never had, and I love how comfortable it is. Just an all around really good ride, very enjoyable to drive."

Bill B., FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"This SUV had a very quiet comfortable ride and comfortable seats for the first 7 years. The past 3 years have seen a deterioration in ride (you feels all the bumps) and the lumbar support in the seats is not as good. The door seals are not keeping out road noise any longer."

Christopher H., KY (2008 Ford Escape)

"For long rides, front seats are not very comfortable, requiring additional padding."

David S., AZ (2008 Ford Escape)

"Fairly comfortable. A little bit crampoed entering or exiting if you have some mobiity challenges due to a deep foot well and higher door sill."

Anonymous, AB (2008 Ford Escape)

"Tires are noisy."

Anonymous, WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"I like seats very much, driver's seat supports by back well Don't like the road noice and it doesn't ride as smooth as it could."

Anonymous, WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"The leather seats are sturdy and comfortable for a small SUV. The cabin isn't very quiet, but has stood the test of time for an over ten year old vehicle."

Richard K., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"The seats are very comfortable, it is not noisy, and the ride is excellent."

Anonymous, MO (2008 Ford Escape)

"Seats are mostly comfortable but moving up ur down also moves seat forward or back. Low noise and quiet ride."

David M., VA (2008 Ford Escape)

"hard to get into. legroom is tight, pretty much I let my daughter use it all the time"

Kevin L., IL (2008 Ford Escape)

"Noise levels are low for an SUV. Seats are very comfortable and back seat leg room is ample."

Richard K., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Very uncomfortable ...hard as a rock...strange shape for any comfort."

Anonymous, TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"When driving on the highway the noise level is too loud, nice clear view outside though. Air conditioner cools quickly."

Anonymous, TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"I like the comfort of the ride and I love the AC quickness. It cools down instantly."

Anonymous, OK (2008 Ford Escape)

"There is more road noise than I would have liked and the body appears to be made of light material like plastic and makes the safe feeling of it seem unsafe."

Anonymous, AB (2008 Ford Escape)

"I have taken many road trips, hundreds of miles each time, and have always been comfortable. And I have back issues. The car fits me well. However, not long after I purchased it, it began to make rattling noises. The body is not built for a quiet ride. That would be the only reason, at this time, that I would consider trading it in."

TAMMY B., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"The seats are adequate - not enjoyable - for comfort. The are fine for short trips, but long trips wear you out. The upholstery is durable but ugly and show everything - dust, dirt, stains."

Anonymous, TX (2008 Ford Escape)

"Noisy when driving at high speed (above 55 MPH)"

Anonymous, CO (2008 Ford Escape)

"Lots of tire noise. Ride is ok, a little on the firm side compared to CR-V. Seats are comfy but stain easily (with just water!), that is definitely the biggest knock against this car. HVAC works very well and cools/heats the cabin quickly."

BRENT L., BC (2008 Ford Escape)

"Driver seat power adjustment is difficult, to little space between the seat and door. Road noise is a bit loud. Comment control is good. Handling is good."

Anonymous, WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"relatively noisy cabin and it picks up a lot of road noise. It also has an annoying whistle or whine in the hybrid system."

JAMES H., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Cabin very noisy"

JAN B., WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"Seats uncomfortable"

VINCENT L., NE (2008 Ford Escape)

"Seat comfort leaves much to be desired."

Anonymous, AR (2008 Ford Escape)

"Uncomfortable driving position (too little distance between steering wheel and pedals, and awkward slant to acceleration pedal)."

Anonymous, VA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Seats are not fully electric - seems chincy. Road noise is main disappointment - since like it for long road trips. Heater damper control has failed twice - an unlivable failure."

ARTHUR F., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Leather seats are hard."

Anonymous, VA (2008 Ford Escape)

"would preferred more comfy seats, feel fatigue mostly from seat"

Anonymous, VA (2008 Ford Escape)


Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"I enjoy dring it. Fills my needs."

Anonymous, CO (2008 Ford Escape)

"Over the 11 years I have owned my car I have not incurred excessive repair costs. It is still running well at 140,000+ miles."

Tammy B., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"It is inexpensive and provides extra space for “stuff‿."

Signo U., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"dependable basic 4wd transportation."

Ann M., WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"I have had very little problems with this car that weren't able to be fixed very easily and inexpensively. The value has been good."

Richard K., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"While the hybrid doesn't give us the acceleration that we'd like, the fact that there is a lot of weight in the rear end made it handle great in snow/rain. We've only had one issue (hybrid battery water pump) and that was replaced under warranty"

Anonymous, CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"This car still drives well, after being in hot climates and in cold weather. I really haven't had to do too much work to it."

Graham W., AA (2008 Ford Escape)

"This SUV has not given me any trouble since day one (and, I am the original owner). The only costs incurred are standard maintenance (oil, filter, tires, etc.)."

Anonymous, VA (2008 Ford Escape)

"very reliable, has provided good service"

Anonymous, MO (2008 Ford Escape)

"Great gas mileage. It is a hybrid gas/electric. Too bad Ford stopped making them. I would like a plugin hybrid version of the Escape. One disappointment with the Escape is that I can't get an update DVD based navigation system."

David S., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"total reliability. have only changed battery & tires in 9 years."

Donald C., NJ (2008 Ford Escape)

"Lot of car for the money. Great gas mileage (I have the 4 cyl). Lots of room and very versatile."

Anonymous, FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"We bought this car new in May 2007 and it has been a great car and is still going strong at 223000 miles. We definitely gotten our moneys worth. Repair costs have been reasonable."

Anonymous, CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"has stood up well for nearly 300,000 kilometres with few repairs - original purchase price was relatively low"

JAMES P., ON (2008 Ford Escape)

"I needed a car because I totaled my previous one in the snow. Being a single woman, I feel that I paid too much and now owe more than the car is worth. Was I taken advantage of or was I just in a hurry and ill-informed... I don't know."

Anonymous, WI (2008 Ford Escape)

"hybrid works great and saves gas and was the only mid-size SUV Hybrid. why oh why did they stop making the Escape Hybrid?"

Anonymous, CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Each time I go in for basic service seems I need major routine work done. I.e. Need transmission flushed, cooling system needs flushing. On and on"

Anonymous, CT (2008 Ford Escape)

"I bought this from a friend in the used car biz, so I got an excellent deal."

RON T., ON (2008 Ford Escape)

"I haven't had to spend a dime on maintenance yet!"

Anonymous, GA (2008 Ford Escape)

"After 8 years the car (a Limited, with chrome wheels and accents, and leather seating,etc.) still stands in place next to newer cars. The V-6 engine gives plenty of pep with 19 avg. MPG."

RICHARD D., FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"This vehicle has style comparable to the current models. Radio has excellent fidelity front and rear. Handles CD's well. Exterior paint has proven to be very durable. AC is excellent for AZ desert climate even when temps exceed 105 Very comfortable seating and adjustment range. No problems with power seats. Good load capacity when rear seats are folded down."

JAMES J., IL (2008 Ford Escape)

"Don't feel the value for the hybrid was worth it, considering Gas prices dropping and expense of repairing hybrid components"

GEORGE H., NJ (2008 Ford Escape)

"Great gas Mileage in town"

Anonymous, IL (2008 Ford Escape)

"Dealer sold me a "Ford certified used car" which had been in a serious accident and had a lot of damage not visible to the eye. I paid top dollar thinking I was getting a like-new vehicle"

Anonymous, VA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Solid and reliable. Does the job with no drama. Easy to park, reasonable mileage for its class."

STACY T., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"I have 228,000 miles on this vehicle now... It has been amazing! It just more than survived a very serious rear end crash that "Totalled" the other vehicle, and I drove away. I'm looking to buy another one!!!!"

MICHAEL G., MA (2008 Ford Escape)

"good mileage"

THOMAS L., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"This model lacked simple things, such as the ability to play music from your phone, which most autos do automatically now. This model requires that you use and SD card. How outdated is that!"

Anonymous, OH (2008 Ford Escape)


How it looks inside and out

What Owners Say

"The paint is peeling on the Window posts. This was a Ford factory issue that they refused to address."

Anonymous, NC (2008 Ford Escape)

"I like the boxy look."

Anonymous, HI (2008 Ford Escape)

"Like the style"

Anonymous, CT (2008 Ford Escape)


RAOUL D., AB (2008 Ford Escape)

"good utility section"

THOMAS L., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"trunk area not as large as my forrester. I do not like how the back seats are folded to get more room from back I like how the driver's seat adjusts for shorter people and seats are comfortable."

Anonymous, NY (2008 Ford Escape)

"The padding in the doors that the windows rest on is just a piece of felt. When small peddles get caught next to the windcow and the window is rolled down the pebbles scratch the window-the service person at the dealership said that that was normal and that I should expect to have to pick the little rocks out of there to avoid the problem. Also the oil gasket started leaking and required about $1,500 to get it fixed."

SHERRY W., NM (2008 Ford Escape)

"Looks like I think a small SUV should."

Anonymous, CT (2008 Ford Escape)

"I preferred the styling of the pre-2008 models over both major updates since"

THOMAS F., OH (2008 Ford Escape)

"Looks great outside. Inside uses lots of plastic, but looks fine."

BRANDON B., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"the styling is pleasant but the material is is made of feels unsafe"

Anonymous, AB (2008 Ford Escape)

"The older style is awesome. I love the look of the vehicle. Solid. The newer style sucks"

WILLIAM S., WA (2008 Ford Escape)

"Although I don't find it objectionable, the styling is fairly bland. The newer models of the Fusion are so much nicer looking."

RICHARD K., CA (2008 Ford Escape)

"The styling of this model allows for spacious cargo area, especially with the back seats down, its totally flat and roomy. Even roomy for back seat passengers legroom."

Anonymous, FL (2008 Ford Escape)

"The back seats fold down completely. Lifting the bottom seat before laying down the seat back makes all the difference. And it's perfect for getting dogs in and out of the car."

CYNTHIA B., MD (2008 Ford Escape)

"The only bad thing is the black back bumper has faded. I try to blacken it with a after market product as often as possible but I have to keep on top of it."

Anonymous, OK (2008 Ford Escape)

Would you buy this car again?

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Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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