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What's with the new Escape?

PunkChild

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When did Ford introduce the Escape? I think it's a good idea, but does anyone else think it looks like a Xterra? Sorry for all the questions but, any reason Ford didn't call it the Excape? Seeing how the have the Explorer, the Expedition and the Excursion why wouldn't they continue the "Ex" theme? I guess I'm just confused!
 


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GJarrett

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"Xterra-scape"

In Moab I carried one of the Ford engineers in my vehicle while they were visiting with us and heard bits and pieces of some of the Escape background/history.

Yes, an Escape looks like an Xterra, but according to Ford, you've got it backwards. An Xterra looks like an Escape. It seems that Ford has been exploring the concept of the Escape for quite awhile, Nissan got spyphotos and specs on the project, then beat Ford to the punch with their own model and hit a home run.

I don't pretend to know how accurately that describes what really happened, but that's what the Ford engineer said to me.
 




Ray Lobato

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They must have taken spy pic's of the Sport Track too because Nissan has one that looks like the Sport Track and also came out before Ford brought out the Sport Track. ;)
 




Kris Guilbeaux

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Just some thing else of the Escape. I read there is going to be a mazda rebadge of the escape called the Tribute. It said mazda was upset with the discontinueasion(sp) of the Navajo had been tring to get ford to co-design a small SUV and this is how the escape came to be.
 








Peter Weber

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The LA Times today ran an article about the Escape and the Tribute.
Apparently the Tribute (Mazda) has a little crisper suspension, tighter steering, more aggressive (later) shift points and standard 16" wheels. The Escape looks and feels more like a truck, which is what Ford intended. Base engine is a 2 liter 4 cylinder making 140 hp with a 200hp V6 available.
Both are available in 2wheel front drive or all-wheel control trac with automatic AWD sending up to 50% of the power to the rear wheels or manual lock into to 50/50 traction split between front and rear.
Similarly equipped Escapes and Tributes are supposed to priced comparable, starting at $18,160 topping out at $25,500.
 




2mrchio

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No 4x4 option? Either 2WD or AWD?
 




Peter Weber

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2mrchio:
They call it 2nd generation control track.
all-wheel control trac with automatic AWD sending up to 50% of the power to the rear wheels or manual lock into to 50/50 traction split between front and rear.
Looks to me like a combination of control track with manual 4x4 lock and AWD.
 




Tom Wilk

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Sounds pretty much like our control-trac except that the front wheels are the primary drive wheels instead of the rear. It doesn't sound like it has a low range though.

That reminds me, I guess I'd better start writing, right Ray? :D
 




2mrchio

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THAT's what I was trying to figure out, Tom! Smells like no 4x4-Lo...
 




TPLYNCH

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Not Yet

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Nope

No low range in the transfer case, unibody (read: CAR) construction, no manual tranny with the V6, and still almost as big as my 78 Bronco (in terms of wheelbase and overall length) = NO SALE HERE.

It's too bad...Ford could have come out with a capable small 'wheeler to compete with the Wrangler, but they built another station wagon instead. Sometimes it's hard to bleed Ford Blue.
 




The Godfather

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I'd definatly buy an Escape if it had the 5 speed. It's got the same 3.0 that my old man has in his Taurus and that thing is really powerful. As Ford usually does, they don't put a 5 speed on anything but 4 bangers. The build quality of all Fords has taken a turn for the worse, although the Escape LOOKS like it's built ok. Ford keeps making my old 93 with 125k mi look better and better. Ford already lost my parents as customers (11 out of their last 12 cars were Ford), there next car is between a Benz and a Lexus due to the problems with the Taurus, and for what you get, Fords are overpriced...if Ford keeps it up I'm going to join them.

GJarret- I heard the same thing, Nissan stole the design from Ford, as with most Japanese companies. They can't seem to come up with ideas themselves so they steal an American design, improve on it slightly and sell it cheaper. I would love to see the Escape stick it to the XTerra in sales for that reason.
 




Stephen

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I had a feeling it was going to be what I call a "CuteUte" oh well, it sells I guess.

Godfather, If they want quality tell them to get a Lexus or an Audi. The build quality and material grade on Benzes has also taken a turn for the worse.
 




Bill (NY)

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Escape

I saw the Escape at the Ny auto show -- if the production model looks like this one it will be very successful. It had attracted much more attention at the show then any of the other SUV's!
 




rustytr

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I just saw the escape on car and driver tv sunday. I think it looks good and a 200hp V6 doesn't sound bad either. But like they say it's no rock crawler but for most that doesn't come into play. All in all it seemed pretty capable for most "semi-offroad" adventures.
 




Jeff

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Gentleman,

Last week while at a client meeting in Orange, CA I parked my '97 XLT in the far corner of a parking lot (no dings yet) and started walking across the lot. Well also parked out in the middle of nowhere was an Escape. From what I understand, it isn't supposed to be on the market until September and I had to spend a few minutes checking it out.

It didn't have a front plate and the back plate was a manufacurer's from Michigan. It was a muted metallic blue with the 3.0 V6 and AWD along with a disc/drum setup. It had a sunroof, leather and overall looked rather comfy and also semi 4WD capable if you only went skiing or to the mall. I believe that it was the top of the line model because of the options that I saw on interior.

The rear cargo area didn't look like it held that much but if the rear seats were folded, it could hold two mountain bikes.

I don't know if this was a vehicle given to a magazine for testing or what but it definately caught my eye. It looks very differant than a CRV or RAV-4 and also a lot more robust. I think Ford will sell alot of them.

I waited for the owner for a couple of minutes both before and after my meeting without luck.
 




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