Back in February/March I had the opportunity to use a 2013 Ford Escape Titanium edition for a few weeks. 1 It came at the perfect time to test out a 4WD based SUV since we got a bunch of snow and then ice and then more snow. And based on it's handling of our snowy weather alone, I'd have loved to drive the Escape all winter.
[caption id="attachment_21325" align="aligncenter" width="600"] 2013 Ford Escape Titanium Edition[/caption]
One of the big features of the Escape that Ford is promoting is the foot-activated liftgate. Or in other words, perform a kicking motion and the back gate will open as demonstrated by my son in this video:
It works as advertised and 9 times out of 10 it saves you fumbling for your keys or the FOB to open the rear gate. It's the 1 time out of 10 when you're kicking the back of your vehicle in the middle of a Co-Op parking lot that makes you reluctant to use it. But carrying a load of guitar gear out to the Escape in snow drifts it was certainly nice to not have to put the gear down in order to load it in the car.
With three kids, all in varying degrees of car-seatedness (that's probably not a word) we weren't sure if we'd be able to fit the whole family in the Ford Escape. But aside from being a bit awkward for our son in the middle booster seat to get his seat belt hooked in, it actually worked quite well. You'll have to take my word for it when it comes to photographic evidence of all our kids in the car seats. The last thing you're worried about when you've finally got the all kids in the car is taking a photo of them. JUST DRIVE ALREADY!
I wouldn't want to do it multiple times a day, every day, but if you were headed out on a longer trip it was certainly comfortable for the kids. And it made it much easier for us to reach back and hand the kids games, snacks or deal with a disagreement. 2
I'll ditto Jordon Cooper's review where he talks about all the sensors on the vehicle and one issue with them:
The collision avoidance sensors get dirty and covered with grime and ice in Saskatoon’s winters. When that happens, they beep. A lot. Kind of like this. BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP.
The sensors and rear back up camera are great over all though. Having indicators of vehicles and possible pedestrians all around your Escape is a great use of technology in a way that's sure to save lives - just so long as they figure out a way to build in mini-wipers so they can handle the spring melt.
You should also read Jordon's review for tips on getting the Ford MyTouch sync working if it drops your phone - so long as a new Pope is being chosen you should be fine.3 Suffice to say, the majority of the time the Ford MyTouch worked great and I loved being able to just hit play on a podcast or some music and have it play through the car's great sounding speakers without having to fiddle with cables.
At our current stage of life with 3 younger kids, it probably wouldn't be a viable, "only vehicle" option. I'd certainly look at it for a second vehicle - something to have fun driving around in when we could leave the minivan at home or I was going to work.
My thanks to Ford Canada for the opportunity to have some real world experience with the 2013 Ford Escape. It's awesome that they give people who aren't official car testers an opportunity to use their vehicles in real world situations - and equally surprising to me that no other vehicle manufacturer has done the same.
I had previously tested out a Ford Flex as part of Ford's program to loan out vehicles to regular, non-car nerd folks like myself to blog, tweet and generally review. We're free to talk about the good or bad of the vehicles we're loaned. ↩
Our kids don't have fights. They have disagreements. Right? ↩
All kidding aside, I didn't ever take Ford up on the phone call presented on the display when it couldn't find my phone for tech support. Since it wasn't my vehicle I didn't feel it was my place to waste their time. ↩