Ford Escape 2023 Review: ST-Line Long Term | Part 2 – Comfortable and fun to ride, but thirsty | Rare Techy
Two months. That’s how long I’ve been testing the Ford Escape ST-Line. And like any relationship, this is the time to know exactly if they are the perfect fit for you or not.
Okay, that’s not always the case. I’ve had many relationships where I didn’t see the warning signs. Sharing again.
Anyway, back to the car. Could my family live happily with the Escape ST-Line? Yes, we could. Simply.
Read the second part of this long-term review
Simply. Like it’s big enough for me and my wife and our two kids.
The interior is roomy enough for those two car seats – one of which is rear-facing and fits behind my driving position… just. And the boot fits in the pram and the supermarket… easy.
And another “just” has to do with fuel costs, because at current fuel prices the costs are too high.
We drove 665.4km (if I had known I was so close to 666km I would have driven another 600m around the block) and used 102.3 litres, which translates to 15.4L/100km. It’s high, but not a bug. Last month, the Escape used 14.9L/100km.
Ford says the Escape ST-Line AWD on test has an official fuel consumption figure of 8.6L/100km, but that’s based on a mix of open and city roads.
If you think my results are too high, the Mitsubishi Outlander I tested at length also used about 15L/100km on the same roads and did the same things.
The high fuel consumption is quite easy to explain. I mainly make short city trips that use a lot of fuel. Also, the car is loaded with a stroller, car seats and a mountain of equipment accompanying the children, so the car uses more fuel.
All-wheel drive SUVs tend to be thirstier than their FWD SUV counterparts because they are heavier and occasionally drive to all four wheels.
This kind of use requires a lot of fuel and with a full tank (57 liters) it can be expensive and costs about $125 if you use 95 RON premium unleaded.
The maximum distance I got out of the tank with this kind of driving is 365.6 km this month. Then after filling up I drove another 299.8 km almost empty.
The plug-in hybrid version of the Escape ST-Line is much more fuel efficient than my petrol all-wheel drive ST-Line, but it’s also $11,950 more at $54,440 before on-road costs.
Those gas bills aren’t high enough to justify spending $12,000 on a hybrid, but they might make us consider the $43,450 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid instead.
At the same time, if you only focused on the not-so-good aspects of the Escape ST-Line, you’d miss what it does so well, and in many cases better, than its rivals.
The Escape ST-Line’s best feature (besides its good looks) is how it drives. It’s not just a car to drive, with light handling, a good brake pedal and excellent visibility. It’s a sporty SUV with excellent handling and agility for something in this segment. Driving comfort is also exceptional.
These fun and easy-to-manage factors make a huge difference on a day-to-day basis. So after two months, I’m still looking forward to driving the Escape, even if it’s just the school run.
I’ve tested just about every midsize SUV on the market over the past 12 months, from the Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester to the Mitsubishi Outlander, and I think the Ford Escape is the best to drive.
Interior comfort is another great feature, with padded surfaces and stitching throughout adding to the premium look and feel.
The cabin equipment is also exceptionally good. Sure, the 8.0-inch screen is small, but the speed at which this media system processes tasks is impressive.
It’s Ford’s SYNC 3 media system, and phone calls, music streaming and navigation are all handled quickly. I just don’t like how the A/C volume setting and blower speed take over the entire screen when you adjust them.
Long-term tests reveal truths that aren’t immediately apparent during a shorter test, and I discovered that the trunk lid isn’t as smart as I first thought.
It’s made from a flexible mesh material designed to stretch over your luggage, which it does, but the way it’s attached to the tailgate with cables means our pram wheels keep getting tangled in them.
I ended up removing the trunk cover completely. Problem solved.
So after two months, I can confidently say that the Escape ST-Line is a keeper, even if it’s thirsty and not too roomy.
Acquired by: July 2022
Distance covered this month: 665.4 km
Odometer: 2673.6 km
Average fuel consumption this month: 15.4L/100km (measured at the pump)