The great Escape
speaker CD sound. The XLT got cruise, cargo net, driver’s seat height adjustment, vanity mirror, engine immobiliser, alarm and fog lamps.
On top of the range the Limited had leather trim, leather-wrapped steering wheel and electric sunroof. brakes and four-wheel drive, the Escape has a good, active safety package. Early XLS models didn’t have anti-skid brakes, but all models had the important safety system after the 2003 ZA update.
All models had dual front airbags. The Limited also had side airbags for added protection.
The rear seat centre passenger had to make do with a lap belt only. trips are no strain on either driver or passengers.
Their only complaints are that the fuel consumption is high, there’s a slight wind noise from the front driver’s side, the cruise control is not very refined, and the factory underbody treatment was not adequate and they had to have it done themselves.
Darren Greenwood has had his Escape XLT five years and has done 70,000 trouble-free kilometres.
He was looking for a small to midsized wagon when he bought it, but the Escape seemed to be well priced given the equipment it came with.
He doesn’t agree with the criticism he’s heard of the column shift and the centre armrest, saying you get used to it and the centre armrest is quite large and useful for storage.
The V6, he says, has plenty of punch and averages about 10 L/100km. It’s done a bit of off roading and been to the snow a few times, though there’s been no serious bush bashing.
The handling isn’t up to car standard, but if it’s not pushed too hard you don’t notice it.