The market for Crossover Utility Vehicles, or CUVs, has grown by leaps and bounds as consumers look for something that can both handle their active weekend lifestyle, as well as the stop-and-start traffic and congestion associated with city life. People want fuel efficient vehicles that don’t skimp on power, or capability — and the Ford Escape is one CUV that checks off all the boxes. The Escape, the 2nd best selling vehicle in the Ford lineup, is a potent blend of power and handling, towing capabilities, and more. Of course, in such a large market there are bound to be competitors. Read on as we compare the Ford Escape to one such competitor, the Toyota RAV4.
Exterior & Interior
Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but this one is no competition. The Escape has smooth, flowing aerodynamic lines while still retaining the muscular appeal of an SUV, whereas the RAV4’s sloping line from the along the front causes confusion — is it a CUV or a wagon? You’ll have to excuse us for editorializing a bit, so why don’t we look at the features? Toyota will be quick to point out the driver’s side turn signal indicator in the mirror, while ignoring the fact that the Escape has LED daytime running lights. The Escape’s available foot-activated power liftgate will come in handy when your hands are full — a feature the RAV4 neglects (both foot-activated, and power in general). Both the Escape and the RAV4 play it cool with air conditioning, but the Escape plays it much cooler with its dual zone front air condition system. And while both have an external digital memory control system, any users of Ford’s SYNC will know the benefits of Ford’s hands-free, voice activated control over music, navigation, and more. A SecuriCode keypad in addition to remote engine start on your SYNC connected keyfob, has the Escape edging the RAV4 when it comes to entering and pre-heating your vehicle, and an 8-way direction control powered driver seat beats out the RAV4’s 6-way manual seat every time.
Features & Capability
Good looks and a cozy interior are great, but if you’re looking for a CUV you want performance, which the Escape has in spades. The top choice of three available engines has the Escape creating 245 horses with 275 lb-ft. of torque, making it much more powerful than the single engine choice for the RAV4, which creates 176 horses via 172 lb-ft. of torque. Not to mention the gulf in towing capacities. The RAV4’s max towing capacity of 1,500 lbs is great for when you have a single personal watercraft (or want to strap a canoe on top like in the photo), but that’s about it. The Escape, however, has a best in class towing ability of 3,500 lbs, i.e. a couple of personal watercrafts, lightweight travel trailers, or utility trailers (with a couple of snowmobiles for good measure). Add in performance features like an intercooled turbo compressor, and a SelectShift shift controller, and you’ve got a stronger, smoother performer, closer to an SUV than not. Additional features like Park Assist and Intelligent AWD, not available on the RAV4, cement the Ford Escape as the most competent CUV on the market.
An IHS Markit study says that Ford has the “highest brand loyalty” of any automotive brand. That may have something to do with the fact that over 96% of Ford Escapes sold in the last ten years are still on the road today. It is, without a doubt, related to the strong performance of Fords like the Escape, against competition like the RAV4. If you have any questions about the Escape, or just want to take one for a test drive, contact us today and you can learn first hand how exceptional a vehicle the Escape is.