Advertisement

Why ads?
Popular at KBB.com
  • 10 Best Hybrid Cars Under $30,000
  • The 40 MPG Cars of 2014
  • 10 Best Sedans Under $25,000
  • Class of 2015: New Vehicles Ready to Roll
Go

2008 Ford Escape

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Ford Escape Review

By

It's easy to confuse the sleek shapes and wedge-like profiles that dominate today's compact SUV crop. The 2008 Ford Escape, however, displays the same boxy, bold and rugged look that defines Ford's Explorer and Expedition SUVs. With over a million units sold, the Escape has proven itself to be an appealing vehicle and, with a host of interior refinements as well as more standard equipment and a quieter, more upscale cabin, the 2008 model looks to continue to rack up sales.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for traditional SUV features, such as high ground clearance and a high seating position, but you want it in a smaller, more fuel-efficient package, the 2008 Ford Escape makes a good choice.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The Escape's ride and handling are not as precise as many crossover utility vehicles, and its four-cylinder engine lags behind the Honda CR-V and Nissan Rogue in horsepower and torque.

What's New for 2008

Despite its new look, the 2008 Ford Escape's chassis, engines and transmissions are, for the most part, carry-overs from the previous model. What is new are the redesigned exterior and interior components, which include seat fabric made from 100-percent recycled material, a new dash backlit in "Ice Blue" lighting and standard AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control (RSC).

Driving the Escape

Driving Impressions The 2008 Escape gained a bit of weight compared to the 2007 model, but unfortunately didn't get any extra power to compensate for the extra padding. As a result, acceleration...

is underwhelming, even with the V6 model. Handling is best described as respectable, but not as tight or confident as experienced in more car-like utility vehicles, such as the Honda CR-V or Nissan Rouge. A new electric-assist power steering system delivers good steering response and eliminates the need for a belt-driven pump, which draws power from the engine.

Navigation System
Easy to use and loaded with helpful features, the Escape's on-board navigation unit can hunt down hotels, coffee kiosks and out-of-the-way gas stations in seconds.

Center Console Storage Space
The revised center console features a storage compartment large enough to hide a laptop computer, a rubber-lined storage tray to keep electronic devices from sliding around and an optional 110-volt power outlet.

2008 Ford Escape Details
2008 Ford Escape photo Interior

The 2008 Ford Escape's interior gets a major overhaul, with better quality plastics, "Ice Blue" dash lighting and a new "top-of-dash" information center. Ford has repositioned the parking brake lever to the driver's-side footwell, creating a new center console storage space large enough to accept a laptop computer. A thicker headliner and carpeting, as well as laminated side glass, help quiet the interior, and the Escape's rear seat remains one of the roomiest in this class. Ford's standard Safety Canopy includes side-curtain airbags that deploy in the event of a side impact or impending rollover situation.

Exterior
2008 Ford Escape photo

The 2008 Escape shares a strong family resemblance with Ford's other truck and SUV models, giving it a rugged appearance worthy of a quasi-off-road warrior. The Escape's small dimensions make it easy to park and maneuver, while the large side-glass panels permit a nearly unobstructed view for both driver and passengers. Unlike more stylized crossovers, the Escape's squared-off roof line creates a tall hatch opening that permits maximum cargo cramming. Bling junkies can opt for the Limited's Chrome Package, which adds reflective trim to the grille, rear hatch and roof rails.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The most basic Escape is powered through its front wheels by a 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine with a five-speed manual transmission. Creature comforts include rear defroster, power mirrors, power windows, power door locks, air conditioning, remote keyless entry, 60/40 split-folding rear seats and a four-speaker CD player with auxiliary audio input jack. Standard safety features include traction control, stability control, front seat side-mounted airbags, side-curtain airbags and anti-lock brakes (ABS).

Optional Equipment

Options vary by trim and include a 3.0-liter V6 engine, four-wheel drive, 320-watt Audiophile sound system, GPS navigation, 17-inch chrome wheels, six-way power driver's seat, leather seats, heated front seats, 110-volt power outlet, power moonroof, fog lamps, keyless entry pad and the Reverse Sensing System.

Under the Hood

The base 2.3-liter four-cylinder isn't much on power, but it does return impressive fuel economy figures, especially when driven at highway speeds. If you desire a manual transmission, this is your only engine choice. The larger 3.0-liter V6 is a carry-over from last year. It provides better acceleration and the ability to tow up to 3,500 pounds, but its fuel economy ratings are in the high teens and low twenties.

2.3-liter in-line four
153 horsepower @ 5800 rpm
152 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/28 (FWD, manual), 20/26 (FWD, automatic), 19/24 (4WD, automatic)

3.0-liter V6
200 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
193 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4850 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/24 (FWD), 17/22 (4WD)

2.3-liter, four-cylinder with electric motor
133 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
124 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 34/30 (2WD), 29/27 (AWD)

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Ford Escape Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 516 Ratings for the 2008 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    8.4/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    8.6/10

Love This Vehicle

By on Friday, December 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Good mileage; great room; sits high"

Cons: "None for me."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I purchased this vehicle in February 2011 and have been very happy with it since the first day. I like the way it looks; the boxy look. The interior works well for me. I have a dog so I often put the back seats up and down, and it's a quick and easy task to do. The seats are very comfortable, at least the driver's seat. I've never ridden in any other seat. Overall, it is a more sound vehicle when compared to other SUVs of the same size. The doors are heavier and close with a good sound, including the cargo door. The vehicle is a 4 cylinder and it has a lot of power. There is no problem accelerating when passing as long as one isn't afraid to give it gas. I get 28+ MPG on the open highway and 25+ in the city/suburb. It is almost 4 years old and has 48,000 miles on it. I intend to keep it at least another 4 years and another 48,000 miles."

2 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Nice 4WD

By on Sunday, December 14, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "good room inside for car seats, drives nice"

Cons: "rides a little stiff."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"we bought this car used, for the 4WD ,as my other 2 are very low slung and deep snow would tear off some of the air deflectors, and more room for two car seats for my grand kids. It is a very good car, but the mileage isn't as good as the two PHEVs that I have. it does get around 18-22 MPG, but that is far away from the others. 48,000 miles and no problems. good car. I have owned 4 other Escapes."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Outstanding Buy

By on Wednesday, December 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 92,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Great price"

Cons: "Cloth interior vs leather"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This automobile comes with four snow tires. It has just had a brand new transmission installed with warranty. Most of the miles are highway miles. It has been maintained on a "map" every 5,ooo miles. No children, strictly a company car until I purchased for myself. Never been involved in an accident. In very good shape."

11 people out of 15 found this review helpful

Basic Comforts

By on Friday, November 07, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 125,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Great car for driving local or long distance!!"

Cons: "Interior is not comfy & it's noisy!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 4

"My 2002 Escape was totaled in an accident. I considered other vehicles, but figured I really loved my "Old-scape". My 2009 "New-scape" is NOT nearly as much fun or have as much character. Much of the "updated" interior design features were far less satisfactory, leaving me longing for the "Old-scape". First of all, I prefer a manual transmissions, which meant a more basic car and upgrades were not an option due to this preference. 1) Emergency Brake Location (Thumbs Down) -I didn't like that the E-Brake is a "step on" rather than center pull, where you can control the "uphill" driving. 2) Handles (Thumbs Down) - They removed all but ONE "hang on" handle. 3) Nooks & Tucks. Not a lot of "storage" space for all the little things that I liked to tuck away, like my phone, chargers, note pads, glasses, etc.. 4) The vinyl covering of the center box (Thumbs Down!!!) There is nothing so uncomfortable and "wears you out" as quickly as the 'grip' covering they have on the handles and center seat/box. Just "NO"! Good Stuff: It's been a good little car overall. It has hauled a 10x20 trailer up outta the LA region's I5 Grapevine without issues. We've put over 8K miles on it in one trip across country! It's an energizer... just keeps going, and going, and going. Easy to drive, turns and parking are just like driving a car."

16 people out of 21 found this review helpful

Very Versatile

By on Thursday, November 06, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 86,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "cavernous! reliable surefooted"

Cons: "wish it had power recline and power passenger seat"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"AWD, 4 cylinder, Limited with every option except NAV. I can squeeze 28 mpg on a road trip, load it up and go! Great little SUV the 4 banger is a little noisy but not bad, The SYNC has some quirks but you just have to reprogram every six months or so."

8 people out of 14 found this review helpful

Nice, simple vehicle

By on Tuesday, October 28, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Space, efficiency, looks, very economical."

Cons: "Weak engine."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I love my Escape. It sits up a little higher than cars, there's plenty of room. Very flexible seating for fitting in large or oddly shaped items. Some complain about the cheap plastic materials on the doors and dash, but I like it. It's durable and cleans easily, something you want in a vehicle like this, especially if you carry dogs with you. The 4 cylinder engine works pretty hard, the 6 is the clear winner for performance, without much reduction in gas mileage. But my unit works just fine for me. It looks great, doesn't cost a lot of money to fill. Reliable and not pretentious."

9 people out of 16 found this review helpful

Share this page

Advertisement

Why ads?
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?