Ford Escape 2013 (This really happened)

We bought a 2013 Ford Escape 2.0L AWD. After 3 tanks of gas, a reasonable break-in period, the vehicle did 21.9 MPG highway without A/C turned on 19.8 MPG city. The vehicle went to the dealer with 1100 miles on it with:(1) the “SYNCH” became un-responsive problem , (2) a noise in the right rear suspension, and (3) a request to find out why the MPG was no where close to the sticker MPG claimed.

The dealer reported to me the following: (1) SYNCH was rebooted because I had too many contacts in my Iphone. So now I have no contact list to call from while driving. (2) The noise was caused by a ditty kit that I keep in a zipper pouch in the rear compartment. This is not the source of the noise, since it was still there after I left the dealer. (3) The MPG was caused by my driving style. Interesting since I was driving in granny mode all the time to maximize my MPG.

When I reviewed the dealer and salesman in response to a request from Ford’s customer satisfaction department, I gave poor scores due to my poor experience with a brand new vehicle.

The salesman first called me at work to complain that my scores were motivated by personal vindictiveness and how could I rank him so poorly after he told me to provide him the highest scores possible. And since I scored him and the dealer so poorly, “NEVER” come back to the dealer for service as I was not welcome. Then he follows up with 3 emails that imparted the same theme as the telephone call. With the 3rd email telling me I needed to take responsibility for my “lack of satisfaction”.

My wife and I shopped for new cars, and we liked the Escape and were excited to be buying a Ford. I wished we had looked on the internet prior to committing to the Escape. But, we were so enamored with the return of an American automotive icon, we did not even bother. Silly me.

Here is what is galling: the MPG claims are absolute fiction. They are heavily disclaimed. But the margin of difference borders on false advertising. ( various blogs indicate my MPG is about right) I wish the government had the guts to ride herd on these claims. There is no consequence for false claims. It is all my fault, as the salesman told me I need to take responsibly for my “dis-satisfaction”. Do I really?

Bottom line, we got rid of the Escape with 1800 miles on it. Took a bath on the resale. But I figured with outright hostility from the dealer, and a vehicle that was poor on MPG, crummy driving range, and emerging problems ( I did not write about the whole vehicle “shimmy” while driving 45 mph on newly paved road. That is probably my fault for selecting that road.) We just wanted out of a bad trade before it got worse. Ok, I am done. Thank you for your attention.

This Particular Dealership Has Some Problems. The Way You Handled It Didn’t Help You Much, But You Must Have More Money To Waste Than I Do. The MPG Marketing vs. Results Sounds About Right To Me.

Was There Another Dealer Near You That Possibly Would Have Liked Earning A New Customer ? Did You Try That ?

If you haven’t bought another vehicle, yet, it would behoove you to rent a similar vehicle first in order to avoid a possible rerun. Reserch MPG claims prior to purchasing, rather than after purchasing.

Looks like a situation where dealer personnel with an attitude ran up against a customer with one.


If you are truly a vindictive person, and in some cases I am OK with that, you could take the dealer and Ford into small claims court. Honda has lost a lot of cases for false advertising on the gas mileage claim of the Civic Hybrid in small claims court.

It helps if you have complete documentation, including copies of those e-mails, print out of the service visit and gas station receipts for the vehicle. It would help more if you had kept the vehicle too. In small claims court, you do not need a lawyer and they can’t bring one in either.

BTW, Fords are a Microsoft Windows platform and that is why your iPod doesn’t work with it.

“BTW, Fords are a Microsoft Windows platform and that is why your iPod doesn’t work with it” I’d say the reason the OP was having problems was the software is poorly written, not because Apple didn’t write it. Ford has the worst touch screen system in the business IMHO.

I would see if the OP could find a regional supervisor and explain his experiences, and forward the emails from the salesperson. The conduct of that dealership is reprehensible.

A few questions that might be asked.

  1. Did cleaning out a number of contacts straighten out the SYNCH problem?
  2. How were you figuring fuel mileage; by a dashboard readout or by the fill and odometer method?

Regarding dashboard readouts, it can sometimes take a while for them to catch up with themselves. In other words, if it shows 20 MPG in town and you hit the open road the vehicle may actually be getting 30 but it might take 50 to 100 miles of pure highway driving to eventually show a 30 MPG readout.

The dealer can certainly refuse to perform any customer pay service work but if it involved warranty they cannot refuse to do it; although taking it back for anything is something best avoided.
The salesman sounds like a real (fill in blank) and it would not be a bad idea to go ahead and forward all of those emails to Ford customer service.

This is all water under the bridge now but a lot of things can transpire behind the scenes and it would not surprise me if that salesman ends up unemployed. Corporate Ford will say very little to you about anything but the wheels do turn behind closed doors.

Your mileage is about what others experienced driven 50% highway. You can see it at The average was 19.4 MPG, compared to 24 MPG reported by Ford for 50% highway. 20% lower mileage than advertised per EPA test isn’t acceptable. But it also is not the first time this was reported in the last year. Hyundai is required to pay up to 900,000 owners a lump sum for the errors in their tests on Hyundai ad Kia automobiles. While it is an EPA test, the manufacturers perform it and use and EAP/DOE test procedure. Hyundai took a couple of short cuts and paid big for it. You might reasonably expect that Ford will face a similar fate. And since you were the original owner, I would guess that you are entitled to a piece of the pie if a suit is brought and Ford loses or agrees to settle.

I don’t react well to salespeople “coaching” on how to respond to customer surveys. The dealers are under extreme pressure by Ford and other manufacturers since anything lower than a excellent score gets the dealer in hot water. No matter, I just answer the questions honestly or I avoid the follow up surveys altogether.

In this case the salesman is completely inappropriate. I think Ford would be interested in seeing copies of those emails. And, I would provide them along with the info that you traded in the car and bought something other than a Ford; I’m assuming you didn’t buy another Ford product, and certainly not from the same dealer.

I do think the manufacturer’s should reevaluate these customer surveys and how they use them, since they are really just bogus and no longer gather really useful information.

I own a Ford Escape. Other than the fact that it has, and I like 4X4 (which now no longer works) I could give 100 reasons why to not buy this vehicle. I got stuck with mine, but will never buy another.

Holy cow that mileage sucks, I have a trailblazer that gets 16/22. And you can’t even tow a boat. I am looking for a new car for the wife in the next year or 2, things are getting worse instead of better. Might as well let her keep driving the windstar 16/22 seating for 7, 4 captain chairs and a bench seat, mpg as it looks at 10k miles a year gas savings are not a significant factor. Sorry about your bad experience with the dealer, they are not all as heartless.

I have no intelligent comment to offer and haven’t driven a Ford in many years, but as the manufacturers say, the dealers are franchises not owned by the manufacturer. I would guess though the salesman is gone shortly. I never score anyone a ten and usually an 8 or 9 for excellent work except after learning how these poor suckers are evaluated. Even for an oil change I get a couple emails and a telephone call insuring my satisfaction so I bend and give them a 10. Not a job I would want.

It always amazes me that people are so afraid of being evaluated as in the case of your salesperson. As a university professor, I have had students evaluate my classes since I started my teaching career back in the fall of 1962. These evaluations were always anonymous and I never attempted to figure out who the student was that wrote the evaluation. In fact, over the years, I only recognized two of the students that wrote the evaluations. The first time I identified the student was my very first class I taught as a graduate assistant. A student in my class had seen me driving down the street in my 1947 Pontiac and came up after class wanting to sell me his 1958 Ford. I agreed to look at the car, but the night before I was to look at it, his wife ran it into the back of a pickup truck. I decided that I didn’t need another wreck. On the evaluation form, the student wrote, “I would have liked the instructor if he had bought my wrecked 1958 Ford”. The other comment that I received years later was one that read “I appreciated the fact that the professor came to class appropriately dressed and sober”. I puzzled over that comment until the next semester when a student came in and asked about a project. After I had clarified what I wanted, she told me about a professor in her major that came to class looking like a slob and drunk. I had had the student the previous semester when I had received the comment.
I have received criticisms that helped me improve my teaching. Those constructive criticisms were easy to separate from the “sour grapes” comments. After I passed out the evaluation forms, I would tell the students “You can make any comments you want and it won’t bother me. When I go home, I have a dog that likes me all the time, a son that likes me most of the time, a wife that likes me only part of the time and a cat that can’t stand me. If you feel the same as my cat, it doesn’t bother me”. I then walk out of the room, let the students do the evaluations and have a colleague pick up the forms and turn them in to the department office until after I have the grades completed.
If I were in sales, I would welcome an evaluation or review of my performance. The best review in sales would be to have customers who come back for the next purchase. I always thought a good assessment of my teaching is students who sign up for another class with me when they have a choice of me or another professor.
As to the cat that hated me, my wife had a friend who gave us a kitten fresh out of her barn. The kitten was infested with fleas. I gave the kitten a flea bath and the kitten no longer suffered from fleas. However, the cat hated me all 15 years of her life for giving her that bath, even though I did something good for her.

The AWD 2L turbo is rated 21/28 mpg. Being a turbo charged engine, it really should be getting high octane(premium) fuel. If you were using 87 octane everytime you filled up, that would account for MPG loss, as the computer retards the timing to prevent preignition in the engine.
Also, granny mode can sometimes be worse as you’re spooling the turbo for longer periods of time, yet not taking advantage of it.

I won’t say I would never trade in a new car with 5K or so miles on it, but I’d be the most dissatisfied customer EVER! The OP’s experience with this Ford Escape must be extremely disturbing to the OP. I just hope the next choice was satisfactory. Who’d be able to afford another bad experience like the first?

I have a 2013 Ford Escape AWD Titanium (2.0 L). My overall MPG is 24.7 (EPA combined rating of 24 MPG). My best mileage was 31 MPG cruising the FL panhandle @50 - 60 MPH (calm sunny day about 65 degrees). My lowest mileage was 18.5 (a bunch of short trips in cold/snowy MI in mid Dec). I now have about 7700 miles on the vehicle. Remember mileage varies with speed, weather, road conditions, driving style etc.

Here’s an interesting article from Car and Driver about EPA testing:

BTW I use regular gas as specified in the owner’s manual.

I never knew this:

legally, the only figures automakers are allowed to cite in new-car ads are the EPA fuel-economy ratings for the city, highway, and combined test cycles.

In theory, that gives all manufacturers a level playing field and a set of reliable third-party data.

I got that statement from this article:

“I appreciated the fact that the professor came to class appropriately dressed and sober” - See more at:

That is ridiculous, Yes I went to college, got a degree and REALLY?

When my daughter bought her first new car, the salesman said that they get graded by the manufacturer and that it is pretty much binary. Either he and his dealership are perfect ro they are in big trouble. He then went on to ask that we contact him with any issues because he wanted the perfect rating. They guy was honest and willing to work to earn it. You can’t beat that.

When my friend takes his Rav-4 to the dealer for service, they always ask that he give them the highest rating in the Toyota survey. Their “bribe” is that those who answer the survey positively will (supposedly) be entered into a monthly drawing for an I-pod, or something of that type. To my way of thinking, this is about as artificial and immoral as you can get, and I don’t know why the mfr doesn’t stop them from doing this type of thing.

By contrast, nothing is ever mentioned about high ratings at my local, family-run Subaru dealership’s service department–and despite the absence of pandering–they wound up with the highest rating in the country from the mfr in 2010. The owner and most of the employees know me by name, they charge reasonable prices, they give me a loaner car if the service will take more than a couple of hours, they don’t pressure me to give them high ratings, and they don’t try to up-sell me. This little local dealership just keeps looking better and better.

ALL dealerships in the USA use the CSI system, which you guys alluded to.

Customer Satisfaction Index

The service writer’s take home pay is dependent on his score
The number of new cars alloted to each dealer is dependent on the dealer’s score

I’ve personally seen service writers and/or mechanics really screw things up, and the writer still received a perfect score, because he gave the customer a few oil change or a free detailing.

I’ve also seen customers slam the service writer because the wash guy did a less than perfect job, or because the car was ready 5 minutes later than promised.

In theory, CSI is reflective of the dealership’s quality

In reality, it’s not that simple.

" In theory, CSI is reflective of the dealership’s quality
In reality, it’s not that simple. "

In my little town of only 4 dealers, this program has really helped improve the amount of attention paid to customers wanting to get their vehicles serviced after the sale. The dealers will bend over (backward) to please the customers - prompt scheduling/repair, pick up/drop off service, free car washes, loaner cars, etcetera. They let customers know they can be contacted by the manufacturers and they place follow-up calls to be sure one is satisfied.