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2014 Ford Escape Review

The 2014 Ford Escape has a lineup of powerful engines and nimble handling, but its below-average safety scores and tricky infotainment system contribute to its midpack ranking in the compact SUV class.

Pros & Cons

  • Strong engine lineup
  • Good fuel economy
  • Spacious cabin
  • Hard-to-use infotainment system
  • Subpar safety scores

Rankings & Research

The 2014 Ford Escape's #9 ranking is based on its score within the 2014 Affordable Compact SUVs category. Currently the Ford Escape has a score of 7.9 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 36 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 8.6
Performance: 8.3
Interior: 7.6
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.0
Safety: 8.4
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2014 Ford Escape Overview

Is the 2014 Ford Escape a Good Used SUV?

The 2014 Ford Escape is an OK choice among compact SUVs. Each of its engines delivers good power and thrifty fuel economy for the class. The Escape’s cargo hold is above average in size, and its rear seats are spacious enough to fit most adults. This Ford’s main drawback is its frustrating infotainment system. Many rivals also offer higher safety scores.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our Ford Escape review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from three dozen sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

The U.S. News Best Cars team has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our staff has a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. To ensure our impartiality, we never accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2014 Ford Escape?

Based on more than 2,750 listings on our site, you can expect to pay between $11,000 and $19,300 for this crossover SUV. The average list price is $15,100, but the price you pay can vary based on the vehicle’s mileage, condition, location, and features.

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How Much Does the 2014 Ford Escape Cost to Own?

Expenses for fuel, insurance, maintenance, and repairs with the 2014 Escape are estimated to be around $25,000 over five years or about $5,000 per year. That’s about average for the class. Those same costs for the 2014 Honda CR-V are estimated to be around $3,600 lower over five years, and the 2014 Subaru Forester’s costs are about $2,100 higher.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Escape?

Aside from a reshuffling of trims and features, Ford didn’t make any significant updates to the Escape for 2019, but it was refreshed for 2017. These newer models have fresher exterior styling, the much-improved SYNC 3 infotainment system, more tech and convenience features such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, and a slight bump in power for the EcoBoost engines. You’ll also get the benefit of a new-car warranty.  However, it also has a starting price of $23,940, and that’s for the sparsely equipped base S trim. For budget-minded shoppers, the used model may be a better choice.

Read about the new Escape »

No new compact SUVs are in the same price range as a 2014 Escape. However, there are a few subcompact SUVs priced close to a high-end used Escape. Starting at $17,990, the smaller 2018 Nissan Kicks doesn’t offer the Escape’s passenger space, storage, or powerful engine lineup, but it will save you money at the pump. It also has a lot of standard and available tech features, as well as a new-car warranty.

See the Best New Car Deals »

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Which Model Year of the Ford Escape Is Best?

Ford redesigned the Escape for the 2013 model year. The 2014 Escape gained two notable standard features: the SYNC infotainment system and a rearview camera. Ford made no major updates to the Escape for 2015. If you can swing a little bit of a higher price, the 2016 Escape may be a better value. That’s largely because the SYNC 3 infotainment system replaced the problematic MyFord Touch system found in older models. The 2016 model also has an above-average predicted reliability rating, compared to the lower ratings of older models.

Compare the 2014, 2015, and 2016 Escape »

How Reliable Is the 2014 Ford Escape?

J.D. Power gives the 2014 Escape a reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average.

Read more about Escape reliability »

2014 Ford Escape Recalls

At the time of this writing, 13 recalls have been issued on the 2014 Escape. Some areas of concern include an inoperative instrument cluster, doors opening unexpectedly, engine wiring splices causing a stall, improper air bag deployment, and leaks in the engine fuel line. Before purchasing this vehicle, make sure these issues have been addressed.

See more information on Ford Escape safety recalls »

Which Used Ford Escape Model Is Right for Me?

The 2014 Escape is available in three trim levels: S, SE, and Titanium. The base S offers a handful of features, including remote keyless entry, a rearview camera, and Ford’s SYNC infotainment system with a six-speaker stereo, a USB port, Bluetooth, and a 4.2-inch LCD screen

The Ford Escape SE trim's biggest upgrade is its turbocharged 1.5-liter engine. The SE also adds fog lights, a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, reclining rear seats, and satellite radio. It’s also the first trim available with the larger 2.0-liter turbocharged engine, all-wheel drive, navigation, a power liftgate, and an 8-inch touch screen.

The top-of-the-line Titanium trim adds leather upholstery, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, proximity keyless entry, push-button start, a 10-speaker Sony audio system, HD radio, two USB ports, an 8-inch touch screen, a hands-free liftgate, rear parking sensors, and larger 18-inch wheels. It’s also the only trim available with rain-sensing windshield wipers, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front parking sensors, parallel park assist, and automatic high beams.

See 2014 Ford Escape trims and specs »

What Does Ford's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Ford offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles six years old or less and with fewer than 80,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Ford extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. These vehicles also get a one-year/12,000-mile limited warranty after the original three-year/36,000-mile new-car warranty expires. Each Ford CPO vehicle must pass a 172-point inspection. Additional benefits like vehicle history reports, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Ford warranty page carefully.

Ford does not have one of the better CPO programs among affordable carmakers. Chevy, GMC, Honda, Kia, and Mazda all have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Escape?

The 2014 Ford Escape has mixed crash test results. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave it the highest rating of Good in four crash tests. However, the Escape also received the lowest possible rating of Poor in both the driver and passenger small overlap front tests. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Escape four out of five stars in front and rollover crash tests and five stars in side crash tests for an overall rating of four stars.

The 2014 Escape comes standard with a rearview camera and Ford’s MyKey system, which lets you set audio and speed limits for secondary drivers. A few other features are available, such as front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, parallel park assist, and automatic high beams.

See Escape safety scores »

2014 Ford Escape Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2014 Ford Escape or 2014 Mazda CX-5?

As far as compact SUVs go, the 2014 Mazda CX-5 is one of the best you can buy. Its dynamic steering and maneuverability help this crossover handle curves more like a car than an SUV. It’s thrifty too, delivering better mpg estimates on the highway than the Ford’s EcoBoost engine. The Escape has slightly more cargo space, but the CX-5 has more room for passengers to stretch out. The Mazda has higher safety and reliability ratings and some of the lowest total ownership cost estimates in the class. When it was new, we named the Mazda CX-5 our 2014 Best Compact SUV for Families. Go with the CX-5.

Which Is Better: 2014 Ford Escape or 2014 Honda CR-V?

The 2014 Honda CR-V is another excellent compact crossover. It has more passenger and cargo space than the Escape, as well as better safety and reliability ratings. The CR-V lacks the powerful engine lineup of the Ford, but its smooth-shifting automatic transmission, strong brakes, and pleasant ride make it well-suited for daily driving. Unless you want the extra power in the Ford’s uplevel engines, the CR-V is the better choice.

Which Is Better: 2014 Ford Escape or 2014 Ford C-Max Hybrid?

The 2014 Ford C-Max Hybrid has an attractive interior and excellent fuel ratings. Despite being a wagon, the C-Max actually has less cargo space than the Escape, though the two vehicles have comparable passenger space. The C-Max Hybrid has a higher safety score, but the Escape has a higher reliability rating. The two share similar features lists, though the Escape has a standard rearview camera. Both are also relatively fun to drive, but the C-Max’s only drivetrain is front-wheel drive, while the Escape is available with all-wheel drive. At the end of the day, neither of these vehicles are the best options in their respective classes.

Compare the Escape, CX-5, and CR-V »

2014 Escape Performance

How Does the 2014 Ford Escape Drive?

The base Escape has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 168 horsepower, and the other trims feature a turbocharged 1.6-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine rated at 178 horsepower. Both the SE and Titanium also have a larger available engine: a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder producing 240 horsepower. A six-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard, and all-wheel drive is available.

Each engine is a capable for daily driving. Acceleration is adequate with the base engine, though the two turbocharged motors are a little livelier, especially on the highway. In particular, the 2.0-liter turbo feels especially energized. Lively, carlike handling and sharp steering add to this vehicle’s fun-to-drive nature.

Does the 2014 Ford Escape Get Good Gas Mileage?

With the standard 2.5-liter engine and front-wheel drive, the Ford Escape has fuel economy estimates of 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg in the highway. The more powerful 2.0-liter engine nearly matches that, only losing 1 mpg on the highway. Those numbers are pretty good for a compact SUV. The 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine is the thriftiest, getting 23/31 mpg.

2014 Ford Escape Towing Capacity

The 2014 Escape can tow up to 3,500 pounds when properly equipped.

Read more about Escape performance »

2014 Escape Interior

How Many People Does the 2014 Escape Seat?

The Escape seats five people on standard cloth upholstery. A split-folding rear bench seat is standard, while heated front seats, reclining rear seats, and leather upholstery are available.

The front seats are comfortable and supportive, with adequate padding. There is enough head- and legroom in both rows to accommodate most adults, especially with the available reclining rear seats. The cabin itself is spacious and filled with handsome materials.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2014 Ford Escape?

The 2014 Escape has two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors on the rear outboard seats and an additional upper tether for the middle seat. The Escape’s LATCH system is generally easy to use.

2014 Ford Escape Features

The Escape SUV features a rearview camera, a six-speaker stereo, and the SYNC infotainment system with a USB port, Bluetooth, and a 4.2-inch screen as standard equipment. Available tech and convenience features include a larger 8-inch touch screen, the MyFord Touch infotainment system, satellite radio, HD radio, a ten-speaker Sony sound system, navigation, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote start, and push-button start.

The MyFord Touch infotainment system is tricky to use. It lags when responding to inputs, and the buttons are too small, making them distracting to use while driving.

See 2014 Ford Escape specs »

Read more about Escape interior »

2014 Ford Escape Dimensions

Ford Escape Cargo Space

With 34.3 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and 67.8 cubic feet with them folded down, the Escape offers a decent amount of cargo space for the class. A few rivals have more storage, but the Escape is one of the few vehicles in its class to offer a hands-free liftgate.

2014 Escape Length and Weight

This Ford SUV is about 14.8 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 3,515 pounds with the 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine and front-wheel drive up to 3,769 pounds with the 2.0-liter EcoBoost and all-wheel drive.

Where Was the 2014 Ford Escape Built?

Ford assembled the 2014 Escape in Kentucky.

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Honda CR-V 2014 2014 Honda CR-V

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