A white 2023 Ford Escape is shown driving on a highway after leaving an Escape dealer.

How the Escape Rises Above the Competition

Trying to find the perfect vehicle in the overflowing compact SUV market might feel overwhelming at times, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. There’s a reason drivers make Ford their go-to brand when it comes to tough, affordable vehicles that are going to last. So when loyal Blue Oval drivers need a compact SUV that they know is going to hold up, they keep it simple and head for their local Escape dealer.

Why the Ford Escape? Because when you want the perfect balance between a rugged performance and a flexible family vehicle, the Escape is tough to beat. As one of Ford’s ten best-selling used vehicles of 2021, drivers know value when they see it. Whether you’re looking to buy brand new or pre-owned, the Ford Escape delivers exceptional value and low maintenance costs that leave other competitors in the dust.

The Escape’s Biggest Competitors

Even though the Escape continues to impress and bring in new customers, that’s not to say it doesn’t face some steep competition from the likes of other popular compact SUVs and crossovers. Drivers looking for an economical, flexible SUV that will fit in with their day-to-day are often stuck between a few models when it comes down to making the ultimate decision.

Near the top of the list, right alongside the Ford Escape, drivers will often find the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Nissan Rogue. In 2021 the Escape topped used car lists, coming in ahead of the Honda CR-V and tied with the Toyota RAV4.

As automakers move away from sedans into the more flexible SUV and crossover market, drivers will follow, searching for a vehicle to meet their needs. So why the Ford Escape? How does it manage to hold a top spot in the market despite such steep competition? What can it do better than its competitors? Let’s check out what the Escape has to offer and find out the edge it holds against some of the best SUVs and crossovers on the market.

A person is shown viewing the back-up camera in a 2022 Ford Escape.

The Ford Escape vs the Competition: Performance and Power

The Ford Escape is a compact SUV that delivers when it comes to performance, value, and comfort. But then again, we hear the same thing from all the other automotive companies. So if you’re in the market for an SUV, why should you go with the Escape?

The first reason to consider the Escape is the value. The Escape offers a lot for the price and can often be had at a lower price than many of its competitors. This makes new and pre-owned Escapes popular with drivers shopping on a budget or those who simply wish to stretch their dollar further. The 2023 Ford Escape starts at $27,500, which is in line with the price of some of the competitors; however, the CR-V, for example, has a much higher starting price of $31,110.

Now let’s see where the money goes and take a look at one of the first things drivers wonder about, performance and power. Drivers looking for a compact SUV want the basics like great engine choices, efficiency, and the ability to tackle slick or snowy weather, and we don’t blame them.

When comparing the 2022 Escape to the competition, the Escape delivers in the best possible way. The Ford Escape’s most powerful engine is its available 2.0L Turbo I-4 which outputs 250 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque. None of these competitors can touch that amount of power. The RAV4 comes the closest in horsepower with a rating of 203 hp, while the Rogue offers 225 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy ratings across the board are pretty close, with the base engine for the Escape coming in at 28 MPG in the city and 34 MPG on the highway (which is the same for the CR-V and RAV4). The Rogue actually comes out on top with a fuel economy of 30 MPG in the city and 37 MPG on the highway, but in the grand scheme of things, that isn’t too much of a difference.

While the Escape is in close competition with the likes of the Toyota RAV4, Nissan Rogue, and Honda CR-V, it still manages to pull ahead performance-wise. Even going back a few years and getting a pre-owned model will still show in the Escape’s favor.

Stuck between a 2021 Escape and a Rogue? The 2021 Escape delivers just as much power as the newer 2022 model, plus all the efficiency you want, with 28 MPG in the city and 34 MPG on the highway. However, the Nissan Rogue had a weaker engine in 2021 (181 hp and 181 lb-ft of torque), already making it less of a competition. It also loses its fuel economy advantage in this year, getting 27 MPG in the city and 35 MPG on the highway, which is right in line with all the other options.

The Escape offers more engine choices, with drivers getting to choose between two gas powertrains, a hybrid, and a plug-in hybrid in 2022, compared to the 2022 Toyota RAV4, which offered one gas option, a hybrid, and a plug-in hybrid. More engine choices mean more flexibility for the driver that wants a vehicle that fits into their life and not the other way around. The numbers don’t lie; if what you want is an efficient, everyday drive that saves you money, the Escape proves to be the best value in town.

A top view of a person is shown standing next to a red 2023 Ford Escape.

The Ford Escape vs the Competition: Comfort and Safety

Many compact SUVs look the same, usually styled with modern lines and a sporty body; it can be tough to decide between them simply based on the exterior. But besides the engine power and performance, it’s important to be comfortable and confident behind the wheel. While some SUVs might seem lackluster on the inside or even confusing when it comes to all the new tech, the Escape is known to keep it simple while delivering all the best features you want.

The Escape, like other compact SUVs and crossovers, fits five, but the Escape is known to make better use of space, offering better storage options as well as roomier seats, head, and legroom for drivers and passengers. Check out the 2022 Escape to enjoy its 104 cu.ft. of passenger volume, while the competition comes in just below, with the RAV4 having 98.9 cu.ft. and the CR-V coming in at 103.5 cu.ft. The Escape has nearly three additional inches of legroom room than its toughest competitor, the RAV4. That space really adds up when it comes to stretching out during a long road trip.

When it comes to safety, the Escape is known to be a family-friend, safe, dependable vehicle, receiving a 2022 Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS and a five-star overall rating from the NHTSA. We aren’t saying that the competition is unsafe by any means; after all, most all manufacturers are putting similar safety suites into their vehicles as safety is the most important thing. In fact, we would say all of these vehicles are comparable when it comes to safety, so you won’t be held back or swayed by wanting the safest SUV when choosing between these models, as they can all deliver.

Escape With Ford

As you can see, while there are some similarities between all of these models, the Ford Escape manages to pull ahead of its competition as the best compact SUV. It’s affordable, offers the best performance, is loaded with comfort, and has all the safety features you want most. The compact SUV market has exploded since the 1990s, with competition growing increasingly fierce in the last 10-20 years, making it tough for drivers to pick from lots full of great-looking vehicles that may or may not be the ones they are looking for. That’s why Ford has made it easier than ever for drivers, turning a problematic choice into an easy one. With its dependable line-up of top-performing vehicles, the Escape is the go-to choice for drivers searching for a safe vehicle that works as a family hauler, daily commuter, and your ticket to your next adventure, all in an affordable compact package.