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2011 Escape...Q's before buying

7171 Views 23 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  stone

I want to downsize from our 2008 Grand Caravan into a 2011 Escape (XLT 3.0L 4WD) as the van proved to be just to big and cumbersome for everyday use. However, my family and I are avid campers and I know that the Escape will not be big enough to carry our gear on its own, so we will definitely need a good rooftop carrier and perhaps a cargo carrier for the hitch.

I know the Escape will be perfect for everyday use, but I do have a few questions that I would like to pose to you experts before we make our purchase (I will also ask my salesman, but he is obviously biased):

1. The factory roof rack supports 100lbs...if I buy some better cross-rails from Thule/Yakima can I increase this number, or is it actually limited by the Escape's roof?

2. The factory hitch is 1.25" and I would prefer to get a 3rd party 2" hitch...are there any reasons why I should not be doing this?

3. We have 2 kids (3 & 6 yo) who will fit comfortably in the back with no problems, but we may want to squeeze a 3rd kid into the back from time-to-time...has anyone had any luck fitting 3 booster seats into the back safely?

I appreciate any answers you can provide, they will definitely make my decision easier!
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Tang said:
Rakerburn said:
[Have you had any issues with it only being 1.25" hitch? Do you happen to tow anything from time-to-time?
No problems yet... as for towing, I don't do a whole lot of it. The only time I have towed was when I moved from my friend's house to my current place of stay (which is about seven miles of driving) last summer. I rented the 5'x8' U-Haul trailer and filled it to the top with my junk/stuff. I purchased an OE Ford 1.25" hitch adapter and then a 3,500 ball from a nearby autoparts store. No drama during the tow, which included a highway stretch. I don't have the towing assist software on my Escape, but I'm sure it'd be pretty nice to have.

In my previous experience with Escapes (dad works for Ford and often leased them since he thought they were a good fit for the family), the nice thing about the hitch setup is that I've used the rings to tow a few people out of ditches.
Tang, are you referring to Trailer Sway Control? And that's an interesting use for the hitch. Kind of makes me want to put one on my Escape just for that, despite never having to tow anything.
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