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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone!

I've been here for a while, and I have been researching an 05-07 Ford Escape as my first self-financed car. I am 19 and have been driving for about 2 years in my father's '97 Mercedes S500 and my mother's '99 Chevro. Suburban 1500 LS. Now I know that with the amount of driving experience that I have, I shouldn't be driving cars of this magnitude and power, however they were the only cars available to me and my family. But now that I will soon have the funds necessary to afford my own vehicle, I have been looking for something that was fuel efficient, stylish, is capable of "light" off roading and can handle almost anything mother nature can throw at it. And I was led to the 2005-2007 Ford Escape, one of the few "boxy" small SUVs still in production (The 05-07 body style, believe it or not, is still in production in Asia, albeit with moderate cosmetic differences).

But here are some questions that have been bugging me that I feel only the folks here at EC could answer/shed some light on:

1. Do these models come with either 2WD only or AWD only? Is there a medium I could work with? I recall earlier models having a switch on the dash that allowed the driver to switch back and forth from FWD to AWD when the need arose.

2. Looking at the gauge cluster in the 05-07 models, I find them to be a little hard to read. Are there any OEM/aftermarket gauge clusters that I could possibly fit into it?

3. Are the 05-07 floor mounted shift handles interchangeable with the 08-11s?

4. Down the road, I do plan to swap out the V6 engine in the Escape that I will eventually buy with a modern up-to-date engine that has better power and fuel economy from one of the current model Escapes. Is this possible? Or are they different sizes?

Thank you!
 

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RMP91 said:
1. Do these models come with either 2WD only or AWD only? Is there a medium I could work with? I recall earlier models having a switch on the dash that allowed the driver to switch back and forth from FWD to AWD when the need arose.

4. Down the road, I do plan to swap out the V6 engine in the Escape that I will eventually buy with a modern up-to-date engine that has better power and fuel economy from one of the current model Escapes. Is this possible? Or are they different sizes?
Hello, welcome to the city! :welcome:

I think the Escape is an overall great first vehicle. (It is my first vehicle actually.) Sounds like you've done your research and found a good fit.

I'll answer what I can on the questions.

#1 You can get 2WD only, but all AWD models 05 and up automatically choose when to use the rear wheels. I don't think it is a true AWD system, but it does not allow any user input. My 01 (and all AWD models 01-04) have a switch that allows you to override the automatic AWD and force it to use the rear wheels when the switch is on. It is still in automatic mode when the switch is off.

#2 & #3, I'm not sure, I'll let someone else take those.

#4 I don't know if it's possible, but I've heard anything is given enough money and time. Overall I'd say it sounds a bit ambitious and quite a bit of trouble. If you were to do it though I'm sure we would want to know all about it.
 

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RMP91 said:
Hey everyone!

I've been here for a while, and I have been researching an 05-07 Ford Escape as my first self-financed car. I am 19 and have been driving for about 2 years in my father's '97 Mercedes S500 and my mother's '99 Chevro. Suburban 1500 LS. Now I know that with the amount of driving experience that I have, I shouldn't be driving cars of this magnitude and power, however they were the only cars available to me and my family. But now that I will soon have the funds necessary to afford my own vehicle, I have been looking for something that was fuel efficient, stylish, is capable of "light" off roading and can handle almost anything mother nature can throw at it. And I was led to the 2005-2007 Ford Escape, one of the few "boxy" small SUVs still in production (The 05-07 body style, believe it or not, is still in production in Asia, albeit with moderate cosmetic differences).

But here are some questions that have been bugging me that I feel only the folks here at EC could answer/shed some light on:

1. Do these models come with either 2WD only or AWD only? Is there a medium I could work with? I recall earlier models having a switch on the dash that allowed the driver to switch back and forth from FWD to AWD when the need arose.

2. Looking at the gauge cluster in the 05-07 models, I find them to be a little hard to read. Are there any OEM/aftermarket gauge clusters that I could possibly fit into it?

3. Are the 05-07 floor mounted shift handles interchangeable with the 08-11s?

4. Down the road, I do plan to swap out the V6 engine in the Escape that I will eventually buy with a modern up-to-date engine that has better power and fuel economy from one of the current model Escapes. Is this possible? Or are they different sizes?

Thank you!
Escapes are good, generally reliable small SUVs, they are a very good value over their foreign counterparts. The 4 cyl gets better overall fuel mileage but is ...slower lol. the V6 gets around 17-23 MPG and has very good off the line power. the "tap-and-go" type. but of course MUCH slower than what you are used to lol. The escape is no jeep or Mitsubishi montero and it is only capable of light-duty off roading as is but it is excellent in snow!. If you do get one, keep up with fluid changes and it will last a long time, mainly the transmission which is the weakest part in the escape.

1. It depends on the year. the 2001-late 2005 escapes had selectable AWD, which means theres a switch on the dash. the 2006+ has full-time AWD (no switch). Personally i recommend the full-time AWD and in the later model years and also the powertrains in those years are better quality.
You can buy an escape with just 2WD (FWD), there quicker off the line than the AWD versions but you dont get the safety that AWD has during emergency situations.

2. the 08 ins. cluster panel might interchange, other than that i really dont know. It was hard for me to read at first then i got used to it.

3. not sure but why would you want to change that out?

4. i doubt it, unless Ford comes out with an EcoBoost engine in their newer escapes and that MIGHT be interchangeable.

Like all SUVs, u can't drive it like a sportscar, it is not and you WILL roll over if you try to due to the high COG. Also, try to find one with dual SIDE airbags, without them the side has a poor crash test rating.
If you are looking for fuel mileage as your main priority with an escape get the 4cyl manual version, they're rare but fun to drive and efficient.
Of course if MPG is your sole main priority get a small car lol.

if you get one, enjoy, its allot of fun!
 

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Judging from questions 2 through 4, I highly recommend you look at a used 2008 model...

#1 as stated, it's automatic 2WD-to-4WD operation in, obviously, the 4WD-powered versions.

#2 maybe with the Mariner or Tribute of the same 05-07 generation. Definitely not up or down though.

#3 highly doubt it, but I'm pretty sure manual-equipped Escapes used the same center console, so maybe I am wrong

#4 you're going to run into a lot of problems, such as engine mount locations, parts compatability, etc. As I suggested, you might want to bring a used 2008 or a really used 2009 into the picture...
 

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All 2005 and newer Escape/Mariner vehicles (including hybrids) that featured 4WD had the new Ford Intelligent system that was computer controlled and required no input from the driver.


This new system is made by JTEKT corporation (Asian based). Vehicles with this system are normally FWD until the computer sensor determine a need for torque to be shifted rearward. The amount of torque shifted rearward varies. Real world experience and with a scanguage II hardware will reveal this system works everytime one accelerates from a stop sign regardless of weather or road conditions. It throttles downward and makes the vehicle FWD during steady state driving.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for answering my questions to the best of your abilities!

But I remember one more question that has been on my mind...

I know that the parking brake lever is on the right (passenger) side, while in the early model Escapes, it was on the left.

Is there any way I could modify the lever to be on the driver's side? It's just a matter of comfort and personal preference to me.
 
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