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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I'm new here. I don't yet have an escape/mariner but I am looking at an 07 mariner luxury.

I have 2 fairly large dogs, live in Ohio and currently drive a 94 t-bird that I LOVE. (sadly it's rusting away on me and I need to upgrade).
I just recently started looking at the escapes/mariner and want to know how they do in the snow if they are not the 4x4's. ( I mean it has to be better than my T-bird, keep in mind my bird is rear wheel drive, V-8, slick as snot in the snow).

Would I be better off with a 4x4. It's Ohio, I may not see snow or I may have it up to my [email protected]#.

How's the reliability? I have checked out reviews and if you listen to the car "guru's" (I use the term VERY loosely), I wouldn't consider one, but when I look at owner reviews, 90% of them LOVE them (which I tend to believe). What's your opinions?

I am just weighing my options between the fusion, mustang (yes, I'm crazy, I love rear wheel drive, except in the deep snows. If you can drive rear wheel in the winter you can drive anything) and Mariner/escape right now. I like the idea of being able to haul things again and having room for my 4 leggers but I need a reliable car. (I've had my T-bird since 96, and am working on getting at least 14 years out of it before I cry as I let him go). I tend to keep my cars for a minimum of 7 years.

thanks in advance

- :yes:
 

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The Escapes are pretty rock solid. We don't really hear of lemons like we do on other car boards, and my Escape has had zero major repairs that were not caused by my fiddling. :angel:

The weak spots are in the drivetrain and suspension - the old 4-speed is a little stressed with the weight and power of the Escape, but the later years seem to be more reliable. Those of us who were around for the early year transmission problems tend to drain and fill the transmission fluid every 10-15,000 miles, which exchanges 4 out of somewhere around 12 quarts. The suspension isn't built for off-roading, so you can't really lift it much if you wanted to go that route. Also, the sway bar links start to go at about 30,000 miles, but they are cheap and usually easy to replace.

If you are concerned with fuel mileage, you may want to get the FWD which is likely around 2 MPG better. Otherwise, the 4WD (AWD) version is unstoppable in the snow (add some winter tires to be able to stop). I have a FWD Escape and can go through some really heavy snow, but there is always a lack of confidence with just FWD. I think the deepest I have gone through has been just over 50 cm of snow. I have gone through much higher snowdrifts, up to the top of the plastic trim around the doors. This was all fresh, fluffy snow though. The thick, compact stuff, I would guess the FWD can handle 30 cm.
 

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Welcome to the site!

First: You will need to decide whether or not you want 4WD.

Reasoning: The FWD configuration would be a vast improvement over the winter capability over the T-bird. That improvement just from switching to FWD would be enough in most cases to satisfy a majority of the population. In a FWD configuration, the Escape should be able to get you through almost any winter weather [save for those big snow dumps we get once in a while.] When that big snow does arrive, even 4WD might not be enough.

So this is why I ask - do you want 4WD? There might not be too much need for it but if you want it that is perfectly fine. Example: I wanted 4WD so my wife could make it to work safely in all kinds of fun weather. But a co-worker of mine bought his wife the FWD version of the Escape last year and they do just as well in snow as I do in my Jeep. But having that extra equipment availble puts my mind at ease.

Personally I would opt for 4WD just because you can. But if the vehicle you are looking at doesn't have it, the loss in capability for daily driving is not very steep.

Reliability:

I can't comment on very much since I don't have the mileage under my belt to give my personal experience. However, from what I have read most people have great success with the E/M/T line up. The 4 speed transmission requires constant mountainous though so I would have that properly inspected before buying. I don't recall any other major concerns with these vehicles.

We bought our Escape new this past summer and plan on keeping it until it's too rusty to be recognizable. At a minimum my vehicles are kept 7 years as well. I am hoping for 10+ out of the Escape.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks,

I don't really want 4wd. I would just like something to get around in that's reliable, fun to drive, sporty looking and just plain fun.

It's good to know the little quirky things that people have problems with so I know what to expect.

I knew going into the T-bird that the transmissions could be trouble but I am religious about making sure to follow my maintenance schedule. (You should see my "baby book" of services over the years, it's almost 2" thick!). Therefore, I would think this is a safe choice as long as I keep doing what I do with my bird.

:thumb: :)
 
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