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With nearly every compact to midsize SUV on the market today using a similar car-like chassis, it is easy to see that the Ford Escape was way ahead of its time. In fact, according to U.S. News, two Ford Escape model years are known as some of the best used SUVs under $20,000. If you are looking to save some money and get behind the wheel of one of the best used SUVs today, look no further than these Escape model years.

A black 2019 Ford Escape driving on a city street.
2019 Ford Escape | Ford Media

2018 Ford Escape: price, specs, and features

Coming in at number six on U.S. News’ list of the best compact SUVs under $20,000 is the 2018 Ford Escape. The 2018 Escape can be purchased for anywhere between $16,703 to $21,348. For this low starting point, you get seating for five, a rearview camera, a 4.2-inch display, Bluetooth audio, and a USB port.

In total, the 2018 Escape was built in four different trim levels, the base S model, which comes with a 2.5L four-cylinder engine, the mid-range SE, the tech-savvy SEL, and the top-of-the-line Titanium trim.

If you are looking for the most value, stick to the Escape SE trim. This SE comes with a much more efficient 1.5L turbo four-cylinder engine, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, and an upgraded infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Andriod Auto.

The SEL and Titanium trims are also great, adding a power liftgate, rear parking sensors, and park assist, along with leather-trimmed seats, but these typically push our $20,000 spending limit.

2019 Ford Escape: price, specs, and features

The 2019 Ford Escape is ranked as the ninth-best option for compact SUVs under $20,000 by U.S. News. This Escape can be purchased used for anywhere between $18,214 and $24,061. The 2019 Escape is nearly identical to the 2018 model other than a few features being moved around to different trim levels.

The same four trim levels from 2018 return for 2019 with the S model acting as the base trim, the SE as the mid-level trim level, the SEL as the tech-forward trim level, and the Titanium as the top-of-the-line trim.

The S is identical to the 2018 model, but the SE trim comes available with rain-sensing wiper blades, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, brake assist, and blind spot monitoring, among other features.

The SEL trim level comes with a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, along with a panoramic sunroof. The Titanium level is also available with a towing package with sway control and an auxiliary cooler.

Which model is the best for you?

The 2019 and 2018 Ford Escape are both great compact SUVs, but the most value may be found in the 2018 model if you can find an SE model at a low price. The 2019 model year is typically still quite pricy on used car lots despite the 2019 model being hardly distinguishable from the 2018 model.

If you are looking to save even more money, there is a huge list of other compact SUVs under the $20,000 price point. Some of these options include the 2020 Chevrolet Equinox, 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan, and 2018 Nissan Rogue. If you are open to other SUVs, these other options may be worth shopping for!


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