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All cars and SUVs experience problems, but new vehicles should be less prone to issues early into the ownership process. Ford has a massive lineup of cars, trucks, and SUVs, so recalls are a little more common with the brand. The Ford Escape is a good small SUV, thanks to its modern design, spacious cabin, and updated technology. However, there are a few 2023 Ford Escape problems noted already by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or NHTSA that might be worth checking out.

Are there any major 2023 Ford Escape problems?

Some common 2023 Ford Escape problems make this small SUV less popular
The 2023 Ford Escape | Ford

There are a few 2023 Ford Escape problems listed on the NHTSA website. These problems resulted in recalls, which can be both good and bad. Brands issue recalls to get ahead of problems. However, recalls also mean something is not working with the Ford Escape. Ford’s compact SUV starts at $28,000 for the base model, while a fully loaded Ford Escape is $39,460.

The first Ford Escape problem noted was the cracked fuel injector back in 2022, NHTSA campaign number 22V859000. A cracked fuel injector in the presence of an ignition source like the engine could potentially cause a fire. This impacted 521,746 units, which is not a small amount. Ford says this issue was present in many 2020 to 2023 Ford Escape SUVs and some 2021 to 2023 Ford Bronco Sport SUVs.

Another recall lists an issue with the instrument panel failing. This might not seem like a big deal, but it can increase the risk of a crash, among other issues. The recall with NHTSA campaign number 23V506000 says that if the instrument panel becomes inoperable, it cannot display critical information like the speedometer or other warning lights. Ford thinks the module may not have been soldered correctly. Unfortunately, that means the Escape fails to meet the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard number 101.

What is the predicted reliability of the 2023 Ford Escape?

Some common 2023 Ford Escape problems
The 2023 Ford Escape interior | Ford

Even though the 2023 Ford Escape has some problems, J.D. Power gave it a predicted reliability score of 81 out of 100. That lands it in the “great” category, a positive sign. Ford has a long history of making good vehicles, and recalls are not that uncommon. Three recalls in the first year of ownership are a little less common.

Next up is the Ford Escape problem with NHTSA campaign number 23V380000. Ford recalled some Escape hybrid models, Maverick, and Corsair vehicles with the 2.5L HEV or PHEV engine, around 125,322 units. It was discovered that the engine could fail and cause a fire. Ford found that oil and fuel vapors could get released into the engine compartment and accumulate when the engine failed. It could start a fire if this happened near an ignition source like the hot engine or other hot components.

The automaker said that if owners heard strange engine noises, noticed a severe reduction in power, or saw smoke, it was best to park and turn the vehicle off immediately. This recall was only released on May 26, 2023, and it says Ford is working out a remedy and will notify owners.

Is the 2023 Ford Escape safe?

The 2023 Ford Escape problems are worth noting, but the NHTSA also gave the compact SUV a five-star safety rating. It earned five stars in the front and side tests, while the rollover star rating was four out of five. The NHTSA tested Ford’s safety technology, and those systems met performance criteria. This includes forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking.

From the IIHS, the 2023 Escape earned many high marks on the main crashworthiness tests. It earned a score of marginal on the updated side impact test, which rendered it unable to earn the Top Safety Pick award. The Escape is just one of many small SUVs that did not score well in this segment, but changing the test will eventually improve vehicle safety.

Once all of these 2023 Ford Escape recalls are completed and updated, the small SUV remains a good option. Ideally, there are no more issues down the line. If these issues are too much, check out the 2023 Mazda CX-5 and the 2023 Hyundai Tucson for similarly priced small SUVs with fewer safety problems.


Quality Issues Halt 2023 Ford Escape Production