Notes: With questionable safety ratings, a faulty power control module (PCM) and a rear subframe that can rust out, the first model year Escape is known for problems. But the worst one of all? A design flaw that carried through multiple model years and caused dangerous unintended acceleration.

A lack of clearance between the engine cover and the speed control cable connector meant the throttle could get stick open when the accelerator was fully depressed. Following a petition from the Center for Auto Safety, NHTSA opened an investigation and eventually issued a recall to fix the sticky throttles in the 2001–2004 model years.

Even with the throttles fixed, the 2001 model year could still have trouble stopping due to multiple problems with leaking brakes.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
0 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2001 Ford Escape drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2001 Ford Escape Owner Comments

problem #2

Aug 212001

Escape 4WD

  • miles


The left front axle made a clicking noise as the vehicle turned. The problem was fixed by the dealer. My concern is that the dealer replaced the axle with an axle from the original design. There's a good chance that this axle may cause the same problem since Ford has not redesigned this part. I'm also a bit suprised that my dealer had replaced the same axle on another Escape and Ford still has no tsb or recall.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #1

Jul 102001

Escape 4WD

  • miles
The front axle and cv joints completely fell off. There was no evidence of the saftey connector bolt being installed at factory. I have photos. Might be called a lower ball joint.

- Washington, DC, USA

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