Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. 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:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
1,833 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 fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2001 Ford Escape Owner Comments

problem #12

Apr 142004

Escape 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 22,000 miles


Smell of gaoline coming through heater vents. Engine stalls or hesttates at around 35-40 mph. Dealer has been unable to fix either problem.

- Savannah, GA, USA

problem #11

Sep 252001


  • miles
Engine stalling, intermittent, unpredictable. During various times, days and circumstances. Since 09/25/01 till last time was 12/01/03.

- Creswell, OR, USA

problem #10

Apr 012002

Escape 4WD

  • miles
Car continues to stall when going approximately 40 mph. All systems fail. Car has been to dealership 3 times for same problem. Air intake valve and relay have been replaced. Dealership taking car again tomorrow for repair.

- Chester, NJ, USA

problem #9

Feb 232002

Escape 4WD

  • miles


I was driving about 40mph, and the engine turned off, I had no steering, no brakes, almost wrecked my truck with my smallchild in the car, had to pull emergency brake to get truck stopped, I fear for my life now, dealership said it was a bad relay system

- Lincoln University, PA, USA

problem #8

Jan 282002


  • miles
At highway speed vehicles suddenly died. Driver lost brakes and steering control. Driver coasted to side of road. Took vehicle to dealer, and they replaced relay system. One month later, problem reoccurred. Dealer stated it was the processer.

- Dacula, GA, USA

problem #7

Jul 232001


  • miles
Traveling at approximately 35mph -car did not shut off, but lost steering and brakes. From time to time time there is a gas odor coming from air vents. Also, in the morning vehicle hesitates when pulling out from a stop sign. Car was towed to local Ford dealership and they were unable to determine problem.

- Schuylkill Haven, PA, USA

problem #6

May 302001

(reported on)

Escape 4WD

  • miles


Poor gas mileage. Averaging 16 mpg. Dealer tested and found that under perfect conditions (no wind, no hills, no acceration, no stopping, etc) at 65 mph it got only 19. The vehicle doesn't get anywhere near the epa of 19 city and 24 highway. Told me this is normal for Ford vehicles.

- Davenport, IA, USA

problem #5

Sep 272000

Escape 4WD

  • miles
Fuel vapor entering passenger compartment.

- Jackson, NJ, USA

problem #4

Feb 102001

(reported on)


  • miles
There is a problem with the O rings, which leaks fuel into the interior of these cars. Ford says they do not have a fix and people should just continue to drive the Escapes and Mazda tributes with the gasoline fumes, even though they are highly toxic.

- Yorkville, IL, USA

problem #3

Jan 272001

Escape 4WD

  • miles
Raw fuel smell in cabin with heater on and at stop light/ideling. Intake gaskets, fuel rail and injectors repleaced. Parts returned to factory.

- Bensalem, PA, USA

problem #2

Dec 252000


  • miles
Fuel smell after restarting vehicle when engine is warm. Fuel odor very strong! this has been shown to be a problem on numerous Escapes and tributes, as seen on the yahoo fordescapeclub and in the discussion thread for the Ford Escape. If I turn the vent off for a few minutes after starting the vehicle, the smell goes away. Note that my dealership and several others have claimed not to be able to find the cause, but several people on the fordescapeclub site have been able to tighten the bolts on the left side of the intake manifold (as facing engine) to limit the smell. My dealer eventually reported that this was caused by a "weeping" intake manifold gasket. I am concerned that under certain conditions the fuel seeping from the gasket could ignite and cause an under-hood fire.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #1

Oct 122000

Escape 4WD

  • miles
Cabin fills with smell of raw fuel when climate control system on..also smell of raw fuel under hood. Mfg inspected vehicle and does not know where problem originates.vehicle is now out of service 36 days while engineering looks for solution to problem.various parts have been changed with no resolution to date.

- Douglaston, NY, USA

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