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.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
84,558 miles
Total Complaints:
34 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replaced transmission (26 reports)
  2. not sure (2 reports)
  3. rebuilt transmission (2 reports)
  4. replaced transmissions (2 reports)
  5. intend to trade the Escape as-is, for a different make (1 reports)
  6. replaced transfer case (1 reports)
2002 Ford Escape transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

May 122008

Escape XLT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,000 miles


I have purchased my last ford vehicle. Had to replace the transmission with only 38,000 miles on it. Ridiculous. No wonder ford is having financial problems. Plan on trading this one in for something not made by ford.

- , Chicago, IL, USA

problem #13

Jul 152006

(reported on)

Escape LS

  • 82,000 miles

I am on the third transmission. I have never had this much trouble with any cars before, Ford or Chevy.

- , Florence, KY, USA

problem #12

Jan 202005

Escape XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,102 miles

The FIRST time the transmission went out it was thankfully under warranty. The SECOND time it went out 70,000 miles later it was not under warranty. The crap shop that fixed it the first time basically told us 1. that they have never fixed a tranny on an Escape until we showed them the paperwork on them doing it and then they 2. told us tough luck and that the trannys on the Escape are "rock solid" and we got the one bad one. Needless to say we'll never buy a Ford (Found On Road Dead/Fix Or Repair Daily) ever again!!!!!

- , Cazenovia, WI, USA

problem #11

Mar 112008

Escape XLT 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles


I have had great luck with my 2002 Escape...until..started getting a brief rumble effect when the transmission would upshift with any load at all on the engine. It kept getting worse and worse. Took to the Ford Dealer who does our maintenance and they couldn't find anything. "It just shifts a little rough" Then it got worse, more frequent really. Took back to Ford. Had a complete flush of the transmission and was told to drive it 200 miles and see if it cleared up! No luck. It is in the shop now getting a new transmission @ $3057.00 min. Called Ford customer service to complain and was told it was my problem because it was out of warranty. I was fine until I discovered the 1000's of similar problems with 2001-2004 Escape transmissions on the web. Where is Ford in all this? No wonder they are losing market share to everyone else!!!!!

- , Luay, VA, USA

problem #10

Oct 182007

(reported on)

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,000 miles

I got into my car to go to work one morning, put my vehicle into drive, stepped on the gas, and nothing. It was like I was in neutral. No warning, it just wouldn't move one morning. The mechanic at the garage that I took it to said that several 2002 Ford Explorers and Escapes, with similar miles, have been coming in lately.

- , Cranston, RI, USA

problem #9

Sep 152007

(reported on)

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

Driving down the interstate with no problems or indicitations there would someday be a problem and the transmission just let go. It was as though I had accidentally shifted into neutral. Later found out, thanks to my local "Ford Only" non-dealer mechanic that the transmission had blown and that it was fairly common with these.

- , Monticello, NY, USA

problem #8

Sep 272007

(reported on)

Escape LX 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles


My husband, daughter and I were driving from San Diego to San Francisco taking my daughter to move into a new apartment. We were on our way to meet a moving truck. The car died on Interstate 5 about 100 miles south of San Fran in 99 degree heat, in the middle of nowhere with almost no shoulder on the side of the road to pull off on. We sat in the car with huge semi's roaring past shaking the car with no where to go, in the blazing heat, waiting for AAA to come tow us for 3 hours!!!! We had to go to the nearest town that had a Ford place. We got the last motel room, missed meeting the movers, had to rent a car from another town, taking a bus there.... etc, etc. It took a week to get the car fixed and my daughter had to go back down to the town via 3 bus changes, (a 7 hour trip) to pick up the car. The transmission cost $3600, the hotel room, dinner, rental and bus fares about $250.

Just about your worst nightmare short of freezing to death.... I heard there are a lot of tranny problems with the Escapes.

Will never buy another Ford. EVER.

- , Encinitas, CA, USA

problem #7

Jun 052007

(reported on)

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,000 miles

Needed new transmission at 64,000 miles.

- , Princeton, NJ, USA

problem #6

Jul 202007

(reported on)

Escape LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles

My Escape as many others started with the OD-light blinking and trans slipping. By the time I got home (4 miles) it would not go in reverse. We bought it as a gas saver now it will cost us the equivalent of a years worth of gas to get it fixed. I have been a ford buyer all my life but it is time for a life change, GM here I come!

- , Millersville, MD, USA

problem #5

Oct 142006

(reported on)


  • 43,000 miles

I have a 2002 Ford Escape that at 43,000 miles should not be having a transmission problem. The car was just in the shop for a week due to a flashing "O/D off" signal. After an extensive review, I was told that it had a bad cylinoid. OK, had that replaced, took it home, and after approx. 50 miles of highway driving, the "O/D off" light is flashing AGAIN. Now the next step, as I was told, is to do a transmission overhaul. More big bucks!!! My question is: Immediately prior to this problem, I finally had a recall done for an acceleration cable or vehicle speed control malfunction. Could these be related in any way???

- , Russellville, AR, USA

problem #4

Feb 282007

(reported on)

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,500 miles


Was originally told that this was a rear differential problem, but it ended up being a transfer case problem, which was far more expensive to repair.

- , Pearl River, NY, USA

problem #3

Oct 042006

(reported on)


  • 55,000 miles

I'll never buy a Ford again! It's now wonder they are losing money in droves.

- , Rochester, NY, USA

problem #2

Aug 272006

(reported on)

Escape XLT

  • 65,583 miles

Since purchasing my 2002 Ford Escape it has been one (Big Pain In The Rear.) I will NEVER Purchase another Vehicle made by FORD, because FORD does NOT stand behind their products. I have had to have my passenger door fixed twice, replace the transmission, & now my A/C is not working. I have called Ford Motor Company many times about the problems I have had with my 2002 Escape & all they had to say is that there hasn't been a recall on any of the problems I am having with my vehicle & that I am responsible for the repairs. I have spent over $5000.00 on my 2002 Ford Escape with no help from the Ford Motor Company.

- , Strong, AR, USA

problem #1

Aug 252006

(reported on)

Escape XLS

  • 55,000 miles

Bought the excape new for wife's 50th birthday. The escape has been dealer maintained, and very well taken car of - my wife is a school teacher- need I say more. Neither the mechanic nor I can figure out a reason for the transmission to go out at 55,000 miles other than poor manufacturing.

- , Tecumseh, OK, USA

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