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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,416 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2001 Ford Escape Owner Comments

problem #3

Apr 252010

Escape 6-cyl

  • 70,248 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Ford Escape. While driving at speeds of 2 mph in the reverse position, the gear shift selector fractured. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 70,248. Updated 07/14/2010. The consumer stated the vehicle was repaired. Updated 07/23/10

- Montgomery, AL, USA

problem #2

Oct 162005

Escape 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
Transmission shift linkage broke. Causing vehicle to go into neutral and roll down driveway. 3rd incident of same problem on this vehicle.

- Ada, MI, USA

problem #1

Jul 252001


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Gear shift lever sticks in front of radio. When changing radio stations hands knocks gear shift into neutral while vehicle is in motion. Consumer states that the vehicle produces so much brake dust that the wheels turn black only after three or four days of driving, Ford states nothing can be done.

- St Charles, MO, USA

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