Notes: The 2004 Ford Escape looks pretty good compared to other Ford Escape model years, but still has a trend of transmission problems, and engine problems from the NHTSA complaint data — so it's not a model year we can recommend.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
103,665 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.

2004 Ford Escape engine problems

engine problem

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2004 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #5

Jul 262012


  • 111,000 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Ford Escape. The contact was driving 65 mph when the vehicle began jerking and jumping abnormally. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis. The dealer advised that they needed to replace all of the spark plugs. The vehicle was repaired but the failure continued. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure mileage was 111,000 and the current mileage was 111,500.

- Toledo , OH, USA

problem #4

Jun 292012

Escape 6-cyl

  • 87,000 miles
I made a left turn from eastbound stewart road onto the inside lane of northbound M125 (N. monroe street), monroe, mi at approximately 09:00. When approaching frenchtown mall area on the left, cars ahead were stopped for others making left turns into the mall. I took my right foot off of the gas pedal to coast so as not to have to brake. Suddenly my car accelerated (sped up); my right foot was still off of the gas pedal and on the floor. I hit the brake hard with my right foot and the vehicle did stop. (I never use my left foot to brake. I always use the right foot to drive and to brake.) I thought of all of the incidents of sudden acceleration; now knew how it felt. Researched, found info as to recall issued. We never received recall notice. Put VIN # in Ford site. Our vehicle, 2004 Escape 3.0L V6 not recalled. The cruise control quit working may, 2011. We had the Escape in for regular service recently and we told the service advisor, who is also the assistant service manager at the dealer, that the cruise control no longer worked. He said it could be checked but it would be expensive to fix. We chose not to incur additional expense given the age of the vehicle. This vehicle has consistently had all service, oil changes, repairs done at the Ford dealer. We did not know about the recall, nor of the technical service bulletin issued to all dealers by Ford. Interesting note: We own and drive a 1989 Ford F150 and the cruise control works fine!

- Flat Rock, MI, USA

problem #3

May 032012


  • 157,100 miles
As I was accelerating to pass a slow moving vehicle, I pressed on the gas petal and after I was back in my proper lane, my vehicle kept speeding and not backing off on the gas. I then put the car in neural and the engine continued to keep racing. I tried to stomp lightly on the gas petal to see if it would come back up but it didn't. I then shut off the engine and called the tow truck company.

- Allendale, MI, USA

problem #2

May 152012

Escape 6-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
I would like to add my complaint to the acceleration problems of the 2001-2004 Ford Escapes which my 2004 has also experienced. There have been a few situations over the last 2-3 years where my cars engine would suddenly start racing while parked at idle. When the issue first began I was able to tap the gas pedal with my foot and the car would return to a standard idle. The more recent instances now require turning the vehicle off and it would idle normal again after being restarted. I believe this problem is connected to a current investigation and the letter dated 7/10/12 written to Ford from the center for auto safety. This may also be connected to a prior recall 04V-574 that I was recently made aware of. Please keep me advised of your efforts or anything I can do to help. Thank you

- Sterling Heights, MI, USA

problem #1

Mar 062012


  • 120,000 miles
At first, my Escape only started hesitating on rainy days when I got to about 45-55 mph. At first I thought I had bad gas so I stopped at auto zone to get dry gas for it. This seem to work like a charm and I thought the problem was fixed. Then it happened again; spudering, not accelerating, car shaking, and engine light began to flash once I reached 45mph. This had been an issue for a few months on and off, then one sunny day its began hesitating and misfiring very badly now not only in 5th gear but at idle and 1st gear. It misfired and hesitated every time I drove it for a week before the mechanic could get it into the shop. I did a lot of research on the two codes that the engine was pulling P0305 and P0316 pending. I found out that there were a lot of people who had the same problem as me when their Escapes reach 90,000 miles or higher, some even worse. People are saying that the issues being caused are a result of Ford putting in the wrong spark plugs which is causing the computer chip to burn out leading to misfires in the coil packs. My mechanic just informed me that it will cost $400 to fix two of the coils and there is only a 50/50 chance that it will fix the problem (for now). He said it will probably happen again but there is no telling how long that might be, it might be right away, a week from now, or a year. Will all these people having the same issue with no way to tell if it is actually going to fix the problem there should be a recall or at least a warning to owners saying what may happen once the car gets over 100,000 miles.

- West Middlesex, PW, USA

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