really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
97,900 miles
Total Complaints:
22 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace transmission (14 reports)
  2. not sure (4 reports)
  3. replace 2nd and 4th gear bands, modulator (4 reports)
2008 Ford Escape transmission problems

transmission problem

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2008 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Mar 042017

Escape XLT 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles


Transmission went into limp mode. Took it into AAMCO and they said that this is a common issue with the valve body on these particular transmission. Should have done more research before buying the Escape.

- Aaron P., Eagle Mountain, US

problem #21

Mar 042017

Escape XLT 3L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,147 miles

I read reviews here and know that Ford would not compensate for my loss caused by their defective products. It's lucky that I was not on the highway when this problem happened, but with quality like this who knows what could happen next. One thing is certain, my next car will not include Ford again.

- Leon G., Victoria, BC, Canada

problem #20

Aug 152016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

this is the 2nd transmission I have had rebuilt! When i first bought this piece of sh*t it was in the Ford Dealer 2 times for transmission issues. Was fine for about 7 yrs so i thought all this was behind me then the transmission started slipping and hard shifting. Of course with all the complaints I read Ford didn't issue any recalls so this first one cost $2300 to replace and only had a 1 yr warranty...batteries have 5 or more years so if your scratching your head as well, welcome to the club. Now the slipping started again and i have to have that trans replaced for $1600 this time, the mechanic and company had a little and i do mean little sympathy on my ass. I'm being told there's some issue with where the fluid goes in that is a big part of the issue with all the trans issues with the 08 model that causes the fluid to leak out and trans issues to start.

I will NEVER buy a Ford again and I will do my best to make sure no one around me does either.

- byron6473, Belleville, NJ, US

problem #19

May 202016

Escape XLT 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 113,865 miles


click to see larger images

loss of second and fourth gear loss of second and fourth gear loss of second and fourth gear loss of second and fourth gear loss of second and fourth gear

I bought this P.O.S. with 81,000 miles thinking It was a nice vehicle, RIGHT! I take very GOOD care of my vehicles & I'm only 21 years old. Financially this has set me back so much so I'm going to have to borrow money from my Mom & Dad to get it fixed! I've researched the cost & it's 1/4 of the value of the dam thing! Now you'd think Ford would make this good or even split the cost but NOPE not from the dealers I've already spoken to. My Granddad worked for Ford for 36 years & if he were still alive he'd surely be raging mad. My dad won't buy anything but Fords & now he as well is of the opinion it's a P.O.S. but I can't afford to just up & go buy another vehicle to replace one I'm already in debt with. Any suggestions or donations would be EXTREMELY APPRECIATED! It's got me depressed just thinking of all the plans I had to further my education & have a job & be a good role model to others younger than myself! I realize no vehicle is perfect but compared to all the other vehicles in my family, mine has the least miles & even looks better but it sits in the driveway waiting for a miracle! How would I describe myself - frustrated & depressed! I've even prayed that God guide me thru this! p.s. If you do buy one ya better take it straight to Ford for the recalls if possible!


- maverickh, Smithville, MO, US

problem #18

May 182016

Escape 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

Transmission - the service wrench dash light came on and the transmission started to shift badly. A quick trip to the Ford service center indicates that gears 2 & 4 need to be replaced at 46,000 miles. Ford has issued a tsb on the problem, and there are multiple posts on the internet concerning this issue. This needs to be upgraded to a recall as it does effect the safety of the vehicle. Not even 50,000 miles yet !!! Ford get off your a$$ and recall this. Consumers don't have $ 4,600 dollars for these repairs.

- Tim A., Godfrey, IL, US

problem #17

Mar 152016

Escape XLT 6 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 196,000 miles

Had to have the transmission replaced before when it was new under warranty. My beef is that the transmission seems to be a major issue for this vehicle. Had regular service, even paid the over $200 for a transmission flush recommended by dealership.

- June K., Lexington, SC, US

problem #16

Nov 202015

Escape XLS 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 134,000 miles


At approximately 134,000 miles while driving on the highway, my car suddenly drastically slowed down quickly, started revving really high and the “wrench light” came on. This almost resulted in getting rear-ended by the car that was traveling behind me on the highway. I took the vehicle to a Ford dealership for an estimate. Was told the transmission was missing 2nd and 4th gear and the transmission would need to be replaced. Was told by Ford that the cost would be $4,200 to replace the transmission. The band for 2nd and 4th gear broke, sending the vehicle into limp mode (only using 1st and 3rd gear). I found this is a known issue as there are many complaints about this as well as a TSB (#TSB-12-4-8). After further research, I have discovered that this is a common issue with all Ford Family vehicles that have the CD4E transmission. I have owned Ford vehicles for over 20 years and have never had this issue. Ford knows that this is a common issue but refuses to assist their loyal customers with a solution. While talking to a Ford Service Technician about this, I was told that Ford knows about the issue but refuses to do anything about it, leaving the customer to pay to replace something that Ford knows has issues. Does it really take someone to get injured or get killed in order for something to be done about it?

- Kenneth J., Homewood, IL, US

problem #15

Jul 302015

Escape XLT 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

This is the second FORD in my family.

This is also the LAST FORD in my family.

- Alex N., Bothell, US

problem #14

Jul 022015

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,532 miles

At 85,000 miles I was not expecting transmission problems, but my car started to struggle to get into second gear and then slam into gear, jerking the car. My son said, "Mommy your car has the hiccups!" After finding this site, I realize this is a common problem and my only regret is not getting rid of this car sooner so that I didn't have to deal with this issue.

- jbrooksva, Fairfax, VA, US

problem #13

Jun 172015

Escape XLT 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

I've had my 2008 Escape for little more than a year which I bought from a relative. At about 98,000 miles the transmission started failing as in 2nd gear will always launch into gear, and when I stop at a light the truck often dies or falls out of gear completely. 98,000 miles is way to soon to need transmission repair. This is really disappointing especially seeing how many people are having the same issue. I hope Ford issues a recall.

- Daniel S., Palatine, IL, US

problem #12

Jun 082015

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,123 miles


I bought this car from Ford Dealership, used, I suppose it was lease by Ford. Apparently this is a known issue from the information on this site. But Ford had no problem selling me the car and sold me a warranty which expired last year. There was no info from Ford, there was no corrective action. I was on my own. Then it failed and they hit me with a significant bill, for a problem that is Ford's. It is a QUALITY issue. I was a loyal customer but NO MORE,

- Allan M., Concord, CA, US

problem #11

Oct 152014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 106,065 miles

With only about 106,000, the vehicle started to have issues when shifting to second gear, then followed by 4th gear. Eventually after a few days of experiencing the shifting problems, it was a hassle to get into 2nd gear, and 4th gear was completely gone and I can no longer get the car to shift into 4th. I took it into Ford and after dishing out $700 for them to take apart the transmission, they give me the bad news that the transmission needed to be replaced. Even after I babied this vehicle from day one and only putting 106,000 miles on it, Ford is telling me that I need to pay them $5k to replace a sh*tty transmission that they put in the first place. Stay away from FORD. I've learn my lesson. "Built Ford Tough" what a complete joke.

- Ben A., Seattle, WA, US

problem #10

Apr 242015

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 53,000 miles

Under 60,000 miles and transmission goes 1 month AFTER warranty expires (go figure).

This is a known problem by Ford, why aren't they at least notifying customers before it goes, repair costs would be lower.

looking at a cost of between $1800 and $3800 is something I cannot afford right now.

This is our only car.

I'm disgusted.

- morganb, Point Roberts, WA, US

problem #9

Feb 252015

Escape 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles

Transmission slipping at only 88,000 miles, no recalls, no help from Ford. We have two Fords and two Toyotas. Problem score.... Ford 2 for 2, Toyota...0 for 2. What are we going to buy next time? TOYOTA! You guessed it !right.

- Peter W., San Diego, CA, US

problem #8

Feb 162015

Escape XLT 2.3L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 126,000 miles

transmission 2nd and 4th gear bands bad

Considering taking Fords off my list of new cars to buy in the future. Transmission shouldn't go out with only 126k miles. Typically have gotten 200K to 300K on previously cars (all GM's) with no transmission problems....

- Lee W., Durham, NC, US

problem #7

Oct 012013

Escape ES 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

We bought this car for our 18 year old daughter for her graduation present. Our girl worked so hard for the grades that we required to make this goal a reality. We saved money and put down a large down payment so that our daughter could afford the payments (a chance to learn responsibility with her first payment ever.) The transmission blew within the first year! Our daughter worked extra hours to pay off the repairs while she was a full time student in college.

Within two years the engine blew and threw a rod through the engine cracking the entire thing. This car now sits in my daughter's driveway useless. She is still making the payments faithfully but for WHAT? We have always been a Ford family. NO LONGER!!!! This is an injustice and Ford turned a blessing into a curse for my poor daughter.

STAY AWAY FROM FORD!!!!! They have not done A THING to help us and they sold us a LEMON. Apparently, this is a common thing and I feel so angry that Ford has treated us, a loyal Ford family, so shabbily. I teach customer service and I teach at several colleges worldwide. Sadly, I now teach thousands of people what NOT to DO using Ford as an example.

After several attempts and many requests, Ford still does nothing to help us with this situation.

DO NOT BUY A FORD as there will be NO SUPPORT once the vehicle has been purchased.

I wonder what Henry Ford would say about the quality of his products now. He would be so sad, I am sure!

It's a sad day when an American institution doesn't stand by it's product. Guess I will buy a Honda?

- Kim G., Huntington Beach, CA, US

problem #6

Nov 012014

Escape XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,274 miles

Had to buy reconditioned transmission because it broke. Don't think this should have happened as the car is only 2008 model. Very disappointed that I had to spend all this money. No more Fords for me!

- valleygirl_59, Mississauga, Ontario, canada

problem #5

Dec 282014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,254 miles

2008 Ford Escape not going into 2nd gear. Seen many complaints of this. At the dealers and $130 for a "diagnostic code check." Asking another $130 to dismantle transmission to check what is wrong and told only seen 1 of these before (Lakewood Colorado), and about $3200 to fix. Taken to AAMCO and estimate to replace band, torque convertor, and "box" at $2700 at this time. Ridiculous that a 6 year old vehicles transmission crapped out! Where is the recall??!?

- Tracy C., Greeley, CO, US

problem #4

Sep 302014

Escape LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

Exactly like this topic states (loss of 2nd and 4th)....at 98K miles, I'll rev transmission to approximately 3k, then let off gas pedal, and it'll shift into 3rd, bypassing 2nd. 'Wrench' engine light comes on, but goes off and remains off when you shut off vehicle. Diagnostics hand held tools can retrieve no error, with or without 'Wrench' engine light on. Had to come to this site to confirm what my problem is, and most likely find out a day in advance how bad it's going to be.

It is what it is, but the most troubling part for me is, this is the most expensive vehicle I've owned and apparently will have the largest price ticket on a major substantial fix. Unless the wife is taking this thing off road and not telling me about it, or doing some heavy towing on the side, seems like Ford might want to start 'farming' out their transmission design engineers oversees.

- Tom V., Illinois, IL, US

problem #3

Nov 292014

Escape Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,300 miles

I own a 2008 Ford Escape.

A couple of days ago, coming off the thruway, I started to apply my breaks to slow down. Instead of slowing down my vehicle sped forward on its own. I had to firmly apply the breaks to make it stop just barely avoiding hitting the vehicle in front of me.

Right after that a yellow wrench came on the dash. Then the vehicle would not go higher than 20 miles per hour. The car was basically coasting. When I tried to give it more power it would just stall. I had it towed to my local Ford dealership and had to pay $100 to see whats wrong They tell me my 2nd and 4th gears are gone and I have to have my transmission replaced. A Ford rebuild transmission would cost me over $4200, a junk yard transmission $3800, called Aamco and they said $2200.

I bought this vehicle in 2011 with a little over 34,000 miles. It currently has 58,300 miles on it. In 3yrs I have driven this vehicle less then 25,000 miles. Meaning around 8,000 miles, if that, a year. So why in the world do I need a new transmissions?

Doing research, I learned there was a serious amount of complaints about these Ford Escape 2005-2013 models, all with this same issue. So instead of Ford doing a recall and fixing the problem, they settle on a customer satisfaction program. Iinstead of them including all the year models with this issue, they only do it for the 2009-2013 models. Now is that fair ? If there are other models out there now experiencing the same issue. This is a known issue with these vehicles and Ford should be responsible in fixing the problem.

Now I have a vehicle that I cant drive and have to wait to get up the money to fix. This is unacceptable. I plan to take this complaint as far as I can, I even may file a lawsuit against Ford, but I tell you this I will never purchase a Ford vehicle again if this is how they treat their customers.

- Valerie H., Troy, NY, US

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