really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
66,264 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.

2009 Ford Escape drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2009 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 5 of 13)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #173

Oct 082013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles


The first time I had a throttle failure (first time wrench light came on), I was on the free way going about 65 mph. My acceleration quickly died and the gas pedal was inactive and useless while my car slowed down. I pulled over on the side of the freeway left shoulder going North on the 5, and after a few minutes, my car turned back on and worked fine. I took my car to Firestone to cleanup throttle, only to find myself experience another car breakdown for the same reason the next day on the freeway going the same speed, this occurred 2 more times going about 25 mph the next day. All 4 times, , my wrench light came on my Escape as well as completely dying as far as acceleration. Each time, I had to pull over to the side. The last time this occurred was earlier today 10/10/13 as I was makin a left at a red light. Where I was afraid my car would not make it through the intersection.

- Vista, CA, USA

problem #172

Oct 092013


  • 110,000 miles
While in the left lane of a 3 lane highway (bishop Ford) I was traveling about 65 mph then accelerating to 72 mph the car made a jerk ( felt like the transmission) then there was no acceleration and the wrench light came on. I tried to push the gas and nothing. I slowly moved to the emergency lane which was very dangerous because the average speed on this highway is about 70 and I had to crossover 2 lanes and at this point the car was less than 40 mph. No one wants to slow down to let you over. I had my 2 yr old in the car at the time so I was very nervous about getting hit by another vehicle. I turned off the car and the restarted and it and drove ok without this happening again. This jerk motion has happened several times and when I had it checked at the dealer while under warranty they could not find anything wrong because it did not do it when they drove the car. Anytime I had a complaint while under warranty they could not find anything wrong with the car. This is a hazard and to know so many complaints have been made and nothing has been done by Ford..................................anyone?S death by this will be on their hands.

- Hobart, IN, USA

problem #171

Oct 082013


  • 42,000 miles
Started to accelerate and the car just has no power to go. Engine runs but touching the gas does nothing. Engine runs around 1K RPM's. the wrench light comes on. If you can live to turn the vehicle off and restart, the light goes out and the vehicle works fine. Seems like a lot of owners are having this problem. This is a life threatening problem.

- North Versailles, PA, USA

problem #170

Oct 082013


  • 178,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 Ford Escape. The contact was driving approximately 80 mph when the vehicle failed to accelerate and stalled. The contact mentioned that the wrench symbol warning light illuminated. The vehicle was merged off road and restarted. The vehicle was not inspected or repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 178,000.

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #169

Oct 032013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 81,000 miles
While traveling at normal speed, my vehicle lost power. The engine continued to run but I had no acceleration factor. I coasted to a median cross over as I was traveling on a four lane divided highway. I stopped and called a local mechanic who suggested I turn off the engine, wait and try restarting. He mentioned a "drive by wire". after restarting, I was able to take the vehicle to the mechanic with no further issues. He scanned the computer and found no error codes. The following day, the same thing happened. Twice now in two days. Should I fear for my safety in this vehicle. Since reading your article, I will contact my dealer. We are planning to travel to knoxville tn (400 miles one way) for thanksgiving - now I am afraid of this vehicle!

- Trafalgar, IN, USA

problem #168

May 092013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
I was driving on a city road and the engine randomly died when I was traveling about 40mph. All the lights and radio/electronics remained on (never lost time or preset radio stations, headlights, dash, etc) but as I tried to give it some gas, it wouldn't respond. When I realized the engine was not running after a few seconds, the rpms were at 0 and the battery light and oil light was on. No codes thrown or check engine or wrench light. As I pulled over and put it in park, I attempted to start it, and it started right up like nothing was wrong. Didn't "cough" or crank and crank...fired just like it was brand new. I took the vehicle in to a local body shop and they checked normal issues that would cause the Escape to randomly shut off and did not find anything. Then I did research and determined there was an investigation upon the throttle body. This same issue has happened a total of 3 times, of which the most recent was in July and September.

- South Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #167

Sep 302013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles


While driving the Ford Escape under normal driving and road conditions at 60 mph, I lost complete acceleration and had to steer the vehicle to the shoulder off the freeway to avoid traffic trailing behind and beside me. It was a dangerous situation to say the least. The engine was still running but I had no power to accelerate. I turned off the vehicle and restarted it. I was able to drive the vehicle slowly off the freeway with intermittent loss of acceleration and into a parking area. I was able to drive the vehicle to my home slowly with intermittent losses of acceleration, having to stop multiple times to turn off and restart my engine. I attempted to drive the vehicle from my home to an auto mechanic shop and the same situation occurred on the way to the shop. The engine check light and the wrench light was on the dashboard. The mechanic performed a computer diagnostics and it indicated a dirty or damaged throttle body. The mechanic cleaned the throttle, and I test drove the vehicle again. Within a short time of driving the vehicle the loss of complete acceleration occurred multiple times again. At that point the mechanic indicated that I would need to replace the throttle body. I called the Ford dealership and explained my situation, whereby they responded that they could examine my vehicle to determine the cause of the problem. They also indicated that the throttle body is not under the powertrain warranty. I strongly feel that this defect which poses a life threatening situation for owners, should be under recall as it has become a common problem with this make & model of Ford vehicle. I have read many on-line testimonials of other owners having the same problem and even some that had serious auto incidents.

- Corpus Christi, TX, USA

problem #166

Sep 202013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 72,100 miles
Traveling along a rural highway, vehicle suddenly lost power and wrench light came on. I was forced to coast dangerously to a safe place to pull over, with another vehicle nearly hitting me from behind due to the sudden loss of speed. Gas pedal seemed to not be working. Once vehicle came to a stop, the car had an extremely rough idle. After turning the car off and restarting, the problem seemed to be reset, and gas pedal worked again, but the problem occurred again the next day, dangerously again along an interstate highway. This should be a recall - the sudden deceleration is very dangerous!!!!

- Taylors, SC, USA

problem #165

Sep 242013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 29,000 miles
The Ford Escape lost power when we were driving on the highway. We had to limp back to home. It was really dangerous. Dropped the car in a Ford dealer. The technician told us the car has a failed trottle body. We are out of warranty and the replacement will cost us around $700. The car has less than 30,000 miles on it. Why could this happen?

- Katy, TX, USA

problem #164

Aug 262013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 64,000 miles
I have been having the same throttle body issues that many people have been having and want to submit my information to include. I have had the throttle body get stuck open many times and am currently in the process of finding a repair shop to replace it.

- Manhattan Beach, CA, USA

problem #163

Sep 192013

Escape 4-cyl

  • 113,090 miles


On Thursday 9/19, my wife was leaving work in our 2009 Ford Escape when after a few minutes it lost all throttle response and stalled on the road. After shutting off the car and restarting, she was able to drive it again for a few miles before the same thing happened. Luckily we were close to a local Ford dealer and were able to guide it there after another couple of stalling incidents. It turns out that the electronic throttle body was stuck open (code P2111) and needed to be replaced at a cost of over $500. The service advisor mentioned that this is a very common problem with the Escapes and that many of the original parts have failed but the newer parts are much more reliable. I found a petition online which alerted me to the fact that this is a widespread problem. www.ncconsumer.org/news%20articles/nccc%20petitions%20nhtsa%20for%20defect%20investigation%20into%20ford%20escape%20vehicles.html

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #162

Sep 202013


  • 78,000 miles
Several times, driving at high speeds, lost complete control of acceleration. Engine throttle revved but pushing pedal made no difference. One occasion we almost wrecked at high speed. The car remains on, but acceleration pedal does nothing. Turn car off, turn back on and it works fine. Has happened in park, slow speeds and high speeds. Ford won't do anything. Please help!

- Rockwall, TX, USA

problem #161

Sep 222013


  • 31,872 miles
I was driving at 30 mph while driving the car, the power train light came on and the car stall and loss power. I stepped on the gas pedal and nothing happened. I had to stop, put the car on parking, turn it off then turn it back on and then the car function perfectly. This is not the first time that same thing happens.

- Guaynabo, PR, USA

problem #160

Sep 212013


  • 67,000 miles
The wrence illuminator came on and then the care stalled.

- Sterling Heights , MI, USA

problem #159

Sep 222013


  • 59,300 miles
After waiting at a red light, my vehicle travelled about 100 yards. The engine shuttered, accelerator pedal was unresponsive, and the engine rpms dropped to 900. I pulled to the side of the road and turned off the car then restarted it. Everything was fine, except for my confidence, for the next 6 miles. While driving 45 mph, the engine shuttered, wrench light and check engine light illuminated, and rpms immediately dropped. Same unresponsive accelerator pedal. I then put the car in neutral and coasted to a side road. I turned the car off and waited a couple of minutes, enough time to call my wife and let her know to be ready to come pick me up if my car wouldn't make it home. I restarted the car and 7 miles later I was home with no problems. I have not been to a mechanic or called Ford or anything of that nature as this has just occurred within the last couple of hours.

- Johns Island, SC, USA

problem #158

Sep 192013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 106,000 miles
My wife was driving on the highway when the vehicle abruptly shut down in a high traffic metro area as an orange wrench light appeared on the dash. After resting on the shoulder for a minute and speaking with me (her husband), I asked her to try and start the vehicle again. It started back up as normal with the orange wrench light now not showing. The car ran as normal for about 10 minutes and then it happened again. She was able to get the car home safely. The next day I took a look at the car, did some research, and drove it around for awhile. The car ran fine for about 15 minutes until it occurred again. Apparently the orange wrench light means there is an issue with either the power train or the throttle box. The vehicle shifts gears as normal so I am left to believe there is an issue with the throttle box (as I have read many complaints regarding this exact same issue with the 2009 Ford Escape).

- Hudson, WI, USA

problem #157

Sep 092013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 104,000 miles
The above affected parts field will not let me choose a part. We were driving on the freeway and suddenly the vehicle lost power - we had to go to the side of the road. The power was still on in the car but the accelerator would not work. We turned off the car and then started it again and was able to drive again. This happened on three separate occasions. The wrench light came on in the car and the book said throttle/drive train problems. We consulted a couple of dealerships and we since found out that indeed these vehicles are having throttle/accelerator problems. Parts are hard to find on a waiting list. There should be a recall on this to fix it. We are now going to fix the problem and save the receipt. We feel we should get our money back. This is a very serious, potential safety issue. Thank you.

- San Clemente, CA, USA

problem #156

Sep 142012

Escape 6-cyl

  • 56,000 miles
We have had this vehicle in for service many times to try and find out why it often will hesitate to accelerate. Recently it has begun to stall while driving. This has happened numerous times and without warning and at various speeds. Luckily we have been able to avoid an accident. Tonight when it happened the car stalled and the power train throttle control light came on. After the stall we put the car in park, then restarted it. We were able to drive to safety but the car was not driving smoothly.

- Allentown, PA, USA

problem #155

Sep 112013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
I was driving at 40 mph and the throttle control/powertrain light came on. There was some jerking, a loss of power and I coasted to the curve. I turned the car off, restarted and drove maybe 2 miles, the light came back on and there was a loss of power again. This happen 4 times and I was able to make it back home. I just had a complete fuel system cleaning that was supposed to clean the throttle on August 14, 2013. I thought I was having maintenance done to prevent my car from malfunctioning. This is the 1st time the throttle light has come on. This is dangerous and I see that other drivers with the Ford Escape are have the same type of problems. Please make Ford motors address this problem.

- Little Rock, AR, USA

problem #154

May 112013

Escape 6-cyl

  • 32,798 miles
While driving on the highway to our vacation, my car felt like it was surging and the engine light came on. I took my car to the local Ford dealership and the diagnoses code was P0012 and P0022. Both vct solenoids were replaced. My 4 yr old car was still under warranty at the time. 2nd incident took place Sunday, 09/08/2013. Was driving at 45 mph and my car cut off!!! no lights came on until the engine stopped, and at that time the oil & battery lights came on. I was barely able to coast into the median. My local Ford dealership could not see me until this Thursday, 09/12/2013. So the problem has not been diagnosed at this time. I have been told by 2 Ford dealerships that it sounds like the full throttle body. Very scary & very, very dangerous!!! I am not driving my car. Mileage is 34,791. This needs to be recalled before someone gets killed. I sent an email to Ford customer complaints &have not heard back. My car is 4 yrs old & has had 2 major incidents that could have caused major accidents.

- Taylors, SC, USA

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