Notes: The 2013 Ford Escape has been in the news quite a bit and for all the wrong reasons. Within a few months of its release the SUV was recalled three times, twice because of engine fires.

In July 2012, due to a fuel line that could split and leak, Ford told owners to park their cars because even driving to the dealership for repairs was deemed too dangerous. Instead, in a somewhat unprecedented move, Ford sent tow trucks to pick up the affected vehicles and handed out rental cars while the owners waited for repairs.

A few months later the Escape was recalled again because antifreeze could leak out onto the engine due to a freeze plug becoming dislodged. As the coolant hit the hot engine there was, once again, a threat for fire.

The 2013 is the first model year of the Escape's 3rd generation and proves once again that you want to avoid the first model year when at all possible.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 22
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 0
Average Mileage:
26,840 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.

2013 Ford Escape engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Ford Escape Owner Comments (Page 5 of 13)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #177

Aug 292015


  • 66,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. The contact stated that while driving at 35 mph, the vehicle overheated and an unknown warning light illuminated. The vehicle was then parked and smoke emitted from the hood. The contact and passenger were able to exit the vehicle before it was engulfed in flames. No police report was filed. The fire was extinguished by a passing motorist. No injuries were sustained. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the anti-freeze had leaked unto the engine causing the fire. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not included in the NHTSA campaign number: 12V431000 (engine and engine cooling). The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 66,000.

- Monroe, GA, USA

problem #176

Sep 022015


  • 95,000 miles
Driving on road and high engine temperature warning came on. Pulled over at first safe area, a very short distance. Shut vehicle off and in approximately 2 minutes flames were coming from under hood.

- Pleasant Valley, NY, USA

problem #175

Aug 192015


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. While driving approximately 5 mph, the contact noticed smoke under the engine and the check engine warning indicator illuminated. The failure recurred on several occasions. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was noticed that engine oil was dripping onto the manifold and diagnosed that the turbo needed to be repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the VIN was not included in the NHTSA campaign number: 13V583000 (engine). The approximate failure mileage was 70,000. MA 10/16/15

- Rosslyn Heights, NY, USA

problem #174

Aug 192015


  • 25,000 miles


Driving down street when vehicle suddenly went into limp mode. Vehicle has had numerous previous engine fault service readings on screen. Dealer has been unable to repair. In shop again.

- Williamsville, NY, USA

problem #173

Aug 082015


  • 39,720 miles
When I was driving my vehicle on a local road in a residential area, the check engine light was on. That day, I've never driven on a freeway, or faster than 45 mph, and the problem occurs only after normally low speed driving for 15 min. I got the vehicle inspected by the dealer, and they told me the error code is P026B7, and it has something wrong with the coolant bypass valve. That part is not covered by the power train warranty. The vehicle had a recall before associated with the coolant leakage, so it is very suspicious that the coolant bypass valve is also inherently defected, considering with so may other vehicles sharing the same failure with the same engine.

- Laramie, WY, USA

problem #172

Aug 032015

Escape 4-cyl

  • 29,000 miles
While driving down the highway I pushed on the accelerator to pass another car safely. The accelerator did not react for 4 seconds, this is a serious safety issue and if our government is not looking out for us, who is. I noticed other postings like this and I have complained to Ford that I have a lemon and they have chosen not to do anything about it. Do I need to start writing my senator or congress person for something to happen, what does it take for someone to notice these complaints, a death from these defects? Ford has chosen to ignore it and apparently the NHTSA as well. I have had several issues with my Escape and have complained to Ford, I am a veteran and cannot afford a lawyer as I am putting three people through college. Help!!!!!!!.....updated 10-27-15

- Seal Beach, CA, USA

problem #171

Jul 222015


  • 26,090 miles


The engine stalled/died while driving. I was about to turn onto an extremely busy 6 lane road, so I am fortunate (I suppose) that it did not die while I was making my turn. I was able to coast to the side of the road and call for help. My child was in the car with me. Very scary.

- North Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #170

May 032013


  • 5,000 miles
I bought a 2013 Ford Escape new in Nov of 2012. This is an unsafe car. Every summer in las vegas where I live the car overheats and I loose engine power. This is a very dangerous situation especially for me as I am 71 years old. I have brought the car back to the dealer many times to correct the problem and they have been unable or unwilling to fix

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #169

Jul 242015


  • 13,000 miles
While my wife was pulling into a parking spot front forward. The engine suddenly revved and the vehicle accelerated forward, causing the vehicle to jump the curb and crash thru a store front window.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #168

Jul 022015


  • 25,200 miles
Over the past 2 1/2 years that we have had the vehicle, the engine will stall out when taking off from a stop. It has happened 7 times and we feel like it is unsafe to drive. We had it at the dealer we purchased from 3 times now for this concern and they cannot fix and deny there is anything wrong. The dealer said they did not care if we had a problem as they cannot find what the cause is. I am a state certified ase auto tech and I think I know what is wrong. But as I said the dealer does not care. The service writer even wrote the wrong description on the ro of what the problem is. He wrote it for a check engine light and we never said that. We told hem that is stalls at slow speeds from a stop or has happened on very low speed turns.

- Farmington Hills, MI, USA

problem #167

Apr 042015


  • 12,850 miles


When driving at highway speed SUV jerks - sputters not all the time but the last time it was like a machine gun at 60mph. It stores no codes. Been to Ford 3 times the 2nd time a code of miss firing they change all plugs and coils. Was on the highway a week later something.

- Revere, MA, USA

problem #166

May 132015


  • 55,987 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. While driving approximately 75 mph, the engine sputtered and the rpms decreased to 8,000. The vehicle was towed to the dealer who drove the vehicle for three weeks; however, the failure was not duplicated. The vehicle was not diagnosed. The manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 55,987.

- Stormville, NY, USA

problem #165

May 252015


  • 26,000 miles
When starting, car shows "engine fault, service now" light. Took to dealership three times, has not been resolved. Recently, when braking for a stop light, engine fault reappeared and lost all power to the transmission. Huge safety issue.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #164

Jun 182015


  • 39,000 miles
Issues related per tsb #asi-44451 (NHTSA id #10055312) 2.0L motor lack of air conditioning on idle stuck in Chicago with over heating indicator lamp on display and overheating

- Churubusco, IN, USA

problem #163

Jun 052015


  • 31,000 miles
On the commute to work, the vehicle was on the expressway going the allowed speed limit of 70 miles per hour, suddenly the dashboard sensor light indicated to "check transmission, " the vehicle immediately stalled on the expressway. This vehicle has had multiple recalls due to wiring and stalling since it was purchased new in 2013. Vehicle has been taken in to repair recalls every time letter was received and above stated incident still occurred, despite very diligent maintennance....updated08/20/15

- Grand Blanc, MI, USA

problem #162

Mar 152015


  • 9,800 miles
While traveling down the highway in plover Wisconsin, smoke began to pour into the vehicle via the front vents. I looked forward and saw massive flames coming from under my hood. I quickly pulled over, shut the vehicle off and ran. I call 911, where it took 15 firemen and 500 gal of water to put out the 10ft flames (see fire report). The entire front end of my car has been destroyed along with all the contents. The fire broke through the firewall and melted underneath the dashboard. Front tires exploded

- Morton Grove, IL, USA

problem #161

May 152015


  • 13,000 miles
On 5/15/15, while driving on the interstate for approximately 1.5 hours, the notification for low engine coolant came on. Upon inspection, the coolant level was down about 1 inch from the max level. Please, note that the coolant was topped off one week prior. Coolant level was filled to max level again. On 6/6/15, upon starting vehicle, the notification for low engine coolant came on again immediately. The car had not been driven in 24 hours up to that time. Upon inspection, the coolant level was again about 1 inch below the max level. Vehicle will be taken to dealership service center for inspection/repair.

- Gautier, MS, USA

problem #160

Feb 262015


  • 14,200 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Escape. While driving at 30 mph, the vehicle decelerated, the transmission failed to shift into gear, and the check engine warning light illuminated. The engine was shut off and restarted, and the vehicle resumed normal operation. The failure recurred multiple times intermittently. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 14,200.

- Marcelluf, NY, USA

problem #159

Apr 082014


  • 12,000 miles
Starting in April of 2014 when the car was only 9 months old the warning light came on "get to safety" overheating engine. It went to pleasantville Ford where they replaced the engine. 1 month later all the transmission fluid fell out of the care. Back to pleasantville Ford where they replaced a part. Over the next 8 months the warning over heating "get to safety" would happen another 7 times. Ford would tow the car to pleasantville Ford they would fix (a sensor, fill fluid, and give me the run around) the final time I filled a complaint with BBB. They got a Ford mechanic from deer born, mi to look at the car. He replaced the radiator and right axial. Only for two weeks later the same "get to safety" and the car dies again.

- Ossining, NY, USA

problem #158

May 162015


  • 19,500 miles
I am stationed in germany with the us military and have taken my Ford to the : fordgarage, merkurstr.11 67663 kaiserslautern +49 0631 41 65 0 for all recalls and services. My problem/complaint: My engine/emissions light comes on and stays on( no blinking) three(3) times and goes off for three(3) and continues at each time I start my vehicle. The Ford shop said that all system are normal but the light continues and they cannot figure out the cause. I need assistance it makes me nervous every time I drive.

- Apo , AE, USA

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