hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
49,815 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.

2008 Ford Escape Hybrid brakes problems

brakes problem

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2008 Ford Escape Hybrid Owner Comments

problem #17

Jul 202016

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape hybrid. When the brake pedal was depressed at approximately 40 mph, the pedal extended to the floorboard. The vehicle failed to stop within a reasonable amount of time. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the hydraulic control unit needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 85,000. Updated 11/29/16

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #16

Apr 042012

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 47,439 miles
The hcu unit which is specific to hybrid escapes went out on me causing ABS to not function properly (brakes turned to sponge). I was inside of warranty 8years/ 100000 miles unique hybrid component. I had less than 48,000 and was inside of four years of having bought the hybrid SUV brand new. Contacted Ford dealership which then directed me to Ford corporate office. They said the warranty did not cover the unique hybrid component!! I had room to stop so I was lucky that no one was hurt when the hcu unit went out.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #15

May 102012

Escape Hybrid

  • 77,000 miles
Started vehicle and both the ABS and the brake light were on - the message said regen brake had been disabled and there was a brake issue. Took the car in to the dealership the next day and was told the hydraulic brake system needed to be replaced and would cost 4 grand to fix. It seems this is occurring quite a bit with Ford Escape hybrids but there is no recall as of yet.

- Conifer, CO, USA

problem #14

Jan 272012

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 72,000 miles


The night of January 27, 2012, as I was driving through traffic near my home, the brakes on my 2008 Ford Escape hybrid failed, my dashboard readout indicating my regenerative brakes have disengaged. I carefully returned the quarter mile or so home, and took my vehicle to the nearby fairfield (California) Ford dealership early Saturday morning, both in order to avoid other drivers, and have my brakes repaired. To their credit, they took my vehicle without an appointment. Over the next few days, the service department contacted me to inform me that two of the computer systems on my vehicle had failed: One controlling the regenerative brakes, the second controlling the fans used to cool the hybrid vehicle's batteries. In a moment of candor, Ford service representative[xxx] informed me the unusual failure was the brake-related failure, as the Ford of fairfield service department was replacing the fan-related computer part, "all the time." My concerns are similarly two-fold: First, the thought that my regenerative breaks simply disengaged is disturbing enough, as it put me and my children in immediate harm. Almost more than that, though, is the fact that the computer part controlling the cooling of my hybrid's batteries appears to fail "all the time." Since there was no indication on the part of my vehicle's performance informing me that the hybrid battery cooling fan was not operating properly, there is simply no knowing when my vehicle could have caught fire in a manner similar to that affecting some volts manufactured by Chevrolet. I am interested in making sure similar failures to not impact other owners of Ford Escape hybrids. Should you need any additional information, my daytime phone number is [xxx]. thank you for your attention to this matter, and I look forward to hearing from you. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Fairfield, CA, USA

problem #13

Jan 192012

Escape Hybrid

  • 48,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape hybrid. The contact stated that when starting the vehicle, the ABS and emergency brake lights were illuminated. While driving approximately 10 mph and depressing the brakes, she noticed a jerking sensation. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where they advised the contact that the hydraulic control unit needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted and they offered no assistance. The failure and the current mileages were approximately 48,000.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #12

Jan 032012

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
The hydraulic control unit of the ABS experienced a failure resulting in internal loss of pressure. The only repair solution is for the dealer to replace then entire hydraulic control unit at a cost of over $3000. It seems awfully odd that 1) only the dealer can diagnose and repair element, 2) only the dealer can order the parts, 3) there is no way to repair just the failing component but the whole hcu must be replaced, and 4) the cost is so extreme. I've read online about other Ford escape owners whose hcu had failed and it seems this may be defective in either design or in function. Certainly making it a dealer-only repair seems shady.

- Menlo Park, CA, USA

problem #11

Nov 102011

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • miles


While driving my 2008 Ford Escape hybrid, the warning chime sounded, "service brakes" flashed on the display, and I lost almost all of my braking power as I was coming up on a stop sign. I was barely able to stop. Later, after the car was turned off, the brakes were restored. This has occured several times in the last week. Each time I start the car, all is ok, as I accellerate, there is a clunk as if the engine wants to stall but keeps going due to momentum. A scan of system faults shows brakes all ok. I drive the car a few mile and the ABS light comes on and the check brakes light comes on and stays on. Car still seems to run fine with ABS light and check brakes indicator. But soft brakes are very woorysome.

- Bremen, IN, USA

problem #10

Dec 302010

Escape Hybrid

  • 73,000 miles
Purchased 2008 4 wheel drive feh used in Nov.2010. On two occasions the brake pedal went to the floor. First occasion ABS brake warning light came on. After start/stop ignition brakes came back. Took to Ford dealer for codes. No codes noted. Second occurrence Oct. 2011. Brakes failed while pulling into a parking place. ABS and regen brake disabled lights came on. Took to local dealer kept car 8 days. Could not replicate problem. Codes did register. Talk of a master cylinder replacement, but favored recharging elec. Battery and changed dirty filter on it. I was very lucky - if the brakes had failed as they did and I was approaching a stop light with another car ahead of me I would have hit it. Dealer says it probably ok. Bought car for our 16 year old son to drive - too unsafe and unpredictable. Traded in.

- Santa Ynez, CA, USA

problem #9

Oct 072011

Escape Hybrid

  • 37,500 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Ford Escape hybrid. The contact stated that upon starting the vehicle, the check brake system warning light illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact then depressed the brake pedal and the pedal depressed to the floor. The vehicle was shut off and upon restart, the vehicle operated as normal. The failure recurred on an intermittent basis. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer, where it was in the process of having the failure diagnosed and repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 37,500. The VIN was unavailable.

- Carson City, NV, USA

problem #8

Sep 082011

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 122,000 miles
Driving on the highway and ABS and emergency brake lights came on, along with message "system brake failure" and "regen brakes disabled". at this time, the brakes almost feel totally out (1/2 pressed) or very touchy (full press). Took it to a Ford dealership and they said they needed to replace ABS module ($2500) which we agreed to. A few days after it was replaced, same thing happened (lights, messages and brakes issues). We took it back, and by the time it was to the dealership the lights, messages and brakes were back to normal. They couldn't find an issues. A few days later, it happened again while in a traffic jam (very scary!!!) took it immediately to a dealership to have them check the codes. Took the codes to the original dealership and they took my escape for 2 days, saying they reset the codes and it was a computer issue. 5 days later it happened again in our downtown (very scary). No one seems to know what is going on. I have contacted Ford and they are not familiar with this issue however I have seen other mentions about this online.

- Madison, WI, USA

problem #7

May 242011

Escape Hybrid

  • 61,667 miles


2008 Ford escape hev needs a hcu (hydraulic control unit) replaced at 61,667 miles. Car was parked (emergency brake off) and when started both ABS and brake warning light came on. Took to dealership this morning and they indicated it was faulty. This appears to be a common problem with 2005 and later Ford escape hevs. Might be worth investigating. We were lucky the brakes didn't actually fail while driving!

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #6

Mar 102011

Escape Hybrid

  • 34,485 miles
2008 Ford Escape hybrid: Turned on the car, turned into a drive way to turn around noticed parking brake light on. Brake not engaged" brake failure car rolling into parked vehicle had to put car in park to stop. Backed out of drive way ABS light on, brake failure on dash, get brakes checked, parking brake light on. No brakes. I backed up again and then the lights were out and the car had hyper brakes.... light brake pedal pressure way sensitive. Over stoppage... took to dealer they said it was a connection to the battery? then my son told me about the hydraulic problem????" Ford still has care servicing other issues, 34,485 miles>.

- Glendale, CA, USA

problem #5

Nov 052008

Escape Hybrid 4WD 4-cyl

  • 29,000 miles
2008 Ford hybrid escape previously had a master cylinder replaced by the dealership and the tone ring as a result of brake failure. Yesterday the brakes failed again this time the ABS system was found to be faulty. The mechanic at the Ford dealership admitted that this was not a wear and tear issue, but a complete part failure that involved the ABS system. The part is supposed to be replaced, but I will have it retained. The vehicle is only 3 years only and has less than 30,000 miles on it. This is the 3rd issue of brake failure in this vehicle and the dealership has continued to attempt to make fixes to no avail.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #4

May 312010

Escape Hybrid

  • 59,621 miles
The vehicle has had at least two issues prior with the ABS system failing. Currently the ABS and the regenerative braking systems both failed making the vehicle impossible to stop with the brakes "cutting out" in the last 5 mph. The dealer was closed so the vehicle was brought to an independent shop who found that the ABS control assembly and the travel sensor in the master cylinder had failed!

- Mattapoisett, MA, USA

problem #3

Jul 292008

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 2,708 miles
2008 Ford escape. Consumer states brake failure and problems with other vehicles that are similar.

- Dunedin, FL, USA

problem #2

Feb 102008

Escape Hybrid

  • 2,000 miles
A few months after I bought my Ford Escape hybrid I heard a squeaky noise when making a left turn. This noise has increased over time. I have taken my SUV about three times to the dealer where I bought it and have explained my concerns about it. The mechanic specialized in hybrid cars has said it is fine and did not notice anything and suggested to use the parking brake. However, I stopped one afternoon when I was having the problem and the mechanic drove with me and heard it. They checked it and said that unfortunately that there was a brake default problem with Ford Escape hybrid. I learned that nothing was going to be made for now. Honestly, I did not feel happy about the services at Ford capital in raleigh, nc and decided to call Ford capital in wilmington, nc. I explained I wanted to make an appointment and told them about my concerns and they said they were aware of the braking default issue and Ford was working on how to solve the problem. This was last year and I am still waiting for a solution.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #1

Jul 172009

Escape Hybrid

  • 41,438 miles
Ford Escape hybrid 2008 check brake system message with ABS lights on then got regen brakes disabled when pressing brake pedal prior to taking out of park. 41438 miles (just out of warranty of course) and just experience no brakes when I backed out. I called the service desk and they claimed they never heard of any issues with regen brakes on my car or recalls. I look online and I find posts such as www.epinions.com/review/2006_ford_escape_hybrid/content_442261278340 and I'm about ready to just sick a lawyer on Ford instead of even attempting to put my family at risk of harms way. Not sure how this will resolve as it's Friday and they seemed to have vacated the building since I called just before 6 and was disconnected, called back and no answer. Not even a manager available to speak to me. I am scared for myself and my wife to drive this car...

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

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