really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
78,760 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 engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2008 Ford Escape Hybrid Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #46

Jul 192014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 71,000 miles


When driving at higher speeds (approximately over 50 mph), the car would suddenly lose engine power and the "stop safely now" message would come on. The car would go into limp-home mode and allow me to pull over to the side of the road. Turning off the car and restarting it would alleviate the problem for a few more minutes of driving. This happened about 15 times on a 60 mile trip home, allowing me to drive anywhere from one to 10 miles at a time before the engine shut off. This was accompanied at times with an engine overheating message. I took the car to the dealer for a repair. They claimed it was a malfunctioning electronic throttle body and replaced it for about $1000. A week later, the same thing happened twice on a 30-mile highway trip when driving at higher speeds, but has not happened since then.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #45

Aug 262014

Escape Hybrid 4WD 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
I was stopped at a signal. When the light turned, I pressed down on the accelerator and the car started to move as normal. Just past the intersection, the gas engine shut down, a red light came on and the car lost all power. The car behind me struck us. Upon going to the dealership, they knew that the electronic cooling pump had failed. There was not many questions, as they described what the symptoms were. Upon looking at the internet, it would seem that this is a known issue with Ford, and that the new ecp was redesigned to prevent the issue. There are literally hundreds of complaints about vehicles losing power to this same problem. In some cases, as was mine, electrical power is lost as well, causing loss of power steering and brakes.

- Temple City, CA, USA

problem #44

Jul 032014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 92,000 miles
Received the red master vehicle electrical hazard warning lamp, immediately followed by engine shutting down while on highway. Cause was a failure of the mecs pump Ford pn 5M6Z-8C419-a. after it happened I researched and found other reports issued for same issue. See 10597458,10604791,10596349,10592073,10588181,10588170,10568053,10567619,10567234,10566464,10565177,10560868,10557567,10554859,10548328,10547463,10537539,10533928,10531556,10525970,10523932,10523371,10521436,10521116,10516178,10514445,10513916,10511202,10505543,10504308,10500579,10500159,10461261,10462036,10462214,10463235,10468355,10474060,10475192,10476583,10477359,10485797,10490135,10460373,10459919,10459596,10459518,10458744,10457505,10457488,10456830,10456625,10455257,10455049,10454894,10453205,10448469,10448468,10409310,10409374,10410388,10411980,10412392,10416615,10419367,10430477,10326667,10329839,10348540,10349760,10352951,10360029,10361122,10393862,10393924,10399209.

- Wappingers Falls, NY, USA

problem #43

Aug 062014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 57,000 miles


Mecs coolant pump defect causes loss of engine power at highway speeds resulting in an extremely unsafe condition. Ford is aware of the defect in this "hybrid unique" component but refuses to cover it under their hybrid component warranty. In my case I was driving at 55mph on a public highway when the dash illuminated a red triangle with the message "stop safely now". I had to scramble to get to the right shoulder and create a dangerous condition by cutting off the drivers around me. I had to pay out of pocket for a redesigned mecs pump replacement and have not experienced the issue since. Pending lawsuit, macdonald V. Ford Motor Co., case number 3:13-cv-02988, in the U.S. district court for the northern district of California.

- Waltham, MA, USA

problem #42

Jul 292014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 54,953 miles
A warning appeared "stop safely now." We pulled over and restarted. We were able to drive the vehicle in for service without the light coming on again. The diagnosis was a bad throttle body and it was replaced under warranty and listed as a recall in the service report.

- N. Potomac, MD, USA

problem #41

May 012014

Escape Hybrid 3-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
Starting in may of 2014, my car's performance has been untrustworthiness. Some days there's no problem-- I push on the gas pedal and the car moves accordingly. At a stop sign, I can go. While moving at 50 mph on the freeway, I can easily accelerate and move around a monster size 18 wheeler. But on the days when I press the gas pedal and the car doesn't respond, I sweat. Here's a description: Foot on the gas pedal, no response... so I press down further, without any acceleration of the car. Finally, now freaked out that the car is not moving (and that another car is right on my tail) I press the pedal to the floor-- with no immediate reaction. Then-- bam-- surprise! it works and the sudden surge sends me flying beyond intention and I must press on the brakes to slow. At stop signs this happens and people behind me get frustrated, probably thinking I'm on drugs or something. But really, it's not me; it's my Ford Escape hybrid 2008. The rate of incidence has gradually increased from may to the current date of July, and consequently, I am afraid to drive this car.

- Danville, CA, USA

problem #40

Jun 082014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 68,000 miles


As we were driving, a "hazard" light come on the dash, the engine shut completely off, and a message, "stop car safely, " also appeared on the dash. We did so, and turned off the car and turned it back on. Car drove fine for about 5 minutes and the same thing happened. We did this for about an hour or so to get home. Had we been on a busy interstate. A sudden engine shut off could have been very dangerous. We took the car to the dealership and were informed that the electric battery had overheated because the water pump was not working. I have come across similar complaints while looking into my situation. Some examples: repairpal.com/coolant-pump-on-hybrid-may-fail-and-cause-celengine-shutdown-562.

- Marietta, OH, USA

problem #39

May 232014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
I was driving my 2008 Ford Escape hybrid at about 65mph in the leftmost lane shortly after merging from I83 South onto I395 (baltimore beltway) when, with no advance warning whatsoever, the gas pedal stopped responding at the same time as the triangle with an exclamation point and the "stop safely now" (as if I had any choice) message appeared. By the grace of god I was able to coast across 5 lanes of traffic to the breakdown lane. I was anxious to get home to feed the dogs, and my husband was out of town, so rather than call a tow truck I restarted the car and kept going in the right-hand lane for another 3 or 4 miles until the same thing happened again. It took another 2 hours (with an 15-20 additional stalling episodes) until before I was able to make it home to annapolis. Through the internet (and my husband crawling under the car) we have confirmed that the source of the problem is a well-documented faulty oem hybrid drive train mecs coolant water pump. Seems to me that this is a catastrophic failure that is every bit as serious as the GM ignition switch problem, and a fatal accident waiting to happen. It is unconscionable that Ford has not issued a recall on this issue, and unconscionable that NHTSA has not forced Ford to do so.

- Annapolis, MD, USA

problem #38

Mar 082014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 58,225 miles
Car goes limp. Ford has tsb 08-24-05. Mecp fails. Poor design. Has gone limp on me ~8 times. Each time car drifts to a stop regardless of location, speed, etc...(eg, can be going 75mph on highway) and it goes limp. Cannot move afterwards for minutes. Many cases of this happening have been reported. Tsb 08-24-5 states that some 2005-2008 Escape hybrid and 2006-2008 mariner hybrid vehicles may exhibit a red triangle light and codes indicating a transaxle overtemp. This condition may result in reduced power as the system activates fail safe operation. Codes P1A0E, P1A0F, P0A3C, P0A3E, P0A7A, P0A7C and P1A0D may also be set.

- Lee, NH, USA

problem #37

Apr 032014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
Car engine turned off at 70 mph. I was able to drive the car to the shoulder of the road. Prior to the engine shut-off, only the "wrench indicator" was on; it comes on occasionally. Service centers can never diagnose the issue once the car has turned off. Warning light on dash said "safety mode" at the time of engine shut-off. I was able to restart the car after about two minutes. Dash warning indicators turned off. Got back on the interstate only for the car engine to turn-off again at the base of an off-ramp about four miles farther up the road. I was driving the car at 55-60 mph before the second incident. I was able to pull into the Ford dealership.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #36

Sep 012012

Escape Hybrid

  • 127,000 miles


Since the first time I experienced a braking failure incident I have done a lot of research&visits to mechanics to retrieve codes thrown from the car off diagnostic machines. Replacing the hcu carries a premium price tag of $5K-7K. Prior to the first accident, there is no obvious way that I could have damaged the hcu with my very normal driving habits (I.e.no history of towing, no long downhill braking)&the hcu is not a component susceptible to wear to the point of early failure. I believe that the Escape hybrids braking system is defective by design (hence the tsb)&fault lies with Ford.I consider this brake failure very serious&a problem that Ford had never bothered to notify me about or recall.my attempts to get Ford's attention on this matter have been fruitless.to summarize NHTSA is not concerned B/C nobody has gotten killed by these defective brakes. Ford claims no responsibility for this very serious&significantly dangerous design flaw.after several episodes of brake failure I found tsb 05-8-5 (8/5/05 NHTSA id#10017553:escape hybrid vehicles exhibit the yellow ABS&red E- brake warning lamps illuminating after the engine is started, &an increase in brake pedal effort)Ford claims no responsibility to deal w/the problem.its not safe to drive w/O the repair, it had no value being broken, &I did not have the conscience to sell the vehicle w/a dangerous problem.Ford failure to proactively address this safety issue is rather appalling.Ford abandoned me w/a$7,000 bill to repair a problem that is solely related to their poor design.first accident description:ABS warning light&service engine light illuminated on cluster."service brake system"&"regenerative braking disabled" illuminated on message board. On the highway in rush hour traffic, upon extreme braking, brakes failed to stop the vehicle in time to avoid a rear-end collision with the vehicle stopped in front of me.

- Pacific, MO, USA

problem #35

Mar 082014

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 85,803 miles
Multiple incidents of the vehicle shutting down occurred on 3/8/2014 beginning while travelling along a 2-lane highway (ca-74 around idyllwild area) at approximately 10:30 P.M. vehicle displayed red triangle icon with exclamation point inside the triangle and words in red "stop safely now", at which point power to the engine was disabled although power steering appeared to still be active. I then pulled over at a turn-out (luckily one was nearby since I was going uphill and losing speed quickly). I proceeded to turn the ignition to the off position and within minutes re-started without further incident until approximately midnight at which point I was travelling along a major freeway in san diego I-15 southbound at a speed of 65-70 mph. At this point the vehicle became disabled after displaying the red icon and words described above. This happened again 4 separate times. These 4 incidents occurred within a 6 mile stretch of each other and within a 20 minute window. There was no other indication that anything was wrong with the vehicle - no system notice of overheating, faulty electrical, etc.

- La Mesa, CA, USA

problem #34

Dec 162013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
This week the news had stories about General Motors recalling several cars because the ignition can suddenly turn off causing the car to lose power while driving. There were even deaths due to bad accidents as a result of the ignition failure and car losing power. This reminded me of an incident that happened to me which was similar. I was driving my 2008 Ford Escape hybrid last December, on I-280 in san francisco during rush hour at 65 mph, when suddenly the dash beeped at me, flashed the check engine light, displayed a message to pull over safely, and the engine had no power! I suddenly found myself in heavy traffic, middle lane of the freeway and no power to safely pull over. I was losing speed and slowed to where I cut between other cars and over to the shoulder. I'm sure I cut someone off in the process. Luckily there was not a horrible accident. There could have easily been an accident. The same thing happened three more times in the next few days before I took the car to the dealer to be fixed. They indicated that this is a common problem of which they are aware. The Ford dealer diagnosed it with code P1A0D, which was a bad coolant pump for the electric generator. I did some research and found that many other Ford escape owners have experienced the same situation as I did where the vehicle lost power while at high speed and put them into a dangerous situation. A simple google search on this finds several blog reports of people with similar situations. Ford has yet to issue a recall on this, but I have found that there is a class action lawsuit against Ford: Macdonald V. Ford, case no. 3:13-cv-02988, in the us district court for the northern district of California.

- Cupertino, CA, USA

problem #33

Dec 272013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 49,950 miles
We were driving on highway 80 going about 70 mph when the engine suddenly shuddered and quit. A red triangle with an exclamation point in the center appeared on the dash with the message "stop safely now". fortunately, there was a shoulder and no traffic in the right lane, so we pulled off. We shut the engine off and restarted it a few minutes later. We proceeded, staying in the right lane and the same thing happened. This occurred 5 times including once on the san francisco bay bridge. In researching this, I found that this is a common problem with Ford Escape hybrids and that it is a faulty motor electronics coolant pump. Ford has issued a technical service bulletin about this problem (tsb08-24-5), but has not yet issued a recall. Since this is a potentially serious problem that could lead to injury or death, I strongly urge you to force Ford to issue a recall.

- South San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #32

Dec 092013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • miles
Throttle body failure; acceleration issues.

- Scottsdale, AZ, USA

problem #31

Oct 172013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 92,827 miles
It was Thursday, October 17, 2013. The ambient air temperature was about 62 degrees. It was sunny. The streets were dry. I was driving South from austin to new braunfels, Texas on I-35 at approximately 7:15 a.M. I had the speed control set for 55 M.P.H. as I was leaving san marcos, an alarm tone sounded, and the dash board display showed "stop safely now" and the engine shut off. I was able to move to the shoulder using battery power only at less than 20 miles an hour, causing issues with other traffic on the interstate, with many of the other drivers anxious to get to work. I stopped the car, and when it was safe to do so, exited the vehicle and did a perimeter scan for issues. None were detected. I opened the hood and checked for untoward issues. There was no smoke. The engine wasn't overly hot. Oil was full to the appropriate mark. The vehicle had been serviced by the dealership who sold the vehicle to me about 1790 miles prior to this incident, and a full diagnostic was performed without any issues detected. After completing this check, I restarted the car and drove for another 20 or so miles when the alarm and display repeated as above. Again there were no issues. I restarted the vehicle after about three minutes and was able to complete the 75 mile commute. The return trip had no issues. Since the vehicle shut down completely without warning in fast-moving traffic, this is a catastrophic failure. Information from the internet indicates that Ford has had this issue since the first Escape hybrids were on the road, and there appears to be no definitive problem or correction. I request that the NHTSA examine this to determine if a recall should be performed before someone is killed because of a faulty alarm that shuts the vehicle down completely without warning.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #30

Sep 282013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 80,800 miles
Driving on highway with no apparent problem, then suddenly, three things happen simultaneously: 1) the gas engine shuts off completely, leaving no power to maintain speed, deceleration happens. 2) safety alert light illuminates in the instrument cluster. It's a red triangle with "!" inside of it. 3) message center displays "pull over safely" or words to that effect. This leaves you with absolutely no recourse, other than to somehow get to the side of the road, out of the way of any traffic conditions that are around you at that instant. The electric hybrid motor still operates, but that's only good to creep along like a golf cart, down the shoulder of the highway, if the safety of the shoulder looks better up ahead, to get out of the way of the traffic that's zooming by. Corrective action, once the owners manual is studied, is to put it in park, and turn off the ignition. Then, re-start and go. It operates as if nothing had just happened! then, in a while, it happens again, and again, and again, (varying miles between episodes, anything roughly from 1 mile to 70 miles) until either you finally give up and have it towed, or you finally get it to some final destination.

- Lugoff, SC, USA

problem #29

Jul 062013

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 62,500 miles
Failure of the electronic water pump for the hybrid system causes the immediate shutdown of the vehicle leaving driver no power to move to a safe area. There is no warning but just an immediate electrical shutoff until driver can move to the shoulder and restart the vehicle. This occurred twice and left us in very dangerous situations before I had the car repaired. Ford would not replace the part claiming it is not covered under their hybrid warranty although the part is integral to the hybrid system. Part should be recalled before fatalities occur.

- Hoover, AL, USA

problem #28

Aug 032013

Escape Hybrid

  • 70,200 miles
While traveling at highway speed, the car suddenly loses all power and the stop safely now light comes on in the dash. I had to pull over quickly while avoiding being killed by highway traffic. No warning at all. During my road trip, this happened 3 times on the highway. During my return trip, it happened 3 more times. Problem will only occur at highway speeds and during long road trips. My 20-min drive to work has no issues. This is a serious safety problem and a flawed design on Ford's part. My family and I could have been seriously injured or killed during any one of the six times the car mysteriously died on the highway. From my research, this problem can be caused by several components and is difficult to diagnose in the shop. For older models, there has been tsb's issued, but not for 2008 and later models. I have known several 2008 models that experienced the same problem around 60,000 - 70,000 miles. Browsing though this website shows many have complained about this issue. Ford needs to address this asap before someone gets killed or injured on the highway.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #27

Jun 222012

Escape Hybrid 4-cyl

  • 34,000 miles
While driving down the road at highway speed on a summer night at around 9:00 pm, the car's engine suddenly stopped, a red warning triangle light came on, and the dash message screen said, "stop safely now." I pulled the car to the side of the road, turned it off, and was able to resume driving after a few minutes. On 5 separate trips subsequently, this sudden loss of engine power has happened, often in heavy traffic where pulling to the side of the road was very difficult and dangerous. The failure often happens multiple times on the same trip. Each time the failure has happened has been in the summer and in the late afternoon or evening. Each time the car can be restarted once pulled to the side of the road and turned off.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?