Jones Ford Wickenburg Compares 2017 Ford Escape VS 2016 Mazda CX-5 Near Wickenburg, AZ

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2017 Ford Escape

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VS

2016 Mazda CX-5

Safety Comparison

The Escape (except S) offers optional parking sensors to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or, optionally, in front of the vehicle. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

The Escape Titanium’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Compared to metal, the Escape’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Mazda CX-5 has a metal gas tank.

Both the Escape and the CX-5 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Ford Escape is safer than the Mazda CX-5:

 

Escape

CX-5

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

3 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

47%

77%

Neck Stress

175 lbs.

260 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

453/192 lbs.

407/293 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

There are almost 6 times as many Ford dealers as there are Mazda dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Escape’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Escape third among compact suvs in their 2016 Initial Quality Study. The CX-5 isn’t in the top three.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Mazda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 25 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mazda is ranked 26th, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

The Escape has more powerful engines than the CX-5:

 

Horsepower

Torque

Escape 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

168 HP

170 lbs.-ft.

Escape 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

179 HP

177 lbs.-ft.

Escape 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

245 HP

275 lbs.-ft.

CX-5 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

155 HP

150 lbs.-ft.

CX-5 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

184 HP

185 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford Escape turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Mazda CX-5 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

Escape

CX-5

Zero to 60 MPH

6.8 sec

8.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.2 sec

16.3 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.8 MPH

84.5 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Escape EcoBoost’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The CX-5 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Escape has almost a gallon more fuel capacity than the CX-5 FWD’s standard fuel tank (15.7 vs. 14.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The Escape has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Escape EcoBoost’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the CX-5:

 

Escape

Escape EcoBoost

CX-5

Front Rotors

11.8 inches

12.6 inches

11.7 inches

The Escape stops shorter than the CX-5:

 

Escape

CX-5

 

70 to 0 MPH

173 feet

181 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

116 feet

125 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

139 feet

142 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Escape has larger tires than the CX-5 (235/55R17 vs. 225/65R17).

The Escape’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the CX-5’s standard 65 series tires. The Escape’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the CX-5’s optional 55 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Escape has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The CX-5’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Escape’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The CX-5 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

The Escape Titanium AWD handles at .85 G’s, while the CX-5 Grand Touring pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Escape Titanium AWD goes through AutoWeek’s slalom 1.3 MPH faster than the CX-5 Grand Touring (42.5 vs. 41.25 MPH).

The Escape Titanium AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.2 seconds quicker than the CX-5 Grand Touring (27.3 seconds @ .6 average G’s vs. 28.5 seconds @ .58 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

The front grille of the Escape (except 2.0L ECOBoost) uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The CX-5 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Escape Titanium is quieter than the CX-5 Touring AWD (39 vs. 40 dB).

Passenger Space Comparison

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Escape SE/Titanium’s rear seats recline. The CX-5’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Escape has a larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the CX-5 with its rear seat folded (68 vs. 64.8 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the Escape easier. The Escape’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 27.3 inches, while the CX-5’s liftover is 29.2 inches.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Escape’s cargo door can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Escape also (except S) offers an optional power cargo door, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button or just by kicking your foot under the back bumper. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening cargo door.

Ergonomics Comparison

When three different drivers share the Escape Titanium, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Escape Titanium’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The CX-5 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The power windows standard on both the Escape and the CX-5 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Escape is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The CX-5 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Escape’s optional front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The CX-5’s passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Escape SE/Titanium’s exterior keypad. The CX-5 doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system.

The Escape’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The CX-5’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Escape has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. When the ignition turns off, the headlights turn off after a delay timed to allow you to securely get to your front door. The CX-5 only offers an automatic headlight on/off feature as an extra cost option.

On extremely cold Winter days, the Escape Titanium’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Both the Escape and the CX-5 offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Escape has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The CX-5 doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The Escape (except S) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The CX-5 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The Escape Titanium’s optional Active Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The CX-5 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Escape is less expensive to operate than the CX-5 because typical repairs cost much less on the Escape than the CX-5, including $25 less for a water pump, $153 less for an alternator, $17 less for front brake pads, $159 less for a starter, $301 less for fuel injection and $52 less for front struts.

Recommendations Comparison

Motor Trend performed a comparison test in its September 2013 issue and the Ford Escape SE won out over the Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Escape second among compact suvs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The CX-5 was rated third.

The Ford Escape outsold the Mazda CX-5 by almost three to one during the 2016 model year.

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