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Ford Authority

Ford ‘Right Sized’ Fourth-Gen Ford Escape Sales

The current fourth-generation Ford Escape was introduced back in 2019 as a 2020 model year vehicle. As expected, sales of the Escape took a dive when the new model hit the market, a common phenomenon. This occurs as production of the outgoing model dips as the old model sells out remaining inventory at the dealer level, while production of the new model has not yet begun as the assembly plant undergoes retooling. However, even after production of the new model begins, sales do not recover right away, and instead take time to increase as interest in the new generation grows. Interestingly, in the case of the fourth-gen Escape, sales of the compact crossover experienced a downturn – and have yet to recover to prior levels.

2023 Ford Escape

Sales Results - USA - Escape

YearTotal
2022137,370
2021145,415
2020178,496
2019241,388
2018272,228
2017308,296
2016307,069
2015306,492
2014306,212

Ford Authority sought insight regarding this scenario at the reveal event for the refreshed 2023 Ford Escape. “So in the last year supply constraints have impacted the whole industry so we have felt that,” Escape brand manager, Adrienne Zaski, told Ford Authority Executive Editor, Alex Luft, in a recent interview. “But we have also, with the launch of the 2020 model, purposely changed how we offer the vehicle to build to demand. We didn’t want the Escape to be that commoditized product that you see everywhere, we did right size it by design.”

In other words, FoMoCo elected to purposefully scale back production of the Escape. This is something that Ford, among other automakers like GM, have done in order to avoid overproducing and then selling at steep discounts.

The downward trend in interest for the 2023 Ford Escape refresh doesn’t have The Blue Oval running scared, however. In fact, the Escape has a new partner in the stable: the Ford Bronco Sport. Both vehicles compete in the mainstream compact crossover segment, and their combined sales have made quite a big splash in their competitive bracket.

Sales Numbers - Ford Mainstream Compact Crossovers - Q3 2022 - USA

MODEL Q3 22 / Q3 21 Q3 22 Q3 21
FORD ESCAPE +34.57% 35,391 26,299
FORD BRONCO SPORT +3.56% 21,427 20,690
TOTAL +20.92% 56,818 46,989

It’s important to note that the Ford Escape and Ford Bronco Sport are geared toward their own niche markets despite sharing the Ford C2 platform. The Escape appeals to a customer base more interested in a sporty crossover to tool around town in, while the Bronco Sport attracts those who want off-road capabilities at their fingertips.

Want the latest on all things Blue Oval? Be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Escape news and continuous Ford news coverage.

Alexandra is a Colorado-based journalist with a passion for all things involving horsepower, be it automotive or equestrian.

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Comments

  1. John

    I think a couple other issues here is that the market for this type of vehicle (CUV or crossover or whatever) is way over saturated now. There are hundreds of models and they all look the same. This type of vehicle has also become the “old lady” vehicle and is not cool anymore, if it ever was.

    Gen Z is entering the job market and looking for something different. Gen X is entering their prime earning years and not into these CUV’s either.

    It feels like it’s the perfect time for Ford to come up with a modern day 64 Mustang type of hit vehicle again that is fun, good looking, and affordable.

    Reply
    1. John

      I think they did, and it’s called Maverick.

      Reply
      1. John

        The Maverick is a great, well-priced, utilitarian vehicle and I applaud Ford for making it. I wouldn’t call it fun nor particularity good looking.

        Reply
      2. Tylor

        Maverick is not a car. People wantto go back to cars now not SUV’s or Trucks.

        Reply
        1. Volki

          Which people want to go back to cars?

          Car sales have been down for 59 consecutive months now in the USA… seems like you’re pulling numbers out of an orifice.

          Reply
          1. John

            Gen Z (the youth market) LOVES sporty cars. Millennials are no longer the youth market.

            Reply
    2. Ford Owner

      The Mach-E is the best selling non-Tesla EV because it is a Mustang in modern design.

      Reply
  2. Tigger

    “But we have also, with the launch of the 2020 model, purposely changed how we offer the vehicle to build to demand. We didn’t want the Escape to be that commoditized product that you see everywhere, we did right size it by design.”

    Another flowery PR BS statement. Face it Ford: you’re failing in this segment whether it be through gouging the customer, not having the right amount of product due to the endless “supply chain” issues (that incidentally Honda, Toyota, and Hyundai/Kia seemed to master), and the ongoing quality issues. Charging premium prices works if it a superior product. Meanwhile the entry-level buyer is leaving Ford for Kia, Hyundai, and other Asian brands. Those customers, once lost, may never come back.

    Reply
  3. Richard

    The Escape is dead in 2025. Farley already considers it to be a commodity vehicle. Beyond this refresh there are no further plans to redesign the Escape. After 9 new Fords since 1997 including a 2016 and 2019 Escape we moved on from Ford and bought a Nissan Kicks as a second car.

    Reply
  4. Kevin

    It’s hideously heinous. This grille is so awful they keep reusing it.It needs to grow in size it’s under size compared to rav4 or crv. Just bring back the edge

    Reply
  5. JX

    Escape is a dead product…the 2020 gen, launched in 2019 floundered huge time…I called it many many times. This gen is a subpar vehicle, the 3cyl engine is terrible, the interior is full of cheap hard plastics and the design is terrible…cheap cheap and cheap ALL the way.

    Old Escape owners like me (I have a 2010, 2014 & 2017) abandoned the brand in droves…I ended up with a RAV4 – I am coming up for a new purchase soon and the Escape/Bronco don’t even ring the bell.

    I am probably buying a new RAV4 or a CRV…

    So yeah Ford – you lost one customer…

    Reply
    1. Jerry

      Yeah, they screwed up and lost cargo spaces, shrink down. Can’t put baggage in there anymore. I used to have a great roomy 2013 escape. Now today they looked ugly and smaller. I don’t get it. It not suv anymore.

      Reply
  6. Joseph M. Tress

    Ford with all the recalls. Quality’s is not number one.
    Ford get one is done, do it right the first time.
    Very frustrating wasting time at dealership with recalls my time is valuable we’re is the customers compensation.
    Have been a Ford person my whole life, Ford you are challenging me on my next purchase. Owner of 1965 mustang, 2014 escape, 2016 explorer, 2022 F350 diesel.

    Reply
  7. WMc

    I have owned three Escapes, 2010, 2013 and and 2021…Been happy with all of them. I did notice the fit and finish/plasticy,was not the best of the 2021 when I purchased it. I now need a larger vehicle. My dealer that I have bought 10 + vehicles of course does not have stock on SUVs like they use to..I get it because of supply chain and moving to ordering a vehicle verse having stock…What is frustrating the Edge is going away ( now $52k plus loaded)…Explorer makes sense but will cost me $60k plus with the options I want, and whatever stock my dealer has, they have tacked on at least $5K if it’s on the lot…I realize times have changed but my dealer who I have been doing business will not even give the slightest discount after many years of giving them my busines…And the new Escape, if I go that route again, is now priced at $ 42k…And the dealers still want to low ball on a trade …I see where in the comments where shoppers are considering Kia, Toyota, etc….Ford needs a vehicle that sits between Escape and Explorer asap… I believe Ford should also come down a dealerships selling stocked vehicles with additional tacked on premiums…Even if they are Mach E and Lightinings…I am now looking at other Dealerships after doing business with my Dealership in Glenview IL for over 40 years..

    Reply
    1. wmc

      …and also looking at other makes and Models…Kia, JEEP, etc..

      Reply
    2. Ford Owner

      Ford does produce a vehicle sized between the Escape and Explorer. It is called the Everest. Search Ford Authority for it

      Reply
      1. Volki

        The Everest is a limited market vehicle that’s probably in its last generation. In the markets where Ford actually moves volume, the vehicle between Escape and Explorer is called Edge.

        Reply
    3. Joe

      Look at the Lincoln Nautilus if you are looking in the 50 to 55K range. Much nicer then the Edge interior.

      Reply
  8. MJ

    Wow, so Ford planned on reduced sales ? If that is there Goal they are doing great with decreasing sales numbers just about every month.
    What idiots strive for reduced sales . Makes no sense at all. Wait till the EV saturation level hits soon and all the OEMs with have unused EV production with no sales to support it . Pleas buy our overpriced , short range electric vehicles that cost more to charge with electricity than gas costs.

    Reply
    1. Ford Owner

      There will never be an “EV saturation level” because every manufacturer is building them. By 2030 there will be only new EVs.

      Reply
    2. Alex Luft

      @MJ This is business 101.

      In the past, Ford was selling a lot of Escapes but at lower profit margins. In essence, Ford was overproducing and then offering a lot of incentives to move the units. Today, Ford sells less Escapes in aggregate but the units it does sell drive higher margins. Less work for the same net result is a net win. It’s as simple as that.

      Reply
      1. Tigger

        What you describe works if you’re brand is premium. Ford,Chevy, Hyundai, Honda, etc are entry-level brands. If customers are happy with the product they’ll come back. Ford’s indifference to losing buyers and market share will bite them in the back when there’s a recession and everyone is begging for buyers. “Less work” now equates to more work later trying to get new and conquest customers to the brand.

        Reply
      2. JBX

        What you are describing is how you kill a brand – after slowly pushing all of your customers away with so much downsizing. People pay attention – Escape owners left in droves, no Explorer owners are as well…maybe another downsize?! Cut them because they are not selling?!

        Conquering a new customer from a diff brand is very hard vs hooking your customer for life…

        Reply
  9. L. FREEMAN

    Stopping the Edge in the U.S. but continuing production in China is crazy. As an owner of a 2018 Edge everyone who rides in it states it has more room especially in back seat area than other manufactures like vehicles. It is perfect for families who don’t want or need 4 wheel drive. If you must go electric keep the Edge in the mix!!!!

    Reply
    1. Joe

      It only comes only in AWD since 2022.

      Reply
      1. Ronald Vekre

        Whatever u do please do not get rid of the EDGE i had a 2019 luved that car now I have a 2022 love it also, and will have a 2023 if I like

        Reply
  10. Al B

    I partially agree with almost all the commentors, particularly those who point out that the Koreans are a huge new factor in this market……and they are kicking butt. However, if Ford abandons this category they are admitting defeat and saying that they can’t play on the world stage. You can’t live off “specialty” vehicles only, unless you are German!

    I think the 2023 Escape looks pretty cool, and having a hybrid and plug-in puts them ahead of much of the competition. My wife and I will soon be market and will include the Escape in our test drives. Hopefully the 2023 interior will be sufficiently upgraded to eliminate the “cheap” feeling, and the latest quality ratings will be an upgrade from Ford’s all-to-frequent weak performances.

    Reply
    1. Becky

      Careful, I have been eagerly awaiting my PHEV for 11 months with no word about when they might start building.

      Reply
  11. X Ford Supporter.

    Someone is trying to shut Ford down, there is something wrong here. Their exit from SEMA and no longer participating in Canadian car shows because no one is participating in the past few years?? Did it ever occur to thos making those decisions that we have went through two years of covid and couldn’t participate? Carlisle All Fords show had record participation both from a spectator point of view and number of cars displayed..

    Reply
  12. Brad Barefoot

    Somebodies Gotta Sat It ! Ford, you’ve made way too many wrong decisions. To me the biggest is the 3 cyc engines … and any turbo engine. Your competition doesn’t lean on the turbo option like you do. They have yes, less powerful engine, but long lasting and low cost with easy to maintain engines. And the American public, they gotta get over all the gotta have more horse power nonsense. I’ve driven 4 cyc engines for over 44 years, back when 87 HP was the normal, and maybe 105 HP was possible. And guess what … you lived with it or walked, or rode a bike. This was during the oil embargo days … and if you didn’t work, you didn’t drive unless you had to. My car was a ’73 Chevy Vega … when other friends lo-mpg cars were parked, I was driving. And Ford, you can’t EV your way to greatness … you’ve got one of the best Hybrid platforms, I’ve drive one for 10 years in a ’13 C-Max we bought new. Now another mistake, you’re offering too many options for the Maverick … for now offer the XL an XLT, and forget the off road nonsense, Maverick was designed for that.

    Reply
  13. Kevin

    I also find this to be major PR spin and complete BS! The reason the sales dropped was the 2020 model was a downgrade in quality. The interior is complete garbage and all hard plastic. The Escape is way overpriced for what you get. I had a 2021 and the radio rattled the whole suv. Sounded like they had no insulation at all and it was a tin can. Sunroof also rattled. I could only stomach it for 8 months before selling. I was lucky enough to have the 2.0 ecoboost, test drove the 1.5 and WTF were they thinking? At idle it shakes the whole car, at speed it sounds like a lawnmower. The main other reason is the looks! They made it so ugly. Bronco sport looks great but it’s the same story with interior plastics. Door handles are trash, touch points all on the door are hard and have rough seems and you can only get the 1.5 in all the trims but top trim. Same story for the 2020 Explorer. I ordered a 2022 ST. Built in dec of 21′ and I didn’t take delivery till June of 22′. Has an exhaust leak, major shaking on highway from flat spots in tires and worst of all the rear windshield wiper would randomly go on. Dealer would do nothing to fix. Sold after 4
    months and now I’m looking at a Hyundai or Kia. I hope Ford gets it together.

    Reply
  14. Becky

    How can they sell a car you won’t get for a year+ unless they cover up the length of wait, we were told 3 months, it has been 11 months with no word about when they might begin. We were told that EV and PHEV cars were going to the coasts first to fill some regulation that would allow them to sell more gas guzzling trucks.

    Reply
  15. Kipp Meyers

    Junk. Especially anything with an eco boost engine. I will never buy another ford.

    Reply
  16. Edward

    I had 2013 1.6 escape se it developed water leaks engine 16000.miles traded it to 2015 titanium escape 2.o transmission warranty wouldn’t covet torque converter ford wanted 3000 to 7000 to fix so I 144000 miles traded to a new explorer done trans.axles back to rear wheel drive .

    Reply

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