2018 Ford Escape vs. 2018 Subaru Forester

September 25th, 2018 by

2018 Ford Escape for sale

Let’s See How They Compare

The 2018 Ford Escape for sale in Leavenworth and the 2018 Subaru Forester also available in the area have a very similar price point, both coming in at about 30,000 dollars for the base models. They also have received similar ratings among consumers and expert reviewers. However, there are certainly some notable differences to explore when comparing these two SUVs.

Both the Escape and the Forester offer some great options. The Escape in particular has an excellent variety of engine and trim options. Both SUVs also have an abundance of cargo space; however, the Escape comes out a step ahead in provided space, placing it near the top of the class for small crossover SUVs.

Performance and Handling

In driving tests, both the Escape and Forester performed well. The Forester is quick, responsive, and provides ample power. The Escape boasts just as impressive speeds and power, accelerating from zero to 60 mph in just 7.1 seconds.

Performance in braking and drivability is quite similar on both models. There were a couple of differences in steering when these two SUVs were tested by the automotive press. The Forester is equipped with three steering modes; however, they did not perform as well as expected when put to the test. The Escape proved to be better, performing well in all tests for drivability.

Both vehicles offer adequate comfort whether driving in the city or on the open road. Experts were surprised by the comfort the Escape offers since it also performs well. The noise and vibration from either vehicle is rarely a source of complaint. The Forester has a bit of vibration and noise, but it is not unbearable. The Escape provides a quiet and smooth ride for all passengers, much better than many other similar vehicles including the Forester.

Interior and Comfort

The interior of these vehicles is where the Escape really pulls ahead. Foresters are equipped with touchscreens with many unnecessary menus. The variety of inessential menus and information on the Forester only serve as a distraction to the driver. The climate control is quite straightforward; however, overall the user interface design is lacking. Another issue concerns the abnormally high position of the seat.

Escape drivers have no similar complaints. The Escape delivers a high-quality interior design with a wealth of worthwhile features. The Escape has a very straightforward way of presenting the most commonly used buttons and controls. All necessary controls are within reach and very easy to use and understand.

It is quite easy to get in and out of either of these vehicles, and both offer ample room for drivers and passengers in the front and rear of the vehicle. The Forester, however, has a very odd seat position, not allowing for much adjustment to a lower setting. The driver’s seat sits quite high, making it feel as though the driver is perched atop the vehicle instead of inside it.

The Escape offers a very comfortable driving experience, with an eight-position power seat and manual tilt steering wheel. The interior materials are high quality.

The Escape and Forester both offer a lot of storage space. Both provide ample spots for holding drinks, packing multiple luggage bags, and loads of groceries. The front and rear seats offer small storage space for bottles, cell phones, and makeup. The front center console is great in both vehicles; however, the Escape frees up a bit more space by using an electric parking brake button instead of a handle.

The Escape also offers a really great option for folding the rear seats flat, offering more cargo space. The Forester also allows you to fold the seats; however, the load floor is not flat as it is in the Escape. The Forester also does not offer a lot of room for larger child car seats, whereas the Escape has ample room for these seats. Both vehicles have clearly labeled LATCH anchors, and the Escape has them placed at the seatback for easier access.


The Escape is equipped with the new Sync 3 system, which is considered one of the easiest touchscreen interfaces to use in any car. Sync 3 has clear graphics, a quick response time, and easy to navigate menus.

The Forester offers Subaru’s own suite of safety features, which are quite comprehensive. However, the Forester lacks Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities.

Both vehicles offer clear, high-quality navigation and audio systems. The Forester’s lack of smartphone connectivity is a big pitfall, especially compared to the ample offerings of the Escape. The Escape offers both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while also providing FordPass with the SyncConnect app that can monitor car health and even help with parking.

Both the Escape and the Forester offer a variety of optional driver aids as add-ons to the basic model. Rear view cameras, blind spot mirrors, and collision alerts are just some of the options these two vehicles can have equipped. Concerning voice recognition, the Forester offers great voice control for Apple users with the Siri Eyes Free app. However, Android users will have to use the Subaru’s standard voice controls. The Escape offers exceptional voice recognition to all drivers, again trumping the Forester.


Overall, both vehicles deliver wonderful performance. However, the Escape packs a bit more punch than the Forester does. The Escape is very quick and technologically advanced, while the Forester seems to be lagging a bit behind in this regard. The cargo space offered is quite similar, aside from the wonderful fold flat feature that the Escape features and the Forester lacks. Steering and handling is another area where the Escape just outshines the Forester. The Escape has superior handling and steering, feeling more like a car than an SUV. The Forester, on the other hand, is less responsive and refined offering a subpar driving experience. Finally, the Sync 3 system from Ford is light years ahead of the outdated Subaru system in terms of ease of use and connectivity.

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