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2018 Ford Escape vs. 2018 Ford Edge: What’s the Difference?

  • The Escape is between $5,000 and $8,000 cheaper

  • The Edge puts an emphasis on performance and refinement

  • Neither offer standard driver assistance features

The 2018 Ford Escape and the 2018 Ford Edge are two stylish, 5-seater crossovers. As a result, it may be difficult to tell them apart. Below, we’ve compared the two vehicles and outlined their major differences to help you decide.

The Escape was last all-new for the 2013 model year and received a refresh for the 2017 model year. The Edge was last fully-redesigned for the 2015 model year, and will be receiving a facelift for 2019. See 2018 Ford Escape models for sale near you

The Escape starts at $23,940 for a base S model and tops out at just over $32,140 in top-of-the-line Titanium trim. The Edge offers enhanced refinement and style, and therefore costs more; the base SE model starts at $29,315 while the Edge Sport rings in at $40,770. A new sporty, range-topping Edge ST model will be added for 2019. See 2018 Ford Edge models for sale near you


The Escape has Ford’s signature trapezoidal-shaped grille. SE-and-up trim levels get fog lights and chrome styling elements. A taught crease extends from the front fender through to the rear quarter panel. Around back, the Escape wears a handsomely styled liftgate and taillights that extend into the rear fenders. Dual exhausts are added starting with the SE trim level.

The Edge has many of the same styling cues of the Escape, but with sportier and more muscular proportions. All models receive a chrome grille, except for the top-of-the-line sport model, which has a menacing black grille. The Edge wears a well-defined crease through its belt line that runs from the front door to the rear; perhaps one of its best styling elements. Combined with its greenhouse, this helps to give the vehicle well-balanced proportions. The Edge’s taillights are sleeker than the Escape’s, and wrap around the tailgate for a futuristic look. All trim levels receive dual exhaust pipes. The base SE model comes with 18-inch wheels, while large, stylish wheels up to 21 inches are available on the Sport model.

The Escape is 178.1 inches long and 72.4 inches wide. The larger Edge is 188.1 inches long and 75.9 inches wide. The Edge also offers more ground clearance, but only slightly, with 8.0 inches to the Escape’s 7.8.


The Escape’s interior is functional, but perhaps a bit busy in its design. Every Escape comes with an LCD screen for its infotainment system and at the center of its gauge cluster. While the infotainment screen in S and SE models is rather small, SEL and Titanium models come with a larger 8.0-inch unit. Titanium models get leather seats.

The Edge’s interior is a cleaner design than the Escape’s and features more flat surfaces and right angles. It also incorporates a brushed aluminum-look trim, which adds to its upscale appearance when compared to the Escape. SE and SEL models come with one LCD screen in the center gauge cluster, while Titanium and Sport models receive their own design featuring one analog gauge flanked on either side by a full-color LCD display. The 8.0-inch Sync 3.0 infotainment system comes standard on Titanium and Sport models and is an option on SEL models. Titanium models come with leather seating surfaces, while the Sport receives leather seats with cloth inserts.

Up front, the Escape offers 39.9 inches of headroom and 43.1 inches of legroom. Back seat passengers get 39.0 inches of headroom and 37.3 inches of legroom. The Edge offers similar front seat dimensions, with 40.2 inches of headroom and 42.6 inches of legroom, and a slightly larger back seat, with 40.3 inches of headroom and 40.6 inches of legroom.

The Edge also offers more cargo space. With the rear seat up, the Escape offers 34 cu ft. of room and 68 cu ft. with the rear seat down. The Edge offers 39 cu ft. with the rear seat up, and 73 cu ft. with it folded, giving it an advantage of five cu ft. over the Escape in both configurations.


Base model Escapes come with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine making 168 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque. Step up to an SE or SEL model, and the Escape employs a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder making 179 hp and 177 lb-ft of torque. Titanium models get a larger 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder making 245 hp and 275 lb-ft or torque.

Base models are only available with front-wheel drive while the Escape SE, SEL and Titanium are all available with optional all-wheel drive. Thanks to the use of turbochargers in more powerful engines, the Escape is rather fuel efficient across the board, earning between 23 and 26 miles per gallon combined in all configurations.

The Edge is also available with three different engines. SE, SEL and Titanium models come with the same 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder found in the Escape Titanium, which also makes 245 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque in the Edge. Optional in the SEL and Titanium is a 3.5-liter V6 making 280 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. Sport models receive their own turbocharged 2.7-liter V6 that puts out an impressive 315 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque, good enough to get this crossover from 0-to-60 in 5.6 seconds; on par with many hot hatchbacks and other sports cars on the market today.

SE, SEL and Titanium models come with front-wheel drive and offer optional all-wheel drive, while AWD is standard on the Edge Sport. The 2.0-liter turbo is the Edge’s most fuel-efficient engine, earning 24 mpg combined with front-wheel drive; 23 with all-wheel drive. The 3.5-liter V6 earns 20 mpg combined with front-wheel drive, 19 with all-wheel drive, while the 2.7-liter V6 in the Edge sport earns 20 mpg overall with its standard all-wheel drive.

All iterations of the the Edge and Escape come standard with a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Features & Technology

The Escape SEL offers a power liftgate. On Titanium models, this becomes a foot-activated power liftgate; just wave your foot under the bumper with the key in your pocket and the tailgate will open — great for accessing the cargo area with your hands full. The Escape also offers an electronic parking brake and available proximity-based keyless entry, heated seats, a panoramic sunroof, a heated steering wheel and bi-xenon LED headlamps. A Sport Appearance package is available on SE models.

The Edge offers a number of fun features, as well. Like the Escape, a panoramic sunroof and hands-free, foot-activated tailgate are available. The Edge is also available with optional heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a 3-prong AC power outlet and ambient interior lighting that can be changed to a variety of different colors. Additionally, the Edge puts an emphasis on performance, and steering wheel mounted paddle shifters, a sport appearance package and a variety of optional wheels are offered.


Both the 2018 Ford Escape and Edge are available with Ford’s Sync 3.0 infotainment system. The system is standard on the Escape SEL and Titanium and on the Edge Titanium and Sport, and is optional on the Edge SEL. All iterations are compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Altogether, the infotainment offerings of the Edge and Escape are pretty much identical.


While the Escape and Edge both score well in most categories of Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash testing, both receive a score of Acceptable on the driver’s side small front-overlap test. The Escape received a score of Poor on the passenger side, while the Edge has yet to be tested. Both vehicles receive scores of Good in other major categories, although both are docked further for their lack of front-collision avoidance technology.

Both the Edge and Escape offer a bevy of electronic driver assistance safety features, but both also have one glaring omission. It should also be noted that in an age where many automakers are starting to offer these features as standard, none of these features are standard on the Edge or Escape; even the simplest require the buyer to fork over more money for added safety. Still, both are available with adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beams, blind spot monitoring, forward-collision warning, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, park assist and rear cross-traffic monitoring, while the Edge is also available with front and rear parking sensors. Neither vehicle is available with automated emergency braking, which will bring the vehicle to a halt in the event of a pending collision. This should be seen as a major drawback to either, as this is one of the most common and impactful driver assistance features on the market.



With its lower base price and practical features, the Escape is meant for anyone needing safe, reliable transportation at a reasonable price. With a base price of around $5,400 more than the Escape, the Edge offers more refinement, more standard features and an overall more upscale experience. While interior space and cargo capacity hardly differentiate the two, the Edge is differentiated further by its sportier nature and more powerful engines. Find a Ford Escape for sale or Find a Ford Edge for sale

Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill
Chris O'Neill is an author specializing in competitive analysis, consumer recommendations, and adventure-driven enthusiast content. A lifelong car enthusiast, he worked in the auto industry for a bit, helping Germans design cars for Americans, and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He runs an Instagram account, @MountainWestCarSpotter, which in his own words is "actually pretty good", and has a... Read More about Chris O'Neill

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