2019 GMC Acadia vs. 2019 Ford Escape

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Escape doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the GMC Acadia’s middle seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Ford Escape doesn’t offer comfort guides on its middle seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Acadia are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Escape doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Escape doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

The Acadia (except SL/SLE) offers optional Forward Automatic Braking, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Escape offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The Acadia Denali offers an optional Surround Vision System to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Escape only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that flash a light and beep. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the Acadia and the Escape have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, 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 GMC Acadia is safer than the Ford Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

138

243

Neck Injury Risk

22%

43%

Neck Stress

162 lbs.

396 lbs.

Neck Compression

16 lbs.

112 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

112/392 lbs.

233/311 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

403

2417

Neck Injury Risk

37%

47%

Neck Stress

152 lbs.

175 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

10/95 lbs.

453/192 lbs.

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

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the GMC Acadia is safer than the Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Restraints

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Steering Column Movement Rearward

0 cm

2 cm

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

19 cm

26 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

POOR

Femur Force R/L

.2/.1 kN

.5/1.1 kN

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

0%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Tibia forces R/L

.9/.9 kN

1.7/2.2 kN

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the GMC Acadia is safer than the Ford Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

106

110

Hip Force

253 lbs.

351 lbs.

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

263

290

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

54 G’s

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

18 inches

HIC

319

357

Spine Acceleration

33 G’s

44 G’s

Hip Force

673 lbs.

707 lbs.

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

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Acadia the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 154 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Escape was not even a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

The Acadia’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Escape’s (6 vs. 5 years).

GMC pays for scheduled maintenance on the Acadia for 2 years and 24,000 miles. GMC will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance (up to 2 oil changes). Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Escape.

Engine

The Acadia has more powerful engines than the Escape:

 

Horsepower

Torque

Acadia 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

193 HP

188 lbs.-ft.

Acadia 3.6 DOHC V6

310 HP

271 lbs.-ft.

Escape 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

168 HP

170 lbs.-ft.

Escape 1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

179 HP

177 lbs.-ft.

Escape Titanium 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

245 HP

275 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Car and Driver the GMC Acadia V6 is faster than the Ford Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape 1.5

Escape Titanium

Zero to 30 MPH

2.2 sec

2.8 sec

2.2 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.1 sec

9.2 sec

7.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

17.2 sec

36.2 sec

22.7 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.4 sec

9.7 sec

7.8 sec

Passing 30 to 50 MPH

3.3 sec

4.6 sec

3.7 sec

Passing 50 to 70 MPH

4.8 sec

6.6 sec

5.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15 sec

16.9 sec

15.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94 MPH

81 MPH

86 MPH

Top Speed

131 MPH

114 MPH

116 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the GMC Acadia uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Escape with the 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. engine requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Acadia FWD’s standard fuel tank has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the Escape (19.4 vs. 15.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Escape (21.7 vs. 15.7 gallons).

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the GMC Acadia higher (5 to 6 out of 10) than the Ford Escape (3 to 5). This means the Acadia produces up to 23.4 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Escape every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Acadia’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

11 inches

The Acadia’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Escape are solid, not vented.

The Acadia stops much shorter than the Escape:

 

Acadia

Escape

 

70 to 0 MPH

173 feet

184 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Acadia’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Escape (255/65R17 vs. 235/55R17).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Acadia offers optional 20-inch wheels. The Escape’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Ford Escape only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Acadia has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Escape doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

The Acadia offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Escape’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Acadia’s wheelbase is 6.6 inches longer than on the Escape (112.5 inches vs. 105.9 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Acadia is 3 inches wider in the front and 2.9 inches wider in the rear than on the Escape.

The Acadia SLT AWD handles at .82 G’s, while the Escape Titanium AWD pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Acadia SLT AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.4 seconds quicker than the Escape SE (26.9 seconds @ .67 average G’s vs. 28.3 seconds @ .55 average G’s).

Chassis

The Acadia uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Escape doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Acadia Denali AWD is quieter than the Escape Titanium AWD (41 vs. 42 dB).

Passenger Space

The Acadia has standard seating for 7 passengers; the Escape can only carry 5.

The Acadia has 45.1 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Escape (143.8 vs. 98.7).

The Acadia has .4 inches more front headroom, 1.2 inches more front hip room, 3.5 inches more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 2.4 inches more rear legroom, .9 inches more rear hip room and 3.5 inches more rear shoulder room than the Escape.

Cargo Capacity

The Acadia’s cargo area provides more volume than the Escape.

 

Acadia

Escape

Third Seat Folded

41.7 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

34 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

79 cubic feet

68 cubic feet

The Acadia’s cargo area is larger than the Escape’s in almost every dimension:

 

Acadia

Escape

Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)

18.5”/48”/83”

n.a./33.6”/67”

Max Width

50”

45.6”

Min Width

42.5”

40.4”

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Acadia’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Escape doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Towing

Maximum trailer towing in the Ford Escape is limited to 3500 pounds. The Acadia offers up to a 4000 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

The Acadia uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Escape uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

The Acadia’s standard front power windows lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Escape’s power windows’ passenger windows don’t open automatically.

The Acadia’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Heated mirrors cost extra on the Escape and aren’t offered on the Escape S.

When the Acadia with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Escape’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Acadia SLT/Denali has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Escape offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Both the Acadia and the Escape offer available heated front seats. The Acadia also offers optional heated second row seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Escape.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Acadia Denali keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Escape doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The Acadia has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Escape SE/SEL/Titanium.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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