2020 MINI Countryman vs. 2020 Ford Escape

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/12

Both the Countryman and the Escape have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front-wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all wheel drive and front parking sensors.

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 Countryman the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 169 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Escape has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

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The Countryman comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Escape’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The Countryman’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Escape’s (12 vs. 5 years).

MINI pays for scheduled maintenance on the Countryman for 3 years and 36,000 miles. MINI will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Escape.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that MINI vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks MINI 6th in reliability, above the industry average. With 27 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that MINI vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks MINI 9 places higher in reliability than Ford.

Engine

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The Countryman has more powerful engines than the Escape:

Horsepower

Torque

Countryman S 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

189 HP

206 lbs.-ft.

JCW Countryman 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

301 HP

331 lbs.-ft.

Escape 1.5 turbo 3 cyl.

180 HP

177 lbs.-ft.

Escape 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

250 HP

275 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range

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Regenerative brakes improve the Countryman’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Escape doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

The Countryman has 1.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Escape 1.5 Turbo’s standard fuel tank (16.1 vs. 14.7 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

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The Countryman offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The Escape doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

The Countryman Auto’s optional launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The Escape doesn’t offer launch control.

Tires and Wheels

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The Countryman’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 Escape’s standard 65 series tires. The Countryman’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Escape’s optional 55 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the Countryman can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Escape doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The Countryman offers an optional 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.

Chassis

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The Countryman is 10.7 inches shorter than the Escape, making the Countryman easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

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For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Countryman’s rear seats recline. The Escape’s rear seats don’t recline.

Ergonomics

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The Countryman’s 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 Escape’s power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.

The Countryman’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Escape’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Countryman to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Escape doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the Countryman offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Escape doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The Countryman’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford only offers heated mirrors on the Escape SE/SE Sport/SEL/Titanium.

When the Countryman with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Escape’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Countryman offers optional 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.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the MINI Countryman offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Escape doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Economic Advantages

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Countryman is less expensive to operate than the Escape because typical repairs cost much less on the Countryman than the Escape, including $1015 less for a muffler, $399 less for a timing belt/chain and $68 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/11/12

Consumer Reports® recommends the MINI Countryman, based on reliability, safety and performance.

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

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