2018 Ford Escape vs 2018 Toyota RAV4 | Compare Specs

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2018 Ford Escape vs 2018 Toyota RAV4

2018 Ford Escape


2018 Toyota RAV4

2.5L iVCT I-4


2.5L 4-Cyl.
23 city / 30 hwy

Fuel Economy

23 city / 30 hwy

Seating Capacity


Serving Columbus, Westerville, and Gahanna, OH

The compact crossover vehicle class continues to grow, and consumers continue to make it clear that a smallish vehicle can no longer get away with skimping on convenience features and and the quality of materials. Most of the vehicles in this class seat five, although not all of them seat five comfortably. Notable exceptions include the Ford Escape, a well-designed compact SUV that also boasts excellent ride quality.

A direct competitor to the Ford Escape is the Toyota RAV4. This model has been popular for many years, and its appeal is centered around the long list of standard features including active safety systems. Upon closer inspection, however, most buyers will notice the lack of interior appeal on the 2018 model. The 2018 RAV4 also rides poorly when compared to the 2018 Ford Escape.


Some might think that the choice of engines on the Ford Escape leave something to be desired, but all three do what most drivers will ask of them. The standard engine is a 2.5L four-cylinder that makes 168 horsepower. The 2018 model S trim, usually sold as a fleet vehicle, is fitted exclusively with this power source. The uplevel SE gets a turbocharged 1.5L engine that produces 179 horsepower. The Titanium trim comes with a turbocharged 2.0L engine rated at 245 horsepower. The 2018 RAV4 offers buyers only the choice of a 176-horsepower gasoline engine or a hybrid version that pairs this engine with three electric motors. The Escape, when fitted with one of the turbocharged engines, can tow about 500 pounds more than the RAV4. The advanced power distribution system means exceptional handling on the Escape, and the steering is much more precise than what is experienced on the RAV4.


Considering the price range into which the 2018 Ford Escape fits, potential buyers will be a bit surprised when they inspect this model's interior. Everything is laid out in a very straightforward, organized manner. The buttons and other dash controls are right where they should be. Getting in and out is easy because the seats are set at the perfect height for most adults. The popular SE trim comes with an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat, rear privacy glass, dual-zone automatic climate control, and steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Heated front seats are also standard. The rear seating area isn't cramped and can fit two adults with ease. The 2018 Toyota RAV4 is also pretty roomy, but the interior materials quality leaves much to be desired. The accents are made from cheaper plastics, and the uplevel trims don't solve the problem to any great degree.

Ride Quality

The 2018 Ford Escape offers a pretty comfortable ride thanks to superior suspension and excellent weight distribution. The turbocharged engine doesn't send much noise to the cabin, and it's virtually impossible to hear when cruising at freeway speeds. Most smaller crossovers trade off handling for ride quality, but the Escape performs well taking turns in a lively fashion without hampering the overall handling. The Toyota RAV4 handles pretty well, but its choppiness is well-known throughout the industry. It's a good choice for off-road when properly equipped, but as a comfortable cruiser, it lags behind the Ford Escape and several other competitors.

If you're in the market for a well-built, safe, and easy-to-drive compact crossover, check out the new 2018 Ford Escape. Call our dealership today and schedule a test drive. If you've already tested the 2018 RAV4, you'll soon see the advantage the Escape has when it comes to interior comfort and materials quality, ride quality, and driving experience.

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