I have a Honda 2002 CRV and had to replace the gas cap at year 2006. I had to replace it again a little over a year later in June of 2007. In May of this year, the check engine light came on and again I was having the same problems with the gas cap. It wouldn't tighten or would act as though it was tight, then if you push a little harder, it gave and tightened more, clicking as it's supposed to. I went back to the Dealer. I complained about having to replace the gas cap so many times. The service tech ran codes and told me it was the 02 Sensor and assured me the gas cap was fine. I paid over $500 to fix it. A month later, my gas cap still wouldn't tighten properly. The check engine light came on again. I found the gas cap loosened after my last fill up. I tightened it down again and after another fill up, the light went back off. I started tightening the cap from the outside instead of using the handle. That worked for a month or so now I'm in the same boat again with it being very difficult to tighten! Any suggestions other than buying a new gas cap every year?
Reading through these comments and reviews, it appears the majority of problems don't actually cause the vehicle from performing its main function - getting me and mine from A to B.
The failure to start is a concern. However, the FORD Escape is a lemon even on paper. The automatic transmission they use has been in use since 1994 in the Mazda 626 (a much lighter car) and has proven to be a trouble spot. I'll take my chance with the CR-V. <- that statement pretty much sums up the current state of the automotive industry, crappy, or crappier, take your pick.
I disagree with your suggestion that basically all cars are mediocre (not your exact words).
There are plenty of very good cars out there; we just happen to hear about the more problematic ones.
A co-worker of mine traded his Honda CRV in on a Ford Escape last year. He is wild about the Escape, and says there is no way he'd go back to a tinny CRV or super-noisy RAV-4.
This year he traded his wife's Accord for a Ford Fusion. He is likewise crazy about the Fusion. Slamming the trunk on his Accord sounded like dropping a big garbage can. The Fusion trunk closes with a quiet "thunk". Big difference.
Although the CRV had been reasonably reliable (other than rattles and excessive road noise), the Accord spent a lot of time in the shop. Thus far neither Ford has required anything.
Having had my own horrible problems with Honda, I hardly feel they are worthy to be compared to the much more solidly built and more reliable Ford products. My two Fords have never had a single problem. I expect well over 200,000 miles out of both of them, without anything beyond tires, batteries and oil changes. That has been our experience with Ford products for decades.
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