It was not built to last: several systems experience fault within the first three years.
On the whole it has been very reliable. We made the choice to purchase from Ford because my father in law was a Ford employee for many years and qualified for the family pricing. It was nice to be able to go to a dealership and not worry about high pressure salespeople. The Escape was large enough for our family yet small enough to get good fuel economy. The 1.6L EcoBoost engine has a surprising amount of pep, as well. Less than a year after purchase, the car had a problem with the climate control: it became impossible to redirect airflow from the floor, which was not only a major inconvenience in itself, but the dealership in the city we lived in at the time refused to fix it the first three times I brought the car in. A few months later the handle broke off the inside of the back hatch - I am not inhumanly strong, so this was indicative of poor build quality. Periodically the back hatch will start chirping like a baby bird on uppers, again an indication of poor build quality, as pieces of the hatch are held together with tiny plastic clips rather than actual hardware. Also, on long trips, the air conditioner compressor ices up, causing a near-catastrophic loss of engine power and acceleration. Unfortunately, as a consumer of modern autos, I have to temper my expectations. A car should be built to last, however to suit the corporate bottom line, cars are built to be disposable, and often do not last much longer than the standard financing term. I will probably purchase a Ford again, and possibly even an Escape, but simply because my family has the privilege of accessing Ford family pricing.