Last post on Nov 30, 2010 at 3:02 PM
You are in the Ford Escape Hybrid Maintenance & Repair
What is this discussion about?
Ford Escape Hybrid, Transmission, SUV
#9 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [sarahfromsc]
Oct 19, 2005 (1:03 am)
Sorry to hear about your problems, it sounds like the engineering team has come to the conclusion you need a new transaxle. You are correct in that the hybrid transaxle (which contains the power split device, and the two electric motor/generators) is manufactured in Japan by Aisin, a large maker of transmissions used by many carmakers, but the design (along with the design of the Escape's complete hybrid system) is Ford's.
The 2006 is basically unchanged from the 2005 except for option packages and availability of new ones like the moonroof and heated seats/mirrors.
As far as noises go, I have occasionally heard a grinding/scraping sound from the rear wheels. I believe it is caused by the parking brake, as I've stated previously. I have not had this noise in a long time, however (several months) so I don't know if it's been dealt with. The dealer claimed they could not isolate anything. A sharp pull on the parking brake handle last time it happened is what convinced me as to the nature of the issue.
As far as 27MPG in city traffic "stinking", it really depends on a number of factors, including:
1. Trip duration...you won't see the benefit of the hybrid system until the engine and most importantly the catalytic converter are fully warmed up. 20 minutes is usually the break-even point here.
2. Acceleration/Braking. The harder you do both, the lower your efficiency. Try to anticipate stopping and coast as much as traffic will allow. A light brake application will be more biased towards regenerative braking, a heavy one will engage the friction brakes, wasting energy as heat instead of capturing it in your battery.
When you say revving out of control...under what circumstances does this occur? When accelerating hard or climbing a hill it's perfectly normal for the engine to rev up in the 4-5k range. The computer is choosing the RPM which allows the system to run most efficiently while meeting your demand for torque This is why letting up on the pedal will drop the RPM immediately. The other condition that causes high RPM is when you use the "L" shifter position going downhill. Once the battery has stored all the energy the computer will let it, the energy will be redirected to spinning the engine at up to 4k RPM...it's not actually consuming any (significant amount of) fuel, it's just using the engine as a place to dump the excess energy.
Hope this helps.
#10 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [stevewa]
Oct 19, 2005 (8:44 am)
I do appreciate your reply and your words have helped a lot. However (isn't there always a "however" or "but"?), the hybrid tech at the dealership said they were dropping in a new transmission (due to the design engineers recommendation). Is a transaxle the same thing? I am very ignorant on this subject and am trying to educate myself so I can be a better car owner when I'm really old, I'm only partial old now.
As for the gas mileage, I can say that it has improved since I bought the car a month ago, so I feel better about the 27 mph then I did the 24.5! I have been very, very self conscious about being lead footed. I had a huge V-8 Lincoln Continental prior to this car, and it was FUN to have a lead foot in that car. So I kinda creep from stop lights and signs, etc., trying to keep the gas engine from kicking on.....kinda a dumb mind game I'm playing on myself.
The RPMs went crazy while traveling in WVA, VA, and NC. I would be cruising along at 70mph and the RPMs would zoom up to 6 then down to 4 and then race back to 6.5 then drop to 5. I finally pulled and stopped the car. I tried the cruise control thinking I must have been pressing the gas pedal inadvertently, the racing was worse then. It was particularly bad in the mountainous areas of VA and WVA (traveling down I 77).
Do you have any ideas on the "slipping" feeling in the back end that I am experiencing? Or is that all part of the transmission/transaxle thing?
Again, thank you SO much for your input. It was appreciated, and I learned much!
#11 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [stevewa]
Oct 19, 2005 (8:54 am)
Oh, and this is a PS:
I do like the little suv, it handles well, the interior "fits" me, and it fits my lifestyle. I just feel a little snake bit at the moment. So, I don't want anyone to think that I am bashing the hybrid, just questing for knowledge so I can go to the dealership and offer suggestions, or at least be able to ask intelligent questions!
#12 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [sarahfromsc]
Oct 21, 2005 (11:30 pm)
Given the symptoms you're reporting the tranaxle (transmission in a FWD based vehicle is referred to as a transaxle because it includes the differential) is likely the culprit. The other possibility is the PCM (computer) but it sounds like they've eliminated that possibility to their satisfaction...the PCM is much cheaper so they'd try that first if there was a chance of it being the problem.
You should NOT be seeing the behavior you describe.
#13 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [stevewa]
Oct 25, 2005 (5:52 am)
Thank you again for clarifying! Lordy, am I learning a lot.
I hope y'all do not mind one more question. I have the new transaxle in, now my gas mileage has dropped from 27 miles per gallon to 23.5. I know I said that 27 stunk, but 23.5 really, really stinks. Is this because this new transaxle needs to "break-in"?
#14 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [sarahfromsc]
Oct 25, 2005 (11:36 pm)
More likely it's because they did a lot of engine idling when they were working on your car
The computer will have to re-learn fuel trim and the like so the first few tanks might be sub-par. Good luck...hope they found the problem.
#15 of 28 Fuel Economy Gauge
Nov 06, 2006 (8:54 am)
The Fuel Economy Gauge is a cumlative average. If you want an acruate intant reading, reset the guage periodically.
#16 of 28 MPG dropped suddenly
Dec 02, 2008 (2:38 am)
As I was driving up to my home in the Virginia mountains I noticed the mpg's dropping suddenly from 27.7 to 22.5. It just tanked. I reached the top of one of the hills and coasted down and the mpg's increased, then dropped again as I drove up the hill to my house. What is happening and if I leave in the AM to go to work what should I expect? Thanks for any help you can give me.
#17 of 28 Re: MPG dropped suddenly [nsupp]
Dec 02, 2008 (5:51 am)
The engine is using a lot more gas going up the hill. A lot more power required. Uses almost nothing going down. The read out is simply stating that fact.
#18 of 28 Re: ELECTRIC MOTOR / TRANSMISSION [stevewa]
May 25, 2009 (6:50 pm)
I have a 2005 Escape Hybrid with nearly 150,000 miles. It drives great and I am averaging 30 + MPG but sometimes when I am going up a steep hill the transmission will rev to 6k or more. It never seems to "slip" but I'm concerned because I don't know if that is normal or not. Should it rev that high under a heavy load uphill?