Jones Ford Buckeye Compares 2010 Ford Escape VS 2010 Hyundai Santa Near Goodyear, AZ

Responsive image

2010 Ford Escape

Responsive image

2010 Hyundai Santa

Safety Comparison

The Escape’s blind spot mirrors use wide-angle convex mirrors mounted in the corner of each side view mirror to reveal objects that may be in the driver's blind spots. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver's blind spots.

The Escape offers optional SYNC, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get driving directions or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies.

Both the Escape and the Santa Fe have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available all wheel drive.

Warranty Comparison

There are almost 7 times as many Ford dealers as there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it much easier to get service under the Escape’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ surveys of the owners of three-year-old cars provide the long-term dependability statistics that show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Hyundai vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 2 more problems per 100 vehicles, Hyundai is ranked 12th.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Escape Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the Santa Fe 4 cyl.:


Santa Fe




19 city/26 hwy


34 city/31 hwy

20 city/28 hwy



30 city/27 hwy

21 city/27 hwy

On the EPA test cycle the Escape FWD gets better fuel mileage than the Santa Fe FWD:


Santa Fe

4 cyl./Manual

22 city/28 hwy

19 city/26 hwy

4 cyl./Auto

22 city/28 hwy

20 city/28 hwy

The Escape has a standard capless fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation which causes pollution. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a capless fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Escape’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Santa Fe:


Santa Fe

Front Rotors

11.9 inches

11.7 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The Escape XLT/Limited offers an optional full size spare tire so your trip isn’t interrupted by a flat. A full size spare isn’t available on the Santa Fe, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which limits mileage and speed before replacement.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Escape has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For greater off-road capability the Escape has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Santa Fe (8.4 vs. 8.1 inches), allowing the Escape to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

The Ford Escape may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 400 pounds less than the Hyundai Santa Fe.

The Escape is 9.4 inches shorter than the Santa Fe, making the Escape easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Escape’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the liftgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The Santa Fe’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Escape Automatic offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The engine computer on the Escape automatically engages the starter until the car starts with one twist of the key and disables the starter while the engine is running. The Santa Fe’s starter can be accidentally engaged while the engine is running, making a grinding noise and possibly damaging the starter and ring gear.

The power windows standard on both the Escape and the Santa Fe have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Escape is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Santa Fe prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the available exterior keypad (not available on Escape XLS). The Santa Fe doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system.

The Santa Fe’s standard power locks don’t automatically lock the doors. The Escape’s standard doors lock when a certain speed is reached. This is an important feature for occupant safety. Locked doors are proven to open less often in collisions, and they are also effective in preventing crime at traffic lights. (The power lock’s automatic feature may have to be activated by your dealer.)

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Escape has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Santa Fe only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The Escape’s optional Active Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages Comparison

The Escape will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The Intellichoice estimates that the Escape will retain 31.69% to 39.02% of its original price after five years, while the Santa Fe only retains 20.07% to 23.81%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Escape is less expensive to operate than the Santa Fe because typical repairs cost less on the Escape than the Santa Fe, including $101 less for a water pump, $180 less for an alternator, $79 less for a starter, $37 less for fuel injection, $121 less for front struts and $179 less for a power steering pump.

© 1991-2016 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. Who We Are
Click here to view the disclaimers, limitations and notices about EPA fuel mileage, crash tests, coprights, trademarks, and other issues.