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2015 Ford Edge First Impression

When I first saw the next-gen, 2015 Edge debut at the Los Angeles International Auto Show last year, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised. I didn’t mind the old car, but the styling overhaul done to the new vehicle is an exercise in modern design to the point that the old car looks rather old-fashioned -- and the new car has hardly even hit dealer’s lots!

2015 Ford Edge Pricing & Specs
The big news here is kind of a double-whammy; the ’15 Edge’s base engine -- a 2.0L EcoBoost turbo-4, but not the same 2.0L EcoBoost turbo-4 seen on the last car thanks to the addition of more efficient twin-scroll turbo geometry, among other things -- is now available with an AWD drivetrain. In Canada, AWD is paramount, so the fact that you can get it with the sippiest of three available engines (2.0L Turbo four, 2.7L turbo V6 and 3.5L naturally aspirated V6) will be music to Canadians’ ears. 

So every trim -- SE ($31, 999 for FWD, $33,999 for AWD), SEL ($35,099, $37,099), Sport (AWD only: $45,199), and Titanium ($41,499, $45,199) -- can be had with AWD. That’s fan-bloody-tastic.

While there was a Sport trim last year, it’s been given a comprehensive once-over for 2015, the most notable addition being that of an all-new 2.7L, 315 hp EcoBoost V6 -- your only choice --and the most notable deletion being that of the gaudy 22” rims from the old car. Now, 20s are standard, with blacked-out 21s as an option. 

Ins and outs of the 2015 Ford Edge 
Dubbed “the Mustang of crossovers” numerous times during the presentation, the Sport gets a stylistic nip n’ tuck to separate it from the clan. There’s a black grille (other trims get silver), different front splitter, different side skirts, rear valance, and wheels.   

The Edge is the latest vehicle to get the “new face of Ford,” which adds a new dual-tier grille and slimmer headlamps. Other nice additions include subtle side creases, and a slightly more aggressive roofline reminiscent of the Lexus RX.

It’s interesting to consider the RX, because once inside the Edge, a real feeling of luxury permeates. 

We only got a chance to experience the two highest trims (the mid-level SEL is likely to be the top seller). Having said that, the Ford folks on-hand assured us that much of the luxurious touches -- like more soft-touch materials on the dash and door panels, for example --will make it all the way down to base SE trim. 

And boy, is it ever airy in there. The full-length moonroof on Titanium and Sport models is nice, but other touches like thinner seats and newly shaped windows make for a more comfortable environs in general. The thinner seats also help add more rear legroom, even though it also has more rear cargo space than the outgoing model; the foot-activated liftgate that debuted on the Escape is now optional on the Edge.

The centre stack was fitted with more buttons; there are no more touch surfaces to speak of, which is nice. However, the gauge cluster and MyFord Touch tech remains the same. 

Driving the ’15 Ford Edge
When you consider that the new Mustang gets a turbocharged motor of its own, the sound between these two is not as different as you may think. Actually, I wonder if the Sport may be too loud on full boil.

If that’s the case, then maybe the Titanium is the way to go; active grille shutters, laminated windshield glass, and optional laminated side window glass all do their part to keep it quiet. The 2.0L engine, meanwhile, is the quieter of the two and also the more efficient (11.5L/100km in the city, 7.8 on the highway and 13.6/9.8 for the 2.7), all facts that point to the Titanium’s luxury chops.

If you really want to enjoy the drive of your Edge, however, the Sport delivers in the powertrain department. Along with the 315 hp, the 2.7L also makes 350 lb-ft of torque, enough to really have the Edge humming along at 100+ km/h with nary a complaint. Passing on steep 8% grades? No problem. Tight freeway entry ramps? I laugh at your challenge. There’s a ton of power here.

The steering also gets tightened up in the Sport, but I can’t say there was much of a difference between the two; for the first time, the Edge gets an electronic power assist as opposed to hydraulic, and steering feel always takes a back seat when this happens. Where you will feel a marked difference on both cars, however, is the way the SelectShift transmission feels depending on whether “D” or “S” is selected.

In “S,” you activate the paddle shifters by hitting one, and it stays in manual mode until you tell it otherwise (it will, however, shift up automatically at redline). If you activate the paddles (by tapping either one) in “D” it will only stay active until the system senses you no longer need them -- say, after an engine-braking manoeuvre -- and revert back to auto right away. The digital tach that appears on the left side of the gauge cluster as soon as you activate the paddles sticks around, though. Even in auto mode, the quicker shifts and throttle response can readily be felt when in “S.”

Comparing the 2015 Ford Edge
The base price of $31,999 puts the Edge a sliver above the Murano ($29,998). The all-new Nissan is an intriguing option, and the Edge’s closest competitor.
However, even the Murano -- which has a fantastic interior of its own -- doesn’t quite hit the level of luxury the Edge does, and the Murano has no answer for the Edge Sport, either.

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2015 Ford Edge
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2015 Ford Edge
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