08-28-2012, 06:41 PM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Whittier, CA
What I Drive: 2012 Sterling Gray SE 5 Speed
FF Reputation: 1
Buy-Sell-Trade Rating: (0
Originally Posted by DefSport
The body roll was definitely present. Weight transfer is higher on the Escape due to the high CG, and I have no doubts the standard suspension Focus would have more lateral grip, but there wasn't much roll stiffness to counteract body roll. Like I said, it was a very comfortable ride, and you get that with low roll stiffness and very soft springs. I didn't take it out on track or anything, but the body roll was the first thing I noticed in a 30 mph corner at maybe .3 lateral G's.
I'm a driving instructor at track events, and have helped numerous people setup the suspension in their cars for track driving, as well as being a mechanical engineer, so I'm not ignorant of this issue.
I'll admit the steering feel was actually reasonable off center, but applying more steering angle seemed to make it lose resistance rather than gain it. This is my first electric hydraulic steering system experience, so maybe I was just preoccupied with the changing levels of assist that seemed to change based on steering angle. I'd probably be fine with it after getting used to it, but my 540i has unnaturally heavy steering for a PS car (with great road feel as a result), so it felt odd going back and forth to that.
Gotcha, I didn't make any adjustments to the car in that respect, but I can see how the auto gets the manual on gas mileage after driving it in the normal mode.
I do like how the steering column telescopes. I found a pretty comfortable seating position fairly quickly in the car and didn't feel like I was struggling to reach the steering wheel. Being 6' 3" I hate the seating position in a lot of compact cars due to the far away positioning of the steering wheel. By the time I get the seat far enough back to be fine with respect to leg position I can barely touch the wheel with my fingertips. The Focus let me have a reasonable amount of arm extension with the wheel telescoped all the way out. I have my steering wheel extended 5" towards me in my 240SX track car just to be comfortable with it, so I'm pretty nitpicky on this issue.
Overall the car was good, and I suspect I'd be much more excited about it if I could drive an SE with the sports package.
Seat track extension. I did it. I lounge now. Seat hits the back and I'm totally comfortable. Let me if you want pictures.
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