The Ford Edge is a midsize, five-passenger crossover with an attractive interior and a wide range of available technology and convenience features. Ford recently gave the Edge a thorough update that included three new engines and two new transmissions in addition to improvements inside and out to both materials and design.
Aesthetic changes include a reworking of the entire front fascia in addition to revisions at the rear of the vehicle. The grille immediately brings back memories of the original Ford Sport Trac Adrenaline concept, although with a modern Fusion-esque style. Previously standard halogen headlamps were replaced with projector headlamps for function and HID projectors as an option. Below, the traditional fog lamp housings were ditched in favor of LED light bars similar to those found on the Taurus SHO or Ford Fiesta.
Out back, the cheap looking chrome housing in the tail lamps was dropped for a more conventional red style, complete with uniquely stylized indentations in the tail lamp housings which have "EDGE" embossed into the plastic. Other changes to the rear of the crossover included minor changes to the general shape of the rear bumper and lower fascia, as well as the addition of an external handle and chrome 'wings' on either side of the Ford oval.
Although the outgoing Edge's interior was generally considered ergonomically sound and modestly appealing to the eye, hard plastic and a lack of design language kept the Edge's interior from being particularly memorable. For the latest model, Ford says it made considerable improvements to overall design, layout and particularly to materials.
Gone are the rock hard door panel plastics, which were replaced with soft touch materials with special acoustic dampening properties to help give the Edge one of the quietest interiors in the class. Ford says that the Edge benefited from an extensive combination of changes aimed at reducing noise in the cabin, including: a new and more absorptive sound pack throughout the interior, an acoustic headliner, a new robust engine cover, several subframe mount additions and upgrades, a laminated windshield, underbody shields and a re-tuned exhaust system.
The result? Ford claims the Edge has a quieter interior than the more upscale Lexus RX350, Audi Q5 and Acura MDX models.
Often going unnoticed at auto shows and showrooms alike are the suspension and various other components that determine the driving dynamics of a vehicle. For the latest Edge, Ford remembered how important these 'invisible' components can be, and decided to start with a new wheel and tire lineup across the models. The Edge SEL and Limited feature standard 18-inch wheels and the Edge Sport gains 22-inch wheels -- also standard.
To make sure that the new wheels and tires were properly integrated into the vehicle, Ford says re-tuned the shocks, springs and stabilizer bars -- with a net tightening of handling as the end result.
To help bring this hulking CUV to a hasty stop, Ford added new four-wheel disc brakes with increased stopping power. Changes include steel pistons, larger rear rotors, among other changes. The Edge also recently gained Hill Start Assist, a technology designed to reduce rollback when starting on hills.
The new Edge debuted Ford's newest infotainment driver interface system, known as MyFord. This optional system makes use of a single inch-inch LCD screen in the center of the dash, in addition to two 4.2-inch LCD screens located in the gauge cluster. Ford says the setup is intended to replace many traditional knobs and dials and help drivers to operate auxiliary devices in less time and with less effort -- increasing their focus on the road ahead.
Reaching into the tech-packed Taurus SHO's bag of tricks, the Edge gains Blind Spot Information System with Cross Traffic Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control and Collision Warning with Brake Support for added convenience and safety.
The Edge was formerly offered with a single 3.5-liter V6 and automatic transmission across the entire range. However, Ford recently made significant changes to the outgoing model's 3.5-liter V6 for increased power and efficiency, added a 3.7-liter V6 for the Edge Sport and also made available an optional 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder.
The outgoing 3.5-liter V6 was good for 265 horsepower along with 16 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway in front-wheel drive trim. The new 3.5-liter V6 makes use of Ti-VCT technology and improvements to the engine's internal components, which result in a net output of 285 horsepower. Despite the increased power, Ford says this V6 will return 27 mpg on the highway -- a 3 mpg gain over the previous model with the same displacement. Ford says this new engine will be unsurpassed in fuel economy, and beat many models in power, too.
For the first time the Edge Sport will enjoy an engine worthy of its name. The new 3.7-liter ti-VCT V6 is essentially the same V6 found in the latest Mustang, and in the Edge it is good for 305 hp and 280 ft.-lb of torque. Like the new 3.5-liter V6 in the base and Limited Edge models, the 3.7-liter V6 will be mounted to a six-speed automatic transmission, but unlike the standard Edge, the Sport gains class-exclusive paddle activation of the SelectShift transmission. Ford says that it tuned this system to offer maximum driver control, removing the forced redline shifting found in most manually shiftable automatic transmissions.
Arguably the most important engine change for the Edge line will be the new 2.0-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine -- raising fuel economy by 30 percent over the original powertrain found in the Edge at launch. Power for this downsized mill is 240 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque, while efficiency checks in at 21/30 mpg.
Trim Level Breakdown
The Edge can be had in SE, SEL, Limited and Sport trims.
The SE base model comes with A/C, power locks and windows, cruise control, an AM/FM/CD stereo with an AUX input, and 17-inch painted aluminum wheels. The SEL tacks on Ford's SYNC connectivity system, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 10-way adjustable driver seat, a reverse sensing system and Sirius XM radio. A new SEL Appearance package brings unique interior trim, 20-inch machined aluminum wheels.
The upscale Limited model brings leather upholstery, heated front seats, MyFord Touch, a premium Sony audio system with HD radio, a rearview camera and a 10-way power adjustable passenger seat.
The Sport model offers all of the Limited features in addition to the more powerful 3.7-liter engine, unique charcoal black leather with silver smoke metallic inserts and contrasting stitching, 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, a piano black grille and monochromatic exterior trim.
Highlights from the options list include a navigation system, a power liftgate, a blind sport warning system with cross traffic alert and a panoramic vista sunroof.
Helping to keep families safe in the Edge are dual front, side and full-length side curtain airbags in addition to traction and stability control systems and a tire pressure monitoring system.
As a mid-size, two-row crossover, the Edge faces competition from smaller five passenger 'utes like the Honda CR-V and Nissan Rogue while, at the other end of the spectrum, it is also cross-shoped against slightly larger vehicles like the Dodge Journey and Toyota Venza that seat seven. The Nissan Murano, Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento are perhaps the Edge's closest rivals in size and mission, however.