New ’15 Ford Edge Stands Out in Crowded CUV Segment

The ’15 Edge retains its 3-bar grille, but now has more space between the bars and is hexagonal instead of rectangular.

Byron Pope, Associate Editor

April 15, 2015

5 Min Read
3915 Ford Edge
'15 Ford Edge.

SCOTTSDALE, AZ – The ’15 Edge is an evolutionary step forward, not just for Ford, but for the midsize CUV segment.

Much has changed since the original Edge was launched in 2006. The model no longer is one of just a few CUV offerings. Today there are several, and the competition keeps improving. Ford noticed, and took significant steps to help the Edge reclaim its spot in the CUV hierarchy.

Improvements were made in all key areas, including the body structure, powertrains and exterior and interior styling.

First impressions are everything, and the new Edge makes one with its aggressive sheetmetal. The car looks angry, in a good way.

The ’15 Edge retains its 3-bar grille, but the new version has more space between the bars and is hexagonal instead of rectangular. The lower grille mirrors the hexagon shape of the upper unit, while the fog lights now are arrow-shaped and point forward, replacing the old rectangular lamps.

The headlamps are long, stretching along the sides of the vehicle, while a raked hood draws the eyes toward the front.

Character lines run along the sides and along hood, making the Edge appear as if it’s about to leap forward.

There is a lot going on, but it works, giving the new CUV a more modern, aggressive appearance compared with the bulbous shape of the outgoing model.

The new exterior (Ford says not a single piece of sheetmetal is shared with the outgoing model) retains the overall appeal of the original Edge, which has been one of the sportier CUVs on the market.

Edge Bigger Inside Than Appears Outside

Its outward appearance belies the spaciousness of the interior, which for ’15 boasts 73.4 cu.-ft. (2.0 cu.-m) of cargo space, 4.5 cu.-ft. (0.12 cu.-m) more than the old version.

The seats are wide, comfortable and well-bolstered and feature distinct patterns on the bottoms and backs, which add to their visual complexity. Similar patterns are found along the door panels, which have been significantly upgraded.

Storage areas are plentiful, with a covered bin on top of the center stack; a pass-through storage area beneath the climate controls; an open storage area on the instrument panel, below and to the left of the steering wheel; and deep pockets on each door.

Switchgear is easily accessible, and the MyFord Touch infotainment system, long a thorn in Ford’s side due to its slow response time and complicated setup, has been vastly improved. Although most systems can be controlled via the touchscreen, redundant controls, such as for the heated and cooled seats, have been added.

There are plenty of gizmos packed in, such as a park-assist feature, a front camera with washer and adaptive cruise control and collision warning with brake support.

While all were useful and easy to operate, many other CUVs in this segment boast similar features.

The new model offers three engine choices, including the carryover 3.5L normally aspirated V-6. The engine is meant to appeal to consumers who still desire a traditional V-6, as well as South American customers who want it for its biofuel capability.

There is also a 2.7L direct-injected turbocharged EcoBoost V-6 available in the Edge Sport and 2.0L twin-scroll EcoBoost inline 4-cyl. that debuts in the new model. Only the two EcoBoost mills were offered for test drives.

For a small-displacement V-6, the 315-hp 2.7L feels surprisingly powerful, moving the Edge Sport’s 3,912 lbs. (1,774 kg) with ease. Throttle response was quick, with peak torque arriving at just 2,750 rpm. The front-wheel-drive Edge Sport with the standard 6-speed automatic transmission, achieved 18 mpg (13.0 L/100 km) combined. That’s not eye-popping fuel economy, but the test included some aggressive driving through the desert.

Of the two EcoBoost mills, the new 2.0L is the better choice. Producing 245 hp and 275 lb.-ft. (372 Nm) of torque, the engine doesn’t struggle and still has some kick at highway speeds. It turned in a respectable 22 mpg (10.6 L/100 km) in combined driving. Not terrible, but not a leader among midsize CUVs, some of which have transmissions with more than six gears.

The Edge’s handling belies its size due to an entirely new body structure that includes liberal use of high-strength steel, which Ford says is 26% stiffer than the outgoing model in reacting to bending forces and 14% stiffer to twisting forces.

Whether driving at speed or inching along surface streets, it’s obvious a lot of work was put into making the cabin quiet. Noise from the outside world is nearly imperceptible, making it easy to carry on a conversation or listening to the 12-speaker sound system.

Ford was able to create this cocoon of silence through acoustic windshield glass, underbody panels and wheel-well liners. On top-end Titanium models, acoustic glass was added to both driver and passenger doors.

The Edge also boasts active-noise cancellation technology, which on the Sport model uses three microphones throughout the cabin to generate opposing sound waves through the audio system.

Aggressive styling, upgraded interiors, a lineup of capable engines and luxury-like refinement make the ’15 model the best Edge ever and puts it among the leaders in this increasingly crowded segment.

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'15 Ford Edge Specifications

Vehicle type

5-seat, 4-door Midsize CUV

Engine

2.7L turbocharged V-6

Power (SAE net)

315 hp @ 4,750 rpm

Torque

350 lb.-ft. (474 Nm) @ 2,750 rpm

Bore x stroke (mm)

95.5 x 87.6

Compression ratio

10.5:1

Transmission

6-speed automatic

Wheelbase

112.2 ins. (2,849 mm)

Overall length

188.1 ins. (4,777 mm)

Overall width

75.9 ins. (1,927 mm)

Overall height

68.6 ins. (1,742 mm)

Curb weight

3,912 lbs. (1,774 kg)

Base price

$28,100

Fuel economy

18-27 mpg city/highway (13.0-8.7 L/100 km)

Competition

Nissan Murano, Volkswagen Touareg, Mazda CX-9, Toyota Highlander

Pros

Cons

Updated sheetmetal

A little too aggressive for some

New 2.7L EcoBoost V-6

Fuel economy good, but lags some offerings

Chock-full of technology

So is competition

 

About the Author(s)

Byron Pope

Associate Editor, WardsAuto

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