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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Review Ford Escape 2013 GPS Problems


I'm proud to announce my newest addition in the past month: my new baby, my Ford Escape 2013 in the colour Ginger Ale Metallic



It took awhile but I love my car :) 

I'm not going to go into an in depth review because I am not an expert on vehicles. 
I have the Titanium 4WD model because I wanted very specific safety features that only came on that model. With that being said, I love my SUV because I wanted the height and power of an SUV but not the excessive bulk of one since I live and work primarily in Downtown Toronto. It has exceptional pick up for a four cylinder (I have the 2.0 L engine) and I can make tight turns in it (compared to other SUVs I have driven).

However my one (and so far only) complaint is the fact that my brand new built-in GPS does NOT function properly in Downtown Toronto. Let me explain that further. I only have a problem with my GPS in Downtown Toronto when I am exiting from my underground parking which does not allow any GPS signal. Yes, it is typical for almost all GPS models to not work in underground parking lots however they all seem to start working and recalculate routes within a couple of minutes of exiting an underground parking area and driving out into the open air. That is not the case with my built-in GPS. After driving out of my underground parking lot, I have waited up to 25-30 minutes in open air on the street for my GPS to start working and it will not pick up a legitimate signal. I have even tried restarting my GPS several times while in Downtown Toronto and it still does not give me the proper signal indicating my correct location. Instead, the GPS usually indicates that I am somewhere in the Mount Pleasant area or the Rosedale Ravine which is not anywhere close to where I actually am in Downtown Toronto. My GPS will only start to pick up the correct signal when I am outside of the Downtown Toronto area away from the condos and high rise towers (e.g. far out on the Gardiner Expressway or when I get onto the Don Valley Parkway North). The interesting twist is this: if I am driving into Downtown Toronto from a suburb or a city/town without high rises around, my GPS will work in Downtown Toronto. I have already brought my brand new car into the dealership this past week to check out the GPS system and it came back clear - the service personnel informed me there was nothing they could do about my GPS not working in Downtown Toronto because according to Ford, there are simply places the GPS will not work and they are not liable for that (nor will they credit me any refund for the fact that I paid for the upgraded built-in GPS which fails to work in a geographical area that I spend plenty of time in).



This was a picture I took this morning while driving towards the Don Valley Parkway North out of Downtown Toronto (I was stopped at a stop light or else I would not have taken the picture)The Magellan Roadmate 1470 (which I reviewed here) on my windshield shows my correct location but as you can see below on my built-in navigation GPS the location is showing a totally different location. I have taken a zoomed in picture of both GPS systems so you can see that the two different GPS systems are indicating different locations.


The Magellan Roadmate 1470 is indicating my correct location


While my Ford Escape 2013 built-in navigation system is indicating the incorrect location with wrong directions.

You can see how it's a pain for me to have a separate GPS in my car in addition to my built-in navigation system especially since I paid for that upgrade.

So my advice is, if you are living in a big city with a lot of high rise towers or condos and you are interested in the Ford Escape 2013 with the built in Navigational GPS, park the car in an underground parking lot of a high rise tower. Drive out of the tower and see how long your GPS unit takes to work....does it only work when you are out of the vicinity of high rise towers? If you have the same problem as I do, consider your alternatives (e.g. skipping the built-in Navigational GPS) especially if you will be spending the majority of your time around high rise towers where it will not function properly.

Have you had similar signal issues with your GPS? 


15 comments:

gabyfauchon said...

Hi Karen! I'm not familiar with Ford but this model definitely looks very sexy - I LOVE SUVs! Did you buy it new? If so, I can't believe the integrated GPS does not work properly since you must have paid a little fortune specifically for this feature... Did you go back to the seller to tell them about that problem? What a pain must it be to have to lug around another GPS! But congrats on your purchase Karen, is this your first car? My first car was my parent's old van, a Pontiac Trans Port 1995 that barely lasted me more than 2 years before 'dying' (we sold it for $300) and then I bought my parent's new car, a Toyota Camry 2002, which I absolutely LOVE!

Karen Law said...

Hi Gaby! Awww Thank you so much for the compliment :) Yes it is my first car brand new. I have brought my car into service recently to have the GPS checked out. I discussed the problem with the Ford servicemen and they informed me there is nothing wrong with the GPS after they did an inspection....they just said that Ford GPSs don't work in "certain areas" and that they cannot give me any rebate because it "works" (it just doesn't seem to work properly coming out of an underground garage and if I hang around high rises). I just want to let others know of this problem since very few who are test driving this would think to go into an underground parking lot, restart the car underground, drive out and see how the navigation system works while around high rises.
That's neat that your first car was a Pontiac van. The first car I was ever in as a kid was my Dad's Pontiac and he later bought a Pontiac Montana (van) which was the first car I drove.....and unfortunately that Pontiac Montana died as well after only a few years even though my Dad bought it brand new - I'll be staying away from Pontiacs now! LOL Camry's are very nice! Way to go Gaby :)

lexi said...

Congrats on your new car! I just got a 2011 Nissan Versa (4 door) in a gray color : ) But unfortunately, I lost my TomTom GPS that I got as a gift! Don't ask how I lost it, maybe it was stolen. Because I looked EVERYWHERE and I never really took it out of my old car...Anyway, the TomTom worked pretty well and was small...I believe it was under $100 so maybe look into that? Your car looks really nice, thanks for sharing this with us : ) It's great that you got a new car that's so safe and sleek looking, too. I love SUVs too but didn't want to deal with filling the pricey tank! Hopefully someone who is thinking of buying this Ford with the GPS will read your review and be aware of this GPS glitch!

FASHION IMPERATIVE said...

I was just talking with my friend about some gps problems yesterday! This Ford looks very fab btw!


A.
FASHION IMPERATIVE
Official Facebook Page

Karen Law said...

Interesting - I guess some GPS systems are just finicky. Thank you very much by the way :)

Karen Law said...

Awww Thank you so much Lexi! Ooo congratulations on your new Nissan :)
Yes I do hope that anyone looking into the new 2013 Ford Escapes will really test out the GPS to make sure it's not finicky like mine is.
Oh no, I'm sorry to hear that you lost your new TomTom GPS. It possibly could have been stolen especially if someone could see your GPS from standing outside of your car. If I have a GPS I always remove it from my car and store it at home (it's a bit of a nuisance to carry it back and forth to the car but I just make it a habit). Well, I really hope your GPS turns out to be misplaced and that you find it.
I hope you're having a great weekend :)

Dale said...

I know two things for sure Karen. We certainly picked out a great vehicle that suits all your needs right now, and you are an excellent driver. They seem to be rare these days!

Karen Law said...

Oh gosh, I didn't realize how many bad drivers are out there until I started driving myself. I love my car.....it handles really well and as you said, it suits my needs right now. Thank you for helping me pick out my car! I know my Dad was happy you did that for me LOL

Francois Goldfain said...

I have the exact same problem with my own Escape 2013, even when I am not in an area with high rise buildings. When I take it out of the garage, it takes anywhere between 5 and 25 minutes for the GPS signal to be acquired.

Francois Goldfain said...

I have the exact same problem with my own Escape 2013, even when I am not in an area with high rise buildings. When I take it out of the garage, it takes anywhere between 5 and 25 minutes for the GPS signal to be acquired.

Karen Law said...

Hi Francois. Thank you so much for stopping by at my blog and for sharing your input ;) Hmmm that's too bad that your new Ford Escape 2013 has the same delayed GPS issue. I've already purchased a holder and car charger for my iPhone 5 and have been using my phone as my GPS - it's more reliable than the GPS in my car so far :S I hope this is the only issue we ran into with our new SUV. I hope you're enjoying your new Ford Escape otherwise :)

elchucko said...

Although not a practical have you tried parking and then turning the motor off then restarting?

Karen Law said...

Restarting my car doesn't make a difference in the satellite signal for the GPS. Thanks for the suggestion though.

John Ferreira said...

There is a technical service bulletin (TSB) for the navigation issue. When you take it back for service have them look into TSB 13-4-20. (You can google it for details) As well, since your Escape was purchased in late 2012 like mine, there is another TSB concerning the fuel gauge stating it was empty while still having 1/3 tank remaining. If you can only put roughly 40 liters in from empty (TSB 13-2-1).

John Ferreira said...

There is a technical service bulletin (TSB) for the navigation issue. When you take it back for service have them look into TSB 13-4-20. (You can google it for details) As well, since your Escape was purchased in late 2012 like mine, there is another TSB concerning the fuel gauge stating it was empty while still having 1/3 tank remaining. If you can only put roughly 40 liters in from empty (TSB 13-2-1).

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