Ford Donates School Supplies To Local Kids & Lets Us Preview The New 2013 Escape!

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As we continue our back to school shopping on a budget series, we are excited to share that the Ford Company has generously provided us school supplies to donate to charity! Ford supplied the use of the newly designed Ford Escape and gift card, and we used our coupons, and deal hunting experience to fill the back of the escape with school supplies for kids in need by shopping the Target Back To School sales. We are very excited to be part of a promotion that will give back to our local community, and do it in style in the new 2013 Escape!

The supplies you see in the escapes cargo space above will be going to kids in the Tacoma school district who do not have supplies. Jen’s husband is a teacher in that district, and they have programs to put together backpacks full of school supplies for kids in need in our local area schools, and that’s where those supplies will be put to use.

Ford is also hosting a Hunger Drive with Feeding AmericaYou can host your own event with Ford to help Feeding America get food to people in need. They bring an event manager, the Hunger Drive banner, fun giveaways, and the 2013 Ford Escape. You bring your friends and family and pick the location of your choice!  For every guest that attends – Ford will help provide 40 meals for Feeding America.

Enjoying having a Ford Escape parked in my driveway, if just for a day!

Before we got started on our back to school shopping trip, I had the pleasure of learning more about the features of the new Ford Escape. The most noticeable is the redesign of the outside of the car. Not only does it look great, but it was built with 85% sustainable or recycled materials! Can you believe a car that looks like that was made from items like recycled plastic bottles, soy foam, scrap cotton from recycled jeans, t-shirts and the like, recycled tires and more. I was impressed (and a little shocked), when I learned how green this car is. Find specific details on how environmentally friendly the new Ford Escape is here.

Cargo space before school supplies

…and after school supplies!

You can see how roomy the car was, by how many school supplies we were able to get into the cargo space of the Ford Escape, and there was still room (had we kept all the supplies still in bags, you could have fit a bag of soccer balls in there with them!).

Watch Mary use the Hands Free Lift Gate in real time!

My favorite features of this car are what I would call “family friendly” features. That is those that keep my family safe, or make being the family taxi driver easier. These include:

  • Rear View Camera – This was so cool! Not sure how else to describe it. There is a camera in the dashboard that shows you what is directly behind the car as you back up. I have two little kids, and it was reassuring to see exactly what was behind the car before I started to back out of the driveway. The camera then shuts off soon after you drive forward, so its not a distraction.
  • My Key – This was one of my favorite features, as I have one child just about to turn 15, so we are facing the prospect of getting him ready to drive over the next year. This feature allows you to provide your son or daughter a key that is set to limit speeds (ie cannot go over 80 miles and hour), limits volume on the radio, includes a belt-reminder that will chime until seat belts are buckled and more. It takes just a few minutes to program the key, and provides you a little more peace of mind.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control – This feature allows you to not only set cruise control, but also designate how close you want to get to the cars in front of you (ie two cars length). The cruise control will adapt itself to the speed of the car in front of you if you get within that distance. The Ford representative I talked with said he drove quite a distance without having to use the gas or brake, once he set up his Adaptive Cruise Control on a recent drive. Sounds like a great roadtrip car to me !
  • Active Park Assist – Anyone hate parallel parking? Well this is your car, it will park for you! Almost too good to believe, but its true. This car can park itself.
  • Hands Free Power Lift Gate – The video above is of Mary, my shopping buddy, demonstrating how the hands free lift gate worked for us on our shopping trip. She simply waved her leg under the tailgate, with key in hand, and it automatically pops open. I used this feature a few times, and had lots of fun with it (see below)!

I was so excited about the Hands Free Lift Gate that I could not contain the giggles. I have not had this much fun with a car in a long time!

If you are interested in a small SUV, you will want to check this one out. The room for passengers and cargo is spacious (see back row room in photo below), the technology impressive, and it is projected to have the best fuel economy in its class. There are more features then I can include here, but check out the Ford website here for full details on all of the safety features, smart technology, and green building that goes into this SUV.

Be sure to enter to win one of the TEN $33 Gas Cards that Ford will be giving away to Thrifty Northwest Mom readers too! You have until 9pm tonight (8/21) to enter this giveaway. A big thank you to Ford for their generosity in helping us get school supplies into the hands of kids in need, and for helping ten Thrifty Northwest Mom readers get some gas in their tanks!

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