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How will Ford keep Edge sharp for sophomore 2016?

What changes will make it different?

It’s difficult to imagine Ford doing too much to change this crossover SUV, which will be all new as a 2015 model in calendar-year ’15. The Edge is the rare vehicle that actually will land in showrooms the same year as its model-year designation. That leaves the possibility of some refinements for a ’16 model in calendar-year 2016. But since the vehicle will go global at the beginning of calendar-year ’15, with staggered releases throughout the first sixth months or so, there may be little room to change things for model-year ’16.

Why should I wait for the 2016 Edge?

We’re not saying you should. Since we’re still waiting for the all-new model-year 2015 Edge to land in dealerships, there’s no real reason to hold out for a model-year ’16 version, which likely won’t be vastly different.

Should I buy a 2015 model instead?

This vehicle is aimed at the segment of the market that’s occupied by offerings like the Audi Q5, which is a tough sell for something featuring a Ford badge. However, that just shows how confident the automaker is about its latest models—and with some justification, we might add. When you take in the Edge’s looks and specification and then consider that it costs $10,000 less than its Audi rival, a strong argument for buying one materializes. It’s an all-new version of an already extremely popular vehicle, so we’re confident it will be a winner.

Will the styling be different?

The straight answer would be no, given that it has just been significantly redesigned, but Ford doesn’t shy away from doing enough each year to distinguish one model from another. In order words, you can expect some tweaks but not an overhaul.

Any mechanical changes?

The ’15 model year already brought a number of mechanical upgrades, with an engine lineup revamped to include a turbocharged four-cylinder as its standard offering and naturally aspirated and turbocharged V-6s as alternate choices. The redesigned Edge is based on the carmaker’s solid Fusion platform and we see no big alterations in the near future.

Will fuel economy improve?

Ford’s EcoBoost engines are a consummate exercise in increasing fuel economy without compromising power, but there have been problems with units like the 1.6-liter model in the past. There is generally room for improvement on relatively new engines, so don’t rule out some fine-tuning. Nevertheless, model-year ’16 isn’t likely to deliver big boosts in gas mileage.

Will it have new features?

Few manufacturers incorporate new features and technology as readily and comprehensively as Ford, and there’s already so much in this vehicle that it’s hard to imagine what can be added without looking to the realm of science fiction. The model-year ’15 version has enough features to keep people happy for a while.

How will 2016 prices be different?

We don’t yet have definitive pricing for model-year 2015, so it’s extremely difficult to predict what the ’16 model year will bring. The 2014 model starts at well under the $30,000, an important threshold that Ford will be keen to keep the entry-level models below for as long as possible. There’s little appetite in the industry for price hikes these days, so that should provide at least an indication of what you might expect.

When will it come out?

The model-year ’15 offering is expected to go on sale at the very start of 2015, with an international rollout over the ensuring months. Therefore, the next model probably won’t see the light of day until the beginning of ’16, and possibly even later.

Best competitors

Audi Q5, Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Terrain, Hyundai Sonata, Toyota Venza, Honda CR-V

What change would make it better?

We hesitate to say “nothing,’ but the model-year 2014 offering was already outstanding, and any perceived shortcomings appear to have been addressed in model-year ’15. Of course, we’d always like to see the price go down, but the Edge’s cost isn’t out of line as it is.

Quick hit

Although the model-year 2015 Edge hasn’t been widely driven yet, people are expecting big things from it. Therefore, it wouldn’t be a shock if Ford decided to carry it over into model-year ’16. At this point, we have trouble finding fault with what is already an outstanding SUV, one that could be a serious rival to the CR-V’s crown.

About Chuck Giametta

This nationally recognized, award-winning writer brings to Carpreview.com two decades of automotive testing and reporting for newspapers, books, magazines, and the Internet. The former Executive Auto Editor of Consumer Guide, Chuck has covered cars for HowStuffWorks.com, Collectible Automobile magazine, and the Publications International Ltd. automotive book series. This ex-newspaper reporter has also appeared as an automotive expert on network television and radio. He’s a charter member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association, the president of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Media association, and a juror for the annual Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year awards. Chuck writes from Colorado Springs, Colo. If you have a question for Chuck, write to him at [email protected]