The tow points on the 05 Escape are decent, but as they are 2 pieces of sheet metal welded together with rolled edges they have their limitations. That said when the Escape was my wife's rig she had to use it to pull out my Toyota, so they are serviceable. As to new rigs not having tow points, this trend annoys me. Our new GMC Terrain does not have any tow points that I can see. It wouldnt surprise me if this is done because of how the newer powertrains are made. The manufacturers probably want to discourage people from pulling others out thinking "this is a truck with 4wheel drive" when it is not. On newer XUVs you are dealing with light weight axle housings and drive lines, and the transmissions certainly are not heavy duty units either. While the powertrain in our GMC is great on its own, having been under it I will say it has FAR more in common with a car that a truck. While my Escape on the other hand still has a legit rear axle center section also the transmission "transfer case" and drive line seem to be far more robust than the GMC. And having browsed service manuals for both I dont think this is because the Escape is a V6, and the Terrain is a 4 cylinder. But I will say with lightness of build comes many benefits, when it comes to driver comfort and economy the Terrain has the Escape beat by miles.