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Ferry from Dover to Calais OR Eurostar from Ashford to Calais?

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DILEMMA:
We need to travel from England(Ashford or Dover) to Calais, France, where we will pick up a rental car.
The Eurostar only runs ONCE a day from Ashford to Calais, at 7:35AM.
OR
The ferry runs every hour or so from Dover, upon which we would be foot passengers.

Has anyone done either of these? Preference?

We will have a rental car that we will need to return before heading to Calais, France. I am concerned the 7:35am(Eurostar) departure doesn't leave us enough time. On the otherhand I am concerned the ferry terminal is inconvenient and overall more difficult.

Your input is very appreciated...3 1/2 weeks to trip.

Thoughts? Experience?
Thanks
Tina

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