By Sala Masindane
It is no secret that the new Ford Everest was eagerly awaited and we finally got our hands on it for an extended period. Santa was friendly enough to lend us his chariot for the festive season, the family friendly and 7-seating all-new Ford Everest Platinum Edition SUV.
The new bold exterior design is the initial sign of how it doesn’t resemble the previous generation Everest. It is based on Ford’s global design DNA, which was first seen on the Ranger and has filtered down to the new Everest. Upfront, the new Everest boasts C-Clamp matrix LED headlights and a strong horizontal upper grille bar. Our aluminum-colored test unit stands out by the chrome ‘Platinum’ inscription on the bonnet, and the wider stance (increased by 50mm) makes the new Everest look more muscular. It rides on 21-inch machined-faced alloy wheels, and the front end theme is continued at the rear with similar LED tail lights surrounding the model name. All these have made the new Everest a head turner across all travels.
The cabin takes the new Everest to an entire level of luxury and premium for the manufacture. All seven passengers were kept connected and entertained thanks to the many standard USB/C ports and the Bang & Olufsen sound system operated via the large portrait 12-inch central infotainment touchscreen which is also Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible. The screen does experience glitches and those could be disturbing while navigating.
Being already spacious, the large panoramic sunroof made the Everest experience even more special for younger occupants. The large C-Pillar windows also allowed them to see the landscape even if they were seated in the third row. They also have the benefit of air-conditioning vents. Santa has been friendly enough to lend us his chariot this festive season, the family friendly and 7-seating all-new Ford Everest Platinum Edition SUV.
Performance and drive
The range-topping SUV is powered by a new 3.0-litre V6 engine with outputs of 184kW/600Nm and is paired with a 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission. Our time with the burly SUV has proved that size is not a factor for the engine as it accelerates well and there’s added refinement compared to the previous generation. We experienced the new Everest Platinum in different conditions – city traffic, unforgiving provincial roads and twisty mountains. Whilst provincial roads can be unforgiving, the new Everest is at home in most conditions. It was able to cushion us with its comfortable suspension and also help us navigate traffic easily with the high ride position. Ford claims a fuel consumption of 8.5 l/100km for the Everest but our stint has seen us attain 12.8 l/100km. This is one of our drawbacks with the V6 engine as it is not frugal.
Thankfully, it is a well-equipped SUV inside and out, which is good news for families who are seeking adventure and space to match.
The new Everest may certainly be no longer competing with the Toyota Fortuner or the Isuzu mu-X and be in the same realm as the Prado and the likes. This is due to the starting range of R965,400 for the Sport or R1,113,100 for the Platinum and current offering of the large SUV. While there’s a long waiting list to purchase the Everest, we enjoyed our time with it and we would buy it without thinking twice.
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