AT A GLANCE
FORD EVEREST PRICE From $55,990 WARRANTY 3 years/100,000km CAPPED SERVICING $1390 for 3 years/ 45,000km SERVICE INTERVALS 12 months/15,000km SAFETY 5 stars, 7 airbags ENGINE 3.2-litre 5-cyl turbo diesel, 143kW/430Nm TRANSMISSION 6-speed auto; RWD THIRST 8.4L/100km DIMENSIONS 4892mm (L), 1860mm (W), 1837mm (H), 2850mm (WB) WEIGHT 2395kg SPARE Space-saver TOWING 3000kg FORD has launched a twowheel drive Everest for those folk who want the rugged looks without the rock-hopping offroad abilities.
The rear-drive model shares the 3.2-litre diesel with 4WD versions but drops 98kg with the deletion of the low-range transfer case, front differential and prop-shafts.
That contributes to a $55,990 price for the RWD Trend against $60,990 for the 4WD.
The lighter weight brings a 0.1L improvement in official fuel use at 8.4L/100km.
The rear-drive isn’t the price leader in the range. The 4WD Everest Ambiente costs $54,990. The prices across the range reflect Ford’s decision to directly target the Toyota Prado at the premium end of the mainstream seven-seat SUV segment.
Ford engineer Jeremy Welch says the move to a rear-drive layout reflects the realities of the segment, where 2WD SUVs account for 28 per cent of sales.
Adds Ford boss Graeme Whickman: “Rear-wheel drive will give Everest a wider lens.”
The focal point of that lens doesn’t extend to matching the impressive on-road manners of the vehicle it may replace in some driveways, the Falconbased Territory.
Given the workhorse underpinnings of the Everest — it is based on the Ranger ute — Ford is trying to pull rabbits out of old-fashioned hats.
The 2WD Everest in midlevel Trend specification has standard dual-zone climate control and eight-inch colour touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration via Ford’s latest infotainment software. It also comes with five-star crash rating and seven airbags.