First of the “Fabulous FOuRDs”
When asked by Ford Philippines if I wanted to test the Everest 3.2 Titanium 4×4, I immediately accepted even before she finished asking. I’ve been waiting for this chance to test the popular SUV from Ford. And to get the top-of-the-line variant, is well, icing on the cake!
When the Sunset Red Everest arrived at our doorstep, the imposing figure was a sight to see. Not that the Everest was big, but the overall package; the big wheels, high ground clearance and the humongous grille gave it a commanding presence. We like it already! The neighbors thought so too, giving the thumbs up, with some asking if I bought it. I wish!
All variants of the new Everest have the same basic shape, but with the Titanium having the most accouterments, helping separate this model from lesser variants. The hood is similar to the Ranger pickup, wide, with the appropriate hood bulge. The imposing chrome grille is exclusive to the Titanium, and lends a luxury feel.
The headlights are special too; DRLs within the Projector lamps. The lower driving lights are placed at the lower valance panel, both enclosed in a silver colored bumper diffuser.
The wheels are top notch. While lesser SUVs settle for 17s or 18s, the Everest took it a couple of inches bigger; the six-spoke polished alloy with 265/50/20 is the perfect combination to complement the overall shape. The SUV-only Goodyear Efficient Grip can be used on rough roads, giving credence to the 4WD abilities of the Everest.
The interior is still fresh-like brand-new! The leather is still supple and smooth to the touch despite the age. The seats are comfortable, and give the driver and front passenger a commanding view of the road. At the second row, 4 passengers can fit comfortably, but in our case, only my three kids will fit (as they are on the big size). As for the third row, we never got to use it; most of the time, it was filled with cargo. Oh, did I mention that the third row is controlled electronically? It will fold at a flick of a switch!
The panoramic moonroof was also an added attraction. While the screen was closed during daytime, opening it proved beneficial during dusk and nighttime by providing added illumination inside.
The dashboard, although appearing basic – with all pertinent controls within reach, is actually more than you bargained for. The magic is in the gauge cluster. At first glance, the speedometer in the middle is the only analog gauge, but upon closer observation, all information are on both sides of the speedometer. With a press of the mode button on the steering wheel, everything — from Fuel consumption, trip meter, driver assist, will appear on the left side, even the LED tachometer. The right panel shows the telephone connections and infotainment information. It’s all in there, believe me.
That dash: It may take a little getting used to, but the different modes are very useful…once you get the hang of it.
The heart of the Everest is the 3.2 litre, 20-Valve, 5-Cylinder Turbocharged Diesel engine. First off, the sound it makes is music to the ears. It’s more similar to a full 6-cylinder purr, with a low staccato tune. The transmission is the reliable 6-speed automatic, a match for the 4wd system.
Amazingly, despite the extra cylinder, it’s a miser on fuel: 10km/L, on heavy traffic, no less. On highway trips, it’s 18km/L, at a constant 90kph.
Nothing much to discuss her, but the comfortable ride is remarkable, considering the heavy-duty 4WD components. Potholes and rough roads came unnoticed, giving some credence to the suspension engineering. An older aunt actually praised the ride: “Hindi matagtag” (Not harsh).
No complaints were received from my family and friends, except maybe, the high ground clearance. Middle-aged people may have a little difficulty climbing up.
The Ford Everest 3.2 Titanium+ 4×4 AT Premium is a top notch SUV, as the ₱ 2,288,000 price tag proves. But for the whole package, it’s more than worth it considering what you are getting. Right now, my “critics” are saying that this may be the best SUV that they have ever ridden. I don’t know about that, as I try to stay unbiased. But with tough passengers like these, their opinion matters the most.
Stay tuned for the “Ford Everest Visits Mt. Purro” story. Coming soon!
Note: Personally, We, at StreettalkPh prefer demo units to have at least a couple of thousands of kilometers on the odometer. It makes a more realistic review; taking notes of the engine performance, the much sat-on interior, suspension play and unnecessary squeaks emanating from all over the vehicle (if any). Sure, a brand new unit is most welcome to use-the brand new smell gets us everytime, but for an honest review, a well-used unit is the way to go.
Text/Images: Earl Manalansan