The Ford Everest sport 2,0 diesel 4x4 with its seven-seater configuration is a go-anywhere family vehicle. Its exterior, although modelled off the Ford Ranger, has a certain sophistication, and in sport guise Ford has added black 20-inch mag wheels, a 3D Everest bonnet badge and blackened badges all round, adding to the overall rugged look.
The Everest’s towering stance dwarfs most vehicles parked next to it, yet hopping into to the vehicle is rather simple, thanks to the side steps. The interior is neat and functional with leather seats for comfort and durability. The centre console is basic but delivers all the required information to understand what is happening with the vehicle. The steering wheel is perfectly weighted and well balanced which is required to have better control on the road and is very welcomed for off-road manoeuvring. The seating configuration allows for five people to sit very comfortably while the two rear seats are comfy, the leg room is less than desired for adults. In this configuration the boot space is diminished and barely manages to swallow a few bags of groceries. Drop the rear two seats into the boot floor to reveal a luggage space that will comfortably take in the monthly groceries with your golf clubs.
The infotainment system has been updated and now has apple car play and Android play features. The reverse camera is very handy especially when parking and towing. The vehicle also has terrain control which allows you to manually select the terrain that you plan to drive on, this will then automatically adjust the gearbox and lock diffs according to what is required for that terrain. This allows the vehicle to cover terrain like sand, ruts, rocks and road with the turn of a dial.
On the road, the Everest is stable even at the national limit. Cornering, however, can be a challenge at a high speed, but once you get used to it, you learn to control it better. Off-road it conquers almost anything you can throw at it. That said, one of the hardest things to do with the Everest is to enter a Johannesburg undercover mall parking which is a few centimetres higher than the roofline, which can play with one’s nerves − especially if you enter it at speeds above crawling speed, and even worse is trying to make this monster fit into the tiny parking bays.
This oversize feeling is terrifying in parking lots, but makes you feel so superior on the road, especially when 14-seaters try to cut you off and then just back off when they are dwarfed in size. It does make driving a lot of fun. The 2,0-diesel motor does not produce neck-breaking power, but has sufficient torque to allow for some fun driving with decent fuel decent frugality but that is lead foot, dependant.
On the whole, the Everest − even though due to be updated to a new model still keeps true to its roots of being a straightforward, go-anywhere vehicle that can cater for almost any need: from family breaks to just having fun off road. Let the fun begin!
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