Following an investment of R2.5-billion in the Ford Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa has launched the locally produced seven-seater Everest with bigger line-up that will appeal to a much wider range of customers. The new Ford Everest will be available in Ford dealers this month and will be exported to other markets across Sub-Saharan Africa.
Along with the two original high-spec 3.2 XLT and Limited 4×4 models (originally built in Thailand), localised assembly sees the addition of a further six derivatives, all built to Ford’s stringent global quality standards. This includes five all-new 2.2-litre versions in XLS or XLT trim, as well as the option of a new 3.2 XLT 4×2.
“Our new and much broader line-up for the Ford Everest meets the need for high-value mid-range models, which dominate the sales in this segment,” said Tracey Delate, General Manager for Marketing – Ford Motor Company Sub-Saharan Africa Region.
Buyers now also have the option of manual or automatic transmissions, as well as 4×2 or 4×4 models to suit their specific needs.
“We expect the Everest 2.2 XLS to be an extremely popular seller. It offers the practicality of a seven-seater configuration, impressive levels of standard specification, great performance and outstanding value for money.”
The 2.2 XLS is available in three versions, comprising a two-wheel drive derivative with six-speed manual gearbox, along with an automatic model that uses Ford’s smooth-shifting SelectShift six-speed transmission to deliver seamless power and refinement, with the added benefit of Sport and Manual modes for ultimate control.
For owners that intend heading far off the beaten track, there’s the Everest 2.2 XLS 4×4, equipped with a manual transmission. The intelligent four-wheel drive system provides permanent drive to all four wheels, using an active transfer case with high and low range, a rear differential lock and Torque on Demand to deliver optimum performance and traction in all conditions. This is bolstered by the 225mm ground clearance and substantial 800mm water wading depth.
Common to all 4×4 models is Ford’s innovative Terrain Management System that boasts four driving modes: Normal, Mud, Sand and Rock Crawl. These modes are easily selected via a convenient rotary dial adjacent to the gear lever. It adapts throttle response, gear shift patterns on the automatic models, the intelligent four-wheel drive system and traction control to confidently tackle any terrain.
Customers desiring an added measure of luxury and exclusivity can opt for the higher-specification Everest 2.2 in XLT guise, available in two-wheel drive form with either manual or automatic transmissions.
New to the Everest line-up is a 4×2 version of the powerful 3.2-litre model, also in XLT trim and paired with the six-speed automatic gearbox. This derivative is ideally suited to customers looking for the space, comfort, performance and luxury of the high-spec Everest, but don’t require extreme off-road capability.
As before, the two top-end models are both matched to Ford’s intelligent four-wheel drive system, automatic gearbox and impressive 3.2-litre engine, in either XLT or range-topping Limited specification.
Alloy wheels are common across the range, with 17-inch rims on the XLS, attractive 18-inch units on the XLT and striking 20-inch versions on the Limited.
One of the most exciting new technologies, available for the first time in Sub-Saharan Africa, is Ford’s latest-generation SYNC3 integrated communications and entertainment system, fitted as standard on all XLT and Limited models. It includes a total of 10 speakers and two USB ports for multimedia connectivity.
SYNC1 remains the entry-level system on the XLS models, and offers Bluetooth with Voice Activation, plus mobile and multimedia device integration. Numerous other sophisticated technologies fitted as standard on the Ford Everest include Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) with Traction Control, Hill Launch Assist and Trailer Sway Control.
Further safety features encompass dual front, side and full-length curtain airbags. A driver’s knee airbag is standard on the XLT and Limited, and optional on the XLS.
All three specification grades include rear parking sensors linked to a full colour rear view parking camera on the 4-inch display for the XLS or the 8-inch touch screen for XLT and Limited – the latter also featuring front parking sensors.
New to the Everest line-up is the refined and extremely capable 2.2-litre four-cylinder unit, which produces a maximum power output of 118kW at 3 700r/min, linked to a torque peak of 385Nm from 1 500 to 2 500r/min – thus ensuring impressive performance in all conditions.
The mighty 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbodiesel engine remains the range-topping choice, delivering 147kW and a massive 470Nm for superlative all-round performance.
Both versions are rated for a maximum towing capacity of 3 000kg, reinforcing the Everest’s exceptional all-round capabilities – particularly as a lifestyle vehicle.
Service intervals are every 20 000km, while 4×4 models include free 4×4 training.