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Wheels of the Week: The Ford beast rides the road

If you’ve been behind the wheel of the next generation Ford Everest Wildtrak, you’ll know that you’re the boss of the road, writes SHERYL GOLDSTUCK.

The Next Generation Ford Everest Wildtrak is a robust and versatile seven-seater SUV that’s tailor-made for both on- and off-road escapades. Its muscle comes from a potent 3.0L turbocharged V6 engine, churning out 184kW and 600Nm of torque, making it one of the mightiest SUVs in its category. It provides ample acceleration and passing power. However, this impacts its fuel efficiency, which can be heavy at times.

The Wildtrak is packed with features like a four-wheel drive system and a range of off-road goodies, including a locking rear differential and a terrain management system. These make it fully equipped to handle even the most demanding terrains.

The interior of the Everest Wildtrak is a spacious and comfortable cabin that easily accommodates seven adults. The seats are supportive, and there is generous legroom and headroom for all passengers. The cabin is well-insulated, ensuring a quiet and comfortable ride during long road trips.

The rear has air conditioning vents in the ceiling of the vehicle. This is far more logical than the standard vents that are placed behind the console. Passengers are more comfortable and the air is better circulated for both the second and third row of seats.

As in the other Ford vehicles, the Everest comes with a range of high-tech features, including a 12-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a digital instrument cluster, and a wireless charging pad. The large touchscreen is placed vertically to create a mirror image of your smartphone. This enhances user-friendliness as you are already familiar with your icons.

Without any effort whatsoever, I was able to connect to Android Auto without a cable. Mapping was such a pleasure as I could see exactly where I was going and when I needed to turn. The voice-over for maps was loud and clear and there was no mistaking what was needed. Wireless Apple CarPlay is also available. My current phone, unfortunately, does not support wireless charging, but the car features a wireless charging pad for those that do.

The Everest offers advanced safety features like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and blind spot monitoring. The rear cameras made reversing easier, especially at night, with a very clear image.

The Next Generation Ford Everest Wildtrak is an excellent choice for those seeking a rugged and capable SUV that excels in both on- and off-road performance. It is a well-rounded package with its powerful engine, off-road capabilities, as well as a roomy and comfortable interior.

Pricing for the next generation Ford Everest Wildtrak starts at R1,115,700.

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