Ford Everest Titanium: For the long haul
A good road trip has two essential components: an enjoyable car and even more enjoyable company. Road trips beckon as summer continues to sizzle. You have to wiggle yourself free from city and town traffic before you can enjoy a brief spell of fast, flowing driving, and then you can discover just how obedient your steed is.
The Ford Everest is certainly an amiable vehicle for a long road trip with a large family or group of friends. There’s a roomy second row of seats that can slide forward to accommodate a third row of passengers. Entry and exit are made easier by the second row seats’ tilt and slide forward function, via a single manual lever.
Climbing into the Everest requires a big hop into the driver’s chair—good thing there’s a standard step board. Thanks to the high seating position, the SUV gives an expansive view of the road and surrounding traffic. One demerit for the Everest’s steering wheel adjustment—it only tilts and doesn’t telescope. With the power-adjusting driver’s seat, though, it’s easy to find a comfortable driving position.
The 2.2-liter turbodiesel engine fires up with a twist of the ignition key. The four-cylinder delivers 160ps and a robust 385Nm of torque. The latter figure is key to the Everest’s smooth and satisfying acceleration. The engine is quieter than we expected at idle. Even when revved hard, the engine gives just the right note of gruffness while powering the Everest quickly up to the triple digits. There’s adequate traction from the 50-series Goodyear tires running on 20-inch alloys. Accelerating hard from standstill and opening up the torque in corners elicited no complaints from the tires.
There’s power in the interior, too. We mean power outlets—lots of them. Two USB ports and two 12-volt power outlets in the front, a 12-V power outlet for the second row. One feature that’s not so common is a full 230-V power outlet, good for plugging in your laptop or charging other devices.
Ford’s Sync interface is one of the easiest to use. It features an 8″ touchscreen mounted high on the center instrument panel. Accessing all secondary features like the airconditioning, vehicle settings, and navigation is easy, thanks to the logical menu system. There’s even a voice-command feature that helps the driver to keep his or her eyes on the road while activating the system.
One aspect of a long drive is entertainment. Since we all carry a portable entertainment device with us at all times, the important aspect is how the vehicle syncs with a smartphone. The Everest is equipped with Apple Car Play interface, as well as the standard USB and Bluetooth modes. The audio interface on the large touchscreen allows easy control of your tunes.
The Everest Titanium sports a long list of convenience features, some only found on premium vehicles. These include one-touch power windows for all positions on the driver’s switch, ambient lighting, and large power moonroof.
Acting as the driver’s “shotgun-seat” companion, the Ford Everest’s active safety features help warn the driver of approaching danger. The blind-spot information system lights-up the relevant side mirror if the vehicle detects an object in the car’s blind-spot area. This is invaluable during the many times a day that motorcycles hover near the Everest, particularly on the right side. The system acts as Cross-traffic alert, warning of approaching vehicles when backing out.
Those long highway drives can cause the driver’s attention to wander, and here’s where the Everest’s Lane Departure Warning steps it. The system subtly vibrates the steering wheel if it detects the vehicle crossing highway lines without the driver signaling. If that isn’t enough, Everest can also apply torque to help guide the vehicle back into the lane.
Cruise control helps lessen driving stress and boredom. The Everest does it one better, with its adaptive cruise control. This monitors traffic ahead of the car and will slow down and speed up automatically to keep up. With the collision warning system activated, if the car senses that you’re closing in too fast to the vehicle ahead, it signals a red “brake light” warning bar under the front windshield to alert the driver. If it becomes more alarmed, the system alerts using a loud beep, and it also pre-charges the brakes to help the car stop in a shorter distance. Rain-sensing wipers activate and adjust speed automatically.
Despite its family-size proportions, the Everest is easy to maneuver. Its electric power steering is light and the vehicle’s turning radius is pleasantly tight. If you want to leave the parallel parking to the computer, the Everest obliges with its auto-park feature. You just have to activate the gas and brake while the SUV steers itself into a parking space.
A road trip with the Ford Everest ensures at least that the car is enjoyable. Now all you need are up to six more companions.
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