Article from WhichCar.
Due for release later this year, the 2023 Ford Everest will be powered by V6 and I4 diesel engines, and offer a jump to 3500kg in towing capacity.
Ford has continued its rollout of new 4×4 vehicles that will go on sale in the second half of 2022, with the first look at the new 2023 Everest wagon.
This comes after recently showing us the Ranger and Ranger Raptor utes, both of which are based on the same T6 platform as the new Everest.
Ford is calling this latest version of the T6 body-on-chassis platform Next-Gen T6 and, as was the case with the previous two iterations of the chassis, most of the engineering, design and testing for it was done here in Australia by the local team.
As in the past, the Everest rides on its own version of the platform with a shorter wheelbase than the Ranger ute and a disc-brake-equipped and coil-sprung rear suspension instead of the leaf springs and drum brakes under the Ranger ute. These changes between the ute and wagon are designed to create a better riding and performing chassis for the Everest over the load-lugging Ranger ute.
Like the next-gen Ranger and Ranger Raptor, the Everest’s chassis is all-new using hydroformed rails, to allow the complex designs needed to accommodate the new engines. The wheel track has been widened by 50 millimetres to improve the ride, off-road performance and the look of the car.
Also in line with the Ranger chassis, the wheelbase has been lengthened by 50mm – this in-between the firewall and front axle line, again to accommodate the new engines and their related cooling systems
The Everest will lose its familiar five-cylinder, 3.2-litre diesel engine but return the four-cylinder 2.0L bi-turbo diesel that is also in the current model. The big news engine-wise is the inclusion on the 3.0L V6 diesel engine also coming from the Ranger. While no figures have yet been given for the power and torque outputs of the new V6, its most recent application was in the Ford F-150 pick-up where it made close to 600Nm and 185kW.
Those power and torque figures, plus the towing rating that has grown from 3200 to 3500 kilograms, should put the wind up Toyota, as the V6 outguns the top-selling Prado. Plus, with its bigger cabin size (over current generation) it could be an alternative for buyers unable to get in to a LandCruiser due to the massive product shortages Toyota is suffering at the moment.
Ford has not given us any payload or Gross Combined Mass figures for the new Everest yet, but we expect them to exceed the current model. The towing experience has been made easier with an electric brake controller built in to the car and a trailer light check function that runs the lights through their paces – you can step back and see if they are working as they should.
Helping to give the Everest its higher towing capacity is the bigger and more efficient cooling system that is possible thanks to the new front-end design and the extra space afforded by the longer nose. The front and rear axle have also been upgraded to heavier duty units to cope with heavier loads. V6 and I4 diesel Everests will only be offered with the 10-speed automatic transmission in Australia.
Even the roof of the new Everest has been engineered to carry heavier loads and is now rated to hold a 100 kilogram dynamic load or up to 350kg static. That’s enough to carry most rooftop tents and their occupants in camp. There are two newly designed roof bars with integrated rails on most grades, and free-standing ones on the top-spec Platinum variant.
As mentioned, the wider wheel track and longer wheelbase have allowed the design and engineering teams to fit a larger, more-accommodating body to the Everest.
Without releasing actual figures, Ford tells us that there’s more shoulder room in the second and third rows of seats and more leg room in all three rows. The action of the third-row seats has been re-engineered to make entry and exit easier for the rearmost passengers; and the cargo space is said to be bigger, both with the third row folded or in use.
The second and third rows now fold flat in to the floor of the vehicle, while the tailgate has a larger opening in order to swallow bigger goods. Plus, the tailgate lifts higher for head clearance at the back of the car.
The Everest’s interior has a more premium feel, with most of its features carried over from the new Ranger. These include a 10- or 12.4-inch centre-stack screen (depending on model spec) for most of the controls and AV duties, plus a huge configurable gauge binnacle. While many of the vehicle controls have moved into menus in the screen, there are still large tactile dials for the most commonly used controls like audio volume and climate control temperature – finally a vehicle manufacturer that is listening!
There are also plenty of power and USB outlets throughout the cabin to accommodate passengers in all three rows. An electronic gear shifter and park brake allow for more space in the centre console, while the dial to select 4×4 functions and modes is large and easily falls to the driver’s hand.
The Everest gets a new 4×4 system that offers full-time four-wheel drive for most driving conditions; locked 4×4 high range and locked 4×4 low range for off-road driving.
The multi-terrain selector puts seven drive modes at the driver’s fingertips – three modes for on road and towing, and four designed to optimise the electronics for various off-road conditions. The Everest also has a driver lockable rear differential lock and, as in the past, the Ford retains ETC across the front axle when the rear locker is engaged.
The next-gen T6’s wider wheel track has allowed the engineers to get more travel out of the axles at both ends, to keep the tyres in contact with the ground.
Ford’s partnership with ARB 4×4 Accessories will not only offer a range of common accessory items such as bullbars, side-steps, suspension, roof racks and lighting for the new Everest and Ranger, but also more specific items suitable for the adventurous owner.
The engine bays of all the next-gen T6 vehicles, bar the Raptor, have been designed to accommodate a second battery and the kit to fit it will come from ARB. When asked about fuel capacity, Ford said it is working with ARB on offering auxiliary tanks, so again it seems Ford is listening to what owners want.
When the new Everest lobs in the second half of 2022 it is expected to arrive with a four-model line-up similar to what’s on offer now. These would include the Ambiente and Trend Sport; while the top-of-the-range model becomes the Platinum in lieu of Titanium.
Platinum is designed to take Everest in to new ground in terms of buyers and specification level. To be powered only by the V6 engine and four-wheel drive, the model gets a premium dash and quilted-look heated and cooled leather seats, park assist 2.0, extra chrome inside and out, a bespoke grille and Platinum badging, plus exclusive 21-inch alloy wheels.
Thankfully, the Platinum will also be available with 18-inch alloys for those who want something more off-roadable. The exclusive features give the Platinum a more upmarket look and feel than anything we’ve seen in an Everest before.
While the full model by model specifications and any pricing are yet to be announced, we do expect the prices to go up from what they are now to be more in-line with Toyota Prado, especially for the V6-powered Everests. The next-gen model will give Ford a wagon to take the popular Prado head on and exceed it in performance and refinement thanks to its new engine.
We expect the new Everests in the final quarter of 2022, following the arrival of Ranger in June or July, and the Ranger Raptor shortly after that. It all adds up to a busy end to the year for Ford as it works to retain its title of having the best-selling 4×4 model in Australia.