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Will Ford Endeavour become the new SUV king?

March 04, 2016 10:54 IST

The new generation Ford Endeavour has been launched in India and is priced between Rs 29.04 – Rs 34.54 lakhs (OTR Mumbai). Since the car will compete against other full-size premium SUVs like the Toyota Fortuner and Hyundai Santa Fe, the folks at find out whether the new car is worth its salt or not.

The Ford Endeavour is a full-size premium SUV from America and to describe the SUV as being 'huge' is a gross understatement. The Endeavour has a cult following in India due to its loud engine, chunky tyres and sheer road presence. But due to the long life cycle of such products in India, the Endeavour was starting to look tired and old in the face of modern competition. However, the blue oval is now back with a bang with the new generation Ford Endeavour not only looking mesmerising but also making competition appear lifeless.

It's easy to spot the SUV among a sea of cars in an average traffic jam due to its will-roll-over-you stance and the big chrome grille up front. The muscular bumper, silver skid plate and well integrated projector headlamps make the front fascia look exemplary. The SUV is broad shouldered and has oodles of chrome to attract the bling-loving Indians.

Overall, the car is 4892 mm long and 1860 mm wide, making it much longer (187 mm) and wider (20 mm) than its immediate rival, the Toyota Fortuner but a tad shorter (13 mm) in height at 1837 mm. It has also got a long wheelbase of 2850 mm, which is 100 mm more than the Fortuner.

Inside, the blingy-glossy theme continues on the dashboard panels and the steering wheel. The excellent fit and finish of materials, glossy plastic panels with ample amounts of beige and just the right amount of chrome makes the interiors of the car certainly the best among its competitors.

The 8-way adjustable driver's seat provides a commanding view of the road such that one even looks down on the Innovas and the XUV500s. Dual zone climate control and dedicated vents for the 2nd and 3rd row justifies the price tag of the car.

The seats are very supportive on the front two rows but the third row is good for short trips only. The third row is 50-50 split and can be folded down electronically. Also, fold the 60-40 split second row and you are provided with an astonishing 2010-litre of boot-space.

The SUV also comes with all kinds of toys and gadgets such as auto headlamps, rain sensing wipers, front parking sensors, tyre pressure monitoring, etc. to keep a human mind intrigued and comfortable at the same time. The Endeavour gets an 8-inch tough-screen infotainment system with the usual connectivity options of AUX, Bluetooth and USB along with Ford SYNC system and voice control. The party trick is the semi-auto parallel park feature that steers the car in the parking on its own while you just need to brake and accelerate.

The beast from Ford is powered by two diesel engine options – 2.2-litre and 3.2-litre mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. We test drove the range topping 3198cc version that churns out 200 PS and 470 Nm of torque. The engine has minimal turbo lag and strong initial grunt to aide city driving.

Push the SUV further and the meaty mid-range power delivery tapers-off at the redline. Special mention goes to the excellent low NVH levels and noise cancelling technology to keep things quiet inside the cabin. You can expect an average fuel efficiency of 8-9 km/l in real world conditions, while Ford claims 10.91 km/l.

The new Endeavour is based on the Ford Ranger pick-up truck from Australia but its driving dynamics are totally different from a truck. Light electronic steering makes city driving a breeze and the coil spring suspension setup, which replaces the old leaf springs, offer splendid ride quality. The Endeavour gets an advanced Terrain Management System that comes with four different modes – Normal, Snow Mud Grass, Sand and Rock.

The car comes equipped with ABS and EBD along with ESP for safety and a plethora of airbags to keep our fragile bodies safe. Ford provides a 2-year/1,00,000 kms warranty and 24×7 roadside assistance. Overall, the car comes off as a beautiful and complete package which in our opinion is good enough to dethrone the current segment king, the Toyota Fortuner.

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Faisal Khan