The new Ford Everest is perhaps one of the most anticipated new cars of this year alongside its pickup sibling, the Ranger. Based on our internal statistics, these two vehicles are some of our most viewed cars for the year. We’ve driven the Everest in Thailand before its launch in the Philippines and now, we’ve finally taken it through our thorough testing in our own backyard. So, does this highly-anticipated 2023 Ford Everest Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo meet our high expectations? Let’s find out.
First and foremost, let’s talk about what’s underneath its sheet metal because this will be important for the rest of the review. The “next-gen” Everest as Ford wants to call it, actually rides on the same T6 platform as the outgoing model. However, at face value, you wouldn’t realize that at all. Its boxy design is all new, with no carryover panels. The result is an SUV that also manages to be the most tailored and rugged of the bunch. The clean and purposeful aesthetic characterized by its C-clamp LED daytime running lights surrounding the adaptive matrix LED headlamps are very distinct, and you immediately know from your rearview mirror that it’s the new Everest.
The boxy profile is complemented by a front and rear fascia that has a common horizontal theme to its design–giving this SUV a wide aesthetic. Being the top-of-the-range Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo, you get goodies such as 20-inch wheels that fill the wheel wells excellently, a tasteful amount of chrome surrounding the grille and window line, as well as this Equinox Bronze paint which I think is the best color for this body-on-frame SUV.
The 2023 Ford Everest Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo presents itself like a man that wears an Armani jacket on weekdays and a pair of Timberlands on weekends. That pretty much carries over inside as it’s by far the most premium and high-tech among the competition. I am normally not a fan of SUVs in this segment because of their cheap and plasticky interiors. Not the case for the new Everest. Premium soft-touch materials adorn the dash and all four doors. Even the headliner isn’t made from the cheap mouse fur-like stuff that all of its competitors still use. I also praise Ford for the tasteful use of colors and textures, because there isn’t an ounce of piano black plastics in high-touch areas, while the ambient LED lighting provides a calm ambiance at night.
Features and Infotainment
The Everest has always led the segment in terms of tech, and this new model is pushing the boundaries even further. As the fully-loaded Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo variant, you get a larger 12-inch SYNC4 infotainment as opposed to the 10-inch version of other variants, along with a 12.4-inch fully-digital instrument cluster that presents a boatload of information over the 8-inch version of lower variants. At least in the pickup-based SUV segment, no other brand does software quite as well as Ford. There are moments when the software would lag, but the broad capabilities of the system, which now includes a FordPass smartphone app, are second-to-none for the class.
I also like the fact that Ford resisted the urge to remove the dedicated climate buttons, so no rants from me on that aspect. However, I am not a fan of having the buttons for the auto hold, hill descent control, and rear locking differential buried inside SYNC4. It brings the question of what if the infotainment screen suddenly freezes or decides to conk out altogether. Also, the electronic gear shifter doesn’t have enough resistance from/to Park, which means it’s easy to hit it even if all you want to do is simply hit Reverse.
Small niggles aside, the Everest Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo also gets a 230-volt household socket at the second row, USB-A and USB-C ports, wireless charging, wireless Apple CarPlay and Andriod Auto, power-adjustable front seats, just to name a few.
Space and Practicality
Remember that I mentioned its T6 platform? Well, that did not carry over unchanged. As a matter of fact, it’s marginally wider and longer that the outgoing Everest. Its wheelbase has also been slightly stretched for better interior room on all three rows. The new Ford Everest also happens to offer the best driving position in its segment, thanks to generous adjustments for the seats and the tilt-and-telescopic steering.
Second-row space has also been improved thanks to a better roof curvature and how the blinds for the panoramic sunroof have been positioned. The third row is also more spacious now, but it’s still a place that’s best left for kids. And just like the outgoing Everest Titanium, those third-row seats fold with a touch of a button, while the powered tailgate also comes with a foot sensor.
Once those third-row seats have been folded, you’re left with 898 liters of cargo capacity, while having the third-row deployed gives you 259 liters. With even the second row folded, you are now given a van-like 1,823 liters of cargo capacity–one of the best in the segment.
We liked the previous generation Everest for its excellent ride comfort and refinement, and that pretty much carries over here, but with significant improvements. As mentioned, the T6 platform gets a heavy redesign, and the new Everest doesn’t suffer from the typical shudder when going over rough pavement that plagues truck-based SUVs due to its thick structure and highly-rigid body. The suspension is still soft, but Ford has made sure that body movements are minimized, which means vertical and rocking motions when going over uneven roads are quelled by the redesigned shocks.
The controlled suspension has also improved the Everest’s handling. The previous Everest felt like a boat with how it dived and rolled through corners. Not anymore for this new model at all. You will definitely have more confidence tossing the Everest into corners now compared to the outgoing model, especially since the electric power steering isn’t so eerily light and numb as before. I still find a car-based Mazda CX-8 more fun and cohesive to drive, but for its segment, the Everest is right up there in terms of handling now.
Under the long hood of this 2023 Ford Everest Titanium+ 4×4 is a 2.0-liter twin-turbo diesel engine that looks tiny. That’s because the larger engine bay has been designed to accommodate a V6 diesel that the Philippines won’t get for now. This 2.0-liter engine pumps out 210 horses and 500 Nm of torque and is the only variant that gets a 10-speed automatic.
While the powertrain has been carried over, this wasn’t also left untouched by Ford’s engineers. There’s much less diesel clatter now than before, and even the power delivery is much more linear now as opposed to the previous model having most of its torque in the lower RPMs. Even the 10-speed automatic, which used to be an indecisive transmission, is now better calibrated for overtakes. It’s only during minor moments when the driver is also indecisive that the transmission can be caught off guard.
Some of the other improvements of the new Everest are its ability to suppress road and wind noise much better than any of its competitors as well as its comprehensive suite of well-calibrated advanced-driver assistance tech. These include, but are not limited to full-speed adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane centering (the only one in its class), blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear automatic emergency braking, and an Everest-exclusive fully-automated self-parking feature.
Lastly, fuel economy has also slightly improved. Under the same circumstances of mostly provincial and highway drives, I was able to achieve 10.6 km/l, which is one or two kilometers per liter better than the outgoing Everest. The Isuzu Mu-X is still the class leader in that aspect, but seriously, would you choose marginally better efficiency over a significantly better overall car?
The 2023 Ford Everest Titanium+ 4×4 Bi-Turbo is here, and it’s undoubtedly Go Flat Out PH’s best SUV for the year. When I reviewed the nearly 10-year-old previous generation 2021 Ford Ranger over a year ago, I mentioned that a nearly decade-old platform is still outperforming its newer Asian competitors in refinement and technology. With this new model, Ford didn’t have to develop a new platform from scratch, because it was so good, to begin with already.
Now in 2022, the new Everest (and Ranger) is finally here, and it’s once again pushing the boundaries of what people should expect from the pickup-based SUV. Whether you’re looking for the most high-tech, the most comfortable, the most practical, or even fundamentally the best SUV to drive at the moment, you’d be a fool to not even consider the new Ford Everest as your next SUV.
Pricing and Rating
Exterior Design: ★★★★★
Interior Design: ★★★★★
Space and Practicality: ★★★★☆
Safety and Driver Assistance: ★★★★★
Fuel Efficiency: ★★★★☆
Value For Money: ★★★★★
Overall: 4.6 out of 5
*Pricing is correct and accurate as of this article’s time of writing.