Browse over 9,000 car reviews

Ford Everest 2023 review: Sport 3.0 - off-road test

The Ford Everest has plenty of appeal as a comfortable and capable touring vehicle, and while the 2.0-litre four-cylinder twin-turbo powered variants continue to build solid followings, everyone wants to know if the new 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 Everest is worthy of the sustained hype it’s received.

I recently pitted the V6 Everest against the Isuzu MU-X LS-T, and the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport GSR in order to see which of those vehicles excelled off-roadread that yarn here – but this time I’ve taken the V6 Everest out bush by itself to see how it would perform on its own terms.

Read on.

Price and features – Does it represent good value for the price? What features does it come with?

The Ford Everest Sport is available as a 4WD wagon with a 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 engine, or as a rear-wheel drive wagon with a 2.0-litre four-cylinder 'Bi-Turbo' – both have a 10-speed automatic transmission. Our test vehicle has the V6 engine and selectable 4WD with a 4A (4WD Auto) mode.

The V6 variant has a manufacturer suggested retail price of $69,590 (excluding on-road costs), but our test vehicle was equipped with the 'Touring Pack' ($2300, includes 360-degree camera, zone lighting), 'Towing Pack' ($1700, includes towbar and integrated brake controller) and it has prestige paint ('Sedona Orange', $700).

Standard features include a 12.0-inch LED portrait touchscreen with sat nav, Apple CarPlay (wireless or wired) and Android Auto, a wireless smartphone charger, dual zone climate control, heated and power-adjustable, heated and ventilated front seats, and leather-accented trim with 'SPORT' branding on the front seats.

The V6 Everest has a manufacturer suggested retail price of $69,590 (excluding on-road costs). (Image: Glen Sullivan) The V6 Everest has a manufacturer suggested retail price of $69,590 (excluding on-road costs). (Image: Glen Sullivan)

It has 20-inch alloy wheels shod with Goodyear Wrangler Territory HTs (255/55R20), LED headlights with auto high beam, LED daytime running lights, LED tail-lights, and hands-free power tailgate.

If you’d prefer a wheel-and-tyre combination better suited to off-roading, you can choose 18-inch black alloys on all-terrain tyres as a no-cost option.

Exterior paint choices include the no-cost 'Arctic White', or choose from 'Meteor Grey', 'Aluminium Silver', 'Blue Lightning', Sedona Orange (on our test vehicle), 'Equinox Bronze' and 'Shadow Black' – each costing $700 a pop.

Upfront of the Everest is a 12.0-inch LED portrait touchscreen. (Image: Glen Sullivan) Upfront of the Everest is a 12.0-inch LED portrait touchscreen. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The bonus for those about to order a new-generation Everest is the fact they can order an ARB ‘Build’ to suit their lifestyle and that will be fitted to their Everest prior to them taking delivery of their new vehicle.

There are three builds – 'Family Adventurer', 'Tourer', and 'Serious Off-roader' – and each one includes a specific set of aftermarket accessories (covering protection, suspension, lighting and more).

And when you’ve specified which build you want at Everest-ordering time, those will have already been fitted to it when it comes time for you to collect your new Everest. The builds are covered by Ford’s five-year/unlimited km warranty

Design – Is there anything interesting about its design?

If you’re considering an Everest, then you’ve already decided that you like the look of the thing. And nothing I write will change that.

For what it’s worth, I like it.

However, as always, I advise you look at the photos in this feature and judge for yourself whether the Everest Sport rocks your world.

Our test Everest wears 'Sedona Orange' paint (+$700). (Image: Glen Sullivan) Our test Everest wears 'Sedona Orange' paint (+$700). (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Practicality – How practical is its space and tech inside?

The Everest cabin has never been too shoddy in the practicality department and nothing’s changed.

The leather-appointed interior is comfortable and functional, but in the Sport everything has a layer of prestige about it.

There are ample storage spaces with sizeable bins, bottle holders in each door, as well as cupholders for everyone – even third-row passengers get cupholders and receptacles for their bits and pieces.

The power-adjustable front seats are supportive and comfortable, without creeping into the dreaded 'too plush' zone. 

In the Everest Sport everything has a layer of prestige about it. (Image: Glen Sullivan) In the Everest Sport everything has a layer of prestige about it. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The portrait touchscreen is easy enough to use although there’s a confusion of choices going on and sometimes it takes a few hefty taps on the screen to get a response from the button/function you’re trying to select.

The driver and front passenger have access to two 12-volt sockets and two USB ports.

The cabin feels a bit cosy and the second-row seat is on the wrong side of tight for three adults, especially in terms of hip and shoulder room for larger chaps, but it’d be fine with slighter adults and even ever-growing teens. 

If it’s any consolation to them, the second-row passengers get a pair of pop-out cupholders in the armrest, and can control their air con temp and fan speed, as well as open or close their air vents as they see fit, and use a 230-volt or 12-volt socket from their seat.

The Everest has ample storage spaces with sizeable bins and bottle holders in each door. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest has ample storage spaces with sizeable bins and bottle holders in each door. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The second-row has a 60/40 split-fold seat back and the third-row has a 50/50 split-fold. There are five child-seat anchor points, and two ISOIX anchor points in the second row.

Third-row seats can be manually deployed or stowed away. The third row is for kids only, I reckon, with shallower room all-round.

When all seven seats are in use there’s a claimed 259 litres of cargo space in the rear; 898L when the third row is stowed away; and 1823L of cargo space when the second row is also stowed away. The area behind the third row has bag hooks each side, and luggage tie-down points on the floor. 

There is also a 12V power outlet in the rear cargo area, plus the Sport has a hands-free power tailgate.

The Everest has 898L of boot capacity when the third row is stowed away. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest has 898L of boot capacity when the third row is stowed away. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Under the bonnet – What are the key stats for its engine and transmission?

Our test Everest Sport has a 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 (producing 184kW at 3250rpm and 600Nm from 1750rpm-2250rpm) and 10-speed automatic transmission.

It has a full-time 4WD system with selectable two-wheel drive (2H), four-wheel drive high-range (4H), four-wheel drive low-range (4L) and four-wheel drive automatic (4A = 4Auto) that sends drive to the front and rear axles as needed, and which can be used on high-traction surfaces.

The Sport also has selectable drive modes including 'Normal', 'Eco', 'Tow Haul', 'Slippery', and for off-roading: 'Mud/Ruts', and 'Sand' – these all adjust engine outputs, throttle control and transmission behaviour to best suit the terrain you’re on and the driving conditions you’re exposed to.

Don’t forget its locking rear diff.

Our test Everest Sport has a 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 engine. (Image: Glen Sullivan) Our test Everest Sport has a 3.0-litre turbo-diesel V6 engine. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Driving – What's it like to drive?

The Everest has always been a refined open-road touring vehicle because it’s always been at the forefront of refinement in the 4WD wagon realm. And the V6 simply adds punch to the prestige.

The new engine is a gutsy unit, consistently able to deliver smooth and sustained power and torque at low and high speeds. It’s low-key torquey and offers plenty of its 600Nm across a broad rev range. 

The 10-speed auto transmission has been reined in so thoroughly that most of the previous-gen’s thrashiness between ratios has been ironed out – and if you want to take over duties yourself you can do so via the 'e-Shifter' in this 4WD wagon. 

But before you even get going, you can dial-in your preferred driving position with a reach- and rake-adjustable steering wheel and a power-adjustable seat.

The Everest's V6 engine is a gutsy unit. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest's V6 engine is a gutsy unit. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

At 4940mm long (with tow receiver; 4914mm without) with a 2900mm wheelbase, and at 2207mm wide and 1837mm high, the Everest is an SUV with size, but it never feels too bloated to steer accurately, with a well-weighted helm keeping it under control. 

NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) levels are so effectively subdued that the cabin is very quiet, with nothing much intruding other than low-level wind-rush around the wing mirrors. 

The suspension set-up – including coil springs all-around – helps to produce smooth, sure-footed ride and handling. The new-generation’s longer wheelbase and wider track help to make the Everest feel composed and predictable.

This latest Everest is one of the best large SUV wagons to drive on-road. And it’s not too shabby off-road, either.

The Everest has a long wheelbase thus making its undercarriage vulnerable to ‘touching earth’ moments. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest has a long wheelbase thus making its undercarriage vulnerable to ‘touching earth’ moments. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The Everest has a listed length of 4914mm (with a 2900mm wheelbase), a width of 2015mm, and a height of 1837mm. It has a turning circle of 11.8m and an official kerb weight is 2457kg.

So, while it feels pretty nimble, even on tight overgrown tracks, it requires the driver’s full and sustained attention at all times.

Approach angle is 30.2 degrees, departure angle is 25 degrees, and ramp break-over is 21.9 degrees.

The Everest has a long wheelbase thus making its undercarriage vulnerable to ‘touching earth’ moments, so if you want to avoid belly-scraping and sidestep run-ins with rocks, tree stumps or exposed tree roots, it's something to keep in mind. 

The Everest has a listed length of 4914mm. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest has a listed length of 4914mm. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Low-range gearing is good and the Everest has an electronic rear diff lock to enhance this wagon’s dirt-grabbing abilities.

Driver-assist tech aimed at making 4WDing safer and easier for everyone includes off-road driving modes such as Mud/Ruts and Sand, which adjust engine outputs, throttle, transmission, braking, traction and stability controls to best suit the driving conditions.

Hill descent control is quietly effective and kept the Everest to a controlled 3.0-4.0km/h while we traversed short but steep downhills at our unofficial 4WD testing ground.

Wading depth is 800mm and the Everest performed admirably when we drove the it through a knee-deep mud hole several times. 

The Everest's ramp break-over angle is 21.9 degrees. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest's ramp break-over angle is 21.9 degrees. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

One definite, but easily solved, problem with the Everest is its standard 20-inch alloy wheels on Goodyear Wrangler Territory HTs (255/55R20).

A 20-inch tyre doesn’t give the driver much flexibility in terms of how much air they can drop out of it for 4WDing – because there isn’t much tyre to let air out of!

And when you start dropping air pressures in a 20-inch tyre, it impacts the vehicle’s running ground clearance, making a vulnerable undercarriage even more susceptible to damage.

Those 'all-season' tyres also became swiftly gummed up with wet clay mud out in the bush.

The Everest performed admirably when driven through a knee-deep mud hole several times. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest performed admirably when driven through a knee-deep mud hole several times. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

When 4WDing, an 18-, 17- or even 16-inch wheel-and-tyre combination is preferable to a 20-inch combo.

The easy fix? Ford offers 18-inch black alloys on all-terrain tyres as a no-cost option.

If you’re thinking about using your Everest as a adventure-touring vehicle then it’s handy to know that payload is 741kg, gross vehicle mass (GVM) is 3150kg, and gross combination mass (GCM) is 6250kg. 

What’s that, you say? Hauling caravans, camper-trailers, and boats is your thing. Well, keep in mind that the Everest’s towing capacity is 750kg (unbraked) and 3500kg (braked).

Efficiency – What is its fuel consumption? What is its driving range?

Official fuel consumption for the Everest V6 is 8.5L/100km on a combined cycle.

Its real-world fuel figure on this test, from pump to pump, was 15.7L/100km, which was considerably less than the fuel-use figure – 20.3L/100km – we recorded on our most recent Everest test.

The V6 never seemed like it was working hard, on either this test, or during that comparison I mentioned, above.

The Everest has an 80-litre tank, so, going by our fuel-consumption figure this time, you will have a touring distance of close to 510km.

The Everest's real-world fuel figure on this test, from pump to pump, was 15.7L/100km. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest's real-world fuel figure on this test, from pump to pump, was 15.7L/100km. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Safety – What safety equipment is fitted? What is its safety rating?

The Everest has the maximum five-star ANCAP safety rating from testing in 2022.

It has nine airbags (dual front, front side, driver and passenger knee airbags, curtain airbags covering all three rows and a centre front bag to prevent head collisions).

There's also a full suite of driver-assist tech including front AEB (autonomous emergency braking), adaptive cruise control with speed sign recognition and speed adaptation, lane departure alert and lane keep assist, and blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.

The Everest has a five-star ANCAP safety rating. (Image: Glen Sullivan)
The Everest has a five-star ANCAP safety rating. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The Everest’s AEB operates up to 130km/h, with pedestrian and cyclist detection operating up to 80km/h, according to Ford.

It also has reverse brake assist (i.e. rear AEB), a tyre pressure monitoring system, a 360-degree surround-view camera, front and rear parking sensors, and auto parking system.

The second-row seat has two child-seat anchorage points and one ISOFIX point each on the left and right seats.

The Everest has a total of nine airbags. (Image: Glen Sullivan) The Everest has a total of nine airbags. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

Ownership – What warranty is offered? What are its service intervals? What are its running costs?

The Everest is covered by a five-year/unlimited kilometre warranty.

Ford offers a five-year roadside assistance, and a capped-price service plan.

Service intervals are scheduled for every 12 months or 15,000km and the maintenance cost for the first 48 months/60,000km (the first four services) is capped at $329 a pop for MY22 or MY23 Everests.

Ford offers a five-year/unlimited kilometre warranty on the Everest. (Image: Glen Sullivan) Ford offers a five-year/unlimited kilometre warranty on the Everest. (Image: Glen Sullivan)

The Everest is a very impressive seven-seat 4WD wagon, with real off-road capability.

It has a lot going for it: it’s quiet and refined on-road, very capable off-road, and it’s packed with features – but it does have the price-tag to match.

With the V6 engine and in Sport grade, this 4WD wagon is very appealing. If you have the cash and fancy a feature-packed off-road tourer, then the Everest would have to be near the top of your list.

$69,590

Based on new car retail price

VIEW PRICING & SPECS

Daily driver score

4/5

Adventure score

4/5

adventureguide rank

  • Light

    Dry weather gravel roads and formed trails with no obstacles, very shallow water crossings.

  • Medium

    Hard-packed sand, slight to medium hills with minor obstacles in all weather.

  • Heavy

    Larger obstacles, steeper climbs and deeper water crossings; plus tracks marked as '4WD only'

Disclaimer: The pricing information shown in the editorial content (Review Prices) is to be used as a guide only and is based on information provided to Carsguide Autotrader Media Solutions Pty Ltd (Carsguide) both by third party sources and the car manufacturer at the time of publication. The Review Prices were correct at the time of publication.  Carsguide does not warrant or represent that the information is accurate, reliable, complete, current or suitable for any particular purpose. You should not use or rely upon this information without conducting an independent assessment and valuation of the vehicle.