We reported earlier that Ford, the American automaker is working on all-new Everest aka Endeavour SUV, which will also make its way to the Indian market. Ford has its own R&D centre in Australia, and there are media reports claiming that the all-new Australian-engineered SUV has already been put on test. The vehicle has been spotted during its test mules in Victoria's high country. In August, the company revealed a concept version of Everest, which will be based on the Ranger.
The new Ford Everest/Endeavour has 100mm longer wheelbase over the current model to offer extra legroom for both middle and third row passengers. The vehicle is likely to be manufactured alongside the Ranger in Thailand, and is expected to hit the Australian shores by 2015. It will be joined by the Ford's Territory, existing Kuga mid-sized SUV and the EcoSport compact crossover.
Earlier this year, Ford has announced that it will shut its Geelong and Broad Meadows plants in Australia by October 2016. The company is planning to launch the facelifted Falcon and Territory models by the end of next year, and if the sales continue to decline it will end local production even earlier than 2016.
It is expected that the next generation Everest/Endeavour will be powered by the same 3.2-litre five-cylinder turbo-diesel engine that also does duty in the Ranger. The vehicle would be made available in both six-speed manual and automatic transmissions. The company could also fit the 2.2-litre 4-cylinder engine, but nothing has been confirmed yet.
The Indian auto market is also expecting the introduction of next generation Endeavour by 2015. The SUV will compete against the likes of Toyota Fortuner, Mahindra SsangYong Rexton and the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.