The Ford Everest 2.2 XLT still has some attitude. Picture: QUICKPIC
The Ford Everest 2.2 XLT still has some attitude. Picture: QUICKPIC

As you will have read in our cover story this week, I was in Canada recently, which like the US is the land of big pick-ups and SUVs.

The pick-ups in particular make our bakkies look like city runabouts and they are everywhere. Most are double cabs for the same reason that we have them here, that of practicality. They offer space for the family on the weekend but can get the work done in the week.

The most popular is the Ford F150, which is actually one of the top selling vehicles in the world. It has been updated for the 2018 model year but still retains the typically in-your-face design and chrome, plenty of chrome.

Our long-term Ford Everest is no F150, of course. It is smaller and an SUV with seven seats but one of the things that has always held appeal for many is that the Ford Ranger and, these days the Everest, have that American truck-like look about them.

Where many manufacturers are either softening the lines of their designs or creating futuristic angles to cater for the lifestyle market, Ford has stuck to its Built Ford Tough philosophy. It is a marketing angle carried over from the US but one which has been applied as much to the Everest as it has to the F150. See an Everest come up behind you in the rear view mirror and it would be easy to feel a little intimidated.

Ford has tried to bring some of that F150 US pick-up truck grit to the Everest. Picture: NEWSPRESS USA
Ford has tried to bring some of that F150 US pick-up truck grit to the Everest. Picture: NEWSPRESS USA

Those big headlights and large, wide chrome grille are not quite as imposing as the facade of many an American pick-up truck or SUV, but imposing they are. It is part of the appeal for many owners I have spoken to over the years, that their vehicle has this US-style attitude, a sense of almost of aggressiveness even.

Styling is also a matter of personal preference and it could just be the design that many like, but it could also be that the truck looks say "don’t mess", something that could easily be perceived as being rather useful on South African roads.

Regardless, there is no doubt that the Everest has a bit of attitude built in. It is also reflected in the driving position, which is high up and where you find yourself surrounded by thick, chunky plastics combined with some soft padded trim.

It is easy to feel as though you are slightly disconnected from the world around which can be great on the often stressful commute to work. That is helped further by the connectivity of the Sync infotainment system.

I have recently discovered the Spotify music streaming service. Technically it is not available in SA, but visit many countries overseas and you can create an account and use it back at home for a couple of weeks. Fortunately my commute is not too long because my cellphone provider, like most of them, is not generous with data, but that’s another story.

Our Everest might lack the full attitude and the sound of its US cousins, but it ticks a number of boxes that not so long ago would have been blank for any bakkie or bakkie-based SUV.

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