endura

What is it?

You may well ask? Sounds like some kind of tyre or prophylactic.

Edura, named Edge in other markets, would appear to be a replacement for the fondly remembered (by some) Falcon-based Territory.

It competes in the same segment as Ford’s 7-seat, Ranger-based Everest, but is a softer, more premium focused product that seats only five — at least that’s the reasoning.

In our book the Endura has zero profile and very little market appeal as a result, in a segment that’s dominated by Toyota’s excellent long-serving Prado and Kluger.

That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with the car, it’s actually quite good, but needs to get some runs on the board — to retain its place in the lineup so to speak.

endura

What’s it cost?

Prices start at $44,990 for the 2.0-litre front wheel drive Trend.

Our top of the line all-wheel drive Titanium with all the bells and whistles retails for $67,990 plus on-roads.

That’s a big ask when you can get a top of the line Kia Sorento or Hyundai Santa for less money, both of which are fairly plush buses in top spec.

Titanium ups the ante with 20-inch wheels, dual panoramic sunroof, active park assist, adaptive LED headlights, auto high beam, power-fold exterior mirrors that are heated with puddle lamps, memory setting, electrochromatic on driver’s side and auto-dip on reverse.

There’s also push-button start, auto lights and wipers, auto dimming rear view mirror, front and rear park sensors, and a power tailgate with handsfree (and foot) operation.

Inside there’s perforated leather trim, dual zone climate, power adjust steering wheel, 10-way power adjust driver and passenger seats with power lumbar and memory for the driver’s seat.

The front seats are also heated and cooled, with heated for the rear seats, illuminated aluminium front scuff plates, rear cargo net, rear cargo blind, deluxe front and rear cargo mats plus ambient lighting.

MyKey lets parents limit the vehicle’s performance parameters.

The voice controlled Sync3 infotainment system includes 8.0-inch touchscreen, rear view camera, satnav, digital radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, nine-speaker sound with active noise cancellation.

It’s also one of the few systems to retain a CD player.

A 12-speaker B&O audio system with 180-degree front-split view camera remains optional — even on top of the line Titanium.

With a five star safety rating, the list of safety equipment is extensive, with seven airbags, adaptive cruise control, Roll-Stability Control and Post-Collision Braking and Evasive Steer Assist joins Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection.

Lane Keep Assist with pull-drift compensation helps to keep the vehicle within marked traffic lanes.

There’s also Traffic Sign Recognition, which works in conjunction with the Adaptive Cruise Control to keep the driver informed of local speed limits, enabling a greater distance to the vehicle in front to reduce the risk of collision.

Granted, Ford has thrown everything but the kitchen sink at this car, but somehow Endura doesn’t quite look or feel the premium part — and the sportier ST-Line with its black grille is more appealing.

endura

What’s it go like?

The words big, blunt and boring spring to mind. This is a car in dire need of some personality.

It’s all there but fails to coalesce into something desirable and aspirational, as Ford would have us believe.

The 2.0-litre four cylinder turbo diesel delivers 140kW of power at 3500rpm and 400Nm of torque between 2000 and 3000rpm.

In Europe however you can get a more powerful 177kW/500Nm version that we believe would be a better fit with the Aussie appetite for performance.

The diesel is hooked up to a traditional 8-speed auto, with power in this model fed to all four wheels on demand, and a sophisticated torque vectoring system to provide greater control during cornering.

Gear selection is controlled via a console-mounted, rotary-style knob, instead of a traditional gear selector — but it requires a little practice.

Performance is smooth and confident, the brakes are terrific, but the steering and handling are lifeless, with little to offer the enthusiast driver.

Ford has definitely got the edge in the lane keeping assistance stakes, however, with a system that does the job without annoying the crap out of you like some systems with their constant tugging on the wheel.

At the same time the driver’s seat belt in our test vehicle kept cinching up tight, which was both annoying and ultimately uncomfortable, and meant a tussle every time we reached out for something.

Accessing the various settings and info screens offered by the instrument panel is not what we’d call intuitive and requires some trial and error to work it out.

Scrolling through the various settings, you might come across something called AdBlue and wonder what it is all about?

It’s an additive that is mixed with exhaust gases to reduce harmful engine emissions, and has its own separate filler spout right beside the fuel filler.

Most car makes put it in at service time and you don’t need to put it in very often — ours wasn’t due for 2300km.

Rated at 6.7L/100km, were getting 7.6L/100km from the 64-litre tank, with a longterm average of 7.1L.

It has a space saver spare, a tow bar is standard and it has a 2000kg tow capacity.

endura

What we like?

  • Long on safety
  • Long equipment list
  • Rear seats air vents
  • Biggish boot
  • Trailer sway control
  • Reasonable service costs
  • 5-year warranty

endura

What we don’t like?

  • No personality
  • Seatbelt pre-tensioning
  • So called sleek interior looks generic Ford to us

endura

The bottom line?

Ford needs to find some character for this car.

At the moment it is just filling a hole in the lineup vacated by the Territory.

Designed and built in North America, it might tempt the American public — but it fails to generate any interest here.

endura

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Ford Endura Titanium AWD, priced from $67,990
  • 7.5/10
    Looks - 7.5/10
  • 7.5/10
    Performance - 7.5/10
  • 8.5/10
    Safety - 8.5/10
  • 8/10
    Thirst - 8/10
  • 7.5/10
    Practicality - 7.5/10
  • 7/10
    Comfort - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Tech - 8/10
  • 8/10
    Value - 8/10
7.8/10
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Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.
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