- Everest production starts at Silverton plant
- Range to grow from two to eight models
- 2.2 Duratorq TDCi 4×4 or 4×2, manual or auto
PRETORIA, South Africa – Production of Ford’s Everest sport utility vehicle has started at the automaker’s facility in Silverton, Pretoria.
The new and expanded range is due for release in South Africa in November 2016.
Job 1 was driven off the production line on October 4, another highlight for Ford Southern Africa and, the company said, “the start of a new era” that will make Silverton a two-vehicle assembly facility – the other the Ranger for export to 148 countries in Africa, the Middle East and Europe.
Ockert Berry, vice-president for operations, told The Corner in a media release: “We’re confident that the SA-produced Everest will deliver outstanding results for us, our employees and our customers.”
The Everest will be produced for the South African market but also exported across sub-Saharan Africa thanks to a R2.5-billion investment in the Everest and Ranger programmes which created 1200 jobs within Ford SA and its suppliers.
Tracey Delate, FMCSA’s general marketing manager, said: “The Everest has been a very popular addition to our local line-up but until now only the two high-spec 4×4 models were available – and imported from Thailand.
“Local production will enable us to add six model derivatives – two engine choices, three trim levels, manual or auto transmission, and two and all-wheel drive versions.
“The addition of the 2.2 TDCi XLS and XLT models, in particular, will appeal to family and lifestyle buyers with exceptional value for money matched to an outstanding level of standard safety equipment,, smart technology and proven all-terrain capability.”
The 147kW 3.2-litre Duratorq TDCi engine, FMCSA says, remains top-of-the-range for the seven-seater SUV but the revised Everest line-up will be enhanced with the 2.2-litre Duratorq TDCi engine – also found in the Ranger – which produces 118kW/385Nn and can be specified with a manual or auto gearbox.
Along with the existing 3.2 TDCi auto all-wheel drive derivatives – XLT and Limited – a third 4×4 will join the mix: a six-speed manual 2.2 TDCi XLS.
Five all-new two-wheel drive Everests will join the line-up for the first time: four 2.2 TDCi models with manual or auto transmissions and the option of the mid-level XLS trim or the top-end XLT.
Top of the 4×2 range wil be a new 3.2 TDCi XLT auto.
Full details on the expanded Ford Everest line-up will be announced at launch.