It took Ford unusually long to come up with the second generation Endeavour. 12 years of gestation period is not very common and usually unheard in the ultra-competitive scenario of our market. First generation Endeavour remained around for ages and despite numerous facelifts, alterations and engine-gearbox combo, the SUV start feeling long in tooth. Ford has invested lot of money and effort (in addition to time) to build up New Endeavour.
A whole lot of technology and modern gadgetry now underpin the new generation of Endeavour. So whether all the time and money invested have resulted something significant, we find out in this road-test review. Well it may be late to hit the roads but with touted claim of being ready not only for present but also for future contenders, we are curious to get under the skin.
Design, Style & Interiors
As massive as large expanses of wild Africa, New Endeavour continues to feature intimidating footprints. In fact, it has grown in width in its second inning. Its feels massive, is wide enough to hold three fully grown adults and sufficiently tall to scale up a mountain. Upfront large hexagonal chrome grille is defining characteristic which in fact completely dwarfs shapely projector headlamps.
Despite being gargantuan, Ford claims an impressive drag coefficient of 0.38 achieved on the account of its impressively designed aerodynamic shape. Large fins and gills help the Endeavour to slip through air without breaking the sweat. Massive wheel arches and large wing mirrors are highlights of the profile in addition to steeply raked A-pillar making car look less bulky. At the rear, the prominent chrome bar and silver finished skid plate up the ante. The roof spoiler and wraparound tail lamps also contribute to make Endeavour more sophisticated than before.
Step inside the cabin and large spacious powered seats provide you snug fit. What feels even more special is the stepped up quality aspect. Double stitched leather dashboard is leaps ahead in opulence and 8 inch touchscreen infotainment display on top-end Titanium variant offers lot of functionality. It may not be best in terms of touch feel but its ability to respond to voice commands is superiorly distinct. It also feature valet mode for preserving secrecy and your personal data in case you are handing the car to someone else.
Thanks to generous dimensions, Ford Endeavour offers acres of space at first and second row. Third row, however, lacks in roominess as you sit low with knees up. Second row is wide enough to seat three adults abreast and though bench feels set a bit low, it cushions passenger with magnanimity feel. New steering wheel is great to hold and though it feels great to hold, it has few too many controls on it. Two high resolutions screens are there on the instrument cluster aiding driver with whole lot of information. Plainly designed centre console lacks the modern air of sophistication although it blends well with overall design. Unlike the previous Endeavour, boot opens via hatch and is powered to aid on convenience. This also means that the spare has to move beneath the car.
Engine, Transmission & Driving Dynamics
New Endeavour is powered by new set of power trains - a 2.2-litre 4-cylinder and 3.2-litre 5-cylinder diesel engines. Both motors are meaty and quite powerful to meet most of the challenges thrown on them. Lower 2.2-litre capacity has minimum turbo-lag and is surprisingly agile. Part throttle responses are very quick and large Endeavour feels absolutely at home in traffic. The motors come mated with well-defined 6-speed automatic transmission making the driving even more comfortable. The car attains triple digit speed in a jiffy and though on highway, 2.2-litre may sometimes feel underpowered, it cruises comfortably as long as it is not pushed very hard. There is no point getting beyond 140 kmph as you start feeling tailing off the power. The only grouse we have is absence of paddle shifters which must be there in this price range. Overall the engine is not very rev-happy though the way it enables the 2.2-tonne car to lunge forward is commendable.
Dynamically Ford has done a commendable job as even with ladder frame chassis, Endeavour behaves like a sincere student. It rolls and yes you can feel the weight shifting from one side to other, still all this is very predictable. It stumbles a bit on low speed but as the speed picks up, the SUV settles with assuring sense of stability. First gen Endeavour lacked on off-road features however in this new-gen variant, company has provided enough gadgetry for adventure enthusiasts.
Ford Endeavour has though taken a long time to finally appear on market horizon, we feel that the entire wait is worth it. Priced competitively at Rs 23.64 lakh for 2.2-litre and Rs 24.64 for 3.2-litre version, Endeavour ticks all the right boxes. It looks menacing, features all modern equipment, comes with luxurious and spacious cabin, powered by performance oriented pair of diesel motors and rides and handles like a car. It is undoubtedly the best Endeavour yet and Ford, we think, has done an excellent job in bringing new Endeavour to fore.
Style & Substance 4/5 Ride & Handling 3.5/5
Interiors & Ergonomics: 3.5/5 Safety & Equipment 3.5/5
Power-Plant & Transmission 4/5 Fuel Efficiency 3.5/5
Value for Money 3/5