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The third-generation Ford Everest has made its regional debut at the ongoing 2015 Bangkok Motor Show. First shown to the motoring public in Beijing ahead of its Guangzhou show debut, the Ranger T6-based crossover is billed as “a completely new vehicle inside and out with host of first-in-class features.”

Looks wise, the Australian-developed crossover offers a bold front end replete with a chrome grille that blends seamlessly into the head lamps which feature LED daytime running lights. Elsewhere, the fog lights are embedded into the skid plate, which further lends a touch of aggression to its outlook.

In profile, steel step plates and the six-spoked 20-inch wheels, wrapped in Goodyear EfficientGrip SUV tyres, help to accentuate the SUV’s tough-as-nails persona. At the back, a large one-piece chrome strip bridges the tail lamps while a diffuser/skid plate-like attachment rounds off the list of aesthetic highlights.

Under the bonnet, two diesel engines are set to feature. A 3.2 litre, five-cylinder Duratorq TDCi mill with 197 hp and 470 Nm of torque is available alongside a 2.2 litre, four-cylinder Duratorq TDCi engine with 158 hp and 385 Nm – the former features a reworked exhaust gas recirculation system for improved efficiency. Both engine options are mated to either a six-speed automatic transmission or a six-speed manual ‘box.

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Both rear- and four-wheel drive options are offered on the 2015 Ford Everest. Paired with the latter option, the Everest employs a combination of an active transfer case with Torque on Demand technology and Ford’s Terrain Management System – which possesses four pre-programmed drive settings comprising of normal, sand, snow/gravel/grass and rocky terrain – to deliver commendable off-road performance.

The aforementioned system works by altering a combination of the vehicle’s throttle response, transmission, four-wheel drive system and traction control to suit the current condition. Furthermore, the 2015 Ford Everest boasts a class-leading ground clearance range of 225 mm and a water-wading depth of 800 mm. Additionally, drivers are presented with the option to manually lock the transfer case in low-range four-wheel drive mode.

In a stark contrast to its hardcore nature, the interior of the seven-seater Everest aims to prioritise practicality, comfort and refinement with the inclusion of a twin-panel moon roof, up to 30 storage compartments throughout and a segment-first powered tailgate. Elsewhere, cargo capacity is increased via the (first-in-class, again) power-folding third row seats.

Further refinement on the inside is made possible with the addition of Ford’s Active Noise Cancellation technology. The system uses three microphones located around the cabin which measures the current noise level and works by generating opposing sound waves via a control module. The generated waves are then pumped through the audio system, effectively cancelling out unwanted noises.

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In-car entertainment comes in the form of Ford’s SYNC 2 platform, which features an eight-inch touchscreen system along with voice command capabilities. Another first-in-class for the Everest is the inclusion of a 10-speaker audio setup with an integrated subwoofer.

Safety kit is aplenty on the 2015 Ford Everest as yet another first-in-class feature comes in the form of Curve Control – which works to help drivers maintain control of the car when entering corners a little too quickly. Elsewhere, Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) is featured with Cross Traffic Alert – the latter warns drivers of an incoming vehicle when backing out of a parking lot.

Active Park Assist, again a segment-first feature, allows for steering-free parallel parking manoeuvres. Roll Stability Control coupled to an Electronic Stability Programme, seven airbags and a passenger cell made from boron steel round off the list of safety features.

The 2015 Ford Everest will be assembled at the AutoAlliance Thailand plant in Rayong, and is set to arrive in Malaysia in the third quarter of 2015. Prices for auto-only Thai models begin at 1,269,000 baht (RM142,938) for the base 2.2 litre 4×2 Titanium AT variant while the 3.2 litre 4×4 Titanium AT starts at 1,459,000 baht (RM164,339). The range-topping 3.2 litre 4×4 Titanium+ AT goes for 1,599,000 baht (RM180,108).