2020 Ford Endura ST-Line review
While rivals such as the Toyota Kluger, Mazda CX-9, Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento all have their merits, none quite hit the spot in terms of the Ford Territory's drivability.
But what about the Territory's pseudo showroom replacement, the Endura?
To be fair to Ford, the big SUV, as illustrated by our 2020 Ford Endura ST-Line, was never meant to be a direct replacement for the Territory. Instead, Ford hedged its bets, hoping the heavy-duty Everest four-wheel drive would appeal to the seven-seater market and the Endura would appeal to those who wanted a car-like, family SUV with only five seats.
Unfortunately, with these two models, Ford fired a couple of arrows either side of the Territory and didn’t hit the target.
The Everest is not as roomy as a Territory and drives like an off-roader due to its heavy-duty underpinnings, while the Endura lacks the third row and comes with a high price.
Which possibly explains why the Ford Endura hasn’t resonated with buyers as much as the company had hoped. The model has already been pulled from the UK (where it is called the Ford Edge) and its future in Australia remains unclear.
However, numerous overseas reports claim Ford is poised to end production of right-hand drive at the Canada factory that manufactures this vehicle.
To end its production run two years after it began is not how this story was meant to play out. Car companies try to get at least five or six years – or more – out of each model to amortise the costs over a longer period of time.
In many regards, we were lucky to get the Ford Endura in the first place. Ford’s head honchos in Dearborn took a punt by investing millions to accommodate a right-hand-drive version of the Endura.
Unfortunately, it seems that investment would have been better directed towards a right-hand-drive version of the Ford Explorer.
The latest Ford Explorer is a good-looking truck, is available with seven seats – and has global recognition. Aussies who travel already know what a Ford Explorer is; many have rented one when on holidays in the US.
While it’s too late to get the Ford Explorer that is in US showrooms today, keep your fingers crossed the next-generation Ford platform is flexible enough to easily accommodate right-hand drive.
Please, Ford, don’t give up on us because the Endura hasn’t worked. If Ford were to roll the dice on one more right-hand-drive large SUV, the Explorer would be a hit.