It’s been around 20 years since Ford last officially sold a large SUV, that was the Explorer, and while it was spacious and comfortable, it carried with it some typical American traits, the biggest being poor fuel economy.
During that absence the demands set by 4×4 owners have grown, not only is it expected to do all the jobs expected of a large SUV, but it’s also meant to be refined, well-built, car-like in the way it drives on the road and not break the bank everytime you stop for fuel. So the big question is, has it succeeded to tick those boxes?
ON THE ROAD
The Edge is available with a choice of just two engines, both of them 2.0 litre diesels with either 178 or 208bhp, and have been seen in the Mondeo, S-Max and Galaxy already. The lower powered model does feel a little out of puff, remember this is a car that weighs just short of two tonnes. 0-62mph takes near on 10 seconds and you’ll have to make sure you’ve got a long run up when trying to overtake.
You’d think then that the more powerful version would be a better offering, but that is only half a second quicker to 60mph, although it does feel overall a little punchier.
There is a manual or automatic choice for the entry level model, auto only with the 208bhp version, which combined with the weight means economy is reasonable rather than outstanding. Both will average around 48mpg – that’s largely due to the lack of a front wheel drive only version. Emissions for both are around the 150g/km meaning even the cheapest model with cost around £225 per year in road tax.
There’s no question the Edge is a big car, and it feels it to drive, at over 2 meters wide it’s not the kind of car you’ll find easy to nip through town traffic in. Now while it may sound very negative so far, there are some positives. It is very comfortable, all but Sport models get a comfort orientated suspension, which wafts over potholes around town. The setup of the Sport is a little firmer though as you would expect and road imperfections a little more intrusive because of the larger 20 inch alloy wheels.
One thing’s for sure, the Edge looks like a typical big American SUV, and Ford is pitching it towards a more premium buyer. The big imposing grille and angular features really make it stand out, and when you get around the back, the steeply raked rear window and high-shoulder line really enhance the Edge’s quality intentions.
IN THE CABIN
Inside anyone familiar with the S-Max will easily get to grips with the functionality, it’s all a bit plain and there are some cheap plastics on show, but there are soft-touch materials on the bits that count.
The seating position is nice and high, one of the key selling points of a 4×4, and there plenty of adjustment to get a perfect driving position. There are three infotainment systems which have been featured in other Ford models, the basic touchscreen SYNC 2 eight inch system though is a little fiddly.
While it’s spacious it is only a five seater, but no one will be grumbling about lack of head or leg room. It’s also got one of the biggest boots in its class, 602 litres with the seats up, 1,847 litres with the seats down – all electric of course.
While the Edge is a good all-rounder it is hard to justify against some rivals that offer more equipment and an extra pair of seats in the boot – all for a similar price. And while running costs aren’t the best in class either, they’re still not bad for such a sizeable 4×4. Ultimately what you’d be getting is a spacious and comfortable SUV.