We dropped off the Territory Turbo Ghia AWD and picked up the Territory XR Turbo AWD to do a comparison. So what difference does nine grand make? The answer is, quite a bit, but only really on the inside.
You see, get rid of the leather, the chunky steering wheel, some of the electric motors in the power adjustable seat and the third row of seats (which are optional for the XR Turbo), and you save yourself 50kg (down to 2125kg). As a result, the four-litre, 245kW engine feels as eager, the brakes work as effectively, and it still could do with a sports suspension mode to match the six-speed Sequential Sports Shift gearbox.
All-in-all, the performance hasn’t really changed at all, the XR Turbo feeling perhaps fractionally more responsive. This could be a result of the seats not being quite so plush, though. I found that I drove relatively slowly in the Ghia because of the comfort; the XR Turbo, while still being more than adequate for my unpadded bottom, does less to tame my impatience.
There’s not dual climate control like you have in the Ghia, but you still get steering wheel-mounted cruise control and stereo controls. The stereo is the 100W version (down from 150W, but doesn’t sound worse than the Ghia’s – I’ll resist the temptation to get all nerdy and explain why 150W is barely different to 100W anyway). The stereo and climate control are represented on a smaller LCD, which doesn’t have as many functions as in the Ghia’s colour LCD. Consequently the trip computer moves to the dials, and shows average and instantaneous fuel usage, elapsed trip time, average speed and the distance until you’ll need to fill up with premium again.
The same safety features are present on both models: ABS, dynamic stability control, and traction control. Not that you need the traction control unless you’re on Teflon-coated ice or are prepared to pull some fairly ridiculous manoeuvres to get the all-wheel-drive to break free.
This grip gives you a good reason to buy a Territory for a towing wagon. The standard towbar will pull up to 1600kg, though with an unbraked trailer the maximum limit is 1000kg. Upgrade this to the heavy duty towpack that has probably been forged by a man with arms the size of my torso, and 480Nm of torque enables you to pull 2300kg in a braked trailer.
Other than the interior fitout, it’s pretty much the same car. There’s not much to distinguish the two on the exterior. Aside from the badging, the trainspotters will notice the lack of reversing sensors in the bumper, rear camera (which is hidden near the boot handle, and the roof spoiler (which is standard on the XR Turbo, but optional on the Turbo Ghia). They both get 18-inch wheels with 235/55R18 tyres, concealing large vented disc brakes with twin-piston callipers up front and single piston callipers at the rear.
If you’re hankering for the extra creature comforts (and those extra two seats as standard), the Ghia is for you, but other than that, the XR Turbo does the job.
Price: from $63,990.
WHAT WE LIKE:
- Interior well thought out
WHAT WE DON’T LIKE
- Needs a sports suspension mode to match the power
- Road noise on rough surfaces
- Like all Fords, the stereo is adequate but not stellar
Words and photos Darren Cottingham