We know the Ford Everest as a practical midsize SUV with a good helping of off-road capability. In fact, we've taken them mud-plugging and has proven to be one of the best 4x4s out there today. The French military seem to agree too.
They have selected the Everest as the basis of their new light-duty tactical vehicle, and it's called the Arquus Trapper. In fact, the French ordered another batch of these toughened Everests to their motor pools. It's not just an Everest with a camo paint scheme either as it was designed to be used for surveillance and reconnaissance missions, as well as personnel transport and general patrol duties. So what makes the Trapper different from the Everest?
For starters, the ride height has been increased. As this is a military vehicle, Arquus did not release full specifications, but did mention a lift for the 4x4. For comparison basis, the Everest Titanium 4x4 stands at 225 mm (approx. 8.8 inches) off the ground, and it is possible that the Trapper could even be at the 250 mm mark with its suspension upgrade. With an increase in clearance, it is likely the Trapper also bests the standard Everest's 800 mm wading depth capacity.
It also looks like it gets a bit more underchassis protection due to the nature of the vehicle's duties. It also has reinforced bumpers, both front and rear. Alloy wheels are ditched in favor of steel rims specific to the Trapper, and they're shod in off-road tires. It can even be fitted with window grills for added occupant protection. Speaking of grills, there's more on the headlights and taillights to prevent damage. You won't find any chrome on it either, nor will see any Ford badges as well. There are no views of its interior, but expect it to be bare inside, more like Everest Ambiente than Titanium.
For those expecting more power under the hood, you might be disappointed. No, it doesn't use the Ranger Raptor's 2.0-liter Bi-Turbo diesel engine. Instead, it sticks to the 2.2-liter mill which is actually the base engine of the Everest. Power is rated at 160 PS but, curiously, there are no specs for torque. Arquus did say that the engine has been modified for military applications, so there might just be a little more shove from the tried and tested Puma turbodiesel. Four-wheel drive is, of course, standard, and it shifts via a six-speed manual transmission. The fuel system has been upgraded too, with its double filtration system that allows it to run on low-quality fuel.
Of course, you can't just walk into a dealership and ask for this militarized Everest. The only way to drive it is by joining the French special forces, which is a lot of effort just to try it out. Of course, you can also wait for it to be decommissioned, but that's probably decades from now.