The Ford Explorer is the all-time best-selling SUV in the US. So when Ford redesigned it the ground up, they made sure the 2020 Ford Explorer keeps a familiar face. Now on a new rear-wheel-drive platform that improves interior space and towing capacity, the Explorer broadens the already strong brand Ford has built over the years.
Under the hood are one of two turbocharged engines. Offered on the Base, XLT, and Limited is a 2.3 liter Ecoboost 4-cylinder producing 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Standard on the Platinum is a 3.0 liter Ecoboost pumping out 365 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque when fed 93 Octane. The 2.3 liter comes in either rear-wheel drive or intelligent four-wheel drive with front axle disconnect. That same four-wheel drive system is standard on the Platinum. Power is fed to the wheels through the now familiar 10-speed automatic also found in the Ranger and F-150. 3.0 liter equipped models can tow up to 5,600 lbs, a 12% increase over the existing 3.5 Ecoboost. the 2.3 liter powered models gain a massive 2,300 additional pound towing capacity, maxing out at 5,300 lbs when equipped with a class-III hitch.
Update: Ford says that more information regarding a hybrid and a Ford Explorer ST will be coming on Monday at the North American International Auto Show.
The interior of the Explorer is also all new and features and available 10.1 in portrait oriented center infotainment screen featuring Ford's Sync3 infotainment system. Wifi service is also available and can support up to 10 devices. Charging those devices should be no problem with 4 USB ports, including new USB-C ports, available wireless charging pad, three 12-volt power sockets, and a 110-volt household style outlet.
The overall silhouette of the Explorer doesn't change much and Ford maintained the blacked out A and D pillars. However, moving to a rear wheel drive platform allowed Ford to reduce the front overhang and give a more sloping roofline.
Like on the new Ford Edge, Ford is including its suite of safety technology called Co-Pilot 360. This suite contains safety items like adaptive cruise control, speed sign recognition, pre-collision assist, automatic pedestrian braking, lane keeping system, automatic headlamps with automatic high beams, and more.
The 2020 Ford Explorer will be built in Ford's Chicago assembly plant and will go on sale this summer.