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Though it is roomy and has a livable third-row seat, the Explorer trails the competition. Handling is ungainly, the ride is not entirely settled, and the nonturbo V6 powertrain is unrefined. Ford's three-row SUV offers a slew of optional safety systems, as well as a more fuel-efficient 2.3-liter turbo four-cylinder engine. The top-shelf Platinum trim level is quite luxurious. The front and rear 180-degree cameras have a wash function to keep the lens clean. Lane-keeping assist and adaptive cruise control are optional. The MyFord Touch system now includes redundant knobs and buttons to compensate for the unresponsive onscreen touch-sensitive buttons and controls.

Road Test

The Explorer is a midsized SUV that shares its underpinnings with the larger Ford Flex, a car-based vehicle we have praised for its ride, comfort, quietness, and space. The Explorer has its good points, including a roomy, practical interior, a third-...

Highs

  • Interior room and flexibility
  • Usable third-row seat

Lows

  • Agility
  • Driving position

Specifications

Seating
2 front, 3 rear, 2 third
Drive Wheels
AWD , Front
Warranty
  • Basic: 3 year/36,000 miles
  • Powertrain: 5 year/60,000 miles
  • Rust through: 5 year/unlimited
  • Roadside aid: 5 year/unlimited
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2.3-liter 4 turbo (280 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (290 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 turbo (365 hp)

Ratings

Safety
Performance
Comfort / Convenience
View Full Test Results