This version of the Explorer switched to a car-based platform. It has a roomy and practical interior, a usable third-row seat and generous cargo capacity. It also has a steady and compliant ride, along with respectable fuel economy. Ultimately though, the Explorer still falls a bit short of the best in this competitive class.
There are 8 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"My Ford Touch feature is very disappointing"

F R., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The acceleration for such a heavy vehicle when entering into high speed traffic (70+ mph) is impressive and has been noted by my passengers. I still have the original tires on the car after 61,000 miles and the hold the road with almost no steering wheel correction for draft or curve control."

JOHN S., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I recently had a situation where I was going 50mph in the right lane and the person in the left lane didn't see me and went in front of me; I slammed on my brakes and the car stopped on a dime !!! That stopping power avoided a crash."

BARBARA M., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Even with the blind spot warnings, the Explorer is frightening to drive. The roof pillars can completely block sight of a car coming from the side. The blind spot warning lights are easy to overlook. I will not let my teenage son drive this car."

DONNA F., TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"somewhat underpowered."

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Handles better than I expected especially curves and turns. Hugs the road without wandering."

RICHARD W., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The suspension is very poor, and gjves a very bumpy ride, even though the suspension checks out."

Anonymous, TN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Great but I don't like front wheel drive. Aggressive emergency lane changes can be exciting. Awesome in all other reguard."

Anonymous, CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The Explorer is awesome, great looks, awesome acceleration and handling. It has ample room for grandkids and all their stuff or hauling the dog around. It is a blast to drive. Love it!"

MARTIN G., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very good acceleration under normal conditions but had several instances of turbo cutting out and bogging, especially when new, which required dealer service."

Anonymous, CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Is the SPORT model which has the 3.5L, twin--turbo V-6 engine. If not for this engine, I would not have bought it. Drove a regular explorer with a regular 3.5L V-6 which would not get out of it's own way (would NEVER buy one of those). I run it on 93 premium which with the twin turbos, makes it get up and go. Zero to 60 in 6 secs. I like performance but can't afford a Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT-8. So, this was best for me. Good brakes. Good handling package. Big, wide tires. Steers good. G"

CLARENCE F., MA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Transmission has shutter issues intermittently. I have taken vehicle to dealer twice. Last time TCM was replaced. Normally acceleration is admirable."

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"My main issue is that the vehicle is under-powered. The engine doesn't make it's max torque until over 3000 rpm, and doesn't make enough torque even then. I bought this to tow a trailer, but after towing a couple of lightweight trailers (1500#) I find it won't get out of it's own way. I will most likely get a full size SUV (Expedition, Suburban) for the trailer I want to pull in the near future."

JEFF B., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I like the acceleration when getting on to a freeway ramp. Quite peppy for a 6 cyl."

A S., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Drives and handles well. Have the towing package and pulls a trailer of about 5,000 lbs. with not much effort. I love the self-adjusting cruise control. I also like the rain sensing wipers. The navigation feature is worthless with current technology on smart phones. It's hard to use and never gives you the destination you ask for."

TERRY M., UT (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Acceleration from a stop to gradual 35 MPH seems to be sluggish and the engine groans somewhat"

RANDY B., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I should have got AWD. Traction is poor on factory tires. Navigation system requires you to come to a stop to interact with the system so this prevents the passenger from navigating."

Anonymous, WA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Transmission is sticky and uneven which is a problem for all fords."

Anonymous, CO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Acceleration is slow to respond and then when you stomp on it exhaust is noticed in the cabin."

DEBBIE S., OR (2013 Ford Explorer)

"acceleration is adequate but not outstanding, handling is above average and steering is tight and predictable, transmission can be a little jerky at times"

Anonymous, MO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Easy to view objects in all areas around the vehicle. Car accelerates well and is easy to make relatively tight turns as in a left turn at a signal light. Only negative issue is that Ford has decided to eliminate the vehicle “health report‿ using the in console SYNC system on Explorers over 5 years old. This should be continued due to the cost of the vehicle."

Anonymous, MA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Good: Ford's Bluetooth phone link starts & stops by a button on steering wheel and direction given verbally. Bad: The female voice of my ford touch gets testy when i give it a command that is not exact.....sounds a lot like my wife!"

Anonymous, FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Easy to maneuver and responsive."

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"It has a powerful engine and is easy to merge into traffic. Because of the excellent handling, I have avoided 2 accidents."

Carol W., MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The vehicle drives and handles very well at low and highway speeds."

Anonymous, NY (2013 Ford Explorer)

"goes over the mountains like it is supposed to"

Norm N., CO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Quiet cabin, good acceleration, comfortable for long distance driving."

Glen L., GA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very pleased with acceleration and handling."

David S., OK (2013 Ford Explorer)

"comfortable t drive"

Anonymous, FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Phenomenal acceleration and excellent roadhandling."

George A., ON (2013 Ford Explorer)

"For a large Crossover the explorer handles and accelerates great. That said I purchased the Sport model with the Largest motor for this specific reason."

Anonymous, WA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"It handles the road great, I really enjoy driving my explorer."

Lynnette C., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Acceleration is OK for an SUV. Comfortable ride."

Anonymous, MN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"It handles great. I love driving my explorer."

Lynnette C., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"No problems with acceleration, but vehicle is very difficult to see out of -- very difficult to park"

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"With current engine technologies I am disappointed in the average fuel economy. The average MPG should be up around 28 mpg. Engine noise under heavy acceleration is excessive. Had to change our OEM tires for another brand to lessen road noise."

Barbara F., AZ (2013 Ford Explorer)

"very impressive power , and stability for a car of this size."

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very comfortable"

Anonymous, MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very comfortable. Good acceleration"

Anonymous, NY (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The EcoBoost engine is really great. Acceleration is phenomenal, and it's fun to drive."

Eric M., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Blind spots when making lane changes , extremely dangerous. Need camera for front as well as back need sensors for lane changes"

Darrell D., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Handles very well on all roads and exceleratrs well on flat roads and climbing"

Anonymous, AZ (2013 Ford Explorer)

"3.5 liter EcoBoost had great acceleration - until it died on us."

Anonymous, MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Decent handling for a vehicles size. Wish I had gotten the turbo 6."

Anonymous, OH (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Greet range of power in all driving camp conditions most is highway and street limited off-road Exceeds requirements to accelerate maneuver in rush traffics"

Anonymous, CO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The big thing about the explorer to us is the AWD system. Combined with good snow tires, this thing turns into a mountain goat on roads that are impassible to other cars. A must have for Canadian winters."

Anonymous, ON (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Acceleration of Twin Turbo Power V-6; Above average handling for SUV, Secure Handling at Highway Speeds; Aggressive Styling of (Front End) Sport model; Interior Space when rear seats are down; Able to carry 7 adults with all seats up."

Frank A., SC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Really quick and powerful. ride quality is great too even with the larger Sport tires."

Russell S., NY (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Great get up and go. Handles well for a large vehicle."

Anonymous, NH (2013 Ford Explorer)

"drives great with plenty of power"

Anonymous, AR (2013 Ford Explorer)


Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Middle bench seats-seatbelts with airbag are hard to buckle and uncomfortable. The electric third seat should have a lock position on the controls are a cover. When rear end is loaded and something leans against the button the seats move."

Anonymous, KS (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I like the climate control, seems to work very good. The ride is smooth, fairly quiet, seats adjust to multiple positions and are comfortable."

Anonymous, MN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Everything is great except; I wish the'd do something for the road noise. I have bought 3 explorers and they all had irons noise"

BARBARA M., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The ride is rougher or harder than my old 1999 Explorer. I feel all of the bumps in the road."

Anonymous, IL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seats are very comfortable"

BERNIE C., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I always try out the seating in every car I buy because comfort is the second most important feature after safety for me and my family."

JOHN S., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"for a big guy like me, the seats are somewhat small and not padded enough for max comfort.They are more comfortable than those in my 2009 chevy impala LT2 that was traded in."

DONALD C., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Ride is bumpy"

Anonymous, IA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Parts inside the seat make noise. Weird how that can happen. Can ignore over time but it cannot be fixe unless the whole seat is taken apart."

CURTIS H., MN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The seats are very small for larger people. The seat pan is curved too much and uncomfortable."

CHAD J., CO (2013 Ford Explorer)


ROBERT L., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"a bit of wind noise yet when driving."

Anonymous, WI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very comfortable. AC cools very quickly in hot weather. Touch screen functions are difficult to navigate, could be more user friendly."

PETER E., NY (2013 Ford Explorer)

"rides good, seats are comfortable, and has great electronic features"

BARBARA T., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Climate control doesn't automatically call for or shut off AC based on temp setting."

LARRY S., ON (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very solid ride. Road noise is not transmitted as with other cars I have owned. Front seats are comfortable. Middle seats have no for/aft adjustment and are too close to the front seats for anyone over 5'-6"."

TERRY M., UT (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Had recurring problems with erratic HVAC blower motor speed control. Had to take and leave vehicle 3 or 4 times for the same problem. The dealership was really the problem as this issue occurred during the warranty period."

Anonymous, NC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Great comfortable car but is a bit of a bumpy ride."

KATHLEEN B., FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I am 5'3" and I have a problem going through any kind of drive through due to the height and width of the doors. I believe this is because of the side air bags but it is very uncomfortable. I never had this problem with my other Explorers."

Anonymous, OH (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Had A/c issues"

Anonymous, FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Leg room is inadequate, I'm average height and my knee rubs against console and is very uncomfortable. Even with seat full back and pedals full down. The console is too wide. I would not buy this car again because of this alone."

Hollice A., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"A lot of room, comfortable on long trips and with allows more people to ride inside."

Glen H., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Too much road noise. Rough ride."

Anonymous, IN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seat bottoms are too short. They cut are not comfortable for long drives. And the front passenger seat does not move back far enough."

Lynnette C., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seats & the ride are very comfortable."

Anonymous, OH (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very little cabin noise. Seats are comfortable over long driving periods."

Carol W., MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"It’s loud as xxxx if you put good tires on it. Stock tires are quiet but terrible in snow. Even a slightly more aggressive all season radial is significantly louder inside the cabin"

Jeremy E., IA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seats are comfortable. Good vehicle for driving long distances. The front seats are heated and cooled. Noise level is good on highway."

David S., OK (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Capability to heat or cool seats and various preset seat positions"

John S., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"very comfortable and supportive bucket seats. very solid feel on the road"

Anonymous, MO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"road noise is fairly high"

Norm N., CO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seats comfortable. Ride is pretty smooth. Noise level could be improved."

Anonymous, MN (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Seats good - noise needs to be quieter. Handling is good."

Kathryn P., TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Love the door up your elbow . Also great wide vision area. And the most comfortable seats I have ever had when driving this car !"

Anonymous, FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The Explorer has a very stiff ride. bumps and potholes are especially noticeable."

Thomas R., KS (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The seat bottoms are to short. They cut off the back of the thigh. Not comfortable for long rides."

Lynnette C., VA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The doors are too high. You have to put seat all the way up and still can't reach a tube at the bank or at a drive thru because of this and I am tall."

Jean T., MD (2013 Ford Explorer)

"can ride a long distance"

Anonymous, FL (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Passenger seat is not adjustable and makes my wife uncomfortable."

Anonymous, NC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Power seats, adjustable to my level of comfort"

Anonymous, GA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The Explorer is a great ride, The seats are very adjustable, controls are easily reached."

Anonymous, PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"This newer style of Explorer has a more comfortable ride, is quieter than previous Explorers I've owned. The interior is a little wider and therefore more comfortable."

Anonymous, PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Climate system does not respond well to change in temp setting i.e. the AC may come on when the temp is already cool."

Larry S., ON (2013 Ford Explorer)

"We have been pretty happy with the comfort in the Explorer. Ride is pretty smooth and quiet."

William C., TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I am impressed with how quiet this car rides. The seats are also very comfortable on long trips. The suspension does a great job of soaking up bumps."

Mary M., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"It feels solid and takes bumps very well."

Anonymous, MA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The seats are comfortable. The head rests are very awkward as they tend to restrict my head and push it forward. Maybe this is because of safety in a crash??"

Pamela N., WV (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The Explorer is large, smooth, and luxurious feeling. The seats are comfortable on long drives."

Anonymous, ON (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Most contoured seats might make them more comfortable"

Bill L., AZ (2013 Ford Explorer)


Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"The MSRP value for the explorer is not up to par with the Japanese. I find better value from the new CX-9, Honda Pilot, Hyundai Santa Fe and pathfinder. What I am try to say is I can get more for the money. But, the explorer does look nice and it has been very reliable for the past 4 years"

Anonymous, NC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very rommy and it has a useful third seat."

Anonymous, CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Good transportation. Horrible trade in value"

DYLAN J., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Purchased this Ford explorer from Blue Knob auto sales and save at least 3 thousand dollars. Tried to purchase an explorer locally at the time, but no one had the features that we wanted ."

JOELLA M., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"We have gotten 22.2 MPG average over the entire 85000 miles we have driven this car, and yet Consumers’ habitually lists its MPG at 18. At the 22.2 average of about a 50-50 mix of city vs. country driving at posted speed limits, we continue to question the substantial discrepancy between your MPG results and ours.. Additionally, the essentially- unchanged body style of this 1913 model has enabled us to drive a car in current “fashion‿ without feeling the need to trade cars because the new model makes ours look dated. That represents good value over a number of years and brings the annual drive cost down when compared with purchasing a new car in three or four years."

Ann W., TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Very nice handling. Comfortable. Good quality sound"

Anonymous, NY (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Great car, very few problems. Good service. Easy to drive."

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Ford seems to have quality issues that are not corrected from one model year to the next. Examples are hood oxidation and front door interior panels. These cars are not cheap so I expected more emphasis on Fords part to “quality is job one‿."

Anonymous, MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"We have been happy with the Explorer. It's been reliable so far, no major repairs. We feel we paid a fair price, so value was good."

William C., TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

"i have not had any warranty issues and it perfvorms beautifully."

Anonymous, NC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"$50k vehicle that's been problematic since day 1 with little to no help from ford. Will not repurchase from them."

Anonymous, MI (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Got every option available. And they all seem worth the effort - Self Parking, adaptive cruise control, push button changing of third row seats, backup warning system."

Kenneth L., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I am happy with the explorer"

Anonymous, AR (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Love this car, would buy another somewhat concerned about exhaust system new reports"

Anonymous, DE (2013 Ford Explorer)

"This SUV is poorly designed, does not hold up and is not backed by Ford. Based on my experience, I will never buy another Ford product."

Jeff G., CT (2013 Ford Explorer)


How it looks inside and out

What Owners Say

"Looks aggressive, a masculine car."

Anonymous, CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Clean looking"

G W., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Interior is very well designed. Exterior is attractive.dual sunroofs is my favorite feature"

F R., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Love the looks! BUT it leaked water from 3rd row seat belt and took 2 repairs to fix. Water inside car almost filling spare tire well is NOT acceptable! Was very upset with this."

DEBBIE S., OR (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Wife liked the looks"

KIM F., CA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"I love the styling and look of my Explorer with the exception of there's no good flat place to put my phone, mail, or purse when someone else is in the car."

Anonymous, NC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"The doors are too high. It impairs your vision to see when you are parking or going around a corner even with the back up camera. I can't use the drive thru at the bank because I can't reach over the door and into the container."

JEAN T., MD (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Just like the way it looks."

Anonymous, OH (2013 Ford Explorer)

"So different and styling rear and front designs"

BARBARA T., PA (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Styling with an attitude. Sport model with aggressive, blacked out front fascia. V-6 Twin Turbos, 365 hp, paddle shifters, larger than standard diameter brakes, tweaked handling, Dual moon-roof, leather 3 row seating."

FRANK A., SC (2013 Ford Explorer)

"We purchased the Explorer because of the third row of seating. We stepped up the model to the SPORT and love the styling of it compared to the regular Explorer model."

BLAISE T., CO (2013 Ford Explorer)

"Look is sporty and sleek"

Anonymous, TX (2013 Ford Explorer)

Would you buy this car again?

2013 vehicles
Chevrolet Traverse
Dodge Journey
Ford Explorer
Ford Flex
GMC Acadia
Honda Pilot
Hyundai Santa Fe
Mazda CX-9
Nissan Pathfinder
Toyota 4Runner
Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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