2018 Ford Explorer Owner Satisfaction - Consumer Reports
The popular Explorer is roomy and quiet, and has a livable third-row seat, but overall it trails more modern competitors. Handling is ungainly, lacking agility but the SUV remains under control when pushed to its limits. The ride is compliant but the body tends to move about often rather than get settled after hitting bumpy pavement.
Alerts
There are 3 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

"It’s great, power when I need it"

Anonymous, VA (2018 Ford Explorer)

"My 2018 Ford Explorer with the EcoBoost engine is a ton of fun to drive. It has been a long time since I drove a car that is this fun to drive. If I am starting from a light, driving on the highway, or just driving around town the Explorer wants to get up & go. The ride is smooth (on some really bad Michigan roads), quiet and relaxed but the car has plenty of power, if I need it."

Mark D., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"This 350-6 has a major engine flaw and it has happened to me a few times. I am now afraid to drive this car and am stuck with a 3 year lease. Getting rear ended by a semi is my future. While driving I lose acceleration down to 0. The car doesn’t stall...it just slowly stops. It hasn’t shown up on the computer panel so they “can’t do anything about it‿ even though it is apparently common in this engine. I googled it. I tried to email you about it since you rated it the safest car...that’s why I leased it for 3 years!!! Can you help????"

P V., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"very comfortable ride with quick acceleration and responsive handling"

Richard C., VT (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Great pickup"

Scott W., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The turbo gives this six cylinder vehicle an extra boost when passing or climbing a steep hill. It is a very powerful engine but economic compared to a V8. The handling is like a sports car, quick steering, good turning radius, and does not lean in turns. The cruise control has 6 control buttons on the steering wheel and is not a distraction to set or re-engage after braking."

Anonymous, OR (2018 Ford Explorer)

"very nimble, handles well, great acceleration"

Wayne R., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"GREAT PICK-UP, HANDLES EXCELLANT, GOOD RIDE, NEED TO IMPROVRE ON GAS MILEAGE!!!!!"

Anonymous, SC (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Fast acceleration because it is an Eco-boost 6 cylinder, but transmission seems to slip and some hard shifts. Very poor gas mileage. Handles well, quiet smooth ride."

Ken F., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"I am very pleased with the 6 cyl EcoBoost engine and the vehicle's (Sport) handling. Acceleration seems effortless and handling seems more taught than the 2016 XLT I previously owned. I'm still in the break-in period from a mileage perspective but I'm getting nearly the same that I had with the non-turbo 6 cyl engine on my 2016 Explorer XLT. Very pleased so far."

Donald B., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"It drives and handles very well compared to previous Explorers. It's more nimble than previous versions. Very easy to drive."

A L., MO (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Plenty of power."

Joseph B., OH (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Drives great especially in rain"

Douglas B., GA (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The power and handling are both excellent. I drive in the S mode all of time as I drive in freeway traffic and the responsiveness is important to me. It goes when I ask and stops well."

Gary D., AZ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Incredible power and towing RV capacity"

Harry P., TX (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The Sport edition is great to drive: quick, great steering feel, supple in cornering, good road manners. Your generally negative review of this vehicle doesn't do it justice. I'm a lanky 6'4" and I kissed a lot of automotive frogs from a variety of brands in my search before I came back to Ford. The Explorer Sport fits me with headroom to spare and handles like a smaller, lighter vehicle."

Michael P., ON (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Great power with the turbo. Very quiet and smooth ride."

Anonymous, OK (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Has the Echo Tec engine with 375 hp. Very handy to have the power when needed. Vehicle handles well and is very quiet."

Anonymous, CO (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Handling is fine. We were coming from Volvo xc70 with T6 with Turbo. We miss the acceleration we had."

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Easy handling for such a big car"

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The ecoboost 4 cyl turbo accelerates like a big v6 and the handling is very tight."

Anonymous, TN (2018 Ford Explorer)

"It's surprisingly quick and agile for a large car. Plenty of acceleration and a firm ride not found in other Explorer models."

Bill B., FL (2018 Ford Explorer)

Comfort

Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Super ride, very comfortable and confident."

Joseph B., OH (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The only complaint I have with our explorer is the tire noise. We have the xlt sport package and the truck came with 20" tires and rims. The road noise while driving is definitely noticeable but it is so much more when hitting bumps and potholes. I feel this is because of the lower profile of the tires (lacking normal size sidewall on tires.)"

Anonymous, CT (2018 Ford Explorer)

"SEATs are vary comfortable, heat and cooling GREAT!!!!,"

Anonymous, SC (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Massage feature"

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Seats are very comfortable and the ventilated feature works great. The cabin is extremely quiet and the ride is good."

Anonymous, TN (2018 Ford Explorer)

"quality of finishing"

Anonymous, ON (2018 Ford Explorer)

"very comfortable seats with memory so you don't have to adjust each time you drive the car. much more space in the driver foot area than the 2015 explorer"

Richard C., VT (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Comfortable, heated, cooling and massage seats. Sits high off the floor so you don't feel like you are sitting on the road. Power seats with many positions available"

Ken F., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"comfortable, very quiet"

Wayne R., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The massaging seat was a key factor in my purchase as I have an injured hamstring and the massage feature allows me to drive."

Gary D., AZ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The seats are totally adjustable"

Dick L., AR (2018 Ford Explorer)

"The seats are very comfortable and adjustable, so on a long trip both driver and passenger can change their seating to be more comfortable. Noise level is a lot less than in our previous vehicle. We were surprised that it rides as well as it does for an SUV. The ride is not like a truck, more like a large sports car."

Anonymous, OR (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Very comfortable and low noise."

Anonymous, ON (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Wife is comfortable"

Fred D., TX (2018 Ford Explorer)

"My wife and I both love the comfort of the Explorer. We have the "Limited" trim which has different seat materials than some other trims. A friend of ours has an XLT with a micro-fiber material on the seats and we don't like that. But our leather seats are great. The ride and noise are good for a large capable vehicle. Even when loaded with 1200 pounds of people for several hours one day, the ride and comfort were good."

Dave P., WA (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Very comfortable seats"

Scott W., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Very quiet ride....we feel safe and protected in this car!"

Janet B., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Three rows of seats are what I wanted and excellent safety features"

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"This version of the Explorer is very comfortable. You can adjust all aspects of the drivers seat and most on the passenger seat, including heating and cooling. The 2nd row seats are also reclining and heated. Best version yet."

A L., MO (2018 Ford Explorer)

"the Explorer is more comfortable with less noise than the 2015 Ford Taurus it replaced."

Anonymous, FL (2018 Ford Explorer)

"the seats are very comfortable and spacious, interior compartment is very quiet from outside noise, and the ride is very smooth"

Jerome G., NJ (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Multi adjustments plus Air Conditioned seating with an adjustable steering wheel make the Sport extremely comfortable."

Bill B., FL (2018 Ford Explorer)

"AC seats with massage mechanism"

Todd M., TX (2018 Ford Explorer)

Value

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

What Owners Say

"I own the Platinum model. MSRP was near 57000. It is not worth that much. The accomodating cruise does not go to zero, but cuts out at 12MPH which is very disconcerting when driving in stop and go traffic. The lane keep assist is a joke; such a gentile attempt at correction that you can easily drift into adjoining lane and the vibration warning does not even begin until you are well into the next lane. No collision would be averted with this system. I think of these systems as the type you might get in a compact car, not a very expensive luxury SUV. The car, in general, is solid, quiet and has good handling and great acceleration with the turbo V6. Only a six speed transmission, so gas mileage is around 20mpg average and possibly 26mpg on the highway. Th eonly redeeming features on this car are the massaging front seats and the power folding third row seats. I wish the second row seats power folded, but engineers must not use these cars, so they leave the most valuable feature out! Other than the lane keep and accomodating cruise, this is a very nice car, but not worth 57000. Dealer discount was 4000, which is not much on such an expensive machine."

Anonymous, UT (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Good value"

Fred D., TX (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Versatility that the SUV. Ford has been a consistent performer for me. I have owned three explorers with great reliability for each."

Ronald H., IN (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Numerous safety features make high cost feel worth it"

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"This is by far the most expensive vehicle we have ever purchased. But the price is competitive in its market segment and, therefore, the value is OK for the equipment we bought. We got a Limited trim for around $42,000 plus extended warranty and the closest competitor, in our minds, is a top-level Volkswagen Atlas at $50,000. An equivalently equipped Toyota Highlander is about the same price as our Explorer Limited and we liked the Explorer better."

Dave P., WA (2018 Ford Explorer)

"I got a vehicle with a ton of options, that is a lot of fun to drive for a very good value. The comfortably seats five with plenty of room in the back for cargo or I can put the third row of seats up and get 8 people with room for cargo. This vehicle was a lot of car for the money"

Mark D., MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Moderate price, good performance"

Anonymous, MI (2018 Ford Explorer)

"Good price, 0% finance"

Todd M., TX (2018 Ford Explorer)

"I was very impressed on the human/car interface on this car. Even the transmission works perfectly in our mountain area by shifting out of manual when tapping the accelerometer. The lane keeping, adaptive cruise control is superb. Even the massage seats work great and the interior looks great. The unexpected benefit is the reasonable gas mileage for the large engine installed.This is a great value."

John D., CO (2018 Ford Explorer)

Would you buy this car again?

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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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