This year is the 25th anniversary of the Explorer. The Ford’s iconic full-size SUV is the best-selling sport utility vehicle in America since his first appearance in the market. Despite the 1990’s Explorer inspired that SUV boom and after that, the model switched its body-on-frame architecture for unibody. The fresh and cutting-edge overall design of the Explorer 2011 pushed the sales up to the sky, making it the most popular three-row SUV in America.
The 2016 Explorer gets its new top-notch trim level. The Platinum blends premium and luxury features of the Explorer Limited with the sporty and athletic performance of the Explorer Sport. This time, Ford has done a significant update since 2011 (the current generation of the Explorer), maintaining the design, but refreshing it, and making it even better. Including changes in front and rear, a fantastic aesthetic is introduced, also, a new trim level and few new types of equipment. In mechanic’s aspect, the most relevant is the arrival of a new Ecoboost engine.
This includes changes in front and rear, a fantastic aesthetic is introduced, also, a new trim level and few new types of equipment. In the mechanical aspect, the most relevant change is the arrival of a new Ecoboost engine.
Let’s review this successful full-size SUV.
Drivetrain and Performance
The agile and powerful engine is the 3.5 L V6 Ecoboost (belonging to the Sport and Platinum trim), paired with a six-speed Select Shift automatic transmission. This setup produces up to 365 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque. Its towing capacity is rated at 5000 pounds and the fuel economy is 16 mpg for city and 19 mpg in the highway. Standstill to 60 mph is rated at 5.9 seconds and has a top speed at 120 mph.
The mid-range is the 3.5 V6 Ecoboost, delivering 290 hp and 255 lb-ft of torque, paired with a six-speed Select Shift automatic transmission. The fuel economy is 19 mpg in city and 28 in highway mpg (FWD). Then, 18 mpg in city and 26 in the highway (AWD).
By the other hand, Ford has replaced the previous 2.0 L with a 2.3 L EcoBoost, an option for the standard 3.5 L V6. The 2.0 L EcoBoost engine delivers up to 280 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. Its towing capacity is rated at 3000 pounds and the fuel economy is 22 mpg for city and 28 mpg for highway. Standstill to 60 mph acceleration is rated at 7.4 seconds with a top speed of 110 mph.
Design Line, Trims and Interior
Ford developed several trims for the Explorer 2016: Explorer, XL, Limited, Sport, and Platinum. All of the trims look fantastic, with changes including new front and rear styling with an elongated shape, less square design and incorporating more curves. New fascia, updated head and taillights with standard daytime running lights and LEDs are also notable. The rear brings a new tailgate, exhaust ports and sexy stop lights.
The interior is roomy with cutting-edge features that grant an incredible feel of comfortableness and safety. Leather, navigation, choice of a bench or buckets in the second row and blind-spot warning are available on the XLT and higher trims. Meanwhile, Limited and Sport trims present extra features as lane-keep assist and adaptive cruise control with a forward-collision warning.
The Premium trim is equipped all the amenities offered by all trims. SYNC with MyFord Touch is standard as infotainment system with hands-free calling, automatic phone book download, music search and control, SYNC AppLink, available navigation, voice control climate, and others.
The Explorer 2016 has new features relative to the outgoing model. Hands-free power liftgate, washers for the 180-degree front and rear cameras, and additional functions for the automatic parking system.
The Bottom Line
The Explorer 2016 has a flawless the balance between comfort, cutting-edge features and performance for seven people. The quality in every aspect of this famous SUV is undoubted and the aesthetics represent what it is: one of the best SUVs available.
Starting price at US$31.050.