All-New Ford Explorer ST and Explorer Hybrid

Tori Tellem

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What’s the next most logical move after the world debut of the all-new 2020 Ford Explorer? For us, that answer was obvious: introduce two more headline-making models: the Explorer ST and Explorer Limited Hybrid.


Sure, we could have stopped innovating the 2020 Explorer after the ground-up redesign that brings even more power, sportiness and comfort than ever before to America’s all-time best-selling SUV for the past 29 years. But we don’t go to the drawing board with a “What if?” attitude and wonder in hypotheticals – we build exactly what we know our customers want. And we were confident we weren’t yet done with ways to engineer and equip the all-new Explorer.


“This new generation of Explorer recognizes that every family – and every driver – is unique,” said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford executive vice president of product development and purchasing. “With an all-new ST and an all-new hybrid, there truly is an Explorer for every adventure.”


Introducing a performance-enhanced version of the Explorer was an easy decision, thanks to the Edge ST that we added to the lineup. It was the first-ever SUV tuned by the Ford Performance team. And, more performance and utility made sense for the Explorer, too.


With the Explorer ST, which replaces the Explorer Sport, we introduce our most powerful and fastest Explorer yet, with a specially tuned 3.0-liter EcoBoost® projected to produce 400 horsepower and 415 lb.-ft. of torque, and a target top speed of 143 mph. There’s a quick-shifting 10-speed automatic transmission and standard four-wheel drive with selectable traction control. Available upgrades include an ST Street Pack and ST Track Pack. Both feature 21-inch aluminum wheels and red-painted brake calipers, with differing levels of performance brakes.


As with the Edge ST, the Explorer ST offers a Sport Mode within the Selectable Drive Mode System; steering tightens for a sportier reaction, the gas pedal responds more aggressively, gears hold longer and shift more quickly, and an enhanced engine note plays through the cabin. Standard equipment for the Explorer ST includes a 12.3-inch all-digital instrument cluster, a Class III Trailer Tow Package with Cargo Management System and Active Park Assist 2.0, and a new hands-free, foot-free parking feature.


This is a no-compromise SUV with performance feel and capability combined with an eye-catching appearance. “More than anything, it’s just a hell of a lot of fun to drive,” said Ed Krenz, Ford Performance chief functional engineer.


The all-new Explorer Limited Hybrid features a 3.3-liter powertrain with performance and efficiency in its DNA that comes straight from our Police Interceptor SUV. The Explorer Hybrid is projected to have an EPA-estimated range of 500 miles in rear-wheel-drive mode.


Other advanced features of the Explorer Hybrid include an all-new 10-speed automatic transmission with SelectShift® capability with liquid-cooled lithium-ion batteries. And the setup is unique: We put the batteries beneath the second-row seats. Stowing them was a high priority in order to preserve cargo and passenger space.


Other standard Limited trim level equipment includes Ford Co-Pilot360 Assist+™ driver-assist technologies, leather seats with micro-perforations and accent stitching, second-row heated seats, 12-speaker B&O Sound System by Bang & Olufsen, wireless phone charging pad and 10-way power-adjustable driver and front-passenger seats.  

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