In many senses, the new Explorer is a definite improvement over the old model. Gone is the unrefined interior and clunky looking exterior, and just cruising around on the freeway you feel more like you’re in a luxury car than a large SUV. It’s when you actually try to push the Explorer, whether on or off-road, that memories of the under-performing old model come flooding back, which is really too bad.
Our fully loaded test car stickered at over $46k, which is a fairly lofty figure, but isn’t excessive given the level of equipment and technology. A base model Explorer can be had for under $30k, which is actually a good proposition for folks needing a larger vehicle who don’t mind that it doesn’t have all the fancy goodies.
Unlike 10 years ago, the competition in this segment is now very tough and there are quite a few excellent models to choose from. Given its good looks and name plate recognition, the Explorer should be a popular model for Ford, although we doubt it’ll fly off the shelves at the same rate that it used to.