2020 Ford Explorer

#15
in Midsize Suvs
2020 MODEL
$32,765 - $58,250
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7.5

Overall Rating

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2020 Ford Explorer Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: July 11, 2020
Karan Rawat's image

Karan Rawat

Automotive Journalist

It is a long road, and Explorer's journey began prosperously only to have its share of agony so early. The Ford Explorer is one of the most popular mid-size SUVs to be ever sold in the US but soon found itself on some shaky grounds. Turn around and there's an Explorer, it is so common to the sight. Fate seems to change rapidly for the Explorer and it somewhere felt that the crossover is no longer a priority for Ford. Since 2011, the first four generations of Ford Explorer were amid speculations regarding truck-based SUV design owing to its body-on-frame architecture, derived from Volvo. The fifth-generation Explorer, ending in 2019 is denounced for a traverse engine setup.  The wait is long and my dream of you doesn't end, Ford has a plan.

Refresh the whole story, that's Ford's answer to shut all the chatters speculating Explorer SUV. With the kind of engineering prowess, Ford has, it was all matter of a shift in attention. The 2020 Ford Explorer is completely revamped with nothing identical to its predecessor. From a new chassis with a uni-body construction to a rear-wheel-drive architecture with a longitudinal engine, it is just the nameplate that remains. The 2020 Ford Explorer comes with an impressive level of features and improved safety technology. Despite these perks, the redesigned Explorer has a tough time wrestling with many of its well-rounded rivals that give more capacious third rows and stylish interiors, while costing less.

Also Read

How much does a Ford Explorer cost?

Is there any safety recalls on Ford Explorer?

See detailed review »

Pros

Increased cabin space and cargo capacity

Rear-wheel-drive platform improves handling

Refined engine and additional driver tech

Cons

Cheap material used in interior

Its can only seat seven people at max

Expensive than rivals

What's New?

The Ford Explorer is fully redesigned for 2020


2020 Ford Explorer Latest Update

Features

vehicle bio

base price

$32765

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

7

drivetrain

RWD

engine type

displacement

140 cu.in.

horsepower

300 hp @ 5500 rpm

torque

310 lbs.-ft. @ 3,500 rpm

transmission

10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift

chassis

frame type

Unibody

brake rotors (f/r)

12.2/12.2

dimensions

wheelbase

119.1 in.

length

198.8 in.

width

78.9 in.

height

69.9 in.

curb weight

4345 lbs.

ground clearance

7.9 in.

capacity

passenger volume

152.7 cu ft.

cargo volume

87.8 cu ft.

towing capacity

5300 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.7 sec.

standing ¼-mile

16.3 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

16/23/18 mpg

highway range

409.2 mi.


Pictures

Exterior
Interior

Styles

2020 Ford Explorer in Agate Black color 2020 Ford Explorer in Blue Metallic color 2020 Ford Explorer in Atomic Silver color
Agate Black

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

7.0

Engine And Performance

7.0

Fuel Economy

4.0

Interior

7.6

Exterior

7.0

Safety

8.0

Competition

9.1

7.5

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


2020 Ford Explorer Base

Base

power
300 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
mpg
18 combined

$32,765 - $34,765


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $32,765 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift rear wheel drive 7
4dr SUV 4WD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $34,765 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift all wheel drive 7

2020 Ford Explorer XLT

XLT

power
300 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
mpg
18 combined

$36,675 - $38,675


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
XLT 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $36,675 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift rear wheel drive 6
XLT 4dr SUV 4WD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $38,675 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift all wheel drive 6

2020 Ford Explorer Limited

Limited

power
300 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
mpg
18 combined

$48,130 - $50,130


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Limited 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $48,130 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift rear wheel drive 6
Limited 4dr SUV 4WD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $50,130 MSRP (16/18/23) 300 hp @ 5500 rpm, 2.3 L, Inline 4, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift all wheel drive 6

2020 Ford Explorer Platinum

Platinum

power
365 hp @ 5500 rpm
fuel
Flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
mpg
18 combined

$58,250


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Platinum 4dr SUV 4WD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 10A) Starting at $58,250 MSRP (16/18/23) 365 hp @ 5500 rpm, 3 L, V-6, flex-fuel (unleaded/E85)
10-Speed Automatic w/SelectShift all wheel drive 6

Expert Review

7.5

Overall Rating


America always had a fandom for the Ford Explorer, be it crossover's starring role in the movie "Jurrasic Park" where it drove some automotive dinosaurs(station wagons and minivans) to extinction or its crowded city streets. Saying goodbye to the 5th gen after long nine years, the sixth-generation Ford Explorer gets a complete overhaul with piles of new features. Now it is presented in modern styling along with enhanced driving capability and power. The Explorer trims (Base, XLT, Limited, and Platinum) hits a different chord, thanks to multiple powertrains it can be optioned. 

The Explorer ST is a performance-optimized model, a replacement for the Explorer Sport. It uses a 3.0-liter EcoBoost engine rated at 400 horsepower and 415 pound-feet of torque. Moreover, a hybrid powertrain also blesses the Explorer series to deliver more efficiency in terms of increased driving range. Now it is clear that the new 2020 Ford Explorer is more updated than the previous year’s model. The improvements are refined with various configurations in comparison to others in the segment.

2020 Ford Explorer Exterior Front View
2020 Ford Explorer Exterior Rear View

7.0/10
Features

 

7.0/10
Engine and Performance

 

4.0/10
Fuel Economy

 

7.6/10
Interior

 

7.0/10
Exterior

 

8.0/10
Safety

 

9.1/10
Competition

 
 

2020 Ford Explorer Features

7.0/10

Following the refresh, Ford offers the 2020 Explorer in four trims paired with two powerful engine options. The most enticing fact about the 2020 Explorer is that it is the best of both worlds. The lower half of Explorer lineup rivals with the entry-level mid-size crossovers while the upper-half shares the luxury of more plush rivals. The standard rear-wheel-drive delivers the driving dynamics of more premium rivals, hard to find at such low price. However, Ford offers intelligent 4WD across the Explorer lineup, giving an additional advantage in wet or snowy weather. The starting price of the 2020 Ford Explorer is $32,765 for the base, which gets you base spec 2.3 L inline-4, fabric seats, and old school SYNC infotainment. The top of the line Explorer Platinum has a hefty $58,250 price tag and has Lincoln rivaling luxury, thanks to interior draped in real wood and leather. It seems the Explorer has borrowed a lot of premium qualities from the Lincoln Aviator, built under same roof at Ford's factory in Chicago. 

Trim

Base

XLT

Limited

Platinum

MSRP (RWD)

$32,765

$36,675

$48,130

-

MSRP (AWD)

$34,765

$38,765

$50,130

$58,250

Key Features

Tri-zone electronic temperature control

Includes Base model’s features and adds -

Includes XLT’s features and adds -

 Includes Limited's features and adds

 

Air filtration system

10-way power driver’s seat including power lumbar

Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror

Active Park Assist 2.0

 

Configurable daytime running lights

LED Signature Lighting

Forward Sensing System

Illuminated front scuff plates

 

Lane-Keeping System

Intelligent Access with Push-Button Start

Steering wheel, Heated, leather-wrapped with paddle shifters

Twin-panel moonroof

 

Rearview camera with washer

Second-row captain seats with Power-Assist Fold

Ambient Lighting

Sony Premium Brand Stereo System with 12 speakers

 

Remote Start

Roof rack side rails, black with black end caps

Universal Garage Door Opener

Heated Steering Wheel

 

FordPass Connect 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot

 

B&O Sound system by Bang & Olufsen

Body-color door handles with satin aluminum insert

 

Cloth seating surfaces

 

Voice-Activated Navigation System

Satin Chrome lower bodyside cladding insert

 

LED Headlamps and Taillamps

 

Leather seating surfaces 

Tri-Diamond Perforated Leather Seating Surfaces

 

Privacy Glass, Second and Third Rows

 

Dual Chrome Exhaust Tips

Quad Chrome Exhaust Tips

Which do we recommend?

Ford brings Christmas early this year with the all-new bespoke Explorer equipped with an overwhelming list of features and refined powertrains. Based on the value for money, we recommend the Ford Explorer Limited model which gives the most bang for the buck. It has an efficient and powerful 2.3 L EcoBoost engine under the hood while the interiors up the ante with a luxurious and highly-equipped cabin.

2020 Ford Explorer Engine and Performance

7.0/10

Replacing the naturally-aspirated V6, the turbocharged inline-four-cylinder which was optional until last year is now standard with the 2020 Explorer Base, XLT and Limited trim. Derived from the Mustang and Focus RS, the Ecoboost turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine under the Explorer’s hood steps-up the power game, and now packs 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque.

That is 10 extra ponies and a mountainous 55 lb-ft more torque. All of the powertrains come mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission driving the rear wheels. Ford offers a more powerful mill under the hood of Explorer Platinum, a twin-turbo 3.0-liter Ecoboost V6 churns out 365 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque. The beefed-up Platinum delivers the extra bit of excitement while being cossetted in luxurious comfort.

Ford's longitudinally-mounted rear-biased engine provides more than enough punch to merge into freeways and keep up at highway speed. The smooth-shifting automatic transmission offers a low first-gear ratio that does a decent job mimicking a traditional 4WD when the off-road mode is engaged or trailer is attached. Gear eight, nine, and ten are all overdrive ratio's and they only come into play after you get on the highway. For all-weather capability, Ford rationally provides an intelligent 4WD is optional. 

Models

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

MSRP

$32,765

$31,995

$31,450

$34,600

Engine

2.3-L Turbocharged Inline-4

2.4L Turbocharged Subaru Boxer 

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

Drivetrain RWD AWD FWD` FWD

Transmission

10-Speed Automatic

CVT

6-Speed Automatic

8-Speed Automatic

Power

300hp@6,500rpm

260hp@5,600rpm

280hp@6,000rpm

295hp@6,600rpm

Torque

310lb-ft@4,000rpm

277lb-ft@ 2,000rpm

262lb-ft@4,700rpm

263lb-ft@4,700rpm

Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer beat the Subaru Ascent at the horsepower game. Toyota Highlander is outclassed by its competition. But when we talk about torque, Subaru takes an obvious lead with its turbocharged boxer engine’s 277 lb.-ft. torque output. The mid-size SUVs hardly have any room for newcomers but it seems the all-new Explorer has the right mix of ingredients to please your platter.

How fast is the Ford Explorer?

Owing to new light-weight construction, the new Ford Explorer is about 200 pounds lighter than its outgoing model  Citing the fact, the 2.3-liter EcoBoost is pretty good with solid power delivery. The Ford and GM co-developed 10-speed automatic transmission is well-calibrated to route the power and hits the 60 mph from a standstill in 6.8 seconds. The bigger V6 packs even more punch, substantially equipping you with a neck-snapping acceleration.

2020 Ford Explorer SUV 0-60 MPH In just  8.2 sec

What do these numbers translate to? Well, the numbers reflect on the fact that the Explorer is no slouch. You have enough pulling power at all times and you won't be left wanting for more. Moreover, the 4WD driving dynamics further complement the acceleration figures.

Models

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

0-60 MPH 

6.8 sec

6.9 sec

6.2 sec

7.2 sec

Quarter Mile 

15.3 sec

15.5 sec

14.8 sec

 15.2 sec

Top Speed  143 MPH N/A N/A N/A

Engine

2.3L Inline-6

2.4L Turbocharged Subaru Boxer 

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

3.5L Naturally Aspirated V6

The 2020 Explorer base is not the fastest of the lot. The 2020 Honda pilot leads the explorer by 0.6 seconds. The Toyota counterpart is last to cross the 60 mph line. However, if its the speed that you demand, Explorer Platinum has your covered. Still not satisfied, we knew it, Ford expands its ST Performance now to Explorer as well.

How good are the Ford Explorer's ride and handling?

The Ford Explorer has its priorities set right - comfort over everything else. The suspension has been tuned to offer a supple ride quality. Even on longer journeys, your family would be cocooned in comfort. Explorer can soak up the undulations from bad road surfaces without any drama. High-speed ride quality is composed and there is no nervous body movement at such speeds.

Engaging handling and fun to drive characteristics are low on the Ford Explorer`s priority list. Effortless, safe, and family-friendly characteristics are high on the list – a good thing for a family crossover. Owing to its large exterior dimensions, the Ford Explorer can be cumbersome to maneuver in the tight spots while driving in town.

2020 Ford Explorer SUV Side view

Engaging handling and fun to drive characteristics are down on the explorer`s list of priorities. The SUV can handle the sudden change in direction with aplomb so you can rely on it to save you from hairy situations. However, it’s lacking in one area where it really shouldn’t. Most people are expected to drive it in town and this Ford SUV is cumbersome in tight situations being heaviest and lengthiest among the rivals.

What about the Ford Explorer's braking performance?

The Ford Explorer comes with decent sets of brakes which is backed by impressive stopping power. The pedal has a nice linear action around town, and it's easy to stop smoothly. The wider dimensions of the Explorer shows some nose-dive under heavy braking conditions, but its until you get used to it.

2020 Ford Explorer SUV Front Brake is 12.8 in.

The Ford Explorer will take around 121 foot to stop from 60 mph with the optional summer tires which remarkable for such a heavy SUV. There is a considerable gain in the stopping power, all because of the new chassis and smaller block under the hood of Explorer.

Model

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Brake Rotors Front 

12.8"

13.1"

12.6"

13.3"

Brake Rotors Rear 

12.8"

13"

13"

13.3"

Curb Weight

4458 lbs

4430 lbs

4036 lbs

4145 lbs

60-0 MPH 

121 ft

119 ft

117 ft

126 ft

The Ford Explorer manages to score an impressive stopping distance. Honda Pilot’s estimated braking distance is 117 ft, yet again Honda steals the podium. However, the Toyota Highlander with its estimated stopping distance of 126 ft, bites the dust.

How much is the Ford Explorer's towing capacity?

The Ford Explorer tow capacity will depend on the powertrain option that you choose. With the 300-hp Explorer can tow 5,300 while the V6 powered Explorer can tow around 5,600 pounds when equipped with an optional towing package (Trailer Tow Class 3 package).

Thereby, opting for the Platinum model gives more towing capacity than the rest of the lineup. Ford's blind-spot monitoring system sees the blind-spot behind the trailer to further ease the driving.

Model

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

 Toyota Highlander

Towing Capacity 

3000 lbs

5000 lbs

3500 lbs

5000 lbs

All SUVs other than the Highlander can tow 5,000lbs. The poor-run of Toyota Highlander continues with below-average performance. The 2020 Explorer beats its outgoing model's maximum towing capacity of 5000 lbs.  

Also, Read

How fast is the Ford Explorer ST?

What is the best year for the Ford Explorer?

Does the Ford Explorer come in a hybrid?

2020 Ford Explorer Fuel Economy

4.0/10

Last year most of the customers complained that the Explorer's fuel tank is not big enough and most of the time is wasted refueling at the gas stations. To your respite, the 2020 Ford Explorer can travel in excess of 400 miles and the Hybrid variant extends the range up to 500 miles on a single refill. A rear-wheel-drive Explorer equipped with the 2.3-liter engine is rated by the EPA at 21/28 mpg city/highway. The mpg further drops by one with the 4WD setup. However, the six-cylinder Platinum trims hets EPA ratings of 18/24 mpg. Whatsoever is the trim level, the Explorer can not be considered as frugal.

Model

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

 Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

MPG (City)

21

21 

19 

20

MPG (Highway)

28

27 

27 

24

MPG (Combined)

24

23

22

22

Fuel Capacity

19.2 gallons 19.3 gallons 19.5 gallons 17.9 gallons
Range (City/Hwy/Combined)

403/537/460.8 miles

405/521/443 miles 370/526/429 miles 375/519/393 miles

Emission

(Tons/yr. of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

 8.2 7.6 8.5 7.5

Looking at the competition, Explorer has an average score. The newly introduced Subaru Ascent delivers a segment-best of 23 mpg which is followed by Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot. To please fuel-conscious enthusiasts, Ford offers a Hybridized version of Explorer SUV.

Also Read

How efficient is the Ford Explorer Hybrid?

Is Ford Explorer costly to maintain?

2020 Ford Explorer Interior

7.6/10

The new platform of Ford Explorer gives far more benefits underneath, certainly more than one can imagine. The new platform grants a well-proportionate interior to the Ford Explorer. Now, the Explorer's cabin is much more soothing and ergonomic than the predecessor. A seven-seater layout comes standard but you can replace the second-row bench with captain's chair, standard on XLT and above models.

The trade-off is reasonable as the extra comfort takes away seating of one. The base and the XLT trim come with standard cloth upholstery and soft-touch material around. If you want something more premium than the Limited trim comes with leatherette upholstery. One thing that would be appreciated is Explorer’s capacity to filter out road noise. The cabin is a quiet place to be and is well equipped to take on longer journeys. As per Ford, the interior is designed in such a way that the passenger will feel complete comfort and luxury.

Model

Ford Explorer

 Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Seating Capacity

7

8

8

8

First Row (head/shoulder/leg) (in)

41.4/61.5/42.9 i

41.3/61.1/42.2

40.1/ 62/40.9

40.7/59.3/44.2

Second Row (head/shoulder/leg) (in)

40.6/61/39.5

40/ 60.3/ 38.6

40.2/62/38.4

39.9/59.6/38.4

Third Row (head/shoulder/leg) (in)

37.8/50.8/32

36.3/57.2/31.7

38.9/57.6/31.9

35.9/55.0/27.7

The cabin features three rows of seating enabled with sliding second-row seats controlled at a touch of a button So, accessing the third row won't be an uphill task. The first and second rows of Explorer are spacious enough to stretch but its the cramped third-row is a letdown. The third-row bench lacks proper cushioning and thigh-support.

2020 Ford Explorer Front Seats

To further reduce its utility, the seating position at the rear is irking as the knees touch the chest. The Explorer gets a twin-panel moonroof that ensures a good amount of light inside the cabin. The Platinum trim features premium upholstery and patterns.

What comfort features will keep you hooked in the Ford Explorer?

Ford Explorer comes with a decent list of interior features after seeing an upgrade for the 2020 model. Some of these features are listed below:

  • Tilting and telescopic steering column
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Memory driver’s seat
  • Power driver’s seat
  • Heated Front Seats
  • Cooled Front seats
  • Rear-Seat Entertainment

What's there to entertain you in Ford Explorer?

The base and XLT trims are equipped with Ford’s SYNC infotainment system which comes with a standard 6-speaker audio system and a 8.0" touchscreen display. Moving up the trim ladder enhances the touchscreen display to a 10.1" vertically mounted screen. Ford’s SYNC3 system which is a standard feature on the Limited and above trim is available as an option on the XLT trim. SYNC 3 is a user-friendly system and enjoys popularity in the market for its user experience.

This interface is intuitive and offers a decent response time. Without the 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity, the infotainment feels incomplete and Ford does not skimp it. The smartphone integration is quick, thanks to standard Apple Carplay, Android Auto and even Amazon Alexa. It comes loaded with the following tech

  • AM/FM Stereo HD Radio
  • Speed-Sensitive Volume Control
  • Auxiliary Audio Input and USB With External Media Control
  • Satellite Radio Service
  • USB Connection
  • 6 Total Sony Premium Brand Speakers including a Subwoofer
  • Smart Device Integration
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Wi-Fi Hotspot
  • Navigation System
  • Onboard Hands-Free Communication System

How practical is the new Ford Explorer?

The cargo capacity behind the third row is the best in class for the Ford Explorer. But with folded seats, the cargo volume isn’t at par with the competition. With the rear seats folded the Explorer frees up 43.9 cu-ft. of space while with both the rows folded, the cargo area increases to 81.7 cu-ft.

The higher trims come with hands-free liftgate which can be a boon when you are carrying luggage in both your hands. The 2020 Explorer features a 40/20/40 split-folding second-row and a 50/50 split-folding third-row as standard. However, the pricier Explorer features a power-folding third row, that adds to the convenience.

Model

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Cargo Capacity 

21 cu.ft.

17.8 cu.ft.

16.5 cu.ft.

13.8 cu.ft.

Getting Captain's chair makes the second row far more comfortable while also allowing easy third-row access. In case you opt for the optional trailer package, your Explorer will benefit from the cargo management system that adds extra pockets in the rear cargo area and sub-floor storage option. Overall, the 2020 Ford Explorer offers a reduced cargo space than its 2019 model, owing to a slightly shorter wheelbase of the new model.

Also Read

Why does Ford Explorer have an RWD?

How well does the Ford Explorer hold their value?

2020 Ford Explorer SUV  Dashboard
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Dashboard
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Infotainment System
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Infotainment System
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Seat detailing
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Seat detailing
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Gearbox control
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Gearbox control
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Center Console
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Center Console

2020 Ford Explorer Exterior

7.0/10

Though the Ford Explorer looks very similar to the 2019 iteration, there has been a lot of changes. First of all, the ladder frame is now replaced with a unibody structure that is rear-biased. Explorer went from being a body-on-frame, truck-based SUV for its first four generations to be a genuine crossover for its fifth.

The front and rear overhangs are now shorter and there is a steep increase in departure angles. Slimmer headlights are enclosed between a more geometrical grille, and both the upward sweep of the character lines and tapered roof give the new Explorer an athletic stance.

2020 Ford Explorer SUV Three Quarter View

The front grille on the high-spec trims looks very similar to the police interceptor vehicle, so you scare someone off by getting in their rearview mirror. Ford's change to a base rear-drive format, let designers push the wheels out, improving approach and departure angles. The exhaust is hidden below well and the reflectors are covered in chrome.

Model

Ford Explorer

Subaru Ascent

Honda Pilot

Toyota Highlander

Curb Weight 

4458 lbs

4430 lbs

4036 lbs

4134 lbs

Length 

198.3"

196.8"

196.5"

192.5"

Width 

78.9"

76"

78.6"

75.8"

Height 

70"

71.6"

70.6"

68.1"

Ground Clearance 

7.8"

8.7"

7.3"

8.0"

Wheelbase 

112.8"

113.8"

111"

109.8"

Newly updated rivals pose a challenge to the aging Ford Explorer. The all-new Subaru Ascent is surely a prime contender in the three-row crossover segment. It has the best in a class ground clearance of 8.7-inches and sits on a wheelbase of 113.8-inches. 

What are the most notable exterior features on the Ford Explorer?

The 2020 Ford Explorer runs atop 18-inch wheels as standard while moving up the trim ladder can get you a bigger 20-inch version. The V6 powered Platinum uses the 20-inch wheels as standard, why not? It has more power under its hood. Moving from the Limited model to the Platinum replaces the dual-tip chrome exhaust with quad-tip counterparts. More standard exterior features with the 2020 Ford Explorer are listed below:

  • LED taillights   
  • LED headlights  
  • Twin Exhaust  
  • Quad Exhaust  
  • Heated Rear View Mirror  
  • Auto-Dimming rearview mirror  
  • Moon Roof  

Also Read

Is the 2020 Ford Explorer bigger inside?

Which is the best Ford Explorer trim? 

2020 Ford Explorer SUV Bonnet
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Bonnet
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Exhaust
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Exhaust
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Tire
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Tire
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Three Quarter view
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Three Quarter view
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Rear View
2020 Ford Explorer SUV Rear View

2020 Ford Explorer Safety

8.0/10

A new life of the Explorer gains heavily from its new platform and so does the safety. Ford further enhanced the standard safety equipment list to keep you and your family safe. The 2020 Explorer comes with state of the art safety equipment that allows it to score well on the safety tests conducted by the agencies.

However, the NHTSA is yet to reveal the safety ratings of the Explorer, we have IIHS crash ratings to quantify it for you. The 2020 Explorer gets a "Good" rating for most of its test except the small front overlap and headlights being acceptable.

What are standard safety features in the 2020 Ford Explorer?

Ford Explorer gets a good safety score from the federal safety rating agencies. Some of these features are mentioned below:

  • Front, Rear, and Third Row Head Airbags
  • 4-Wheel ABS
  • Post-Collision Safety System
  • Traction Control
  • Stability Control
  • Front and Rear Ventilated Disc Brakes
  • LED Headlamp
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring

Also Read

What is the price of Ford Explorer SUV?

See the detailed NHTSA and IIHS safety ratings for Ford Explorer

2020 Ford Explorer Competition

9.1/10

Ford Explorer vs Subaru Ascent

Newly introduced Ascent is powered by a horizontally opposed four-cylinder boxer engine. Transmission duties are taken care of by a CVT automatic transmission. Ascent is one of the better performing three-row SUVs available in the market. Being the costliest Subaru, Ascent brings a plethora of standard features.

2020 Subaru Ascent SUV

Unlike its competitors, it comes equipped with standard AWD and Subaru’s Eyesight safety system. The Subaru offers only one engine choice, a punchy turbocharged 4-cylinder, whereas the Explorer offers two robust engine choices, including a V6 even in the top model. While the Explorer is an excellent highway cruiser, the Ascent maintains Subaru’s tradition of off-road valor and is also surely a sharper handler when the road turns twisty.

Ford Explorer vs Honda Pilot

Honda Pilot is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that generates 280 hp and 262 lb-ft. of torque. Pricing for the Honda Pilot starts at $31,450. Honda Pilot has been one of the best vehicles in this segment. The third generation of the Pilot was introduced in 2016.

The pilot is a terrific choice and you can't go wrong decision in the three-row CUV market. With the updates received, the 2020 Honda Pilot comes off as more contemporary in design but Honda has addressed many of the shortcomings. The exterior gets some subtle change along with a reworked 9-speed automatic transmission from ZF to improve efficiency. Both the Pilot and the Explorer use a V6 engine but the Honda engine returns a better fuel economy.

Ford Explorer vs Toyota Highlander

The Toyota Highlander has an upper hand in this fight. The base trim comes with V6 engines and much more standard features. The Explorer, on the other hand, comes with 2.3L turbocharged inline 4 that is tuned to its limits. The engine does have a good amount of oomph but it takes a hit in the fuel economy because of this.

 

2020 Toyota Highlander

Ford has its upsides but compared to the Highlander, the Highlander is a well-rounded SUV with its reasonable price, good performance, and excellent safety and reliability.

2020 Ford Explorer Final Verdict

The Ford Explorer is the most popular model sold after the behemoth F series trucks of the brand. Getting close to being in existence for 30 years, the Explorer is one of the most recognizable nameplates in the SUV segment. Shortcomings are now addressed by using a new platform and a slew of powertrains options makes it more appealing to families all around the world.

The Explorer is set in the hearts of many Americans and it can do whatever you ask it to do almost as good as or better than the rivals. The hefty body is the very reason some love the Explorer, but now you have more to enjoy. At times, the Ford Explorer is being plagued by pricing issues as most of its rivals undercut it. All in all, if you like the explorer and are ready to pay more than you will pay for a similarly equipped competitor, get it.

Also, Read

What is the difference between Ford Explorer and Ford Explorer ST?

How comprehensive is the warranty package with the Ford Explorer?

Should I buy a used or new Ford Explorer? 

FAQs

What is the difference between the 2019 and 2020 Explorer?

For Starters, the 2020 model is a new generation. A key difference is that the standard 2020 model is an RWD whereas the 2019 model is FWD and the other difference is that the 2020 model comes with new and improved engine options.

Is the 2020 Ford Explorer a good car?

Yes, the 2020 Ford Explorer is a good car. 2020 redesign includes significant changes, and the result is a much-improved three-row SUV.

Is the 2020 Ford Explorer bigger?

Yes, the 2020 model is bigger than its predecessor. It offers more passenger and cargo space. The 2020 model offers 18.2 cubic feet of cargo capacity, which is the best in its segment.

How much is a fully loaded Ford Explorer?

The base 2020 model Ford Explorer will cost $32,765 which doesn't include destination charges. While the fully loaded Platinum trim will cost you $58,250.

 

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2020 Ford Explorer Overall Reviews


Daniel L. Barrera

Daniel L. Barrera 2020 Ford Explorer 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A)

10

User Overall Rating

Posted On: June 23, 2020

My Ford drives awesomely

Overall Review -

10

Overview Rating

It is wonderful and easy to handling. Good to drive on the snow, mud, and wet roads.

10/10

Features

10/10

Interior

10/10

Design

10/10

Safety

10/10

Reliability

10/10

Deal Value

10/10

Dealer Review


Larry I. McCoy

Larry I. McCoy 2020 Ford Explorer 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A)

9

User Overall Rating

Posted On: June 23, 2020

Avid Ford driver

Overall Review -

9

Overview Rating

Explorer is very nicely made for families or one to go about his/her daily commuting. Love the practicality and overall built. My feet firmly stay on the pedals and no problems of visibility too

8/10

Features

8/10

Interior

9/10

Design

9/10

Safety

9/10

Reliability

9/10

Deal Value

9/10

Dealer Review


Jermaine S. Evans

Jermaine S. Evans 2020 Ford Explorer XLT 4dr SUV 4WD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A)

10

User Overall Rating

Posted On: June 19, 2020

Ford Explorer is very comfortable for my family.

Overall Review -

10

Overview Rating

It also driving well but I’m mainly happy with the top level comfort it offer for me and my family to travel for long extent.

10/10

Features

10/10

Interior

10/10

Design

10/10

Safety

10/10

Reliability

10/10

Deal Value

9/10

Dealer Review

Top User Reviews


10

User Overall Rating

"My Ford drives awesomely"

It is wonderful and easy to handling. Good to drive on the snow, mud, and wet roads.
by Daniel L. Barrera

9

User Overall Rating

"Avid Ford driver"

Explorer is very nicely made for families or one to go about his/her daily commuting. Love the practicality and overall built. My feet firmly stay on the pedals and no problems of visibility too
by Larry I. McCoy

10

User Overall Rating

"Ford Explorer is very comfortable for my family."

It also driving well but I’m mainly happy with the top level comfort it offer for me and my family to travel for long extent.
by Jermaine S. Evans

10

User Overall Rating

"My Ford drives awesomely"

It is wonderful and easy to handling. Good to drive on the snow, mud, and wet roads.
by Michael S. Holman

10

User Overall Rating

"Ford Explorer is good on the features wise."

I would always drive my car on the constant speed that gives a smooth ride and a high level of mileag
by David J. Nelson