2020 Ford Explorer Hybrid Review

Explorer Hybrid

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2020 Ford Explorer Hybrid Overview

Ford redesigned the Explorer, one of the oldest nameplates in the midsize SUV category, for 2020. The new model year brings in two exciting new variants, the Explorer ST and Explorer Hybrid, to create this the most diverse Explorer lineup ever. The new Explorer Hybrid will go up against the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, as well as popular midsize SUVs such as the Honda Passport, Subaru Ascent, Mazda CX-9, Kia Sorento, Chevy Traverse, and Hyundai Santa Fe.

The new Explorer pays homage to older Explorers, incorporating consistent styling elements like blacked-out front and rear pillars and body-color center pillars. A sloped roofline and shorter front end make the vehicle look more sporty than before. A set of 20-inch wheels finishes the look.

The Explorer Hybrid boasts a total of 318 horsepower from its 3.3-liter engine paired to a liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery. The transmission, a 10-speed modular hybrid unit, is also new. The EPA hasn’t certified fuel economy yet, but Ford anticipates that with rear-wheel-drive (RWD), the Explorer Hybrid will have a range of more than 500 miles.

The Explorer offers three rows of seating with generous space in each, with second-row sliding seats for easy access to the back. The new Explorer Hybrid offers the same cargo space as other Explorer models. The Explorer Hybrid, based on the midrange Limited trim, comes standard with 10-way power adjustable driver and front passenger seats, perforated leather upholstery with accent stitching, front- and second-row heated seats, ambient lighting, and active noise cancellation.

An 8-inch touchscreen enables access to Ford’s Sync3 infotainment system, which includes satellite radio, HD Radio, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Amazon Alexa, a Wi-Fi hotspot, navigation, and voice recognition. Options include a 10.1-inch touch screen and a 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system.

Standard safety features include the Ford Co-Pilot360 suite, which includes forward-collision warning, pre-collision assist, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-keep assist, and automatic headlights and high beams. The Explorer Hybrid also includes a 360-degree camera with split view, intelligent adaptive cruise control, and evasive-steering assist.

The 2020 Ford Explorer Hybrid offers efficiency without compromise. This valuable new addition to the long-running Explorer lineup delivers midsize SUV comfort and capability in a more responsible package.

Updated

Cherise is a Chicago-based freelance writer and editor with nearly 15 years of experience covering the automotive industry. Cherise loves writing about car culture and sharing common-sense car-buying advice. She is eagerly awaiting delivery of a 2019 Subaru WRX Series.Gray, which will join her household's 2008 Toyota RAV4, 2007 Genuine Buddy Italia 150, and 2015 Honda Grom.

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