The new, 2019 Ford Edge ST won’t likely be the last crossover/SUV model from the Blue Oval brand to wear the sporty “ST” badge, and thanks to a report from The Truth About Cars, we may now know what the next large “ST” vehicle will be: the next Ford Explorer. TTAC reports that, according to its sources, a Ford Explorer ST will come along as the full-size crossover enters its sixth generation for 2020.
The Ford Explorer ST will reportedly be powered by the twin-turbocharged, 3.0-liter V6 that debuted in the 2017 Lincoln MKZ and 2017 Lincoln Continental. That engine, which for now remains a Lincoln-exclusive powerplant, makes as much as 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque in the Continental.
Other notable changes allegedly coming to the Ford Explorer for 2020 include a move to Ford’s new, modular CD6 platform, which can be configured for front-, rear-, and all-wheel drive. This will allow the sixth-generation Explorer to shift to a longitudinal powertrain configuration, supporting rear- and all-wheel drive models (we’d bet the sporty Ford Explorer ST will have AWD). That, in turn, will allow Ford to deploy its new 10-speed longitudinal automatic transmission.
Apart from the ST’s twin-turbo 3.0L, TTAC‘s sources tell the publication that the all-new, 2020 Ford Explorer will offer three additional engine options: a normally-aspirated 3.3L V6 (base engine in the F-150), the familiar 2.3L EcoBoost I4 (carryover), and one other, as-yet-unknown powerplant.
Given the new, sixth-generation Ford Explorer’s anticipated launch for the 2020 model year, chances are we’ll first see the new full-size crossover make an appearance in late-2018 or early-2019. Until then, stay tuned for more news as it breaks.