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2020 Ford Explorer Teased At 2018 Beijing Motor Show

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An all-new version of the full-size Ford Explorer crossover was teased today at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show, lurking underneath a sheet much the same as the forthcoming performance-oriented version – the Explorer ST – did when it was teased by the automaker last month (pictured below). The automaker isn’t quite ready to show the future product just yet, but Ford Asia Pacific President Peter Fleet confirmed that the new crossover will be built locally in China by the automaker’s joint venture with Changan Automobile.

Little about the Ford Explorer’s design can be gleaned through the sheet, but in profile, it looks quite similar to the Lincoln Aviator concept unveiled at the 2018 New York International Auto Show. That model will replace the Lincoln MKT* in the lineup, and the two are expected to share the same Ford CD6 platform, which is capable of supporting front-, rear-, and all-wheel-drive vehicles. The 2020 Ford Explorer appears to have a similar upward-sloping beltline, downward-sloping roof, and big, round wheel arches.

Engineering

As with the refreshed, 2019 Ford Edge, the Ford Explorer will add a performance-oriented “ST” model, which sources have told The Truth About Cars will be powered by the same twin-turbocharged, 3.0-liter V6 that’s found in certain trims of the Lincoln MKZ and Continental. The engine, which hasn’t officially been branded an “EcoBoost” because of its status as a Lincoln-only powerplant (so far), produces up to 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque. Compare that to the Explorer’s current range-topping powerplant, the 3.5L EcoBoost V6, which in that application pumps out 365 horsepower and 350 lb-ft.

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2020 Ford Explorer ST teaser image

The 2020 Ford Explorer is expected to stick with steel as the material-of-choice for its body and structure, in contrast to Ford’s body-on-frame vehicles (F-Series, Ford Expedition, Lincoln Navigator), which have all donned aluminum-alloy exterior panels. Other powerplants in the lineup will reportedly include Ford’s 2.3-liter EcoBoost I4 and the 3.3-liter normally-aspirated V6 from the F-150.

The 2020 Ford Explorer ought to bow later this year or early next before going on sale in the summer 2019. With the crossover craze in full swing, the sooner Ford brings out its brand-new full-size offering, the better.

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*Previously, this article stated that the new Lincoln Aviator would replace the MKX – not the MKT, as it should have read. Our mixing up the alphanumerics makes a terribly compelling case for why Lincoln is moving away from them in the first place.

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Written by Aaron Brzozowski

Aaron Brzozowski is a writer and motoring enthusiast from Detroit with an affinity for '80s German steel. He is not active on the Twitter these days, but you may send him a courier pigeon.

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2 Comments

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  1. While I’m very happy to see Ford cut the Fiesta, Focus, fusion and Taurus out of the lineup, i don’t think they went far enough. The Ecosport, the Escape and the Edge need to go as well. But it is all together stupid not to make a sedan. Americans still want sedans they just don’t want the BS that American companies (except for Dodge) make. Wonder why Dodge is one of the best selling American brands? because they make American style cars with American names that live up to their name. Dodge has the Challenger & Charger, why can’t ford have the Mustang and the Falcon and Chevrolet have the Camaro and the Malibu?
    ideal lineup for Ford would look like this
    Mustang: 400hp/425hp Hybrid 2.3L Ecoboost AWD, drop the 5.0L DOHC V8 for a 5.8L Push rod V8 pushing out 480hp with modern technology, drop the GT350, replace with a 7.0L Push rod Mach 1 pushing out 550hp, bring in a supercharged 7.0L Push rod to push out 730hp and have the best mustang lineup ever
    Falcon: same power trains as mustang but add AWD to all levels
    Explorer: 400hp/425tq Hybrid base engine 5.8L 480hp GT, 7.0L S/C 730hp RS to battle Durango R/T, SRT & Jeep Trackhawk
    Bronco: 400hp/425 tq hybrid & a 3.0L diesel engine along with a Raptor trim
    Expedition: 450hp/510tq 3.5L Ecoboost V6 as only option with 10-speed auto
    Ranger: Same as Bronco
    F150: 400hp/425tq 2.3L hybrid, 480hp 5.8L Pushrod and 7.0L 550hp N/A Raptor & Lightning
    F-series Super Duty: leave it be, maybe give the diesel 500hp and 1000lb-ft of torque
    Chevrolet should look like this:
    Corvette: America’s only sports car is running strong. Let it evolve the way it needs to but keep that v8 under the hood, or wherever you’re gonna stick it.
    Camaro: 410hp 3.6L twin turbo (XTS V-Sport) engine, a 480hp LT1, a 550hp 7.0L N/A Z/28, the new LT5 6.2L ZL1
    Malibu: Alpha platform sedan with AWD optional on all models with a 420hp variant of the 5.3L V8 in an SS model
    Blazer: Colorado based SUV w/ the standard Baby-Duramax, a 375hp N/A 3.6L V6 and 410hp version of the 3.6L twin turbo V6.
    Tahoe/Suburban: Base on new Silverado for the Tahoe. Suburban should be a 2500HD with a diesel option
    Colorado: same as Blazer
    Silverado: So far somewhat disappointing. decent looks, lackluster performance. Honestly there should be a blacked out LT1 480hp 6.2L SS Version in the lineup.
    Silverado HD: New design is promising but dont screw it up please. maybe bring it up to 500hp/1000lb-ft torque
    and lastly Dodge
    Challenger: New Maserati platform, drop the current 5.7 and 6.4L V8 take the 5.7L, bring it up to 5.9L and put the Apache top end, exhaust, etc on the 5.9L and call it a T/A. Replace the 6.4L with the new 7.0L 520hp Banshee V8, bring out a new 10-speed automatic, move to the ’72 body styling, call that level the R/T and go from there. The new Hellcat should retain the 725hp 6.2L V8 but have a better, more capable chassis to go with it. The base GT trim should get a 400hp twin turbo V6.
    Charger: Same as above but needs a coupe. With the new Maserati platform and the ’99 Charger concept styling as a basis, with the upgrades mentioned for the Challenger, a Charger like this would be Awesome! As far as naming goes, the R/T should be the 5.9L, the Daytona should be the 7.0L and the Hellcat name should remain on the 725hp 6.2L S/C V8 while the 400hp v6 should retain the GT name.
    Durango: The Durango is so Perfect i hate to see it change. But Change is inevitable. Obviously the Levante is where it should get its basis from but lets make sure we keep the big boy engines under the hood such as a new 5.9L, 7.0L V8 & 6.2L S/C engines in R/T, SRT, and Hellcat trims respectively. There should still be a Citadel version and a V6 GT AWD version with a 400hp twin turbo V6.
    Dakota: Same as Durango just with a bed on the back.
    Ram-Charger: Full size Ram 1500 SUV with a Cummins 5.0L V8 Diesel option and a Cummins 6.2L Diesel option along with the new 5.9L V8 and a Eco-Diesel option. Should be off-road capable like a Rebel along with a limited option and a Big horn option.
    Ram 1500: Gods gift to the truck world. Add a 7.0L Banshee and a Hellcat engine in the mix and let freedom ring!!! One of these needs to be a street truck!
    Ram HD: 500hp, 1000tq & Ram.
    Obviously there will be more to the lineups of the big three than just these vehicles but these are the mainstay. GM needs to Drop Buick completely, keep GMC as the Premium variants, drop the current Acadia and Terrain because no GMC should ever be front wheel drive, Make everything a Denali, further distinguish Cadillac by giving everything the Cadillac body language and going with only the 464hp 3.6L V6, the new 550hp 4.2L twin turbo V8 and a hotter 5.0L twin turbo 700hp V8. There should be no way an Escalade has to compete with a Yukon in styling and comfort or feel. The Cadillac should be well distinguish and more epic and angular just like the rest of Cadillac, and not to mention lower to the ground. Cadillac should Rival and destroy AMG but cost a little less. I could also see FCA dropping the Chrysler lineup and just going with Jeep and Dodge. Jeep could stand some cutting as well and just leave the Wranglers, the Cherokee, the Grand Cherokee the upcoming Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer and that be that. Ford has been such a disappointment with Lincoln that I honestly feel like Lincoln should drop but I will give the Aviator and Navigator a chance. The Continental was a total failure. Honestly here would be a good place for a new CD6 Rear wheel drive based all wheel drive setup to go and take the DOHC 5.0L coyote engine and put it to use here. It has no place in the Mustang. Yes the Coyote engine is a very beautifully designed engine and i love it but Ford should really switch to a pushrod setup on the Mustang and really compete with GM and the upcoming Mopars the right way. Just my opinion but it would even the playing field because even though the mustang has horsepower it lacks the torque of a pushrod and GM and dodge have done some incredible things with pushrod V8 engines and Ford engineers are no dummies so they can do it to possibly even better. But a refined 480hp 5.0L V8 like the Coyote would fit a new RWD continental nicely and offer sophisticated power enough to move the sedan with true authority and make car buyers swoon. The continental needs better (more Lincoln continental) styling and it needs to be more confident on the road (like Cadillac) Also I’m strangely enough excited about the new electric vehicles that Ford is coming out with. Granted i despise Tesla with all of my being but this electric performance SUV could be interesting. Jaguar has a good one and i would hope that Ford would at least match what Jaguar has done if not exceed it with “the soul and inspiration of the Mustang.” I wouldn’t want to see it called a Mach 1 though. I would like to see Chevrolet do something similar with the FNR-X concept and have it inspired by the Camaro with an equally as powerful electric power plant that can also create an exciting and dynamic driving experience that an enthusiast can enjoy. Both vehicles should produce around the 500hp mark with 750lb-ft of instant torque and all wheel drive. I would also like to see Dodge do something like this with the Journey so that each company would have a performance electric SUV. To be truthful, the SUVs could be something cool like the Dodge Duster, the Chevrolet Vega and the Ford Maverick (kind of taking a hint from the official talks of earlier today). Just a thought. Of course these are all my thoughts and opinions and just things i’d like to see in the upcoming vehicles from Ford, GM and Dodge.

    • Your name is pushrod? Seriously you think everything in the Ford line up needs a 450 plus HP pushrod engine?

      I agree with you with the return of the Falcon name on a 4 door version of the Mustang.

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