The 2020 Ford Explorer ST has made its debut, arriving hot on the heels of the regular version of the new three-row SUV.
The Explorer ST is the most powerful and sportiest take on the new Explorer, packing a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 under its hood making 400 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque. Shared with the new Lincoln Aviator, the twin-turbo V6 is paired with a sport-tuned 10-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive, helping to deliver a driving experience that Ford promises to be fun and engaging. Acceleration figures weren’t provided by Ford, but the automaker places this big SUV’s top speed at a respectable 143 mph.
Two performance upgrade packages are available with the SUV as well: an ST Street Pack and an ST Track Pack. Ford says they both have “21-inch aluminum wheels with differing levels of performance brakes and feature larger vented rotors, red-painted brake calipers with stainless steel pistons and larger brake pads for even better stopping power.”
The Explorer ST will be easily identifiable thanks to its black mesh grille insert, lower bodyside extensives, roof rack rails and gloss black trim. The cabin also gets some performance ST add-ons in the way of a flat-bottom heated steering wheel, leather sport bucket seats with microfiber inserts and ‘City Silver’ accent stitching.
Finally, the Explorer ST will come standard with a Class III Trailer Tow Package with Cargo Management System and Active Park Assist 2.0. This may be a sport SUV, but it’s not forgotten about practicality entirely.
“We designed (the Explorer) to be an ST from the beginning,” said Ford Performance’s chief functional engineer, Ed Krenz. “There’s no mistaking its ST DNA. It has a performance feel with sustained performance capability and wears an unmistakably ST appearance. More than anything, it’s just a hell of a lot of fun to drive.”
Pricing and availability for the 2020 Ford Explorer ST have not yet been announced, but look for this new performance SUV to go on sale sometime later this year.