Ford Explorer Sales Decrease 15 Percent In Q4 2019

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Ford Explorer sales decreased in the United States, Mexico and South Korea during the fourth quarter of 2019.

Ford Explorer Sales - Q4 2019 - United States

In the United States, Ford Explorer deliveries totaled 48,083 units in Q4 2019, a decrease of about 15 percent compared to 56,316 units sold in Q4 2018.

During the complete 2019 calendar year, Explorer sales decreased about 26 percent to 168,309 units.
MODEL Q4 2019 / Q4 2018 Q4 2019 Q4 2018YTD 2019 / YTD 2018 YTD 2019 YTD 2018
EXPLORER -14.62% 48,083 56,316 -26.09% 168,309 227,732

Ford Explorer Sales - Q4 2019 - Mexico

In Mexico, Ford Explorer deliveries totaled 357 units in Q4 2019, a decrease of about 32 percent compared to 523 units sold in Q4 2018.

During the complete 2019 calendar year, Explorer sales decreased about 34 percent to 1,627 units.
MODEL Q4 2019 / Q4 2018 Q4 2019 Q4 2018YTD 2019 / YTD 2018 YTD 2019 YTD 2018
EXPLORER -31.74% 357 523 -34.37% 1,627 2,479

Ford Explorer Sales - Q4 2019 - South Korea

In South Korea, Ford Explorer deliveries totaled 1,209 units in Q4 2019, a decrease of about 24 percent compared to 1,599 units sold in Q4 2018.

During the complete 2019 calendar year, Explorer sales decreased about 29 percent to 4,910 units.
MODEL Q4 2019 / Q4 2018 Q4 2019 Q4 2018YTD 2019 / YTD 2018 YTD 2019 YTD 2018
EXPLORER -24.39% 1,209 1,599 -28.93% 4,910 6,909

Competitive Sales Comparison

The decline in Ford Explorer sales during Q4 2019 places the vehicle into second place in its segment, behind the Toyota Highlander but ahead of all other rivals. Combined sales of the Explorer and its police-duty variant, the Police Interceptor Utility, totaled 51,284 units during the quarter.

Following the Explorer are the Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot, Subaru Ascent, Volkswagen Atlas (see VW Atlas sales), Kia Telluride, Nissan Pathfinder, Hyundai Palisade, Dodge Durango, and the Mazda CX-9.

Sales Numbers - Mainstream Large Three-Row Crossovers - Q4 2019 - United States

MODEL Q4 19 / Q4 18 Q4 19 Q4 18 Q4 19 SHARE Q4 18 SHARE
TOYOTA HIGHLANDER -7.12% 59,268 63,812 20% 22%
FORD EXPLORER -14.62% 48,083 56,316 16% 20%
FORD POLICE INTERCEPTOR UTILITY -61.82% 3,201 8,385 1% 3%
CHEVROLET TRAVERSE -14.94% 33,631 39,536 11% 14%
HONDA PILOT -21.84% 31,039 39,714 11% 14%
SUBARU ASCENT +11.64% 21,916 19,631 7% 7%
VOLKSWAGEN ATLAS +30.75% 21,803 16,675 7% 6%
KIA TELLURIDE * 19,395 * 7% 0%
NISSAN PATHFINDER -6.03% 16,349 17,398 6% 6%
HYUNDAI PALISADE * 15,279 * 5% 0%
DODGE DURANGO -8.71% 14,977 16,406 5% 6%
MAZDA CX-9 +17.60% 8,318 7,073 3% 2%
TOTAL +2.92% 293,259 284,946

The Explorer and Police Interceptor Utility held a combined 17 percent segment share, behind the 20 percent held by the Toyota Highlander. The Chevrolet Traverse and Honda Pilot each held 11 percent, while all other models held less than 10 percent share.

The three-row, large crossover segment expanded nearly 3 percent to 293,259 units in Q4 2019.

For informational and comparative purposes, we are also providing sales figures for midsize SUV models that overlap with large crossover SUVs like the Explorer – either in price, seating capacity, or both. These not-quite-full-size crossovers are often cross-shopped with full-size crossover SUVs. These models include:

  • Midsize crossovers that offer three rows, including as the GMC Acadia (see GMC Acadia sales), Kia Sorento, and Mitsubishi Outlander
  • Midsize crossovers with two rows of seating sold at a similar price point to the Traverse, including the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Nissan Murano, Ford Edge, Chevrolet Blazer, and Hyundai Santa Fe,

Sales Numbers - Overlapping Crossover Sales - Q4 2019 - United States

MODEL Q4 19 / Q4 18 Q4 19 Q4 18 YTD 19 / YTD 18 YTD 19 YTD 18
GRAND CHEROKEE -0.56% 57,929 58,255 +8.03% 242,969 224,908
EDGE +6.93% 37,621 35,184 +3.28% 138,515 134,122
SANTA FE +10.63% 31,054 28,069 +8.83% 127,373 117,038
SORENTO +7.21% 23,751 22,154 -11.03% 95,951 107,846
BLAZER +85,114.78% 23,008 27 +215,140.74% 58,115 27
ACADIA -22.51% 19,471 25,128 +12.20% 99,429 88,621
MURANO -11.36% 18,013 20,322 -18.18% 68,361 83,547
OUTLANDER +9.53% 7,494 6,842 +0.83% 37,965 37,652

The Ford Authority Take

We believe that the decrease in Ford Explorer sales during the fourth quarter is attributable to tow primary reasons:

  1. Supply-level issues associated with bringing the all-new, 2020 model to market, and
  2. Issues associated with the launch of all-new model

It’s worth noting that five competing models showed very strong sales results during the month. These include the Kia Telluride, Hyundai Palisade, Mazda CX-9, Subaru Ascent, and VW Atlas. Combined, the Kia and Hyundai accounted for nearly 35,000 units, significantly more than the Traverse. Subaru Ascent sales, meanwhile, climbed nearly 12 percent to 21,916 units and VW Atlas sales increased 31 percent to 21,803 units.

Meanwhile, GM’s Chevrolet Traverse will receive a midcycle enhancement for the 2020 model year that will deliver revised styling and potential interior improvements, thereby giving the new Explorer even more competition.

About The Numbers

  • All percent change figures compared to Ford Explorer sales for Q4 2018
  • In the United States, there were 78 selling days in Q4 2019 and 77 selling days in Q4 2018
  • Ford Police Interceptor Utility is the police version of the Ford Explorer; Police Interceptor Utility sales are not included in the Explorer line item

Subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Explorer news and ongoing Ford news coverage.

Ford Motor Company Q4 2019 sales reports:
  • U.S. Ford Motor Company Q4 2019 sales results:
    • U.S. Ford Q4 2019 sales results (Ford brand)
    • U.S. Lincoln Q4 2019 sales results
  • Ford Motor Company Brazil Q4 2019 sales results:
  • Ford Motor Company Korea Q4 2019 sales results:
  • Ford Motor Company Mexico Q4 2019 sales results:
    • Ford Motor Company Mexico October 2019 sales results:
      • Ford Mexico October 2019 sales results
      • Lincoln Mexico October 2019 sales results
    • Ford Motor Company Mexico November 2019 sales results:
      • Ford Mexico November 2019 sales results
      • Lincoln Mexico November 2019 sales results
    • Ford Motor Company Mexico December 2019 sales results:
      • Ford Mexico December 2019 sales results
      • Lincoln Mexico December 2019 sales results
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Written by Alex Luft

Ford Authority founder with a passion for global automotive business strategy.

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3 Comments

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  1. Might add the price as a 3rd issue with the Explorer. The prices are crazy high compared to the competition. If they price it to compete with BMW, then they’re going to loses sales.

    • The prices are high, but so is that of the competition. Much of the pricing will be reduced with incentives, which will run higher than the last-gen model. Even so, Ford will make more on the new Explorer vs. the old one.

  2. Styling is the issue with me.
    It is almost like they showed the designers the new beautiful Lincoln Aviator, and told them the Explorer has to be differentiated here, there, and everywhere, so instead of designing an Explorer, they designed an anti-Aviator.

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