Ford Authority

2021 Ford Explorer King Ranch Spied Testing For The First Time

Back in October, we reported that the King Ranch and Timberline would be joining the 2021 Ford Explorer lineup. Since then, we’ve spied Timberline prototypes out testing not once, but twice. And just yesterday, we reported some new, exclusive details regarding the 2021 Ford Explorer King Ranch. Now, we have spy photos of the new trim level to share as well.

These new photos of a 2021 Ford Explorer King Ranch prototype confirm the details we reported just yesterday, including its tri-bar front grille with mesh in between the bars, which looks remarkably similar to the one present on the Explorer Limited.

As was the case with the Timberline prototypes we’ve seen so far, the badges on this King Ranch – located on the front doors and liftgate – are also covered up. But in the rear, we can somewhat make out the familiar King Ranch logo, despite Ford’s attempts to hide it from prying eyes.

As we reported yesterday, the Explorer King Ranch features body-color door handles with a chrome trim insert, as well as a dual-tip dual exhaust that protrudes from the bottom of the rear bumper. There’s also a chrome strip along the bottom of the doors.

The King Ranch will be powered by Ford’s 3.0L EcoBoost V6, and will slot just above the Limited and just below the range-topping Platinum trim in the Explorer lineup. As such, it will offer more features and interior amenities and niceties compared to the Limited as well.

The Ford Explorer King Ranch and the new Timberline – a more off-road focused variant of Ford’s popular crossover – will round out the automaker’s North American Explorer lineup for the 2021 model year, joining the Base, XLT, Limited, ST, and Platinum.

In addition to these changes, all Explorer trim levels have received a bit of a price cut for the 2021 model year. A new XLT Sport Appearance Package has also been added, while the ST is receiving a few interior enhancements for the new model year as well.

We’ll have more on the new Explorer King Ranch soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Explorer news and 24/7 Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. NCEcoBoost

    Too many Explorer variants, like WAY too many pickup trim variants (GM is also guilty of this, and FCA) does nothing for Ford in the event of the inevitable economic major downturn. Some say it’s already underway. FCA and GM have insulation but Ford would be in BIG trouble. Time to focus on reality, Ford and not nonsense. The decisions of late, like the Mach -E, Escape engine choices, purported Fusion Activ as a “crossover coupe” and Maverick body style (4-door only, why???) are outragously HIDEOUS and the internet is deservedly scalding Ford.

    1. Atari

      GM has always had too brands and models. This on the other hand is another trim.

      1. F-150 owner

        They should just make it simple. People like simplicity. That’s one of the joys of in n out burger. They should make the timberland a XLT package, scrap king ranch, keep ST and Platinum, and limited is debatable but it is a great in between model. The base model is fine too since it’s a affordable option which is always good to have but I’d rather just get a used car with more amenities rather than a new model for about the same price with less. I like how they do it with Lincoln. Have only really two trims with a base model and the different engine options.

  2. Dan

    Too many trims. I’d like to see a nicer interior and more availability of the V6 instead.

  3. F-150 owner

    This is where the line needs to be crossed with the King Ranch trim. Should only stay on the F series and truck like suvs like the Expedition. I can totally see some suburban mom from Texas driving that around her cul de sac. This is going to cause an identity crisis for the King Ranch brand.


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