To date, the Ford Explorer ST has come standard with four-wheel drive, which is befitting of a high-performance vehicle – particularly a crossover. However, Ford Authority has learned from sources familiar with the 2022 Ford Explorer model-year changeover that the 2022 Ford Explorer ST will drop four-wheel-drive from its standard feature list, and the crossover will now come in a rear-wheel-drive configuration as standard.
All-wheel-drive will still be available as an option with both equipment groups available for the 2022 Explorer ST – the Enthusiast Package 400A, and High Package 401A. As Ford Authority reported earlier this year, the Enthusiast ST is the new Standard Equipment Group within the ST model and features the looks and performance of the Explorer ST at a lower MSRP.
Both the Enthusiast ST and the regular Explorer ST are powered by Ford’s 3.0L EcoBoost V6, which produces 400 horsepower and 415 pound-feet of torque and is mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. While it may seem that opting for rear-wheel-drive in a vehicle with this sort of power could put it at a traction disadvantage, it’s worth noting that the Lincoln Aviator also comes with the same powertrain and RWD as standard equipment.
This isn’t the first time a Ford Explorer model has made the switch from standard AWD to RWD either, as the RWD Explorer Platinum made its debut for the 2021 model year, providing customers who don’t necessarily need all-wheel-drive with a better value. In addition to these changes, Ford also launched the Explorer Platinum hybrid, Explorer King Ranch, and Explorer Timberline for the 2021 model year.