Following the debut of the current-gen Ford Explorer back in 2020, the long-running crossover underwent a handful of changes for the 2022 model year – including the addition of standard rear-wheel drive for the ST, the new ST-Line trim, and a few other minor tweaks – yet will enter 2023 essentially unchanged. With the Explorer receiving its own unique refresh in China recently, many have wondered when, exactly, the North American version will receive updates as well. That will happen when the refreshed 2024 Ford Explorer launches – which is likely to happen later in 2023 – but sources familiar with the matter have told Ford Authority that the revised crossover is already in the testing phase.
It’s unclear what sort of changes the 2024 Ford Explorer will bring for North American customers, but the recently-refreshed Chinese version features a unique front end, 21-inch Turbine fan wheels, and a massive 27-inch coast-to-coast touchscreen inside the cabin. The Explorer was treated to its own host of unique touches for the Chinese market to cater to customers there, however, which makes it unlikely that they’ll wind up in the North American version.
Meanwhile, the all-electric Explorer and Lincoln Aviator will reportedly enter production at the Oakville Assembly plant in Canada – which will soon be retooled for the production of five all-electric models – in late 2024 for the 2025 model year. The Blue Oval also reportedly teased the Explorer EV to select dealers, showing them some early video renderings of the electrified crossover that featured a large touchscreen similar to the unit present in the Ford F-150 Lightning and Ford Mustang Mach-E.
In the meantime, 2023 Ford Explorer order banks are already open, and production is currently slated to begin at the Chicago Assembly plant on November 7th, 2022. The 2023 Ford Explorer will carry over from the 2022 model with no changes to trim levels or colors, though it’s possible Ford may offer a few tweaks later in the model year, but those would represent relatively minor changes, and nothing like the refreshed Chinese version.