The 2013 Ford Explorer Sport goes on sale this fall, packing a 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, premium interior features and sporty (sort of) exterior design elements. And while Ford originally told us that the Sport would produce "at least 350 horsepower," we've now learned that the top-trim Explorer will churn out 365 hp and 360 pound-feet of torque. If that sounds familiar, it's because those are the same totals found in the Taurus SHO sedan, which shares its engine.

365 hp and 350 lb-ft are a welcome improvement over the 290 hp and 255 lb-ft present in the naturally aspirated V6 model. Fuel economy doesn't suffer horribly, either. The Sport is officially rated at 16/22 miles per gallon (city/highway), compared to 17/23 in the regular, all-wheel-drive model. For reference, Ford points out that the Explorer Sport is more efficient than both the V8-powered Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango.

When it hits dealerships, the 2013 Explorer Sport will be priced from $40,720, not including $825 for destination. Scroll down for the official press blast.
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New High-Performance Ford Explorer Sport, a Fully Capable SUV Certified to Deliver Class-Leading Fuel Economy

· The Ford Explorer Sport high-performance SUV is certified at 365 horsepower, with class-leading EPA-rated fuel economy of 16 city and 22 highway mpg

· The Ford Explorer Sport's standard Terrain Management System™ has been specifically calibrated to optimize increased EcoBoost® power

· Explorer Sport features an interior inspired by designer fashion accessories, sporty exterior cues, and 20-inch high-performance tires and wheels

DEARBORN, Mich., Aug. 24, 2012 – Ford's new Explorer Sport will stand in a class of one when it goes on sale next month with an EPA-certified 22 mpg highway rating, the only seven-passenger, high-performance SUV on the market to do so.

New for the 2013 model year, Ford Explorer Sport arrives, packing a 365 horsepower EcoBoost® engine, high-fashion interior design and class-leading fuel economy.

"Explorer Sport hits a sweet-spot combination of power, usable torque, 4WD capability, with class-leading fuel efficiency," said Bill Gubing, chief engineer for Explorer, Taurus and Police Interceptor vehicles. "The Explorer Sport EcoBoost engine matches Taurus SHO for output and the Terrain Management System has been specifically calibrated to optimize increased power – regardless of the road or conditions."

Explorer Sport mixes high-performance SUV power with fuel economy of up to 16 mpg in city driving and 22 mpg on the highway. This is 3 mpg better in the city and 2 mpg better on the highway than the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango R/T with 5.7-liter Hemi engines.

Explorer Sport scores 3 mpg higher in the city and 4 mpg higher on the highway than the supercharged Land Rover Range Rover Sport.

No compromises

"Explorer Sport is an uncompromised high-performance SUV," said Gubing. "From making changes to the chassis and suspension, uniquely calibrating the Terrain Management System for added power, we're delivering an SUV that delivers great dynamics and performance – while towing up to 5,000 pounds."

The Explorer Sport features a paddle-shifted six-speed SelectShift Automatic™ transmission with a unique 3.16 to 1 final drive ratio to provide the balance of responsive acceleration and economical low-rpm cruising for better highway fuel efficiency.

Ford engineers also added chassis tunnel reinforcements and a solid-mounted electric power-assisted steering (EPAS) rack with improved pedal feel and response for drivers, both on-road and off.
This model comes standard with larger brakes for improved pedal feel, stronger resistance to fade and better performance while towing.

Explorer Sport also has received special Terrain Management System settings for optimizing increased power and torque in on-road touring and under sandy, snowy, rutted mud and hill descent conditions. These changes enable a luxurious ride for driving enthusiasts, without the harshness or thirst for fuel of performance-intended competitors.

Development engineers validated snow settings in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and returned to Borrego Springs, Calif. to fine-tune sand settings.

Sport-specific calibration optimizes increased EcoBoost power and consistent torque to specific conditions such as deep sand or snow, at the setting of a console-mounted knob.

Design elements

The 2013 Sport builds on Explorer's muscular, sculpted form with subtle cues to differentiate it from other models in the lineup.

Available in four exterior colors – Ruby Red Metallic Clearcoat, White Platinum Metallic Tri-Coat, Tuxedo Black Metallic and Ingot Silver Metallic – Explorer Sport has unique 20-inch painted and machined wheels, features blacked-out headlamp and taillamp treatments, black roof rack rails, sideview mirror skull caps and a liftgate appliqué.

The Explorer Sport's special grille is a low-gloss Sterling Gray mesh, with contrasting ebony high-gloss bars.

The black front lower fascia features a functional opening for additional cooling. Explorer logotype in billet-like black adds a bold identity statement.

Inside, the high-end feel continues. Charcoal Black leather-trimmed seating is available with and without contrasting Sienna inserts.

The interior design contrast was inspired by fashion, mirroring two-tones that are currently seen in leather accessories and apparel from design houses Balenciaga and Prada. Stitching is emphasized to lend a handcrafted appearance while highlighting Explorer Sport's sculptured seats.

Explorer Sport also has unique steering wheel stitching, a technical look to instrument and door panel appliqués, unique Sport-logo floor mats and illuminated scuff plates.

Comfort, convenience, connectivity

As the top of the Explorer line, Sport offers a robust array of standard and optional customer-focused technologies that make driving more comfortable, convenient and connected. These include:

Dual-zone electronic automatic temperature control (DEATC)
10-way power driver's seat with power recline and lumbar
Six-way power passenger seat with recline and lumbar
First-row heated seats
Compass and exterior temperature display
Rearview camera system
SYNC® with MyFord Touch® driver connect technology
Sony® Premium Audio System with HD Radio™ and 12 speakers

Explorer Sport can be tailored to individual preferences with the following options:

BLIS® (blind spot information system) with cross-traffic alert
Cooled seats
Inflatable rear seat belts
110-volt outlet
PowerFold mirrors
Rain-sensing wipers
Intelligent access with Push-Button Start
Remote Start
Power tilt and telescoping steering column
Adjustable pedals with memory
Dual-panel moonroof
Power liftgate
Class III trailer-towing package

Explorer Sport is manufactured at Ford's Chicago production facility and goes on sale this fall.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 140 Comments
      TrueDat
      • 2 Years Ago
      i was not expecting 22 mpg, considering the SHO is only rated at what, 24? It's a little pricey, but hey.. it's a hell of a package.
        Autoholics Anonymous
        • 2 Years Ago
        @TrueDat
        Yeah I think it is a bit pricey too considering it is under the Ford badge but taking a closer look it has a number of high points and price to match of the Lincoln Aviator at it's base trim.(i.e. Leather, 365HP EB V6 vs 302HP V8, AWD, Three rows, etc) I think this could easily be improved upon a bit and dressed up to look more like a Luxo-Ute and call it a day to be an Aviator
      artandcolour2010
      • 2 Years Ago
      I would love to see Ford produce a 2500lb roadster with this engine.
      Spartan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Since there's no SHO wagon, I guess this is the next best thing.
      Christopher
      • 2 Years Ago
      The Explorer Sport is nice, however dropping that Eco-Boost enging in the Edge Sport would be even hotter.
      Azazel
      • 2 Years Ago
      This utterly destroys the new Nissan Pathfinder in all categories.
      XJ Yamaha
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ford needs to hurry up with releasing some ecoboost engines a little larger in displacement than 1.6 and 2.0 I4s. Bring out a 2.8 or 2.9 ecoboost v6 to drop in the larger vehicles, and with the upcoming updates and weight reductions they'd be phenomenal on power and fuel economy.
        TrueDat
        • 2 Years Ago
        @XJ Yamaha
        the 2.3L I4 is going to slot between the 2.0L and 3.5L.. its expected to make at least 300 hp. Some speculate a hotter version will be 330 hp in the Focus RS.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        tinted up
        • 2 Years Ago
        Thanks over9000 for making Bimmer fans look like ass hats yet again. BMW does not offer a vehicle that directly competes with an Explorer.
          frost54661
          • 2 Years Ago
          @tinted up
          BMW doesn't need to. They're a class above.
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
        WillieD
        • 2 Years Ago
        "I'd rather buy a ______ with that kind of money." What a stupid statement. No one cares.
        brian
        • 2 Years Ago
        A BMW X1 is roughly the same price and a fair-bit smaller - only two rows of seats... ...and an X5 - the one with 3 rows - starts out roughly $10,000 more. But hey - You could always lease the BMW rather than buy the Ford.
        Dean Hammond
        • 2 Years Ago
        used perhaps.....
      natron3030
      • 2 Years Ago
      16/22 epa equals 13/18 real world. No thanks. Don't want this land barge. But's it's handsome enough (except when one is blocking on the sun and sky when you are behind it on the highway).
        montoym
        • 2 Years Ago
        @natron3030
        I don't know what you drive, but I tend to get at least the EPA ratings for all the vehicles I drive. I don't drive like a grandma either. Maybe you should remember to release the E-Brake?,
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @montoym
          That's great that you milk your vehicles for better real world mpg but it's not a bold claim that EPA numbers are often not what the average driver gets. http://editorial.autos.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=435406 Sorry if this offends you (why?)
        Dean Hammond
        • 2 Years Ago
        @natron3030
        nice Prius natron..........
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          Nope no Prius here, but your 6k lb ford expedition that you use to transport your 200lb body around town is pretty slick.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          And where was Prius mentioned? Get your stuff straight.
          NightFlight
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          @ natron3030 He's making fun of you, and stereotyping. Guess that went over your heard. You were the one who thought the Explorer was a Expedition, and you are 1,500 pounds off of the correct weight.
          NightFlight
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          This is the EXPLORER, not the Expedition. Get your stuff straight.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          An expedition weights nearly 6k or just over 6k depending on what kind you get. I was making fun of him. Guess it was over your head (irony?). See a Prius an example of a very high milage car (and why he said Prius). An expedition was an example of an extremely low milage car. Get it yet?
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          snicker...thx Nightflight....hahahahaha....
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Dean Hammond
          And I own a 65 impala that doesn't get very good MPG at all...
        TrueDat
        • 2 Years Ago
        @natron3030
        if you drive like a complete dick-head it does...
          TrueDat
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TrueDat
          I'm glad you've surveyed "most" drivers and know their habits. Like I said.. go on ANY auto form for ANY car, and you will find that the majority of people are meeting or exceeding EPA estimates.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TrueDat
          or.... http://editorial.autos.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=435406 sorry that the EPA not being accurate makes you butthurt.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TrueDat
          That's nice but EPA ratings are still not accurate to most drivers. Google away if you desire to challenge yourself. I'm not saying anything profound here.
          TrueDat
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TrueDat
          wow.. one article? One article written by a biased source that has big corporate interests? Seems legit... In my 23 years of life, every single vehicle my family has ever owned (which is 14) has met or exceeded EPA estimates. Just last week, on a 250 mile trip, I AVERAGED 29 mpg's in my 09 Fusion, measured at the pump (rated at 29 HWY) . Of that 250 miles, about 30 - 40 was city driving, while the remained was hwy running 73 - 74 mph. My mom's EB Edge consistently averages 28 mpg's, and is only rated at 23. So don't give me some BS article written by journalists who have an agenda that is fed by big corporate interests.. All you have to do is read personal testimonials to know that's a big load of ****.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @TrueDat
          [blocked]
        Matt
        • 2 Years Ago
        @natron3030
        Maybe for people like you that drive like idiots. People that drive like a 16 year old in their first car get worse gas mileage than EPA ratings. They are always lower than the mileage I've had in any vehicle I've ever driven.
          Matt
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Matt
          Even with many things on my car that hurt mileage I still manage to get good mileage. The 3.73s I have compared to the stock 3.55s hurt mileage. The supercharger turning 40% more than stock with each engine revolution doesn't help either. The 13.2 stoich my car is tuned to because of the inefficiency of E10 (the only gas here) hurts mileage compared to 14.7 with real gas. EPA ratings are with 100% gasoline, not ethanol blends. I've driven trucks and easily surpassed EPA ratings. It's not just performance vehicles.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Matt
          You have a lot of faith in the EPA ratings. That you break early and softly and accelerate moderately and smoothly and cruise on the highway at around 63 mph is great but that doesn't change that study after study shows that the EPA ratings are not what people can expect to see.
          Matt
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Matt
          I drive a 550hp car and get better than the EPA ratings. It's called driving with common sense. If you don't BRAKE early, you aren't driving safely. You probably floor it to beat other people to a red light too.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Matt
          Superchargers can actually improve MPG numbers if you are really really stingy with your acceleration. And for turbo's this is even more true as there is no parasitic belt drain. This is the reason why major automotive companies are putting turbo 4's in everything lately.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Matt
          I guess... I was referring to the more common centrifugal type superchargers. Though they are pretty hard to actually get any efficiency gains out of because they typically don't help much until you get to some higher RPMs... it can be done if you really try though.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        natron3030
        • 2 Years Ago
        What? You don't love it when an aggressive driver in an SUV cuts you off? I especially enjoy how you can't see anything else beyond the bloated land barge leaving you with very little time to react to a traffic slow down... so you back off from 2 cars away to around 6 cars and then another AggroV fills that space.
          natron3030
          • 2 Years Ago
          @natron3030
          Please feel free to make fun of minivan drivers... Or prius drivers or my personal favorite, Saab drivers. There are all kinds of annoying drivers in this world.
      Mike Hunt
      • 2 Years Ago
      I paid $35k in 1998 for a decked out Eddie Bauer with 4 wheel drive, etc. Asking $40k base almost 15 years later is a steal these days considering the technology and equipment upgrades from back then.
        rmkensington
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Mike Hunt
        And that 1998 eddie probably got around 17 on the highway if you drove it easy.
      Ducman69
      • 2 Years Ago
      Do people just not drive much, or are they not bothered by $75 fillups every 350 miles?
        Paul P.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ducman69
        It's all relative. If you drive, say, 10,000 miles a year, $75 at every 350 miles is $2143 for the year. Depending on who you are, that might not be a huge expense. I know some people that will spend that much just going out for dinner and cocktails in NYC. Actually, a pack-a-day smoker in NYC will spend around double that each year.
      DougShep
      • 2 Years Ago
      nice engine Ford, now put it in a vehicle worth getting. not FWD soccer mommy cars
        Dean Hammond
        • 2 Years Ago
        @DougShep
        Doug....in anything but the F-150 its AWD.
        Randy
        • 2 Years Ago
        @DougShep
        Three stock Mustangs and the Taurus SHO already have this HP or more. The Focus ST is also class leading. Only model that need it is the 13 Fusion.
          TrueDat
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Randy
          "Only model that need it is the 13 Fusion." Which I speculate will be the first recipient of the upcoming 2.3L Ecoboost..
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