We have spy shots of one more Explorer. However, in contrast to some previous testing models which were featuring some new characteristics, this one is not looking like the next-gen Explorer. The main reason for that is because it is not. Instead, the car manufacturer is testing the upcoming 2019 Ford Explorer ST, which will be based on today’s version of the SUV.
Are you confused? Well, don’t be. The 2019 Explorer ST is actually the high-performance SUV, which is going to use the current platform and features, but it will host a totally new powertrain. Blue Oval is making it in order to keep the mid-size SUV fresh and interesting until the arrival of the next-gen Explorer. Plus, Ford Edge ST proved to be a good idea, so why would not try with a larger option as well?
There is nothing official yet. However, judging by the latest reports, the 2019 Ford Edge ST will use one really interesting and capable option under the hood. The SUV will reportedly borrow a 3.0-liter twin-turbo from the Lincoln MKZ. The unit is going to be updated and capable of delivering up to 400 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque. Just like the Edge ST, the high-performance Explorer will also use an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel-drive. The main catch will be the ST-based suspension system, which will make handling easier and better, while responses should be sharper.
The camouflaged prototype doesn’t really reveal anything except a pair of new taillights and larger wheels. Still, we largely expect ST-based bumpers and redesigned headlights, as well as some additional equipment. We’ve also noticed that the crossover lies closer to the ground. What we don’t see and will happen is a completely new exhaust system with a pair of pipes around back. Of course, the large wheels will be paired with performance tires and big brakes.
The 2019 Explorer ST will likely arrive this spring or summer. There’s nothing on price at the moment, but stay tuned and we will inform you as the development continues.