The ride, road noise, and stability seem to be much improved. The added horse power is apparent. The seats are much less comfortable than my previous Explorers, even though they are listed as luxury seats. I asked my dealer about this, and they just blew it off. The 'floor shifter' is really in the way after using previous column shifters. It also leaves no room for pockets in the cockpit in which to store things in a convenient manner. I had an extremely difficult time getting the vehicle set up to my preference. After waiting 6 weeks, I finally accepted a vehicle that was very much a compromise -- next time I will abandon my allegiance to Ford.
The best features are: more horse power, less road noise, and better stability.
I suggest putting the shifter back on the column allowing room for storage within reach of the driver, forgetting a 3rd row seat in a vehicle this size, and stop dinging the buyer for the cargo crossbars on the roof -- even the salesmen laugh about that.
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