2020 Ford Explorer SUV Consumer Reviews

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Transmission Problems at 1700 miles

Deidre Velazquez, 09/28/2020
XLT 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A)
37 of 37 people found this review helpful

I regret buying this car, and I am stuck with it! Ford will not "buy back" this vehicle, and I don't have a case because according to Illinois Lemon Laws, the vehicle must be repaired more than once in order to be considered a lemon. Well, I think this needs revision, because if the transmission fails within the first 2000 miles....the car is faulty...PERIOD. So, Ford has replaced my transmission, and I am still driving this car. The transmission still does not feel right, it does a little "jerk" when shifting. Each car payment I make, makes my blood boil. Now, I am going to say that Ford has fixed the transmission, they did supply me with an enterprise rental car, that they paid for during the fiasco, but I am still very unhappy with the way Ford handled my case. We were on Vacation in Montana, re-gassing up at a gas station in Bozeman when the transmission failed to go into gear. There were no warnings at all that this was going to happen! It just...quit at 8PM. I called roadside assistance and had it towed to the nearest Ford dealer, and me and my family of 6 walked to a motel. We spent 5 days in Bozeman in that motel! The dealer in that town was less than helpful and refused to give us a loaner. We got corporate involved, which is how we actually got a rental car to get us home in, but the service at the Bozeman Ford dealer was horrendous, absolutely horrible the way we were treated there, which was completely ignored, with a shoulder-shrug attitude. A month later my Ford is back in my possession, and I have been compensated for some of my motel, and rental car expenses, but not to the extent that I feel I am out of...which is a completely ruined vacation to Montana. I will never trust this car, and every car payment I make makes me cringe.

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1,100 Miles on Platinum

Geronimo Jenkins, 08/12/2019
Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 10A)
194 of 202 people found this review helpful

Extremely pleased with this car. Features: LANE CENTERING with adaptive cruise. This car basically takes me for a ride while on the highway. It frees you up to really scan your surroundings while driving and anticipate what other drivers are doing. Definitely spec it with the Copilot 360 Assist PLUS with whichever trim you choose if drive on interstates. This feature is not available on the Durango which stopped me from considering it. Explorer with these features is very relaxing to drive. Park assist is good for parallel, useless for perpendicular parking. 360 camera implementation is subpar with upgraded 10.1 screen. If you don’t value massage seats or the upgraded stereo (I do) then skip the technology package with the big screen as the implementation is much better in the smaller screen. Performance: After test driving all trim levels of the explorer to see if I could get away with a 4 cyl model, I ultimately decided that the low RPM torque available in the twin turbo model was a necessity for my style of driving. It’s ability to waft from a low rpm to merge onto a highway is excellent. Steering feel is the best of any crossover/suv I’ve ever driven. Great waiting and appropriate steering ratio. I find body roll to be minimal. 365 horsepower is a lot, and the 10 speed allows you to use all of it instantaneously if you put your foot down. I’d like the ST tune, and I would have purchased it if it had an optional adaptive suspension. Luxury: with the hollow barrier between the engine and the acoustic glass all around in Platinum model it feels like a Mercedes acoustically. Stereo sounds excellent, bass oriented, but very tight with no rattling. Leather is everywhere in platinum, passengers are shocked that it’s a Ford when they get inside. The seats are supremely comfortable. Practicality: captains chairs are a hit. Everyone notices how plush the armrests are and plentiful legroom. Auto tailgate is nice, and the hidden cubby underneath to keep things hidden is great. Dislikes: optimization of large screen and Apple CarPlay. Seats have developed a crease already in the leather, probably won’t look great after a few years. Overall: the Platinum is a great choice if you want a more modestly styled luxurious cruiser with excess power without the “racy” features of the ST like piped in exhaust sounds. I found it more agile and better looking than the Durango. 59k for an American Crossover is steep, but to get an equivalently equipped German SUV is over 70k, and much more if you want a usable third row from some brands. For a cheaper alternative, I recommend getting the Kia Telluride if you don’t value driving dynamics. The new Explorer is a great driving three row crossover that is supremely comfortable.

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Dangerous driver assist and plenty of odd noises

James K, 05/07/2020
Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 10A)
23 of 23 people found this review helpful

This is my 3rd Explorer and I am, or was a fan but not with this fully loaded Platinum AWD. With only 600 miles on it,one of its many failures is the adaptive cruise with lane centering - it is terrible technology compared to other brands and is dangerous and unreliable. The adaptive cruise is slow to react and then over-corrects, and doesnt work around curves. The lane centering is horrible even with good road markings, rocking the vehicle from side to side. The steering torque makes the vehicle handle poorly and has nearly pulled me into curbs and ditches. ( And yes I have cleaned and checked the cameras). The all wheel drive front suspension has an array of clunks and rattles, and the engine is much noisier than the previous 2016 and 2012 models I have owned. I do not recommend this vehicle

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THIS SUV IS AWESOME....EXCEPT

Rob Ortiz, 10/26/2019
Platinum 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 10A)
118 of 125 people found this review helpful

I only have 200 miles on my fully loaded Platinum model, but I already have a few concerns. First let me say that the safety features on this Explorer are incredible and work flawlessly. I was backing out of my garage and suddenly it braked to an immediate halt. My neighbors cat was walking by, it works. Ok, the few complaints. I'm not crazy about the 10.1" screen, would of preferred the 8" screen. But at the time, inventory was limited due to factory issues, so I really couldn't hand pick my options or color. So being impatient, I settled for magnetic with the technology package. I don't need massaging seats either. Anyway, the interior is very nice, but the dash material is rather rough, so wiping it down even with a microfiber cloth seems to scratch it. That's probably why they recommend vacuuming it. What? I may have to invest in a dash cover. Really? Another issue is noises. I realize when you open the door, the noises you hear are waking up all the systems including the brakes. What I don't like, is after I park in the garage, 10 minutes latter things are still activated, making noises. No, it's not the exhaust cooling down. Also, this vehicle has clunking type noise in the suspension at low speeds. When ever I buy a new vehicle, I make sure I drive it around for a few weeks with the entertainment system off. I want to find out what is normal, and what is not. As a lifetime Auto/Truck mechanic, I can tell you, this vehicle makes noises that are not normal. Time will tell. I'm still in the break-in stage. I Love the way this vehicle handles. Has a lot of power, and I can't wait to tow my boat behind it.

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Nice Looking, Functional; Horrible Transmission

Otto, 04/22/2020
XLT 4dr SUV (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 10A)
88 of 94 people found this review helpful

I actually like this car. Its nice looking, spacious, simple and easy to use controls, and very functional. Unfortunately, the transmission is a loser. I work in real estate, so looking at properties, lots of stop and go driving. Shifting from 1st into 2nd gear, and 2nd into 3rd gear, is quite jerky. Also, when the car is downshifting from 3rd into 2nd, and 2nd into 1st gear, the car lunges forward in a jerky manner. Thought I would get used to this, but its quite annoying and a bit unsettling when merging into traffic. I assumed that since it is such an important car for Ford, that they would do extensive testing to make sure it runs really well before selling it. Unfortunately, I was wrong. Do some homework and you will see many reviews have commented on the jerky transmission (Motortrend, Consumer Reports, etc). Half the reviews on Edmunds also mention the transmission. What happened is that Ford redid their manufacturing plant on a fasttrack, and ended up having lots of 2020 Explorers could not be sold due to quality problems, and had to send the cars to third party companies to fix them. Do yourself a favor and wait a year or two if your heart is set on an Explorer. If I didnt have the transmission problem, I do like the car and would probably have given it a 5 star rating. I'll be fighting with Ford now. As an engineer, I always knew you shouldnt buy the first year of a new model. Better to wait a year or two until the issues are worked out. Did I follow my own advice? Ofcourse not. Maybe I can help you avoid this problem. Best of luck.

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