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  5. 2022 Ford Explorer: Everything You Need to Know

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

More than just a vehicle, the 2022 Ford Explorer is a thoughtful means of adventure and exploration for the entire family. With a highly configurable interior, plenty of space for people and gear, and lots of road-going capability, this SUV is ready for any type of journey, whether it's to work or across the country. 

For 2022, Ford is expanding the Explorer lineup with a new performance-inspired ST-Line trim, as well as upgrading its other models with more standard technologies, additional seating configurations, and a rear-wheel-drive-only option for the 400-horsepower Explorer ST. 

Let's go over the new vehicle highlights for the 2022 model year, and remind ourselves why the Ford Explorer is one of America's favorite SUVs.

 

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2022 Ford Explorer Models 

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

The Explorer charges into the new year with a total of eight models, including the newly introduced Explorer ST-Line. 

2022 Ford Explorer Model Line-up:

  • Explorer
  • Explorer XLT
  • Explorer ST-Line
  • Explorer Timberline
  • Explorer Limited
  • Explorer ST
  • Explorer King Ranch
  • Explorer Platinum

The new-for-2022 Explorer ST-Line gives customers the choice of having performance-inspired styling without the extra power (and cost) of the Explorer ST. This appearance upgrade builds on the Explorer XLT model to deliver functional and sporty design elements along with technology enhancements to make it more than just a visual hop-up kit.

 

The Explorer ST-Line features 20-inch machined aluminum wheels, exclusive fascia-integrated quad exhaust tips, gloss-black "EXPLORER" graphics across the hood, as well as additional ST-Line badging.

Other new offerings for the 2022 model year include a rear-wheel-drive-only configuration for the Explorer ST, and an available XLT Sport Appearance Package for base Explorer models.

 

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2022 Ford Explorer Exterior

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

There's a lot to like about the 2022 Explorer's sculpted and dynamic exterior design language. It's sleek and athletic, all while offering a healthy dose of modern sophistication. 

The Explorer really expresses itself through its unique front-fascia, and offers a persona that matches a variety of lifestyles. For example, the performance-focused ST model features a muscular front grille, while the Timberline model's grille looks like it's ready for an off-road adventure. Then, you have the eye-catching silver grille of the luxurious Platinum model. 

Depending on which model you choose, you'll have access to up to nine exterior paint colorways: 

  • Agate Black
  • Stone Blue
  • Iconic Silver
  • Atlas Blue
  • Rapid Red
  • Star White
  • Carbonized Gray
  • Forged Green
  • Burgundy Velvet (new for 2022)

For off-road enthusiasts, the Timberline model adds steel skid plates on the front, rear, and underbody of the vehicle to provide additional protection from rocks and debris. You'll also get unique 18-inch aluminum wheels with a laser-etched Timberline logo. 

On the luxury spectrum, the King Ranch and Platinum models come standard with a hands-free, foot-activated rear liftgate as well as roof-rack side rails.

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2022 Ford Explorer Interior

Interior view of the Ford Explorer

Because the Explorer was designed to be a lifestyle companion, its interior is versatile and capable of handling just about anything your family can throw at it. 

It can be configured for seating up to seven people, or transformed to haul tons of stuff with the available Cargo Management System. And access to the third row is effortless thanks to the E-Z Entry second row - the seats move out of the way with the pull of a lever. 

The Explorer provides up to 87.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the first-row seats, meaning  you can pack for the entire weekend without worry. Plus, the available PowerFold 50/50 fold-flat rear seat backs makes the conversion from people mover to cargo hauler as simple as pressing a button. 

Interior view of the Ford Explorer

When it comes to infotainment, the star of the show is an available 10.1-inch portrait touchscreen featuring Ford SYNC 3 technology and FordPass Connect. It's like having a tablet computer on your dashboard, and operates in much the same way with swipe, pinch, and touch gestures. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility are standard, and Amazon Alexa is built-in so you have plenty of options for advanced connectivity, apps, and voice commands. Select models also offer in-vehicle Wi-Fi hotspot and a wireless smartphone charging pad. 

New for 2022, the Explorer ST-line adds Ebony Black ActiveX seats with Miko micro-perforated inserts, heated first-row seats, a sport-style steering wheel, red accent stitching throughout the cabin, and a 12-speaker B&O sound system. 

Of course, the Platinum model offers the most posh interior with exclusive tri-diamond perforated leather seats, an available twin-panel moonroof, and a 14-speaker B&O sound system.

 

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2022 Ford Explorer Performance

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

The Explorer's on- and off-road capability is delivered by three powertrain choices:

  • 3.0-liter EcoBoost V6 with auto start-stop technology
  • 3.3-liter hybrid engine
  • 2.3-liter EcoBoost I-4 with auto start-stop technology

Each engine system is backed by a multitude of advanced engineering so you'll get the best power and efficiency to tackle your daily driving needs. The 3.0-liter EcoBoost engine pumps out 365 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque for the Platinum and King Ranch models, but on the ST, these numbers go up to 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque for maximum fun. 

The 3.3-liter hybrid engine is not only fully off-road capable, but it's the only hybrid in its class that can also tow up to 5,000 pounds. 

But power means nothing if you can't effectively transfer it to the road, which is why Explorer offers Intelligent 4WD with Terrain Management System. Featuring seven driver selectable modes, Intelligent 4WD optimizes torque and grip for a variety of scenarios, like trails, deep snow, wet conditions, and towing. Hill descent control is also included, which automatically applies braking to help control downhill speeds. 

If you're looking for a more sporty driving experience, the Explorer can be configured for rear-wheel drive only, offering a different driving dynamic while maintaining similar levels of off-road confidence. 

Fuel economy for the 2022 Ford Explorer is an EPA-estimated 20 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.

 

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2022 Ford Explorer Safety

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

Every 2022 Explorer comes standard with Ford Co-Pilot360, a suite of advanced safety and driver-assist technologies. Some of the features include:

  • Blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert
  • Pre-collision assist with automatic emergency braking
  • Auto high-beam headlamps
  • Lane-keeping system
  • Rear view camera

 You can also add even more assistance by way of intelligent adaptive cruise control, reverse brake assist, and active Park Assist 2.0 for extra peace of mind. These systems help enhance your awareness of the surroundings, and will intervene with input assistance when appropriate.
 

Towing and trailer sway control is also standard on Explorer, which selectively applies the brakes and modifies engine power to keep you steady on the road.

 

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2022 Ford Explorer Overall

Exterior view of the Ford Explorer

With one of the broadest and most capable lineups ever, it's no wonder the Ford Explorer is America's all-time best-selling SUV. It offers sportiness, luxury, and all-around comfort in a flexible package because every family has different needs.

Starting MSRP for the 2022 Ford Explorer is $33,245.

See for yourself how the Explorer fits into your family's lifestyle by visiting your local AutoNation Ford dealership.

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Andrew Chen | Dec 29, 2021 

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