Ford is adding a hybrid Explorer to the mix, the first time the popular SUV is offered with any type of electrification.
The automaker introduced the Explorer hybrid on Monday, as well as a new Explorer ST, at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The revelation followed last week’s debut of 2020 Explorer, a rebuilt model that has a new platform and is loaded with technology. The final assembly for the entire Explorer line will be at the Ford Chicago assembly plant. The hybrid Explorer will be manufactured at the engine plant in Lima, Ohio.
The new Explorer hybrid, which will hit dealerships in summer, has a 3.3-liter hybrid powertrain that Ford projects will produce 318 horsepower combined. The company said it is targeting a range of more than 500 miles between refueling service stations in the rear-wheel drive model.
The hybrid SUV has a new hybrid 10-speed modular transmission and a liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery integrated into the Explorer’s chassis under the second-row seats. This new configuration preserves cargo and passenger space, unlike previous hybrid vehicles, Ford said.
“The loss of cargo space in hybrids is a thing of the past for Ford customers,” said Bill Gubing, Explorer’s chief engineer.
Ford’s presentation follows a strategic roadmap developed last year that will emphasize SUVs and hybrids. Or hybrid SUVs.
Ford estimated in March that SUVs could represent half of the US retail market. UU By 2020. The company said at the time that it planned to bring high-performance SUVs to the market, including five with hybrid powertrains and an electric model with full battery.