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Worth mentioning that the current German wagons are not far off in weight. This thing is 4850lbs.... A6 Allroad is like 4500, E450 is 4300.... and you def get more utility for the added weight
 

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When they first announced it I thought it was ridiculous, but having seen a few and reading some reviews and such I am changing my tune. I would compare it to the X3 M40i as I'd compare the Mustang GT to the M240i. No reason one needs to pay all the markup if they want the capability/performance but aren't interested in fancy touch controls or whatever.
Except Explorer is the same size as X7... so you are jumping across a big size chasm to compare it to X3.

Mustang is roughly the same size as 4 series coupe so at least with M240i, you are only going down one size.

But I get it... price wise, they are very similar. ST and X3M40i are in the same price range.
 

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Friend of mine had a new Expedition and just traded recently on an Explorer ST. He seems to be enjoying it so far.

They are pretty sharp looking.
 

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Except Explorer is the same size as X7... so you are jumping across a big size chasm to compare it to X3.

Mustang is roughly the same size as 4 series coupe so at least with M240i, you are only going down one size.

But I get it... price wise, they are very similar. ST and X3M40i are in the same price range.
Yup, I was fixing price as opposed to size. Although I think your right that my point would've been better made if I'd fixed size and compared to 440i and x7 m50i. :beer:
 

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Would be sick if they made one with the Coyote. Explorer 5.0!
 

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It’s silly quick for what it is. Drives nicer than the previous one.
I can’t stand the iPad glued to the dash infotainment. It’s mounted completely vertically, and when using the reversing/360 cameras they only use a tiny portion of that giant ass display.

If I wanted a wagon but had to tow a boat, I’d buy one.
I'm not normally one to complain about the recent dash mounted tablet trend, but this one is atrocious. It's like they looked at a Tesla, decided to copy it, then did everything wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #67
I forget to check this thread for a couple of days and I see it's gone pretty much as I should have expected. :rolleyes::laugh:


To be clear, I'm no particular fan of SUVs/CUVs and have never really envisioned myself being in the market for one. But they serve a purpose and can/do offer capability not found in other vehicles.

I didn't especially feel the need to rationalize my interest in the ST, but whatever, for discussions sake...

I need to be able to tow 4000lb of fueled boat and trailer safely, plus my family and vacation gear loaded up (ST has a GVWR of around 6100 lbs, so with a decent safety cushion in mind, it's pretty much perfect). Given we're a family of three, I have no particular need for a three row vehicle, but options are somewhat limited when it comes to relatively affordable, new performance SUVs that hit the load numbers I need. I'm not all about spending $70k and I'd prefer new with a warranty for my daily.

Which leads to my wants. An ST would replace the SS as my daily. I have neither the interest, nor the space to keep four vehicles and a boat, so the SS would go away. I have the Trans Am for summer fun, but I don't want to give up all enjoyment the rest of the time. Hence my interest in something with a little power. 95% of the time my SS shenanigans are highway on-ramp pulls during my commute. I'm willing to sacrifice corner carving capability for utility. Admittedly, I would miss the childishly obnoxious LS theater that surrounds the SS.

I also live in Western NY. We get a metric ass-load of crappy snow (not that friendly picturesque powder they get out West). The SS is super fun on winter tires and all, but I'd be lying if I said that by the end of February, white knuckling it home in a storm after a late night at the office hasn't gotten a little old. So a shift to winter tires, AWD, and some ground clearance has some appeal at this point.

Lastly, I dig how the ST looks. Head on I think it's maybe a little cross-eyed, but overall it looks leaner and with better proportions than its predecessor. I peg it somewhere just below the JGC SRT and well above the Durango SRT in appearance, but of course that's entirely subjective.



I dig the outside and love the color combo, but the dashboard (mainly the canter section) could use a little more attention.
I never noticed that before. The buttons above the center console look like they ate a bad burrito.
I can’t stand the iPad glued to the dash infotainment. It’s mounted completely vertically, and when using the reversing/360 cameras they only use a tiny portion of that giant ass display.

After looking at one in person a bit, I still can't say I'm thrilled by the screen implementation either. The more I look at it though, the iPad aesthetic doesn't bother me so much. It's how they utilize the available space that's just wonky. I could only hope for a software update that maybe addresses it a bit. At the end of the day, I don't think it's a show stopper though. I'm just glad that there are traditional hard buttons/knobs for the critical controls, unlike the Mach-E and Expedition update. And at the end of the day, it's all still a vast upgrade over the ancient MyLink setup in the SS.
 

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I forget to check this thread for a couple of days and I see it's gone pretty much as I should have expected. :rolleyes::laugh:


To be clear, I'm no particular fan of SUVs/CUVs and have never really envisioned myself being in the market for one. But they serve a purpose and can/do offer capability not found in other vehicles.

I didn't especially feel the need to rationalize my interest in the ST, but whatever, for discussions sake...

I need to be able to tow 4000lb of fueled boat and trailer safely, plus my family and vacation gear loaded up (ST has a GVWR of around 6100 lbs, so with a decent safety cushion in mind, it's pretty much perfect). Given we're a family of three, I have no particular need for a three row vehicle, but options are somewhat limited when it comes to relatively affordable, new performance SUVs that hit the load numbers I need. I'm not all about spending $70k and I'd prefer new with a warranty for my daily.

Which leads to my wants. An ST would replace the SS as my daily. I have neither the interest, nor the space to keep four vehicles and a boat, so the SS would go away. I have the Trans Am for summer fun, but I don't want to give up all enjoyment the rest of the time. Hence my interest in something with a little power. 95% of the time my SS shenanigans are highway on-ramp pulls during my commute. I'm willing to sacrifice corner carving capability for utility. Admittedly, I would miss the childishly obnoxious LS theater that surrounds the SS.

I also live in Western NY. We get a metric ass-load of crappy snow (not that friendly picturesque powder they get out West). The SS is super fun on winter tires and all, but I'd be lying if I said that by the end of February, white knuckling it home in a storm after a late night at the office hasn't gotten a little old. So a shift to winter tires, AWD, and some ground clearance has some appeal at this point.

Lastly, I dig how the ST looks. Head on I think it's maybe a little cross-eyed, but overall it looks leaner and with better proportions than its predecessor. I peg it somewhere just below the JGC SRT and well above the Durango SRT in appearance, but of course that's entirely subjective.

After looking at one in person a bit, I still can't say I'm thrilled by the screen implementation either. The more I look at it though, the iPad aesthetic doesn't bother me so much. It's how they utilize the available space that's just wonky. I could only hope for a software update that maybe addresses it a bit. At the end of the day, I don't think it's a show stopper though. I'm just glad that there are traditional hard buttons/knobs for the critical controls, unlike the Mach-E and Expedition update. And at the end of the day, it's all still a vast upgrade over the ancient MyLink setup in the SS.
This all sounds perfectly reasonable to me.
 

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If you want something you can offroad, RWD kind of sucks... so.... imho this is a crappy offroad vehicle that doesn't handle as well as a wagon/car would.
For one, it's not an offroad vehicle.

For two, you're right. RWD offroad vehicles are absolutely the worst. Explains why Jeep has had no success with Wrangler.
 

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I need to be able to tow 4000lb of fueled boat and trailer safely, plus my family and vacation gear loaded up (ST has a GVWR of around 6100 lbs, so with a decent safety cushion in mind, it's pretty much perfect). Given we're a family of three, I have no particular need for a three row vehicle, but options are somewhat limited when it comes to relatively affordable, new performance SUVs that hit the load numbers I need. I'm not all about spending $70k and I'd prefer new with a warranty for my daily.

Which leads to my wants. An ST would replace the SS as my daily. I have neither the interest, nor the space to keep four vehicles and a boat, so the SS would go away. I have the Trans Am for summer fun, but I don't want to give up all enjoyment the rest of the time. Hence my interest in something with a little power. 95% of the time my SS shenanigans are highway on-ramp pulls during my commute. I'm willing to sacrifice corner carving capability for utility. Admittedly, I would miss the childishly obnoxious LS theater that surrounds the SS.

I also live in Western NY. We get a metric ass-load of crappy snow (not that friendly picturesque powder they get out West). The SS is super fun on winter tires and all, but I'd be lying if I said that by the end of February, white knuckling it home in a storm after a late night at the office hasn't gotten a little old. So a shift to winter tires, AWD, and some ground clearance has some appeal at this point.
If you can bend to a CPO, check out a Cayenne. They are overpriced new but depreciate like mad into surprisingly good values. Mine has a GVWR ~6200, can tow 7700, plenty of room, with snows is an absolute beast in the snow, and if you're just driving around does a pretty decent sport sedan impression--just as dynamic, but with extra roll. The 958.1 S and all the Turbos have V8s if you want to keep that going.

With dieselgate I got my 958 as a "why not" for a tow vehicle, but after a couple years ownership it's not only my daily, but I love it and don't really want to replace it with anything else. Pulls my 6x12' box trailer and two place snowmobile trailer no problem; I park them both in a field and was even able to drive through >20" of accumulation once to get one out, no sweat. :eek:
 

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I forget to check this thread for a couple of days and I see it's gone pretty much as I should have expected. :rolleyes::laugh:


To be clear, I'm no particular fan of SUVs/CUVs and have never really envisioned myself being in the market for one. But they serve a purpose and can/do offer capability not found in other vehicles.

I didn't especially feel the need to rationalize my interest in the ST, but whatever, for discussions sake...

I need to be able to tow 4000lb of fueled boat and trailer safely, plus my family and vacation gear loaded up (ST has a GVWR of around 6100 lbs, so with a decent safety cushion in mind, it's pretty much perfect). Given we're a family of three, I have no particular need for a three row vehicle, but options are somewhat limited when it comes to relatively affordable, new performance SUVs that hit the load numbers I need. I'm not all about spending $70k and I'd prefer new with a warranty for my daily.

Which leads to my wants. An ST would replace the SS as my daily. I have neither the interest, nor the space to keep four vehicles and a boat, so the SS would go away. I have the Trans Am for summer fun, but I don't want to give up all enjoyment the rest of the time. Hence my interest in something with a little power. 95% of the time my SS shenanigans are highway on-ramp pulls during my commute. I'm willing to sacrifice corner carving capability for utility. Admittedly, I would miss the childishly obnoxious LS theater that surrounds the SS.

I also live in Western NY. We get a metric ass-load of crappy snow (not that friendly picturesque powder they get out West). The SS is super fun on winter tires and all, but I'd be lying if I said that by the end of February, white knuckling it home in a storm after a late night at the office hasn't gotten a little old. So a shift to winter tires, AWD, and some ground clearance has some appeal at this point.

Lastly, I dig how the ST looks. Head on I think it's maybe a little cross-eyed, but overall it looks leaner and with better proportions than its predecessor. I peg it somewhere just below the JGC SRT and well above the Durango SRT in appearance, but of course that's entirely subjective.


After looking at one in person a bit, I still can't say I'm thrilled by the screen implementation either. The more I look at it though, the iPad aesthetic doesn't bother me so much. It's how they utilize the available space that's just wonky. I could only hope for a software update that maybe addresses it a bit. At the end of the day, I don't think it's a show stopper though. I'm just glad that there are traditional hard buttons/knobs for the critical controls, unlike the Mach-E and Expedition update. And at the end of the day, it's all still a vast upgrade over the ancient MyLink setup in the SS.
The standard infotainment setup on the ST looks not bad, compared to if you get the "upgrade" iPad looking thing. I've only experienced the 12" screen, and I can't stand it. Thats $1k off the bill, too, by getting the standard setup!
My dad's had his ST since last year, I asked him if he's got used to the stupid screen yet and he says he has not. Hates it.

Their boat is about 4000lbs and it pulls it without issue, as did the previous two explorers he's had. I think this one is the nicest one yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #72
If you can bend to a CPO, check out a Cayenne. They are overpriced new but depreciate like mad into surprisingly good values. Mine has a GVWR ~6200, can tow 7700, plenty of room, with snows is an absolute beast in the snow, and if you're just driving around does a pretty decent sport sedan impression--just as dynamic, but with extra roll. The 958.1 S and all the Turbos have V8s if you want to keep that going.

With dieselgate I got my 958 as a "why not" for a tow vehicle, but after a couple years ownership it's not only my daily, but I love it and don't really want to replace it with anything else. Pulls my 6x12' box trailer and two place snowmobile trailer no problem; I park them both in a field and was even able to drive through >20" of accumulation once to get one out, no sweat. :eek:


A Cayenne would certainly be fun. My father owned a 955 Turbo years ago, and I recall it being quite entertaining. It's definitely worth considering. :thumbup:

I didn't mention it in my previous post, but I do also have a wish to stay slightly under-the-radar. It's mostly personal preference, but there would be some raised eye brows in my circle if a Porsche badge showed up. Not bad by any stretch, but perhaps a bit more conspicuous than I'm comfortable with? Not saying it's entirely logical, but it's a factor.
 

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Discussion Starter #73
The standard infotainment setup on the ST looks not bad, compared to if you get the "upgrade" iPad looking thing. I've only experienced the 12" screen, and I can't stand it. Thats $1k off the bill, too, by getting the standard setup!
My dad's had his ST since last year, I asked him if he's got used to the stupid screen yet and he says he has not. Hates it.

Their boat is about 4000lbs and it pulls it without issue, as did the previous two explorers he's had. I think this one is the nicest one yet.


I agree that the smaller screen doesn't look bad at all. And I believe there's really no compromise with regard to Sync functionality.

The only other things I'd be skipping in the package would be the nicer massaging front seats and the upgraded B&O audio system. I think the seats are externally the same, so I don't think I'd be missing much there. I don't know enough about the audio differences though.


From my research, the current Explorers do seem to be very solid tow vehicles. I've seen a bunch of people reporting on pulling similar setups to ours with nothing but positive feedback. :thumbup:
 

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One nit to pick- I hate how all performance cars are only available with black interiors. I'm sure this thing has enough glass to make the interior not feel like a cave, at least up front.... but 1 light interior color option would be nice. Including the dash too.
 

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I didn't mention it in my previous post, but I do also have a wish to stay slightly under-the-radar. It's mostly personal preference, but there would be some raised eye brows in my circle if a Porsche badge showed up. Not bad by any stretch, but perhaps a bit more conspicuous than I'm comfortable with? Not saying it's entirely logical, but it's a factor.
Nah I totally get it. That's actually a big reason I got rid of my E92. Ironically the Porsches have gotten significantly less negative attention than that car, but not zero.

I'd recommend the E2 Touareg in that case but I don't think it will be enough power for you without the Porsche motors.
 

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Discussion Starter #76
One nit to pick- I hate how all performance cars are only available with black interiors. I'm sure this thing has enough glass to make the interior not feel like a cave, at least up front.... but 1 light interior color option would be nice. Including the dash too.

I don't mind the black interior on the ST, and I think the gigantic dual pane moon roof opens things up a bit, but yeah some options would be nice. Probably not as light as you're thinking, but a saddle brown combination would probably look pretty nice.



Nah I totally get it. That's actually a big reason I got rid of my E92. Ironically the Porsches have gotten significantly less negative attention than that car, but not zero.

I'd recommend the E2 Touareg in that case but I don't think it will be enough power for you without the Porsche motors.

The Touareg is definitely nice too - a few friends have had them and I've always been impressed. As you said, available power options is why they haven't been on my list. What can I say, I wanna go fast. :laugh:
 

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It's interesting that despite the run-up in auto prices during this pandemic, I see many ST's in my area asking well below sticker. Not sure if this is due to reluctance to spend that much on an Explorer or if supply is catching up with demand.
 

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A Cayenne would certainly be fun. My father owned a 955 Turbo years ago, and I recall it being quite entertaining. It's definitely worth considering. :thumbup:

I didn't mention it in my previous post, but I do also have a wish to stay slightly under-the-radar. It's mostly personal preference, but there would be some raised eye brows in my circle if a Porsche badge showed up. Not bad by any stretch, but perhaps a bit more conspicuous than I'm comfortable with? Not saying it's entirely logical, but it's a factor.
It's funny you say that. When I was younger, I never cared about driving a flashier car or something that seemed outrageous for my age. Now that I'm older and have subordinates at work, etc - flying under the radar is 100% what I want to do. Just a funny little realization.
 

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One nit to pick- I hate how all performance cars are only available with black interiors. I'm sure this thing has enough glass to make the interior not feel like a cave, at least up front.... but 1 light interior color option would be nice. Including the dash too.
You can buy the Platinum with a different tune on the same engine. Or an Aviator. The dark seats and headliner suit the ST’s niche when it’s already mechanically similar to those alternatives.
 

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Discussion Starter #80
Had a little bit of time to kill after I left the office tonight - dropped by one of our local dealers to check things out in person.

Three 2021s on the lot, none had the street pack, but they did have the tech pack and moonroof. I got to climb around in one of them for while and then took another for a nice, long solo test drive.


First impressions after jumping in, I'm not sure I agree with the sometimes extremely harsh complaints about the interior quality. Stepping out of the SS and into the ST, the Explorer is at least on par with it. It will never be confused for a top luxury interior, but it's quite nice. If you hunt around you can definitely start to find some cheapish areas like the low console between the second row seats and some of the panels in the way back. But I literally sat for a good five minutes running my hands around the dash and front seats and I didn't find anything to be overtly objectionable.

Seating position was pretty ideal for me (6'2, 240), and quite comfortable. As usual, a touch more bolstering would be nice, but there's more than in the SS. Surprisingly, the massage function was actually pretty nice. Also in contrast with the SS, the seat heater was in full effect within 90 seconds of remote starting it and then climbing in. I can run my entire commute in the SS during the winter before the heat kicks in there. Heated steering wheel was glorious too. With the front seat adjusted to my position, I had a ton of leg room in the second row - it's big in there. I'd probably run with the third row stowed, but even that was plenty tolerable for a typical office lunch run.

Infotainment-wise, it's as laggy as I'd read. The instrument cluster more so than the central screen. Coming away, I'm actually liking the big screen more than before. Despite it's appearance, it pretty well falls away while driving. And the larger size facilitates bigger layouts and buttons that are easy to hit without having to do any finger tip pecking. The instrument cluster though, wow - the whole animation dance every time you switch modes is a bit much. Although I suspect once the novelty has worn off, it's not something that you'd be doing a lot. Being equipped with Sync 3 and Sync 4 coming out, I feel like I'd be setting myself up in the same situation I have with the SS and MyLink - tail end of old tech.

I wasn't sure what to really expect with regards to engine performance. It's 400hp, but it's 4700lbs, but it has a ten speed trans. Firing it up, the piped in engine note is pretty aggressive. On the fence about whether that would get old. First hitting the road, I struggled a bit with the throttle being touchy, but I think I chalk that up to just hopping out of the very different SS. Things smoothed out later in the drive. It's certainly not slow. I didn't rail on it (10 miles on the odo when I left), but I did dip into the throttle in a few different scenarios. There's a bit of noticeable lag before a pretty sizable slug of torque hits. It gets up and moves in surface street situations quite well - scooting into traffic, two lane passing, etc. Steering felt decent - appropriately weighted and a bit lighter than the SS in performance mode. On the highway it rips. The on ramp acceleration plays weird tricks on your mind when trying to resolve the fact you're basically sitting in a minivan. Lag doesn't need to be planned for passing or anything, but again it's apparent. It builds speed very quickly and the seemingly endless up shifts with the ten speed are something of a novelty (to me at least).

Sport mode is almost too aggressive I think. It holds gears a bit too long and it's just kind of ragged feeling. Normal mode is plenty sporty. Manual mode is fun, but like most it's something of a novelty as well. It shifts quickly, but in most situations I think the trans can do better on its own.

Handling is a bit of mixed bag to me. It handles well... for an SUV. Overall the thing does shrink a little bit around you, but there's no hiding that much weight and size. It's got a decent amount of grip (and keep in mind I was also driving a non-sport pack car with the narrower, less grippy, regular all-seasons in high 30deg temps), but it will never be a corner carver in my mind. I've read a lot of positive feedback from people that have done suspension tweaks like upgraded sway bars from Steeda, so that'd be something to consider down the road.



TLDR: I like it more than I was expecting to. I genuinely smiled to myself a few times while behind the wheel. It's quick enough to satisfy me and I think it has enough overall performance to back up its 'image'. Interior is more than acceptable and the tech isn't nearly as bad as some say. I'm giving serious thought to this one now.



Massaging seats, not just a gimmick (seriously, upper rolling back on high was spectacular):




I somehow missed the fact, going in, that the ST has schnazzy puddle lights:




Side note - the police effect is no joke. I drove a silver one. At first I couldn't understand why people were on their brakes so much, then it clicked. :laugh:
 
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