Review 2023 Ford Explorer: a full-size SUV with comprehensive upgrades

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The Ford Explorer large-sized SUV made its debut in 2016 and truly caused a sensation in the market. Not stopping there, it can be said that the Ford Explorer has contributed to attracting the attention of many customers to its segment, where the price range is almost equivalent to luxury models from Germany.


To provide customers with more new experiences, the American car manufacturer has officially introduced the completely new Explorer 2023 to customers around the beginning of 2022. Moving into a new generation, the Explorer 2023 features comprehensive upgrades from design, chassis system to technology as well as performance. Along with that, the price of the Ford Explorer has also increased significantly compared to its predecessor model. In addition, the price of this large SUV has also changed and is only distributed in a single version similar to the previous generation.


In terms of overall design, the Ford Explorer 2023 has received many upgrades while still maintaining its familiar strong and bold SUV style. However, due to some size adjustments, the body of the 2023 Explorer is even more robust and bulky than before.


The SUV model has dimensions in terms of length, width, and height of 5,049mm x 2,004mm x 1,778mm, along with a wheelbase of 3,025mm. Compared to the Teramont, the 2023 Ford Explorer has much greater width and wheelbase length, promising to provide a comfortable interior space for all positions in the car. The ground clearance of the 2023 Explorer is also reasonably evaluated at 198mm, showing its off-road performance as well as ensuring aesthetic appeal and stability.

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The front end of the 2023 Ford Explorer stands out with its expanded mesh grille and integrated front lighting cluster, forming an attractive bird-wing shape. This is considered a design language detail seen on many recent models. When combined with its superior width, it creates a particularly impressive and prominent impression for the 2023 Ford Explorer.


Evaluation of the 2023 Ford Explorer's lighting capabilities, the full-size SUV model boasts a set of LED headlights combined with rectangular projector bulbs housed in a modern compartment. The projector technology helps to concentrate light better, resulting in higher and more optimized lighting efficiency. Located just below the headlights is the symmetrically designed bumper with a grille to match, adorned with silver-plated bumper trims that emphasize a sporty and robust impression for the Ford Explorer 2023. The bumper trim design also leaves space for the sporty air intake with LED lights on either side, creating a modern and trendy impression for this SUV model.


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Moving to the sides, the sharp and angular lines continue to play a dominant role in the body of the 2023 Ford Explorer, contributing to maintaining a strong and rugged American SUV impression.


Evaluation of the 2023 Ford Explorer in terms of its frame and pillars, these details on the vehicle are all painted black, creating a unique "floating roof" effect. The C pillar on the 2023 Explorer is designed to be angled and painted the same color as the body of the car to give a more modern feel. In addition, the wheel arches are also painted black and connected to the shiny chrome side cladding, contributing to the overall sleek and powerful look.

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The large SUV's side mirrors are equipped with full electric adjustment and folding functions, especially with the integration of a 360 camera. This part is also painted black by the car manufacturer, creating harmony with the car's window area and at the same time making a strong impression on the whole. However, the placement of the mirror at the traditional A-pillar position makes it a weak point of the Ford Explorer 2023. If the side mirrors were placed on the body of the car as in modern design trends, it could help expand visibility while significantly reducing blind spots at the A-pillar position when viewed from the driver's seat.


The highlight of the Ford Explorer 2023's rear area cannot fail to mention the Michelin tires with self-sealing capability when punctured, sized at 255/50R20. Meanwhile, the wheels of the car are 20-inchers with a 10-spoke design, combined with a premium silver paint finish, bringing a sporty and imposing impression to the Explorer 2023.



Moving forward, the tail of the 2023 Ford Explorer features a square, masculine shape. It also boasts a spoiler with integrated high-mounted LED brake lights. Additionally, the black-painted D-pillars create a seamless window strip effect, wrapping around the rear corners of the car and giving it a very attractive look.


The taillight cluster on the 2023 Explorer now features a 3D block design and is neatly placed on both sides of the vehicle. This design still retains Ford's DNA from the previous generation, so it will be familiar to many customers.

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Evaluation of the overall interior of the 2023 Ford Explorer, the American car company has completely redesigned the Explorer's cockpit in a modern, but more neutral and simplified way. The car's design is noted to be not particularly outstanding, and the equipment does not provide the overwhelming feeling of "technology overload" like Korean car models, but overall it still provides satisfaction. However, upon closer examination of each detail, customers can still easily recognize that this is an expensive car.


Vision is also one of the good factors evaluated on the Ford Explorer 2023. Thanks to the large windows and slim A-pillars, it enhances the driver's visibility. In addition, although the side mirrors are located at the A-pillar, they do not cause a blind spot due to the protruding design, thereby ensuring good visibility for the driver on both sides of the car.


In the driver's compartment, the dashboard and the area around the door handles are arranged in an intuitive way, with details grouped into separate clusters for each component, making it easy and convenient for customers to get familiar with and use the car. In addition, Ford's SUV model mainly uses high-quality gray leather and is combined with dark wood paneling throughout the cabin, providing a more luxurious and trendy feel for the SUV model.


The downside of the 2023 Ford Explorer is that it is only equipped with an 8-inch touchscreen display, without upgrading to the top-of-the-line vertically positioned 10.1-inch display. Below the main screen is a separate 3-zone independent air conditioning control area, accompanied by traditional mechanical knobs and levers. However, the American automaker has skillfully created a luxurious feel for the area with attractive silver-plated temperature adjustment levers.


The 2023 Ford Explorer features a three-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel with silver-painted bottom spokes, providing a rugged and solid feel. In addition, the steering wheel also integrates a 4-way power-adjustable function, contributing to the driver's convenience. Right behind the steering wheel is an analog gauge cluster combined with a 6.5-inch LCD multi-information display.


Evaluation of the 2023 Ford Explorer in terms of transmission reveals a premium feature in the form of the traditional gear shift lever that has been completely removed in the previous version and replaced with a modern electronic rotary knob. This knob uses a circular shift pattern configuration that simulates the correct sequence of P-R-N-D of the traditional gear shift.


Right below is the electronic parking brake system and the Drive Mode button. In addition, the front seat area and the steering wheel of the car also integrate a system of buttons for adjusting heating and cooling, maximizing comfort for the driver and front seat passengers in all weather conditions.

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When it comes to the entertainment system, the Ford Explorer 2023 offers an 8-inch touchscreen display, which incorporates the famous SYNC3 voice control system exclusive to Ford. Additionally, it comes with popular smartphone connectivity standards such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


The sound system in the car is also invested appropriately by the manufacturer to match the premium positioning of the 2023 Explorer. This large-sized SUV model possesses a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system with a power output of up to 780W. Moreover, this system is also integrated with exclusive sound processing technology, bringing excellent and consistent sound experience for all seating positions under any operating conditions.


Some of the notable standard features on the 2023 Ford Explorer include: a three-zone automatic climate control system with integrated vents for all three rows of seats, a push-button start, electronic parking brake, power-adjustable intelligent liftgate, wireless charging, panoramic sunroof, and two 8-inch headrest-mounted screens for the rear passengers.


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The Ford Explorer 2023 comes with neutral and clean gray leather seats. The front seats have fully adjustable 10-way power seats for the driver and 8-way power seats for the passenger, with heated and cooled seat functions, a heated steering wheel button, ensuring the driver's comfort in all driving conditions. In addition, the driver's seat also has a convenient 3-position memory feature.


However, the premium massage feature on the previous generation of the car has been removed. This is also a regrettable point about the interior equipment of the 2023 Ford Explorer. According to many sources, the massage feature is integrated with the 10.1-inch vertical entertainment screen, which is included in the high-end versions in the US market.


The rear seats of the 2023 Ford Explorer have also received considerable investment from the American automaker with the inclusion of a separate air conditioning and ventilation system. Moreover, passengers seated in these seats can enjoy an exciting entertainment system, consisting of two 8-inch screens integrated into the front headrests. In addition, highly-rated features include a phone charging port and an AC power outlet rated at 230V - 150W.

Regarding the space and size of the seats, the Ford Explorer 2023 provides ample and comfortable space for all positions. Even the third row can accommodate two adults with sufficient legroom and a reasonable backrest tilt.


In the second row, Ford has adjusted the ratio of seat width to 35-30-35. This means that the center seat occupies 30% of the area, while the two side seats occupy 35% each. This ratio provides more space and better comfort for the passenger in the middle, while ensuring comfort for passengers on long journeys.


The 2023 Ford Explorer is evaluated for its cargo space, with a standard trunk capacity of 560 liters. However, users can maximize it up to 2,486 liters by folding down all second-row seats, contributing to an extremely spacious and optimal space, satisfying the need for transporting bulky items.

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Assessing the 2023 Ford Explorer in terms of performance, this full-size American SUV is equipped with a 2.3L Ecoboost gasoline engine that has been fine-tuned to generate a maximum power output of 298 horsepower and a peak torque of 432Nm. Additionally, the transversely mounted 4-cylinder engine has been replaced with a longitudinally mounted one to better match the new 10-speed automatic transmission. The 2023 Explorer also utilizes an intelligent 4WD all-wheel drive system.


The real-world experience shows that the 2023 Explorer provides a satisfying and exciting driving sensation. When switching to the Sport mode and pressing down on the gas pedal, the driver can easily feel the car swiftly accelerate while remaining very smooth. Currently, if compared to competitors such as the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado (164 horsepower) or the Volkswagen Teramont (220 horsepower), the 2023 Ford Explorer has completely superior specifications.


The safety assessment of the 2023 Ford Explorer has a major advantage over its predecessor in that it is equipped with the Co-Pilot 360 technology package, which contributes to maximum driver assistance with a range of advanced features such as lane departure warning and lane keeping assistance, adaptive cruise control, automatic headlights, collision warning, and emergency braking assistance when encountering obstacles ahead, blind spot warning combined with cross-traffic alert, collision avoidance steering assistance using radar and ultrasound sensors to detect objects on the road, and a 360-degree panoramic camera system.


In addition, the standard safety features on the 2023 Ford Explorer are quite comprehensive with a 7-airbag system, anti-lock braking system, electronic brake-force distribution, electronic stability control, hill start assist, tire pressure monitoring system...

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Overall, the 2023 Ford Explorer is a standout full-size SUV and the most beloved in its price segment. With advantages such as an impressive design, spacious interior, and a long list of features, the 2023 Explorer continues to conquer every market and customer.


Video review Ford Explorer 2023


Agus Nack