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This Explorer feels big on the inside and looks big on the outside. The only time it doesn’t feel huge is when you’re on the throttle, because this bad boy is quick with that twin-turbo V6.

The Explorer got a facelift in 2016 and I think it looks way better. I don’t love it in red, but normally it has a little Range Rover styling, which isn’t bad at all. It looks beefy, with cladding on the bottom and a decent ride height. I wouldn’t take it four-wheeling but a couple of two-track roads to a cabin? No problem.

The interior is spacious and comfy and, like the Lincoln Continental, it has massaging seats that don’t just hit the back, they hit the rear end. I would even ask that could be a little more intense, but there’s probably some law saying that you aren’t supposed to fall asleep on your way home in bumper to bumper traffic. The Ford Sync 3 entertainment system is better and easier to use than it ever has been before, but it still angers me when I can’t use the in-house navigation, while using my iPhone and Apple CarPlay for music. Apple Maps sucks, yeah I said it, and that’s what it keeps trying to draw in as opposed to Google Maps, which is great.

Like I said, the Explorer has plenty of speed for bombing around town, the brakes are acceptable and the suspension absorbs all of the bounce from the tires, but only about half the noise. It feels so big and plush, I expected it to be quieter inside, but that's the tradeoff for lower-profile rubber and big wheels.

This car’s a little out of range for my family of three, considering it fits seven, or eight when properly equipped, but those third row seats are really for small children only. You can get into a larger Chevy Tahoe starting at $47,200 or so. You could add eight grand of options and still be close to this Explorer. I’d probably go with that, or the Mazda CX-9, which I love, even with its hardworking turbo four.

--Jake Lingeman, road test editor

Source : https://autoweek.com/article/car-reviews/2017-ford-explorer-review-big-plush-and-surprisingly-quick

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