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2013 Ford ExplorerView 2018 Model Price, Photos, Reviews & Features

2013 Ford Explorer Exterior

2013 Ford Explorer Overview (See Available Styles)

The 2013 Ford Explorer is a midsize three-row crossover that competes with other crossovers like the Honda Pilot and Chevrolet Traverse.

There are a few notable changes for the Explorer as it enters the 2013 model year, including the brand-new Explorer Sport trim which puts an emphasis on performance and has a unique engine along with some suspension and steering tweaks. Also added are a pair of newly available features, a heated steering wheel and HID headlights that automatically dim when faced with oncoming traffic.

Styling on the Explorer is more sleek than rugged, with thin headlights up front that feed into the familiar Ford three-bar grille. The A- and B-pillars have been blacked out, which gives the windshield and front/second-row windows a seamless look to reminds one of a visor. 17-inch wheels are standard, while 18- and 20-inch alloy wheels are optional.

Mechanically speaking, the Explorer can be configured in several different ways corresponding to the way it needs to be used. If fuel economy is a priority, the Explorer offers an optional 240-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder outputting 270 pounds-feet of torque that is mated to a six-speed automatic and comes in front-wheel-drive only. For those who potentially need all-wheel drive or want more power/towing, there is the standard 290-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 which makes 255 pounds-feet of torque. The optional all-wheel drive system offers a Terrain Management System, which adapts drivetrain settings to pavement, snow, sand, or mud. Topping things off is the aforementioned Explorer Sport and its 350-horsepower, twin-turbo 3.5-liter V-6 and standard all-wheel drive.

The best fuel economy ratings are put up by the four-cylinder EcoBoost engine, which checks in a 20 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. That is followed by the base V-6 and its 17/24 mpg city/highway with FWD (opting for AWD drops highway mpg to 23). Ratings for the Explorer Sport were not available as of this writing.

Inside, the Explorer seats seven in its standard configuration, but you can replace the second row bench with captain’s chairs which drops seating to six. Both the second- and third-row fold down to expand cargo capacity; the Limited trim comes with power folding seats that will stow at the touch of a button. Standard features include auxiliary audio input, air conditioning with front and rear controls, and power windows and locks. The Explorer offers a large list of optional equipment ranging from comfort options to tech offerings. Heated and cooled front seats, a dual-panel moonroof, and leather upholstery are available. The optional MyFord Touch system puts two LCD screens in the instrument panel and revamps the center console with touch-sensitive controls. SYNC, a navigation system, and a premium Sony sound system finish off the tech options.

We’re also happy to report that the 2013 Explorer got the highest possible scores in safety ratings, garnering a five-star rating from the NHTSA and a Top Safety Pick award from the IIHS. Safety features include antilock brakes, electronic stability control with Roll Stability Control, and eight airbags all standard. A blind spot monitoring system, backup camera, adaptive cruise control, and inflatable rear seat belts are all optional.

It may be the truck-based Explorer of old, but the 2013 Ford Explorer still has plenty of on- and off-road chops to make it a great choice for families on the go.

EPA Fuel Economy

  • City: 16 - 17 MPG
  • Highway: 22 - 24 MPG

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Vehicle crash and safety data is provided by NHTSA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The NHTSA testing was established by Congress to reduce highway deaths and injuries. Read an article on the current NHTSA crash test program.

Safety Rating

  • Overall Safety: *****
  • Frontal Crash: *****
  • Side Crash: *****

Consumer Reviews Summary

Overall Rating:

89 of 105 (84%) consumers said they would recommend this vehicle to a friend.

Read Ford Explorer Consumer Reviews