Ford launches the Explorer in Europe starting at £39,875

Ford is launching its electric Explorer on the European market. However, the basic version for £39,875 will only be available towards the end of the year. The versions with a larger battery available at launch are several thousand euros more expensive.

Image: Ford

In its press release, Ford states a starting price of £39,875 for the Explorer in the UK, but this variant with a standard range battery is not expected to be available to order until the end of 2024. At the start of sales, the Explorer will only be available with an Extended Range battery and will regularly start at£45,875 in the configurator.

The extended-range battery is available with two drive options: The rear-wheel drive model has an output of 210 kW, while the all-wheel drive variant with an additional electric motor on the front axle has a system output of 250 kW. At the model’s premiere in March 2023, Ford had not yet provided any technical data on the Explorer’s drive system. The performance figures now published suggest that Ford will be using the latest drive generation from VW for its MEB model, i.e. the APP550 on the rear axle. This is a more powerful and more efficient permanent magnet synchronous machine (PSM), which offers 210 kW instead of 150 kW compared to the APP310 previously used – with lower fuel consumption.

Surprisingly, Ford installs slightly different “extended range” batteries in the Explorer depending on the drive system. The rear-wheel drive vehicle uses the familiar VW battery with 77 kWh of usable energy content, which can be charged from ten to 80 per cent in 28 minutes with a maximum of 135 kW. The all-wheel drive vehicle, on the other hand, uses the latest VW version with 79 kWh, which can be charged at 185 kW – the standard charge from ten to 80 per cent should take 26 minutes here.

VW had previously used cells from different suppliers in its 77 kWh packs. Although these had the same energy content, the charging behaviour differed. VW itself also uses the new 79 kWh battery (with 84 instead of 82 kWh gross) in the ID.3 GTX in a rear-wheel drive vehicle, whereas Ford does not.

Regardless of the battery and drive type, the Explorer is equipped with an 11 kW onboard charger ex works. In addition, Ford’s Explorer is only limited at a top speed of 180 km/h, whereas this is usually the case with VW at 160 km/h. All other data can be found in the table:

Explorer RWDExplorer AWD
Performance210 kW250 kW
Torque545 Nm134+545 Nm
Acceleration6,4 s5,3 s
Top speed180 kph180 kph
WLTPrange602 km566 km
Battery capacity77 kWh79 kWh
Charging performance DC135 kW185 kW
Charging time DC 10-80%28 min26 min
Price49.500 Euro53.420 Euro

With regard to the Standard Range model that will follow later, Ford states that this battery also uses NMC chemistry and will be offered with a motor. If Ford also adopts the MEB technology 1:1 here, it is likely to be the 52 kWH battery from the VW ID.4. However, this has not been confirmed.

The body has been known since the premiere: The Explorer is slightly shorter than its VW counterpart but offers a 450-litre trunk. If you add the 17-litre “MegaConsole” in the interior and other storage compartments, Ford claims 470 litres of storage space. There is also extensive standard equipment with LED headlights, heated front sports seats, a massage seat for the driver and numerous assistance systems. Above the basic equipment, there is also the premium version, which is characterised by dynamic matrix LED headlights and 15 assistance systems in addition to a B&O sound system.

The list of surcharges is correspondingly short: there is a choice of six paint finishes (maximum surcharge of £800 euros), and optional extras include fastening points in the interior, 21-inch rims, all-season tyres, a driver assistance package, a heat pump (for £1,050) and a trailer coupling. The data of the trailer coupling corresponds to the VW models, meaning that a maximum of 1,200 kilograms can be towed.

The Explorer is built in Cologne, where Ford converted the plant into the ‘Cologne Electric Vehicle Centre‘ with an investment of two billion US dollars. Ford currently gives a delivery time of 24 weeks in the configurator, regardless of the drive system or premium equipment. (announcement), (configurator)


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