High Gear Media Drives The 2011 Ford Explorer

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Finally, almost six months after the covers first came off the new 2011 Ford Explorer, we get our first seat-time behind the wheel of the stylish SUV. High Gear Media’s own Marty Padgett was at the Explorer’s launch and has published his take on how the new Explorer looks, feels and drives on our sister site TheCarConnection.

As most of you would already know, the Explorer has been reinvented for 2011, ditching the truck-like designs of its forebears in favor of a new car-based platform, a lighter and more streamlined body, fuel efficient downsized engines and several world-firsts in safety technology.

The end result is a fully capable off-roader--there’s still a generous 7.9 inches of ground clearance as well as the advanced Terrain Management System in place--but with 25 percent better fuel economy than the previous model. The V-6 powered 2011 Ford Explorer is EPA rated at 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, and soon there will be an even more fuel efficient four-cylinder EcoBoost model available as well.

So how does the Explorer ride on its new car-based platform? Follow the jump below to find out.


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