2020 Ford Explorer spy shots - Image via Tom Poeschel
Ford is busy readying a new version of the Explorer for the 2020 model year. We already know that the police version will come standard with a hybrid powertrain. We also know that a Sporty ST version is in the works. Now, after a bit of information has leaked out on the Internet, we also know which engines we can expect to find under the hood.
Jalopnik caught wind of a leaked Explorer ordering guide that appeared on a model-specific forum. The police version will come with a choice of three powertrains; a 3.3-liter V-6, the 3.3-liter V-6 with hybrid bits, and a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6. Each engine will be paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and rear-wheel and all-wheel drive will be available.
For us civilians, we'll get the choice of a 2.3-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, the 3.3-liter V-6 with or without the hybrid system, and the 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6.
Horsepower, torque, and fuel economy numbers for all engines are not yet available.
Ford is bringing the Explorer back to its SUV roots, or at least closer to them. In 2011, Ford swapped from body-on-frame construction with a longitudinal engine layout to a transverse setup and unibody construction. Ford is reverting back to the rear-wheel-drive, longitudinal layout (with available all-wheel-drive, of course), but on a unibody architecture shared with the upcoming Lincoln Aviator. This change might help the sporty Explorer ST actually deliver a dash of sportiness beyond potentially decent horsepower and fancy badges.
The order guide revealed some other information as well. The Police Interceptor will feature the same LED headlights as the civilian version, which should become a problem for those of us who like to dance above the speed limit. The cop version will also get optional ballistic doors, uprated rear-impact protection tested to 75 mph, and all of the fancy lights and computer gear cops use to look up info on perps.