The 2013 Ford Explorer Sport is powered by the same 3.5L EcoBoost V6 that is found in other company products including the Ford Taurus SHO and, like the SHO, the new Explorer Sport offers 365 horsepower and 360lb-ft of torque. This powerful twin turbocharged engine is mated to a standard 6-speed SelectShift automatic transmission and the Intelligent 4WD System – a drivetrain which allows the Explorer Sport to achieve 16 miles per gallon around town and 22 miles per gallon on the highway. For comparison, that is only 1 mile per gallon lower in both the city and on the highway compared to the naturally aspirated 3.5L V6 that offers only 290 horsepower and 255lb-ft of torque.
"Explorer Sport hits a sweet-spot combination of power, usable torque, 4WD capability, with class-leading fuel efficiency," said Bill Gubing, Ford’s chief engineer for the Explorer. "The Explorer Sport EcoBoost engine matches Taurus SHO for output and the Terrain Management System has been specifically calibrated to optimize increased power – regardless of the road or conditions.”
The closest competition for the 2013 Ford Explorer Sport is the Dodge Durango R/T AWD which in the 2012 model year, packs five less horsepower than the twin turbo Ford V6 but with 390lb-ft of torque, the Durango has a massive advantage in terms in that category. The Durango R/T AWD also has an advantage in price as the Explorer Sport’s starting price of $40,720 (not including the $825 destination fee) is over $2,000 more than the sporty Dodge SUV. However, it should be noted that the Explorer Sport also includes a fully loaded interior and a sportier exterior with unique body appointments and some great looking black wheels so this package is more than just an engine upgrade. It should also be noted that the Durango R/T offers only 13 miles per gallon in the city and 20 miles per gallon on the highway so the Explorer Sport has a pretty significant advantage in terms of fuel economy.
Competition aside, the 2013 Ford Explorer Sport looks awesome with a dark, aggressive design that just screams “high performance” while the 365 horsepower EcoBoost V6 makes sure that the Explorer Sport is as much ‘go’ as it is ‘show’. Inside, the Explorer Sport should basically come with every available feature from the Limited trimline so there is plenty of luxury inside to go with the sportiness on the outside and under the hood.
The 2013 Ford Explorer Sport will be built alongside the rest of the Explorer lineup at the Chicago Assembly Plant with production of this high performance model scheduled to start this fall.