The Explorer makes four. Ford’s mid-size, three-row SUV is the latest nameplate to get the automaker’s King Ranch treatment, joining the Expedition full-size SUV and F-150 and F-Series Super Duty pickup trucks to offer a highfalutin trim level named after a sprawling Texas ranch. Ford announced the addition today of the 2021 Explorer King Ranch, which will slot near the top of the Explorer’s trim levels when it hits dealers this spring.
Related: 2020 Ford Explorer: 6 Things We Like and 4 Things We Don’t
Ford said the King Ranch will start at $53,595 with rear-wheel drive (all prices include destination); all-wheel drive adds another $2,000. That’s a stone’s throw from the starting prices of the 2021 Explorer’s extant top trims, the ST ($53,850) and Platinum ($55,725) — and all three are a far cry from the SUV’s base price ($33,470).
What You Get
Like the Platinum, the King Ranch has a turbocharged 3.0-liter EcoBoost V-6 that’s good for 365 horsepower and 380 pounds-feet of torque — an output second only to the Explorer ST, whose turbo 3.0-liter is good for 400 hp and 415 pounds-feet of torque. (Lower Explorer trims also offer turbocharged four-cylinder or hybrid V-6 powertrains, good respectively for 300 and 318 hp.) But the ST and Platinum are both AWD-only, meaning the King Ranch is the only way to get the Explorer’s turbo V-6 with rear-wheel drive.
Like the corresponding editions of the Expedition and F-Series, the Explorer King Ranch boasts unique materials that conjure up home-on-the-range Americana. Among them:
- A unique, gray-painted mesh grille
- 20-inch aluminum wheels with the King Ranch’s “Running W” logo in the hubs
- A liftgate scuff plate, quad chrome tailpipes and King Ranch exterior badges
- Mahogany-colored Mesa Del Rio leather seats, Mesa Del Rio leather center armrest and leather-wrapped door panels
- Genuine Sapele wood trim on the dashboard and steering wheel
- King Ranch logos on the seats, steering wheel and center armrest
An available Premium Technology Package adds massaging seats, Ford’s 10.1-inch vertical touchscreen and a Bang & Olufsen premium stereo. That package runs $995 on the Platinum and ST, so it’s a safe bet the King Ranch will offer commensurate pricing.
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- Ford Expedition Platinum: What You Get When You Go Big
- Research the 2021 Ford Explorer
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