Price, Design And Review 2023 Ford Explorer Sports

UPDATE 11/10/21: This analysis has been adapted with analysis after-effects for a 2.5T model.

Interior 2023 Ford Explorer Sports
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Breaking into the advantageous barter bazaar isn’t for the aside of heart. Subaru’s Baja lasted four abbreviate years, Honda had to butch up the looks of its Ridgeline to defended a bench at the table, and alike Toyota’s T100 stumbled until it became the V-8-powered Tundra. And who can balloon the Ford Explorer Sport Trac? It would assume that to accomplish in this segment, your barter had bigger attending and accomplish like, well, a truck.

In what may be an attack to administer expectations, Hyundai isn’t application the “t” chat to call its new entry, instead apropos to it as a “Sport Adventure Vehicle.” Hyundai alike goes so far as to affirmation the Santa Cruz wasn’t advised as a mid-size barter competitor, but one attending at the amalgamation and it’s adamantine to allocate it as annihilation else.

Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Drive it and you’re not so quick to use the “t” word. The Santa Cruz rides on an continued adaptation of the Tucson crossover’s platform, with struts up advanced and a multilink abeyance with self-leveling dampers out back. Its 118.3-inch wheelbase (nearly 10 inches best than the Tucson) contributes to a calm and composed ride, with none of the rear-end skittishness sometimes present in a full-size auto with an abandoned bed. Maneuverability about boondocks is carlike. At 195.7 inches continued and 75.0 inches wide, the Santa Cruz calmly slots into parking spots. Driven with alacrity forth two-lane aback roads, the Santa Cruz is agile, actual almost collapsed through the corners.

The top-range Bound archetype we activated had affluence of bite to go forth with its moves. Borrowed from the beyond Santa Fe, its turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-four bliss out a allusive 281 horsepower. An eight-speed dual-clutch automated channels the torque to all four wheels. Off the line, this powertrain will delay a exhausted afore its turbo starts charging, but it bound builds a arch of steam, carrying a stout 311 pound-feet of torque from 1700 to 4000 rpm. The run to 60 mph takes a admirable 6.0 abnormal flat, and the quarter-mile passes in 14.5 abnormal at 98 mph. Aided by a light-for-a-truck 4132-pound barrier weight, that’s abundant advance to outaccelerate all the players in our best contempo allegory analysis of mid-size pickups, all of which advised in balance of 4500 pounds. Likewise, our example’s 0.82 g of skidpad anchor and 171-foot stop from 70 mph additionally would’ve been acceptable for top ceremoniousness in that evaluation.

Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Lesser Santa Cruz models canal the turbo and the dual-clutch for a 191-hp 2.5-liter and a accepted eight-speed automatic. The abject 2.5-liter musters aloof 181 pound-feet of torque and is article we’d skip. We haven’t activated that adaptation yet, but in an all-wheel-drive Tucson, the nonturbo 2.5-liter after-effects in a apathetic 8.8-second time to 60 mph. Front-wheel drive is accepted here, with all-wheel drive a $1500 option. There’s no amalgam variant, but aback the Tucson appearance both amalgam and constituent versions, we adumbrate the carefully accompanying Santa Cruz will chase clothing in the future. In agreement of ammunition economy, the accepted 2.5-liter four holds a slight advantage: an EPA accumulated appraisal of 23 mpg against the turbo model’s 22, although our analysis car did boilerplate 30 mpg on our 75-mph artery test, accessible its artery appraisal by 3 mpg.

Despite its Tucson underpinnings, the Santa Cruz is able of trucklike activities. Turbo all-wheel-drive models are rated to tow 5000 pounds, and alike the abject front-drive bureaucracy can tow 3500 pounds. Bivouac amplitude control, a action of the stability-control system, helps abate adverse bivouac motions and comes accepted on all models. Off-road excursions are additionally possible, as 8.6 inches of arena approval is abundant to get you into the asperous stuff. A appropriate 23.2-degree abandonment bend will ensure you’ll get out of best moderately difficult situations after abrogation the rear bonanza on the trail. The adventure itself ability not be absolutely smooth, as we activate that the delicacy of the Santa Cruz’s floor-mounted burke pedal can accomplish it difficult to advance a bland ample speed.

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Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Duality of purpose notwithstanding, the accurate make-or-break affection actuality lies out back. Area best barter beds are a bare canvas, this is added of an artist’s toolkit. As the Santa Cruz is advised alone for the North American market, the development aggregation formed to broil in the affectionate of account and versatility that would address to the outdoor-adventure set marketers adulation to target. Key to this mission is a dent-resistant molded blended bed (as against to formed steel), which accustomed the aggregation to advance every aboveboard inch of the space—whether it’s in, under, or aloft the bed.

Packed with cubbies and hidden compartments, the Santa Cruz’s artificial bed is added intricate than a addle box. Aloof as in the Honda Ridgeline, there’s a lockable underfloor accumulator amplitude amid abutting abundant to the tailgate that it’s accessible to retrieve items after abrupt yourself. Drain plugs accomplish it a absolute abode to accumulate drinks on ice. Added accumulator can be activate on the abandon of the bed abaft the caster wells, forth with an AC ability aperture with abundant accepted to run a baby refrigerator. There are tie-downs throughout, as able-bodied as an adjustable block system. The amplitude aloft the caster wells is advanced abundant to board four-foot-wide bedding of plywood.

Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Hyundai additionally went bonkers on the accessories. Whatever account your amusement requires, the Santa Cruz can acceptable secure, store, and carriage it. With the tailgate down, it can board a brace of clay bikes or kayaks. A branch tonneau awning retracts to the advanced of the bed and is a lot easier to use than the folding jobs apparent on some pickups. Precut tabs on the top of the bed balustrade can be punched out to add a awning system. And back was the aftermost time you saw a barter with roof-mounted crossbars?

Climb in and you’ll ascertain a aesthetic autogenous abundantly aggregate with the Tucson. A analytic hushed 67 decibels of babble edge into the berth at 70 mph, with full-throttle pulls registering alone 72 decibels on our complete meter. The apparatus console and infotainment awning are neatly tucked into the dash, rather than actuality army on top. The aftereffect is a clean, humble dashtop, which allows for accomplished advanced visibility. The Santa Cruz accommodates alpine cartage in both rows, with affluence of allowance and appropriate legroom in the rear. Like abounding pickups with baby sliding rear windows, altar that canyon through are bound to things the admeasurement of soccer assurance and six-packs.

Andi HedrickCar and Driver

The centermost assemblage appearance all of Hyundai’s latest tech. Best models affection an 8.0-inch touchscreen, with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard. Exclusive to the Bound trim is a 10.3-inch awning with navigation. As with the Tucson, the arrangement with the beyond awning can’t do wireless buzz mirroring; you’ll accept to bung in your buzz like it’s 2018. Best controls surrounding the arrangement are of the capacitive-touch variety; they attending glassy but allure their fair allotment of fingerprints and aren’t as convenient as the concrete buttons activate in added Hyundai models. In what’s a aboriginal for the brand, a tiny little Santa Cruz adumbration adorns the controls for air recirculation and hill-descent control. The Santa Cruz’s autogenous and exoteric is brindled with added Easter eggs.

Performance and New Engine 2023 Ford Explorer Sports
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Despite what Hyundai claims, those little illustrations absolutely resemble the appearance of a barter because the Santa Cruz’s contour says truck. But the exoteric lacks the cocked and squared-off attending that characterizes acceptable pickups. The administration is a able-bodied and bulked-up booty on Hyundai’s latest architecture language, and the big, adventurous grille abounding of brightwork is handsome. But the Santa Cruz looks like a crossover-turned-pickup. It makes no attack to adumbrate its roots.

Andi HedrickCar and Driver

Arguing how truckish it is or isn’t ability be fun for internet arguments (Please animadversion below—Ed.), but the better obstacle for the Santa Cruz could be its price. Abject SE versions activate at $25,215 and accommodate a acceptable bulk of accepted equipment, but opting for the turbo requires an added $10K. Top-spec Bound models activate at a abrupt $40,945. This appraisement becomes an affair back you accede a apple area the analogously sized Ford Maverick exists. A Maverick starts at aloof a beard over $20,000 and appearance a accepted amalgam powertrain that’s acceptable for a 37-mpg accumulated EPA fuel-economy rating; added able turbocharged versions top out at a still-frugal 26 mpg combined. The Maverick additionally appearance added accepted barter styling, which ability accomplish it added adorable to added accepted barter buyers. But Hyundai is demography addition tack—it charcoal to be apparent if its action will pay off. So conceivably the catechism becomes: Do you appetite a truck, or do you appetite a Santa Cruz?


2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz Bound AWDVehicle Type: front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door pickup

PRICE Base/As Tested: $40,945/$41,140Options: carpeted attic mats, $195

ENGINE turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, anchorage and absolute ammunition injectionDisplacement: 152 in3, 2497 cm3Power: 281 hp @ 5800 rpmTorque: 311 lb-ft @ 1700 rpm

TRANSMISSION 8-speed dual-clutch automatic

Prices 2023 Ford Explorer Sports
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CHASSIS Suspension, F/R: struts/multilinkBrakes, F/R: 12.8-in vented disc/12.8-in discTires: Michelin Primacy LTX245/50R-20 102V M S

DIMENSIONS Wheelbase: 118.3 inLength: 195.7 inWidth: 75.0 inHeight: 66.7 inPassenger Volume: 104 ft3Curb Weight: 4132 lb

C/D TEST RESULTS 60 mph: 6.0 sec1/4-Mile: 14.5 sec @ 98 mph100 mph: 15.2 sec130 mph: 32.3 secResults aloft omit 1-ft rollout of 0.4 sec.Rolling Start, 5–60 mph: 6.4 secTop Gear, 30–50 mph: 3.3 secTop Gear, 50–70 mph: 4.3 secTop Acceleration (gov ltd): 133 mphBraking, 70–0 mph: 171 ftRoadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 0.82 g

C/D FUEL ECONOMY Observed: 18 mpg75-mph Artery Driving: 30 mpgHighway Range: 530 mi

EPA FUEL ECONOMY Combined/City/Highway: 22/19/27 mpg


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Price and Review 2023 Ford Explorer Sports
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