The used Ford Explorer is the Everyman's SUV - in addition to off-road capabilities and towing power, it also seats up to seven passengers in impressive comfort. With so much to offer, it's no surprise that the Explorer attracts a wide range of buyers. Before you test-drive yours, check out our used buying guide to learn more about how these models have changed in the last decade or so.
Used Ford Explorer Buying Guide
Fifth Generation, 2011-Current
Comfort: This large, three-row SUV hosts up to seven passengers without complaint. All models supply hours of on-road comfort with soft, supportive seating and leg room to spare. Higher trims are as classy as a luxury SUV, with features like supple leather upholstery and a heated steering wheel.
Technology & Convenience: Use the Sync voice command technology to reroute the navigation app or call home while keeping you eyes on the road. Depending on the model year, Ford offers the Sync 3 or MyFord Touch infotainment systems throughout this generation. Both are easy to use and include vital smartphone integration features like music streaming.
Safety: The Explorer's automatic parallel parking system takes any complications out of street parking. Driver aids, such as the forward collision warning system, can even detect danger and alert you to take action.
Performance: Look for an all-wheel-drive Explorer to take you down light off-road trails with ease. The Explorer also offers car-like driving dynamics, letting you get in and out of tight spaces with confidence. Depending on equipment, the modern Explorer can tow up to 5,000 pounds, getting your boat to the beach without a problem.
Fourth Generation, 2006-2010
Comfort: These used models offer impressive space for big families. Unlike many competitors, the fourth-generation Explorer supplies a roomy third row, even adult-size would be happy with.
Technology & Convenience: It's easy to connect your smartphone to the central entertainment system - just use the USB jack or wireless Bluetooth technology. From there, you can stream your favorite podcasts and playlists.
Safety: These SUVs supply important anti-skid features, such as anti-lock brakes and stability control. When the weather turns wet or icy, these features are invaluable.
Performance: The fourth-generation Explorer was a bit more capable - at least in the towing department. Properly equipped, this SUV can tow up to 6,000 pounds, making it a great pick if you've got a larger boat at home.
What Drivers Love about the Used Ford Explorer
In a used Ford Explorer, there's not a lot you can't do. Weekend warriors love that the Explorer tows boats or Jet Skis with minimal effort. When it's time to explore a new campsite, the all-wheel-drive Explorer takes you down light off-road trails with impressive traction. In addition to all of this adventure, the Explorer supplies substantial comfort for the whole family.
What to Look for in Your Used Ford Explore
The turbocharged four-cylinder engine didn't arrive until 2012. If you're looking to combine impressive speed with generous fuel economy, 2012 is a good place to start.
Used Ford Explorer Buyers Beware
If you want to squeeze the most mobility out of your Explorer, shop for a fifth-generation model. These used unibody architecture for car-like driving dynamics and better precision around curves. Before the fifth generation, the Explorer featured a traditional body-on-frame build, which wasn't quite as maneuverable in a tight spot.