The Full-size SUV That Keeps Getting Better, we review the 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with the EcoBoost engine

Ford continues the trend offering fuel efficient, responsive powered vehicles with the introduction of the 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with EcoBoost—the market’s most fuel efficient 7-passenger SUV. Seeing as more than half of last year’s 2011 Ford Explorer early buyers cited fuel efficiency as their primary purchase motivator, coupled with Ford’s goal to fit 90-percent of their products with the award-winning engine, the EcoBoost-Explorer marriage was an inevitable one.

Also see: Ford Reviews

Not that Ford has had any trouble selling the iconic SUV, with sales of the new Explorer having tripled compared to the same time last year. Now, the 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with EcoBoost will no doubt lift the automaker’s sales into the upper echelon of SUV success.

2012 Ford Explorer Limited Review2012 Ford Explorer Limited Review

Last year, I tested the 2011 Ford Explorer Limited; please visit the link for the full review. This year, I was once again in the Explorer Limited but now fitted with the EcoBoost option, new for 2012.

More on the EcoBoost

EcoBoost engine technology offers customers incredible fuel efficiency without compromising power—essentially, enjoying V8 power at the V6 fuel level, the engine combines turbocharging and direct fuel injection on smaller engines. And, the engine in the 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with EcoBoost is certainly small, powered by a 2.0-litre, inline-four, making 240-hp at 5500 rpm and 270 lb.-ft. of torque at 3000 rpm. Granted, fuel economy is incredible, and only an additional $1000 for the EcoBoost engine option, the upgrade is a no-brainer, but the FWD-only limitation may turn off some, coupled with the lack of power via the smaller engine moving such a large SUV. Particularly, those who plan to tow their boats to the lake may find this lack of power an issue.

…fuel economy is incredible, and only an additional $1000 for the EcoBoost engine option, the upgrade is a no-brainer, but the FWD-only limitation may turn off some…

On the plus, the Explorer EcoBoost offers 40 mpg on the highway. That’s beating out the pack, including the Honda Pilot, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Chevy Traverse, GMC Acadia, and the Toyota Highlander.

2012 Ford Explorer Limited Review2012 Ford Explorer Limited Review

On another plus, Ford recently announced the introduction of the upcoming 2013 Ford Explorer Sport—still with EcoBoost but bigger engine at 3.5-litre (not 2.0) and over 100-hp more at 350-hp. Plus, sportier design and the MyTouch will be reworked for 2013.

Thus, $7050 in options, this 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with EcoBoost rings in at $48,149 (before taxes/fees).

The 2012 Ford Explorer Limited starts at $41,199 CDN MSRP. Add $1000 for the EcoBoost engine. My tester also came with the dual panel moonroof ($1750); navigation system (700); bigger 20-inch rims (600); all-weather floor mats (100); and a $2800 packaging adding a group of goodies including a luxury seating package, powerfold third row seats, blind spot monitoring system, and rain sensing wipers, to name a few. Thus, $7050 in options, this 2012 Ford Explorer Limited with EcoBoost rings in at $48,149 (before taxes/fees).

The redesigned Ford Explorer just came to market yet it’s getting better every year. EcoBoost included.

Again, for a full review on the Explorer Limited, please check out the 2011 review here.

Learn more – Ford Explorer Limited

CONS:

  • Underpowered with 2.0L engine (EcoBoost)
  • FWD (EcoBoost)
  • 2013 Explorer Sport not here yet!

2012 Ford Explorer Limited review2012 Ford Explorer Limited review2012 Ford Explorer Limited review

Amee is an award-winning motor & lifestyle photographer and writer in the auto niche. His work has been published in various global outlets including NBC Sports, Chicago Tribune, SuperStreet, GlobeDrive, MotorTrend, and others. A member of AJAC and founder/publisher of TractionLife.com, he enjoys travelling and spending time with his kids and family.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here