Ford unveils all-electric Explorer SUV, but it will only be available in Europe

After months of teasing Ford has officially taken the wraps off their first EV based on Volkswagen’s MEB platform. On Tuesday the American automaker revealed the all-electric Explorer SUV, which even though they say is “steeped in Ford’s American roots,” will only be available in Europe.

The electric Explorer SUV marks a number of firsts for the company. Aside from the aforementioned base being VW’s MEB platform, the electric Explorer was also engineered in Germany for the European market and will be built at Ford’s new EV plant in Cologne, making it their first EV built outside North America.

Ford says the electric Explorer is a mid-size crossover with seating for five across two rows, but there was no mention of a six or seven seat configuration. With the five-seat configuration the electric Explorer has about 470 litres of storage space, including a massive 17 litres of storage space in the center console between the driver and front passenger, which Ford says is big enough to hold a 15″ laptop.

Credit: Ford

The Explorer will be available in either rear-wheel drive (RWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) configurations in two different trims, the Explorer and Explorer Premium. Not many specifications were provided in the announcement, not even aspirational range estimates, but Ford did say it will be able to fast charge from 10 to 80 per cent in 25 minutes.

According to Ford the Explorer will feature a fully loaded infotainment system, 15-inch movable screen, wireless app integration and advanced driver assistance technology.

One of the surprising parts of the announcements, other than the fact it won’t be coming to SUV-crazed North America, is the price. Ford says it is targeting a starting price under €45,000, or about $66,500 CAD or $48,400 USD. That is considerably less than Ford’s other electric SUV offering in Europe, the Mach-E, which starts at  €62,900 in Germany.

Ford says orders will open for the Explorer later this year, and the first deliveries are slated to begin in 2024. The electric Explorer is part of Ford’s plan to only sell electric passenger vehicles in Europe by 2030.

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