Ford is currently running prototypes of an all-new Explorer in the US. The luxury SUV is still fairly new and will not be replaced until 2018. The prototype spotted this time around in Dearborn, Michigan is covered in heavy camouflage, indicating that the next-gen model is still in its early development stage.
Hardcore fans of the Explorer might think of it as a disguised version of the existing car but underneath, the prototype is testing the new D6 platform. The latter is set to be the basis of both Ford and Lincoln vehicles.
Like all major manufactures, Ford is developing the D6 platform in a way that it’s flexible enough to underpin different categories of vehicles. It's said its flexibility will allow for both front and rear-drive vehicles to be based off of it. There will of course be all-wheel drive models as well.
Rumors also suggest that the next-gen Explorer could go rear-wheel drive although these pictures do not show any sign of a rear axle. The Explorer is also set to get the latest EcoBoost engines, with a possible termination of the naturally aspirated V6. We expect to see the next-gen Explorer early in 2018 at the Detroit Motor Show.
The Explorer is predominately an American model and has been exported to other markets globally including the UK, China, Japan, Taiwan, the Middle East and Africa.