The Ford Explorer has a trophy room at home that is ready
burst. Year after year, the midsize sport utility vehicle
comes home with awards recognizing its build quality, performance
package and overall comfort. If you hand out another annual
title for the best-selling midsize SUV, then it gets that
much more crowded in there.
Twelve years running, more Americans have turned to the
Explorer to handle their driving needs. The 2004 Ford Explorer
offers more standard equipment, both inside and out, plus
a few more options as well. One of the new features concerns
the fine-tuning of Explorer's two engines. They are now
configured to meet more stringent emissions standards, a
feature that benefits everyone.
Both the XLS and XLT models feature additional Sport trims.
Other models for 2004 include the NBX, Eddie Bauer and Limited,
which are covered separately.
The cabin is functional when it needs to be, and as refined
as you want it to be. All models are available with a fold-flat
third-row seat for comfortable seven-passenger seating.
One of the Explorer's key points is its use of space. The
2004 Ford Explorer leads its class in third-row headroom
and legroom. Seven-passenger models have a split 40/20/40
second-row seat that gives easy access to the third row,
as well as the ability to customize the cargo area.
Not as many features are found with 2004 Ford Explorer
XLS and XLT models, if you compare them to the upper level
trims. However, all Explorers do come with at least air
conditioning, cruise control, a center console, power mirrors,
windows and door locks, an AM/FM/CD player and a cargo management
The 2004 Ford Explorer's use of durable exterior materials
allows it to last for years without looking faded. For 2004,
the Ford Explorer has a bold new grille featuring the familiar
egg-crate insert of all Ford SUVs.
Rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations are
offered. But that's surely not a surprise.
XLS models have a standard 4.0-liter V6. It generates 210
horsepower and 254 lb-ft of torque. With the XLT trim, you
can upgrade to a 4.6-liter V8. It offers 239 horsepower
and 282 lb-ft of torque.
Explorer's independent rear suspension not only allows
for more interior cargo space, it also does what it should:
provide a smooth ride.
Safety and Security
Dual front airbags and antilock 4-wheel disc brakes are
standard on all models. Curtain side airbags are optional.