WORLD'S LARGEST VIDEO "SCREEN" KICKS OFF NEW 2020 FORD EXPLORER
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Don't Miss The Official Ford Field Introduction of the All-New Ford Explorer See Video BelowYou can't watch it on: kbb.com, Road and Track, Edmund's, Cars.com, Any Cox Automotive Site, Auto Week, Car and Driver, Car Connection; Car Guru, C net, Motor Trend, Etc Etc Etc...enjoy it here on the web's First and still the most plagiarized automotive information site...we're here to tell not sell.
By Martha Hindes
The Auto Channel
That technophile who wants the world's largest video screen is going to have to go some to match the kickoff Ford Motor Co. had in unveiling its new 2020 Explorer sport utility.
Try 300 feet long.
That's the standard football field length inside Detroit's Ford Field, home of the Detroit Lions. While the home football team didn't make many waves this season, Ford on the other hand did exactly that.
As an early kickoff before official press days start at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit next week, Ford jumped the gun with a mind-bending show to capture news media already in town. Before a crowd of enthusiastic company employees, guests and media, Ford for about an hour showed off the ultimate in video presentations meant to emblazon the message in everyone's vision that this is THE sport utility to rock climb, transport a family, go cross country, plow down a stretch of beach and have the rear-drive authority and luxury comparable to a Land Rover, but without the cost. That big a statement needed an Atlas-sized venue to succeed.
From the moment Ford's Executive Chairman Bill Ford Jr. stepped into the spotlight to start the Wednesday cvening kickoff, the thundering sounds and earthquake-sense vibrations accompanied a myriad of scene changes playing out on the arena floor. Scenery changes splashing on the floor palette flowed from desert to seashore to north woods lush greenery to the peaks of Grand Canyon outcroppings that gave one the sense of looking down several thousand feet. All this as four different trim level Explorers seemed to cruise along roadways, dirt paths or snow covered passes designed to make the casual observer yearn to get behind the wheel to try it out. Of course the vehicles that had pulled onto the floor were stationary as the scenery moved around them. But the sensation of watching them drive through wilderness made one forget it was just a light show.
Ford has big reasons for this kind of launch. The Explorer, ready to start its 30th year, and the vehicle Ford touts as "America's all-time best selling SUV," was one of the original sport utility vehicles that started the trend now taking over the auto industry. This is the beginning of its sixth generation and the first based on a rear-drive, or available all-wheel-drive architecture.
This is a top to bottom redesign of the Explorer, with what Ford calls a sportier, more athletic look and feel. That makes it worthy of Ford's Global Markets chief Jim Farley's comment that it can out-Land Rover the Land Rover, while still coming in only a few hundred dollars more than previous loaded versions of Explorers. The basis for its new stance as trail and tow worthy is an available 3.0-liter Ecoboost powerplant and Class III towing package capable of pulling 5,600 pounds, a 12 percent boost over the previous 3.5-liter Ecoboost. Rear-wheel drive models can switch from normal to sport, trail, slippery, tow/haul and even eco. Those with intelligent four-wheel drive also can clamber up sand dunes or plow through deep snow with settings for those conditions.
Interior easy-in, easy out three-row seating and expanded flat-floor cargo storage are touted for their improved carrying capacity.
And while the overall design retains distinctively Explorer traits such as body color B pillars and blacked out A and D pillars, it was given a more sloping roofline and a sportier, shorter front overhang to emphasize its authoritative DNA, according to Ford. An available moon roof would have let in an expansive sky-view if this launch hadn't been indoors.
Technology advances include a 10.1-inch centered touchscreen with SYNC and WI-FI for 10, and accident avoidance advances including speed sign recognition and pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection.
Showgoers to Detroit's public motor show at Cobo Center starting January 19 -- and the last midwinter show for the event -- will have an opportunity to get touchy, feely close to the 2020 newcomer, but without the explosive hype.
Somehow we don't think Ford is concerned about attracting an audience. They've proven many times they have the chops to capture attention in a big way.