2006 Ford Explorer Environment
2006 EXPLORER IS CLEANEST, MOST FUEL EFFICIENT EXPLORER EVER
Greatly reduced emissions. More fuel efficient. Yet more powerful. The new 2006 Ford Explorer lineup delivers on all three.
The 2006 Explorer with the standard V-6 engine produces 74 percent less smog-forming emissions than the previous year's model. In fact, V-6-powered Explorers are expected to be certified to the same federal tailpipe emissions standards as Ford Escape Hybrid, the world's cleanest SUV.
Additionally, fuel economy for the all-new 4.6-liter three-valve V-8 engine paired with the new six-speed transmission is expected to increase by 10 percent in 4x4 models, while delivering 53 more horsepower.
Cleaner emissions on standard V-6 engine
Explorer's standard 4.0-liter SOHC V-6 engine received significant improvements for the 2006 model year. New engine calibrations and improved emission controls cut smog-forming emissions. Idle quality was improved by 50 percent, thanks to a new camshaft and spark plugs.
These improvements are expected to allow the 2006 Explorer V-6 to meet federal Tier II Bin 4 emissions requirements to achieve ULEV II status - the same federal tailpipe emissions standards as the Ford Escape Hybrid.
V-6 Explorers deliver the same 210 hp as before, but more efficient catalysts, new camshafts and new sparkplugs help deliver a 74 percent decrease in NOx emissions.
"The new design reduces the complexity and cost of emissions controls while making a substantial cut in NOx emissions," says emissions system manager Joel Beltramo.
The new system cuts emissions of nitrous oxides to 3.6 pounds per 15,000 miles, from 14.2 pounds by its predecessor.
To achieve the emissions reduction, the catalyst assemblies were moved closer to the engine's exhaust manifolds because "hotter is better" for neutralizing NOx and other exhaust gasses. The air-fuel mixture of the V-6 was also recalibrated to stay in the catalyst systems' "sweet spot," with no loss of horsepower, torque or fuel economy.
Three-valve V-8 and 6-speed automatic deliver 22 percent more power,
up to 10 percent better fuel economy
Newly designed V-8 cylinder heads incorporate three valves per cylinder, high-flow ports, charge motion control valves and "dual-equal" variable cam timing (VCT) for improved performance, fuel economy and emissions. Dual-equal VCT changes the intake and exhaust timing together, rotating the single cam for each bank of cylinders. This allows the valves to operate at optimum points in the combustion cycle, tailored to the instantaneous speed and load of the engine. This brings all the benefits of variable valve-timing systems - improved power and mileage with lower emissions - that actuate the intake valves alone while creating far less complexity and adding less valvetrain weight.
As a result, the 4.6-liter overhead-cam V-8 delivers an increase of 22 percent more horsepower (53 horsepower more than last year) with an anticipated increase in fuel economy of up to 10 percent (or two miles per gallon) for 4x4 models. In addition, Explorer's new V-8 engine is expected to meet federal Tier II Bin 5 standards, which is compliant with California's Low Emissions Vehicle II (LEV II) standards.
The new, 3-valve 4.6-liter V-8 and 6-speed automatic deliver 22 percent more hp and up to 10 percent better fuel economy.
The V-8 is paired with the first six-speed automatic in the segment. The wide-ratio transmission enables the engine to operate at peak performance - delivering the most power under acceleration and the most fuel efficiency during low-throttle applications.
In addition to the emissions and fuel efficiency gains, the 2006 Explorer has increased capability resulting in additional customer benefits, according to Raj Nair, SUV and Body-on-Frame Vehicles executive director:
"The new three-valve V-8 and six-speed automatic drivetrain is a tremendous advantage for the 2006 Explorer. Not only does it offer more power, more refinement and better fuel economy, but it also offers increased utility. The additional power output helps Explorer deliver impressive maximum payload - up to 1,520 pounds - and 7,300-pound towing capacity when properly equipped."