Question of the Week: Yay or Nay on the 2018 Explorer Facelift?

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Can you notice the subtle changes made to the 2018 Ford Explorer?

The 2018 Ford Explorer made its grand debut at the 2017 New York International Auto Show. While the facelift is a subtle one, it definitely gives the popular SUV a more upscale and sporty look. For our newest “Question of the Week,” we want to know if you like or dislike the design updates? Since the changes are so slight, here is a quick rundown of what changed.


Overall, the shape of the 2018 Explorer is identical to the 2017 version. The LED-trimmed, projection headlights remain relatively unchanged, and the shape of the large upper grille is similar. That being said, the 2018 grille extends all the way to the edge of the body-colored fascia, rather than having a chrome strip outlining the opening. Both the 2017 and 2018 Explorers have an additional, narrow opening just below the upper grille, but where that opening is molded into the 2017 models, the 2018 Explorer has a separate bar design separating the two openings. Obvious, isn’t it?

As we move further down, the fog light housings are more compact for 2018, and the actual lighting element is also a bit smaller. In retrospect, new LED technology should make the 2018 fog lights just as bright as the 2017 units.


The lower fascia of the 2018 Explorer is separated from the upper portion with a satin silver accent strip, which runs from wheel well to wheel well, giving the new SUV a more premium feel. While the overall front-end design looks similar, the new sculpting gives the 2018 model a bit bolder look. In addition, the athletic SUV gets new quad-exhaust outlets in the back, along with new wheel designs for the Sport trim.

Now that you know (and hopefully can tell), do you like the changes made to the 2018 Explorer?

Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>

Patrick Rall is a regular contributor to LS1Tech and JK Forum, among other auto sites.

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