3 Things Consumer Reports Doesn’t Like About the 2022 Ford Explorer

Consumer Reports has had plenty of nice things to say about Ford‘s popular midsize SUV. However, creating a perfect vehicle is nearly impossible. As a result, there are a few things Consumer Reports doesn’t like about the 2022 Ford Explorer. It’s one of the lowest-ranked SUVs for CR, so many things could improve.

What does Consumer Reports not like about the 2022 Ford Explorer?

A red 2022 Ford Explorer parked in the street. There are 3 things Consumer Reports doesn't like about the midsize SUV.
2022 Ford Explorer | Ford

There are three significant changes that Consumer Reports would like to see for the 2022 Ford Explorer. They are the ride quality, low-speed transmission shifts, and price. The Explorer’s ride is stiff and “less compliant than many rivals,” making it feel cheaper than it is. In addition, CR describes the transmission as “clunky,” which, combined with a noisy engine, contributes to even poorer ride quality. These downsides are tolerable in an affordable SUV, which the Explorer is not.

That’s where Consumer Reports’ third complaint comes in handy. Even the most affordable Explorer base model is a bit overpriced. For example, the range-topping trim for the top-ranked Kia Telluride starts at $45,190. An Explorer’s top-of-the-line model starts at $55,380, making the most luxurious version of the midsize SUV out of reach for most. In addition, the $34,010 base model is a little underequipped compared to rivals.

The latest Explorer has a poor predicted reliability rating

Consumer Reports’ predicted reliability rating is a major reason why the 2022 Ford Explorer ranked so low overall. As one of the worst midsize SUVs, there are many reasons for its placement. On top of what Consumer Reports doesn’t like about it, it’s not likely to be very reliable. Using the experience of previous model year owners, CR determines how likely it is for every vehicle to require frequent non-routine maintenance.

Unfortunately, the Explorer received the worst possible predicted reliability rating. Although recent model years have improved significantly, earlier versions of the Explorer were very unreliable. Owners faced problems requiring expensive maintenance. For example, the Explorer’s engine, transmission, climate system, suspension, body, paint, and electronics all suffer from issues.

What does Consumer Reports like about the 2022 Ford Explorer?

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Despite a low overall score and poor predicted reliability, there are some things Consumer Reports loves about the latest Explorer offering. Moreover, agility, controls, and interior room are highlights for the publication. CR says handling is a high point, and the Explorer uses “quick, weighty steering” to comfortably and quickly steer around corners. Furthermore, it feels like a smaller SUV even while driving fast on winding roads.

Next, CR loves the controls because they are high quality in feeling and work very well. The chrome audio and tuning knobs have detents and feel well-made. However, CR says the buttons for changing the temperature have more of a plastic feeling, which feels cheap.

Lastly, one of the best things about the Explorer and one of the most essential parts of any midsize SUV is the interior room. Ford’s offering has plenty of space inside for passengers and cargo alike. The Explorer is very spacious compared to other models, considering many get cramped in the rear seats.

The 2022 Ford Explorer could be better

Although there are things to love about the 2022 Ford Explorer, it could be better. Things Consumer Reports doesn’t like about it are the ride quality, low-speed transmission shifts, and the price. If these things, and reliability, are improved for the new model year, the Explorer will be a much better midsize SUV option. The best parts are the agility, controls, and spacious interior. Is that enough for you to buy a new 2022 Ford Explorer?

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