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The Ford Explorer may have had a troubled past, but luckily Ford’s made some changes. With the latest design of the Explorer, Ford’s revamped its line of mid-size SUVs and filled it with new features and new technologies. That said, the 2016 Explorer still has one issue that Ford’s grappling with to this day.

What a new 2020 Ford Explorer offers

While the most brand-new, 2020 model year Explorers will come standard with an 8-inch touchscreen, every other model year won’t have one as standard. U.S. News reports that in the 2016 model year, in particular, Ford doesn’t offer much in terms of standard features. 

For example, the six-speaker stereo system on the 2016 Explorer is connected to just the standard stuff — an AM/FM stereo, a CD player, and an MP3 player. That said, there is some smart tech in there. U.S. News says that the 2016 Explorer does have Ford’s own SYNC hands-free communications system as well as smart device integration. Additionally, Ford offers a single USB port and Bluetooth connectivity.

Explorer model years, up until the 2020 model year, will have similar features with very little variation. Of course, Ford has far more options that you can add on for a fee, and these do change by model year. The biggest change happens in the 2017 model year, when Ford starts offering the SYNC 3 infotainment system on the Explorer. SYNC 3 comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility as well as a touchscreen.

There are other premium upgrades available too, such as satellite radio, a bigger and more premium sound system, as well as several smart safety features. However, out of all these features and options, one of them is noticeably worse than the others. 

What 2016 Ford Explorer’s worst feature

According to Car Complaints, the radio on the 2016 Explorer, as well as the 2018 Explorer, just aren’t that great. Many people experienced issues with the Explorer’s radio, mostly due to the radio just not working. That said, this is a very minor issue that, and while annoying, it isn’t going to really do that much damage.

Unfortunately, Car Complaints doesn’t mention how much money it cost consumers to fix their Explorer’s radio. That said, what’s really concerning about this issue is that the average mileage of the Explorers that encountered this radio issue was very low. Car Complaints says that their average mileage was only 8,450 miles, which means that the Explorers were almost brand-new. 

Again, this radio issue wasn’t even the biggest problem with the 2016 Explorer, but it was a common one. When all of the 2016 Explorer’s problems are added up, Car Complaints gave the SUV its “Beware of the Clunker” award. That’s cause for concern as is, but the fact that Ford had radio problems also speaks to other issues as well.

Does Ford care anymore?

The radio is one of the most standard and common features that any car will have. The fact that Ford’s radios in the Explorer have been problematic raises some eyebrows. It’s strange that Ford, one of the oldest and most experienced manufacturers in the business, is still having problems with such a simple and basic feature. 

When you look at the numbers, SUVs and trucks are how Ford makes its money. But the fact that the Explorer, one of Ford’s premier SUVs, is still having so many troubles and problems despite being redesigned, says that there may be greater issues affecting Ford than the public knows about. SUVs from automakers who are trying to break into the SUV market, like the Hyundai Palisade or the Kia Telluride, seem far superior to the Explorer already. Perhaps Ford does still care about the Explorer, but based on this radio issue, that may not be true anymore.