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New, 2020 Ford Explorer Debuts As RWD, 365HP Large SUV

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New, 2020 Ford Explorer Limited SUV, blue

It’s the first SUV to ride on the Blue Oval’s new platform.

Ford has unveiled the all-new, 2020 Explorer, the latest iteration of its mainstay three-row family SUV, having previewed it days earlier with the new Ford Police Interceptor Utility Hybrid .

Whereas the previous-generation Ford Explorer is built on a front-wheel drive platform that debuted in 2008, the new model moves onto a brand-new rear-wheel-drive platform that also underpins the new Lincoln Aviator. It’s a return to form for Ford’s nearly 30-year-old nameplate.

Power is provided by a 2.3L turbocharged four-cylinder that produces 300 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft. of torque, paired to Ford’s new ten-speed automatic that drives either the rear wheels or, optionally, all four wheels.

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That output isn’t too shabby for a base engine, but buyers looking for even more oomph! will have the choice of a 3.0L turbocharged V6 with 365 horsepower and 380 lb-ft. of torque, the most powerful engine ever put in an Explorer. A hybrid powertrain will also be available.

The 3.0-liter EcoBoost equipped Explorer can tow up to 5,600 pounds (2,540 km), while models with the 2.3-liter EcoBoost and Class III Trailer Tow Package can tow up to 5,300 pounds (2,404 km).

Moving to the exterior, designers chose to give the new Ford Explore an evolutionary design that reminiscent of its predecessor, but the rear-wheel drive proportions give it a sportier, more athletic look that should appeal to more buyers.

The interior is both upscale and practical, featuring a new sliding second-row seat that eases entry to the rearmost row. The long list of standard comfort and convenience features includes a 4G LTE WiFi hot spot that can accommodate up to 10 devices, a power-operated rear hatch, and a vertically-mounted infotainment system that juts out of the dashboard like a tablet. Do you like the look?

Cargo capacity comes in at 87.8 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded and 6.1 cubic feet more than the current Explorer.

On the safety front, every Explorer now comes with Co-Pilot360, Ford’s suite of passive and active safety features that consists of a blind-spot monitor with a cross-traffic alert system, lane-keep assist, automatic high-beam headlights, and a forward collision system with automatic braking and pedestrian detection.

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An adaptive cruise control system with lane-centering technology is available, as are an automatic rear braking system and Ford’s latest parking assistant, which is able to parallel or perpendicularly park the Explorer without the driver having to touch the steering wheel or pedals.

The all-new, 2020 Ford Explorer goes on sale in summer 2019 with a starting price of $32,765 in the United States. Are you happy with how it turned out, and could you consider one for your next vehicle?

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Crossovers

Tesla Model Y Small SUV Arrives As A More Practical Model 3

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New Tesla Model Y Small SUV

The entry-level electric crossover is expected to replace the Model 3 as Tesla’s most popular model.

Tesla has finally unveiled the Model Y, an all-electric crossover that’s more important to its mass-market ambitions than even the Model 3.

Essentially a high-riding Model 3 with more seating and cargo room, the Model Y looks to capitalize on the popularity of crossovers and SUVs, which have been killing sedans the world over, both figuratively and literally. It can also be viewed as a smaller, more affordable Tesla Model X.

At launch, the Model Y will be offered in Performance and dual-motor AWD trims. The former is priced at $60,000 in the United States and will be the quickest-accelerating in the lineup, capable of launching from 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in just 3.5 seconds and hitting a top speed of 150 mph (241 km/h).

The dual-motor AWD Model Y, on the other hand, has a $51,000 price take, completes the zero-to-60-mph sprint in 4.8 seconds and is limited to a 135 mph (217 km/h) top speed. Both are expected to have a driving range of up to 280 miles (451 km/h).

There will eventually be a rear-wheel drive Long Range edition of the Model Y that starts at $47,000 and features a modest increase in driving range to 300 miles (483 km) on a single charge, though acceleration drops to 5.5 seconds.

Finally, the entry-level Model Y Standard Range kicks everything off with a “bargain basement” $39,000 price tag, but steps down to a 5.9-second zero-to-60 time, a 120-mph (193 km/h) top speed, and 230 miles (370 km) of range.

The Model Y shares approximately 75 percent of its parts with the Model 3, explaining its familiar looks inside and out. It does a good job at mimicking a baby Model X but doesn’t get falcon doors for the sake of simplicity.

Bigger dimensions means occupants benefit from for 66 cubic feet of trunk space compared to the Model 3’s 15 cubes, and having conventional doors also allows owners to install a roof rack.

The options list include a $3,000 package to upgrade the seats from five to seven, 19-inch alloy wheels ($1,500), a number of exterior color choices other than black, a black and white interior, Autopilot, and full self-driving capability.

The Performance and dual-motor AWD Model Y are scheduled to arrive by fall 2020, while production of the entry-level Model Y Standard Range isn’t expected to begin until spring 2021. You can currently reserve a Model Y by sending Tesla a refundable $2,500 deposit.

Are you happy with how Tesla’s small SUV turned out? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Crossovers

Polestar 3 Will Be A Coupe-Like SUV Rivaling Tesla Model 3

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White Polestar 2 EV

It will be the Swedish electric car brand’s first SUV-crossover.

Polestar has shifted is hard at work on it’s follow-up the Polestar 2, the company’s Tesla Model 3-fighter.

Unsurprisingly, the Pole Polestar 3 will be a utility vehicle — more specifically a coupe-like SUV — intended to capitalize on the SUV-crossover craze.

“We’ve produced the two bookends. You’ve already got the top end and the bottom end, and all of the Polestar models that we launch thereafter will be positioned in between those two,” Jonathan Goodman, Polestar’s CEO confirmed to Digital Trends. “The one that comes after the Polestar 2 is the Polestar 3. It’s a coupe-style SUV, and we will release it in the back end of 2021.”

Like the Polestar 2, the Polestar 3 will be a fully electric vehicle and will likely share a platform with the the Polestar 2. It will give Polestar an answer to the Tesla Model Y

What are you hoping to see?

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Alfa Romeo

Alfa Romeo Tonale SUV Concept Previews Alfa’s First Electrified Vehicle

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Alfa Romeo Tonale SUV Concept, live

The Italian automaker is getting ready to enter the electric vehicle segment.

Alfa Romeo used the 2019 Geneva Motor show to debut the Tonale Concept, previewing its first plug-in hybrid.

Sharing a design language with the larger Stelvio, the sleek compact crossover stands out with a large lower grille flanked by LED-array headlights that are thinner than those on the Stelvio and retro design elements like Alfa Romeo’s characteristic phone-dial wheel, which as borrowed from the 33 Stradale of the 1960s.

Highlights of the interior include a 12.3-inch full digital instrument cluster, a large 10.25-inch touchscreen for the central head unit, and premium materials ranging from aluminum to Alcantara and leather.

Technical details or a launch window for the production Tonale were not revealed, but the model was envisioned with a plug-in hybrid powertrain.

Alfa Romeo plans to launch a total of six PHEVs by the end of 2022, and the Tonale will certainly be one of them.

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