The current Ford Explorer lineup will get a little smaller in 2010 when FoMoCo drops the Explorer Sport Trac and the Mercury Mountaineer SUV. The move will come when Ford switches the Explorer from a body-on-frame to a unibody platform, suppliers told Automotive News.
The unibody 2011 Ford Explorer, based on the D3 platform used on the new 2010 Ford Taurus, will go into production in 2010 at the company’s Torrence Avenue plant. Expect an EcoBoost model to follow after the standard gasoline engine choices make their debut.
Sales of the Explorer have seen a drastic decline since the model’s popularity in the 1990s. In its peak year in 1999, FoMoCo sold 507,091 Explorers and 49,281 Mountaineers.
In 2008, sales of the Explorer declined to a staggering 78,439, while Mountaineer sales were 10,596. Both nameplates are down more than 50 percent so far in 2009.
– By: The Daily Auto Editor