With the 2021 Enthusiast ST stealing the show in regards to the Explorer’s 2021 updates, Ford wanted to ensure that no stone was left unturned and has revealed that the range-topping Explorer Platinum will also receive some new additions for 2021 with the trim now adding a rear-wheel-drive option and even a hybrid flavored model for fuel-conscious buyers.
Rear Wheel Drive For The Jet Set Sets Explorer Platinum Apart
In its base form, the $54,480 Explorer Platinum is a very potent statement of luxury with perforated leather seats, warm wood accents, and standard all-wheel-drive to buyers looking to have a balanced luxury SUV package. Like the Explorer ST, though, this high degree of standard equipment comes with a high price tag that might lock some SUV buyers out of the model.
That’s where the rear-wheel-drive Platinum variant comes in, with the model expected to be popular in areas where buyers want luxury but might not need the four-season capability that all-wheel-drive brings to the table. The removal of all-wheel-drive helps shave $2,000 off the price with the rear-wheel-drive model starting at $52,480. While this might not seem like that much of a price cut, it could be just enough to lure in a few more buyers, especially in sunny areas.
Coddling In A Greener Package
In addition to the rear-wheel-drive Platnium, Ford is also pushing its range-topper into greener pastures with the new $53,085 Hybrid model. This is the first model year that the Platnium gets access to hybrid power, and it will serve as a more fuel-conscious alternative to the powerful but thirsty 3.0 liter twin-turbocharged V6. Ford claims that the Hybrid will broaden the Explorer’s reach and perhaps allow the Platinum version to serve as an example of Ford blending high feature content with fuel-conscious performance tech.
The appearance of the Platinum Hybrid also coincides with Ford’s renewed efforts towards enhancing its green vehicle lineup with electric vehicles like the Mach-E and hybrid models to play very key roles in helping Ford reach its long-term environmental targets.
Like the Enthusiast ST, these new flavors of Platnium can be ordered by customers at their local Ford dealership, with the first models arriving in dealer lots this summer. When it arrives, the updated Platnium and its wild west themed counterpart, the King Ranch, will go to war with rivals such as the Toyota Highlander Platinum Hybrid and a growing sea of other contenders
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.