$27,250 - $44,811

2019 Ford Explorer Interior Review


Interior: 7.2

The 2019 Ford Explorer has a nice cabin quality in upper trims but drab materials in low-end models. There's plenty of room in all seats, but comfort varies by what row you’re in. Most of the tech features are user-friendly, and the cargo space is excellent for the class.

  • "A well-made SUV. There's plenty of soft-touch materials throughout the cabin; the steering wheel has quality leather; and the trim pieces look good and fit together well. The only flaw we noticed was an occasional dash rattle that we couldn't pinpoint." -- Edmunds
  • "The interior also looks bland and unrefined in all but the Platinum trim." -- Automobile Magazine (2016)
  •  "While the interior of Platinum models is awash in fancy trim, with real wood, matte aluminum, and glossy plastic featuring prominently, lesser Explorers have seen a mild revision, too. Redesigned door panels have a more comfortable armrest, and the dash trim is nicer. But some of the Explorer's packaging limitations remain." -- Car and Driver (2016)


The Ford Explorer seats seven people on standard cloth upholstery with an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat. Optional second-row captain's chairs drop seating capacity to six. Other options include leather seats, 10-way power-adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel, heated and cooled front seats, heated outboard second-row seats, and power-folding third-row seats.

The Explorer has three complete sets of LATCH child-seat connections. In models with the second row-bench seat, the middle seat has a tether anchor and it can borrow the lower anchors from either side. All four tether anchors are hard to find, but the lower anchors are set fairly deep in the seats.

The Explorer offers plenty of space for passengers in all three rows. The front seats are plush and supportive, but the last row has hard upper seatbacks.

  • "The reasonably wide and flat front seats are cushy with good support. Nicely padded armrests. The optional second-row buckets have excellent comfort but no inner armrests. The third-row upper seatback is hard and has awkward outer armrests. … Super airy up front, with a long dash, loads of headroom and elbow space. The second-row captain's chairs recline and, unlike the standard bench seat, they slide fore and aft, granting more third-row legroom and thus space for adults or big teens in all rows." -- Edmunds
  • "From the driver's seat, however, the vehicle feels larger than it really is. That's partly due to outward vision hindered by narrow side glass and thick pillars front and rear. It's a smooth and quiet ride, though." -- Autotrader (2018)
  • "The Ford Explorer SUV … seats up to seven in its three rows, and the third row offers room for adults. The second row comes as either a 3-person bench, or it can be had with two bucket seats to ease 3rd-row access." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)

Interior Features

Standard features in the 2019 Explorer include a rearview camera, the SYNC infotainment interface, a 4.2-inch color display, Bluetooth, a USB port, a six-speaker stereo, and the MyKey system. Optional features include proximity key entry, push-button start, remote start, dual-zone automatic climate control, a seven-speaker stereo, a 12-speaker Sony audio system, satellite radio, two second-row USB ports, the SYNC 3 touch-screen system, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a 110-volt household-style power outlet, navigation, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a twin-panel moonroof, and a rear-seat DVD entertainment system.

The SYNC 3 infotainment system is user-friendly and it functions smoothly. Critics like the inclusion of many physical buttons and knobs that let you perform common tasks with ease. 

See 2019 Ford Explorer specs »

  • "The Sync 3 technology interface works well. Radio tuning uses a button; volume gets a grippy knob. We like the configurable gauge cluster display screens." -- Edmunds
  • "We're happy Ford has moved to using actual buttons for most controls, and also like the digital screen integrated into the gauges. The infotainment touch screen is a large 8-inch unit, and Ford's Sync 3 is easier to use than before and has become one of the more capable systems available." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "Ford largely nailed the updates here just by listening to consumer complaints and bringing back buttons to allow for adjustment of climate controls and so forth. What used to be a panel of touch-sensitive lines now has real buttons and knobs that mean you can actually have confidence that you have, in fact, turned on your cooled seat and not just left fingerprints on your dash." -- Cars.com (2016)


The Explorer has 21 cubic feet of cargo space behind its third row, which is one of the highest values in the class. There's 43.9 cubic feet with the third row folded down and a maximum of 81.7 cubic feet with both back rows folded. A power-folding third-row seat and a hands-free liftgate are optional.

  • "The cargo area's deep well is useful even if the total cargo volume isn't exceptional. There's a good variety of cabin storage overall." -- Edmunds
  • "Standard on the Limited, Sport and Platinum trim levels, [the hands-free power liftgate] allows you to open the Explorer's tailgate without dropping your Costco purchase and pulling the key fob from your pocket or purse. Just a wave of your foot under the SUV's rear bumper opens or closes its hatch. … Cargo space is generous." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "As you'd expect with any three-row SUV, cargo-carrying largely depends on whether you're using all three rows. With the third row up, there's not a ton of space in back for cargo, though the cargo well is fairly deep. With the third row folded flat, there's a nice flat floor to carry a number of large items." -- Cars.com (2016)

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