Flash Drive

2021 Ford Explorer Timberline

Model Tested: 2021 Ford Explorer Timberline 4WD

Ford delivers on promise to offer more rugged, off-road-capable SUVs and trucks by introducing the new Explorer Timberline; the first Timberline series Ford SUV gives customers more capable off-road features for memorable weekend adventures with family and friends

Engine: 2.3-liter Ecoboost I-4, 300 horsepower and 310 lb.-ft torque

Transmission:10-speed automatic, four-wheel-drive

EPA Rating: 19-mpg city, 23-mpg highway, 21-mpg combined

Base Price: $46,015

As Tested: $47,425


Very powerful 2.3-liter Ecoboost four-

The Ford Explorer Timberline has unique styling cues and is available in this Forged Green Metallic color.

cylinder engine

Sport mode makes noticeable improvement

Very wide range of drive modes for varying conditions

Lifted suspension—0.8-inch higher

Retuned springs

All-terrain Bridgestone Dueler tires

18-inch wheels

Front and rear skid plates

Upgraded suspension components, skid plates, and more aggressive tires are part of the Timberline package.

Torsen limited slip rear differential

Upgraded shock absorbers

Pleasant highway ride

Towing capacity of 5300 pounds


Heated front seats (3 temps)

Very comfortable, supportive seats

Heated steering wheel

Power lumbar both front seats

Stretch-out front row legroom

Excellent headroom

A spacious interior is standard Explore equipment, but the Timberline has added features.

Thick, flat bottom, contoured steering wheel

Lots of auxiliary controls

Excellent second row knee and shoe room

Big sliding range for heated Captain’s chairs

Rear HVAC controls


Red tow hooks

Factory receiver hitch

Smart phone charging pad

Power liftgate with great clearance

Cargo capacity and access is great in all Explorers.

Flat floor, no lift-over

OK cargo space behind third row

Third row seats fold flat

Full-width storage bin under cargo deck

Large front door bins

Lots of information in dash display

Ample center console storage

Locking medium size glovebox

WOW Factors:

Powerful engine, especially for its size

Rugged off-road suspension components

Power lumbar support both front seats

Excellent interior room and comfort

Great steering wheel

Back seat room and comfort are great in all Explorers. These are Captain’s chairs in a Platinum package.


We got below EPA estimated fuel economy

Bottom Line:

The 2021 Ford Explorer Timberline is an enhanced version of the standard Explorer with added suspension/mechanical features aimed at buyers who take their SUV off paved roads. The package includes tasteful exterior and interior Timberline themed touches. The 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine seems small (on paper) for this size SUV, but it’s quite powerful and does a fine job on and off highways. The Explorer Timberline has all

The new Ford Explorer Timberline is a great family adventure SUV.

the popular Explorer features plus more adventure ready capabilities.