From Ford press: Ford Explorer has been the world's best-selling SUV for 15 consecutive years with sales totaling nearly 5.5 million because it adheres to a simple formula: put people first. Since its introduction in 1990, Explorer has defined the SUV segment by offering the capability of an SUV for towing and off-roading, along with innovations in package, comfort and refinement.
The 2006 Explorer's new optional three-valve 4.6-liter SOHC V-8 that shares the same variable cam timing and three-valve cylinder heads used on the highly lauded Mustang GT and the 5.4-liter Ford F-150 engine. In the Explorer, the new 4.6-liter delivers 292 horsepower (53 more horsepower than the two-valve 4.6-liter previously used) and 300 foot-pounds of torque.
V-6 certified to same level of ultra-low emissions as the Ford Escape Hybrid. Explorer's standard 4.0-liter SOHC V-6 engine received significant improvements for the 2006 model year as well. Idle quality was improved by 50 percent, thanks to a new camshaft and spark plugs. New engine calibrations and improved emission controls cut smog-forming emissions by 74 percent compared to the previous model.
The 2006 Ford Explorer's advanced engine technologies improve both the drive experience and the environment. The 2006 Explorer with the standard V-6 engine produces 74 percent less smog-forming emissions than the previous model. In fact, V-6-powered Explorers are expected to be certified to the same federal tailpipe emissions standards as the Ford Escape Hybrid, the world's cleanest SUV. Additionally, fuel economy for the all-new 4.6-liter three-valve V-8 engine paired with the new six-speed transmission is expected to increase by up to 10 percent, while delivering 53 more horsepower. Explorer's standard powertrain is a refined version of the SOHC 4.0-liter V-6, paired with a five-speed automatic. Both powertrains boast modifications to improve noise, vibration, and harshness.
The most significant powertrain improvement, from the driver's perspective, is the new 4.6-liter V-8, with three-valves per cylinder, and single overhead cams with variable cam timing. These features are common with the highly lauded 2005 Ford Mustang GT, as well as the 5.4-liter V-8 in the F-Series pickups and Expedition. With the introduction of the Explorer, Ford Motor Company is approaching one million three-valve V-8s produced. This multi-application approach to Ford's "modular" V-8s delivers benefits in manufacturing efficiencies, proven customer reliability, and performance.
In the Explorer, the 4.6-liter V-8 delivers 292 horsepower. The slight decrease in output from Mustang's 300 horsepower can be attributed to a more restrictive exhaust necessary to accommodate Explorer's available four-wheel-drive system.