|The 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum 4WD.|
When I walked out of my office building to meet the delivery guy who was picking up the 2016 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid and dropping off the 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum 4WD, I saw the Explorer sitting in the lot, the sun gleaming off its gorgeous Ruby Red Metallic paint.
"Man, that's pretty", I told him as I took the key fob and signed the paperwork. I glanced at the bottom line of the window sticker and was shocked. $55,155 is big SUV money, at least in my mind. Psychologically, subconsciously, I expect something in the Explorer's size class to stay on the sane side of $50K.
|2016 Ford Explorer Platinum 4WD.|
Regular TireKicker readers know that I have no deep need for luxury. I can appreciate it, but I don't crave it. Or didn't until I drove the Explorer home from the day job on night one.
|2016 Ford Explorer Platinum AWD audio and HVAC controls.|
The automatic climate control needed zero fiddling....set it and forget it. Virtually instant comfort, which given that Sacramento was going through its (hopefully) final burst of 100-degree days this year, was no mean feat. On top of that, the Explorer Platinum has both heated (red buttons) and air-conditioned (blue buttons) seats. Heated seats are fairly common. Ventilated ones less so, and truly chilled ones are still something of a rarity outside the luxo crowd.
|2016 Ford Explorer Platinum 4WD interior.|
Decadent. Unnecessary. Frivolous.
I want it every single day for the rest of my life. And $55,155 sounds like a perfectly reasonable price to pay.
In all seriousness, if Lincoln had made its customers feel as pampered in its vehicles the past 40 years or so, we'd still be talking about driving a Lincoln in envious, reverent tones.
Base price for the Explorer Platinum 4WD is $52,970 with all the above, a twin-panel moonroof, 20-inch machine-faced wheels, heated second-row seats, adaptive cruise control, a Class III trailer towing package, a front 180-degree camera, hill descent control, lane-keeping system, rear view camera, remote start, reverse sensing, voice-activated navigation and a full complement of safety features.
The only extra cost options were the Ruby Red Metallic paint ($395), 2nd row bucket seats ($695) and a 2nd row console ($150). Add $945 destination and delivery and there's your $55,155.
The 3.5-liter Ecoboost V6 with a six-speed automatic transmission has plenty of power and gets fairly grim mileage...the EPA says 16 city/22 highway...we managed 18 in a 50/50 mix of city streets and urban freeways...which, coincidentally, is the EPA combined average. The window sticker says you can expect to spend $3,500 more in fuel costs over 5 years compared to the average new vehicle.
Were I to be able to give in to my newfound hedonism and sign on the dotted line for the Explorer Platinum, I'm sure that added gas expense wouldn't worry me a bit.