Chain Lightning - 2003 Centennial Edition | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Chain Lightning - 2003 Centennial Edition

This is my 2003 Explorer, Centennial Edition. I found it at a tiny dealer way up in Sedro-Woolley, WA, on January 21, 2022. I was on a plane to Bellingham, WA, the morning of January 22. 4.6L, AWD, every option except the rear DVD. She had 195,000 miles when I got her, and I immediately drove her almost 1000 miles home to Sparks, NV.

With some exceptional help from one of our members, I was able to determine the following...

Out of the 4000 planned Centennial Edition Explorers, 3167 were built.

Of those, only 304 are all-wheel drive.

Of those, 272 are equipped with the 4.6L engine.

This one, as optioned, is one of thirty-seven.

The first set of photos are how I got her.

I've been after one of these for over ten years, and now I have one.

Engine - completely stock
Transmission - completely stock
Suspension - Bell Tech lowering springs
Tires - Continental ExtremeContact, 275/40ZR20
Wheels - Adrenalin/late 4th Gen factory 20s, chromed by California Chrome
Infotainment - Atoto S8 Premium Android head unit, Rockford Fosgate Punch 6x8s (P1683) and 8" shallow-mount sub (P3SD2-8), with Kenwood 5 channel amplifier (X802-5)

Mustang-spec Coyote 5.0 &10R80 swap (3rd Gen)

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Interior. About as clean as could be, with minimal wear on the driver's seat and steering wheel.

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Current status...

Ever since I decided I was going to own this one day, I wanted to lower it and install Adrenalin wheels. So I did.

Wheels were chromed by California Chrome, and I would not hesitate to use their services again. Tires are Continental ExtremeContact in 275/40-20.

Sound system is in progress, with an Atoto Android head unit, Rockford Fosgate Punch 6x8s and 8" sub in the factory box, and a Kenwood 5 channel amp.

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We ran this in the Nevada Open Road Challenge last weekend. Open road racing, 122 miles total, in the 110 MPH average class.

Full southbound run -



What's the top speed of your explorer? I'd like to do some open road racing.

We hit 121 (our class has a max of 124 before we get disqualified, so I didn't want to push it).

I used a tuner to yank the speed limiter out, and lowered the rev limiter a bit. At 120 MPH in 5th, I was turning about 3500 RPM.

Made another run through the Nevada desert, this time in the Silver State Classic Challenge, 100 MPH class. Video below is from one specific part of the course, which we ran 15-20 MPH faster than last time. Truck setup is the same as before.