• Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^

Suspension/ride quality on 2020 vs. 2019

bcarlson

Member
Joined
September 1, 2019
Messages
26
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2015 BMW 328
I recently rented a 2019 Explorer XLT and overall I thought it was a good vehicle, considering it was just a base version. However, I found that on city streets the suspension was so bouncy/jiggly in normal driving that one of my more sensitive passengers started to get car sick. The TPMS said the tires were at 36 psi, so pressures were a little high but not completely out of reasonable. My current vehicle is a 2015 BMW 328i M Sport and even with the tires inflated 5 psi above recommended it has a much smoother and better controlled ride than the Explorer XLT on a city street.

Did they improve the suspension on the 2020, and/or would it have a better ride if it was a Limited or ST version?

Bruce
 


Join the Elite Explorers for $20 per year. Gets rid of the ads! New $5 per month "try out" option.

Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




peterk9

Staff member
Moderator
Elite Explorer
Joined
December 28, 2010
Messages
30,085
Reaction score
2,075
City, State
Russell, Ontario (Ottawa area)
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Aviator Reserve
Callsign
VE3
The ST would have a slightly 'harder' ride since it has a differently tuned suspension. The wheelbase of the 2020 is 6" longer than the 5th gen so that should provide a slightly better ride. The only way to tell if it is better for you is to actually take one for a test drive. Although the Explorer is a unibody, it still does not ride like a car.

Peter
 




bcarlson

Member
Joined
September 1, 2019
Messages
26
Reaction score
6
Year, Model & Trim Level
2015 BMW 328
I used to own an Expedition and I currently own a GMC pickup truck, so I think I understand the expectations for truck vs. car ride quality. However, even Car and Driver described the new Explorer ride by saying "When the road turns rough, the Explorer is overwhelmed by its busy body motions.", so it may not be much different than the feel of the 2019 XLT suspension. I just wondered if the ride gets better if you move up to the higher trim versions.

Bruce
 




themishmosh

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 10, 2019
Messages
367
Reaction score
90
City, State
NE Ohio
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
The ST suspension is barely "sport". It's 9-10% stiffer springs but I don't thinking damping is greater and that's what it really needs. The ride is bouncy and ungainly on even modestly uneven surfaces. I am reminded of a 4 Runner ride quality which is to say "truck". It doesn't handle great but is acceptable. I don't even appreciate the benefits of RWD bias like I have in other cars (ie. BMW Xdrive).
 




irl4512

Member
Joined
August 21, 2014
Messages
46
Reaction score
10
City, State
Grimes, IA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
We had a 2014 sport and now drive a 20 ST. I’m really disappointed how rough the ride is. You feel every single imperfection in the road. Yes, it’s a blast to drive, but the trade off is the harsh ride. Not to mention the yet to be solved mystery suspension noise that many ST owners have discussed on another thread.
 




Axles of Evil

Active Member
Joined
October 9, 2019
Messages
66
Reaction score
21
City, State
Louisiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Platinum
May need to offload the shocks in favor of Bilsteins. Seems like Ford OEM shocks suck anyway....
 




dstewart51

Elite Explorer
Joined
July 29, 2019
Messages
299
Reaction score
140
City, State
Lake Hughes, CA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
Callsign
KJ7E
Ride quality and firmness is very subjective. One says its too soft, one says its too stiff, I tend to think Ford did a good job balancing the ride on the ST, its modestly firm to allow moderately spirited driving but I still consider it civilized and anything but harsh and uncomfortable. That said, I will be first on the list to swap out the OEM shocks for Bilstein B6 Monotubes as soon as they are available, I have always had great luck with the B6 parts, both more firm slow speed damping with a highly digressive curve to absorb sharp edge hits. This gives a more planted ride at speed but less harshness on potholes or sharp bumps.
 




peterk9

Staff member
Moderator
Elite Explorer
Joined
December 28, 2010
Messages
30,085
Reaction score
2,075
City, State
Russell, Ontario (Ottawa area)
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Aviator Reserve
Callsign
VE3
We had a 2014 sport and now drive a 20 ST. I’m really disappointed how rough the ride is. You feel every single imperfection in the road. Yes, it’s a blast to drive, but the trade off is the harsh ride. Not to mention the yet to be solved mystery suspension noise that many ST owners have discussed on another thread.
Have you checked your tire pressures? New Vehicle High PSI Readings Upon Delivery

Peter
 




themishmosh

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 10, 2019
Messages
367
Reaction score
90
City, State
NE Ohio
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
Nothing I've read say the shocks on the ST are any different than the base Explorer. Stiffer springs without better shocks is exactly what this ride is like...bouncy and rough, with body motions at times herky/jerky and floaty. I actually do not feel small road imperfections are very penal and mostly attributable to the rim size and tires. Bilstein HD shocks would make a world of difference.
 




dstewart51

Elite Explorer
Joined
July 29, 2019
Messages
299
Reaction score
140
City, State
Lake Hughes, CA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
Callsign
KJ7E
Nothing I've read say the shocks on the ST are any different than the base Explorer. Stiffer springs without better shocks is exactly what this ride is like...bouncy and rough, with body motions at times herky/jerky and floaty. I actually do not feel small road imperfections are very penal and mostly attributable to the rim size and tires. Bilstein HD shocks would make a world of difference.

The shocks and struts are different on the ST, I just had to replace a leaky one on mine, it was backordered for a month.
 








dstewart51

Elite Explorer
Joined
July 29, 2019
Messages
299
Reaction score
140
City, State
Lake Hughes, CA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
Callsign
KJ7E
Yes, we lowered the pressure to the correct amount. Great question though! It was unbearable on our first test drive when they were at 45 psi.

How many miles do you have on it? Maybe things will loosen up a bit with a few miles under its belt.
 




Michael Lopour

Well-Known Member
Joined
March 16, 2019
Messages
159
Reaction score
34
City, State
Scottsdale AZ
Year, Model & Trim Level
Expedition Limited 302A
I didn't test drive an XLT or a '20 Explorer, but for reference the ride quality of my '19 Platinum is better than the Santa Fe Sport (19") I had but not quite as settled as the Q5 (with 19" wheels) I had before that. I don't think I'd want to sacrifice handling for a slightly better ride, but sometimes do wish for slightly less road noise.
 




irl4512

Member
Joined
August 21, 2014
Messages
46
Reaction score
10
City, State
Grimes, IA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Explorer ST
How many miles do you have on it? Maybe things will loosen up a bit with a few miles under its belt.
2500 or so. It does seem a little better than when it was brand new. It most definitely has less road noise than the 2014, and I love the engine sound even when not in sport mode. There’s no question you’re driving something with some power.
 




Forddealz

Well-Known Member
Joined
December 2, 2015
Messages
694
Reaction score
71
City, State
NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
2020 Ford Explorer ST
2500 or so. It does seem a little better than when it was brand new. It most definitely has less road noise than the 2014, and I love the engine sound even when not in sport mode. There’s no question you’re driving something with some power.

Yeah, some people say that the interior front section is plastic and the button door part is black plastic. I am starting to like to rotari dial, 360 degree cam and many other nice features.

But it's a fun car to drive for sure.
 




Top