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Old 11-12-2019, 04:41 PM   #1
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Anyone Towing a 2019 Ford Explorer?

Last month we were travelling west on 1-4, about 60 miles east of Tampa, FL. As always, I-4 was packed, but we were plugging along in the slow lane at 50-55 mph. All of a sudden, my wife and I hear an explosion, the motor home lurches and I see our tow car swing into the middle lane. Someone had hit us from the rear. By the grace of God, no one was injured. However, our tow car, a 2010 Ford Edge didn't survive. So, the search for a new tow car began. We decided to buy a new car so we could use it as a family car, as well as our toad. Surprise, Surprise, Ford doesn't make a 2020 car or SUV that is flat towable. In fact, we couldn't find any 2020 car or SUV that could be towed flat. However, we continued looking for options, and we may have found a solution - but we would love to have confirmation from real live users. It seems that 2019 FWD (front wheel drive) Ford Explorers, with a 3.5 engine, can be towed with 4 wheels on the ground. Is anyone out there using a 2019 Ford Explorer as their tow car?
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:10 PM   #2
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Have you looked at the Fusion Hybrid/Energi? They have always been 4-down towable.

Here is the 2019 owner's manual (PDF) go to page 225.

Can't seem to find a 2020 owner's manual but I doubt they would change the car enough that it wouldn't be flat towable (Ford doesn't really want to put that much effort into cars in the US anyway).
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Old 11-13-2019, 01:07 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NowIR1 View Post
...
Surprise, Surprise, Ford doesn't make a 2020 car or SUV that is flat towable. In fact, we couldn't find any 2020 car or SUV that could be towed flat. However, we continued looking for options, and we may have found a solution - but we would love to have confirmation from real live users. It seems that 2019 FWD (front wheel drive) Ford Explorers, with a 3.5 engine, can be towed with 4 wheels on the ground. Is anyone out there using a 2019 Ford Explorer as their tow car?

Prior to 2020... the non eco boost configurations of the Explorer were flat towable... Looks like 2020 offers ONLY eco boost... ouch...
My 2017 is flat towable, and one of the reasons I got it. (65mph speed limit)
Check the owners manual for 2019 and the particular power train... but if non eco boost, I expect it will be flat towable.
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:41 AM   #4
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Dinghy Towing Guide

Motorhome Magazine updates the models capable of flat towing each year.

Here's the 2019 guide.

https://webcontent.goodsam.com/motor...inghyGuide.pdf

The list starts on page 18.


Unfortunately, I couldn't find the 2020 guide yet.
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:37 PM   #5
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It looks like FWD dolly towing or AWD on trailer only for the 2020 Explorer

From the 2020 Ford Explorer owner's manual which is available online from Ford

Recreational Towing

Front-wheel Drive Vehicles

You cannot recreational tow your vehicle with all wheels on the ground because vehicle or transmission damage may occur. Place the front wheels on a two-wheel tow dolly. If you are using a tow dolly, follow the instructions specified by the equipment provider.

All-wheel Drive Vehicles

You cannot recreational tow your vehicle with all wheels on the ground because vehicle or transmission damage may occur. We recommend towing your vehicle with all four wheels off the ground such as when using a car-hauling trailer. Otherwise, you cannot recreational tow your vehicle.
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Old 11-13-2019, 04:45 PM   #6
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Thank you for your responses. I realize that dealership salespeople are not always the best sources of information, but that was where we learned that the 2020 Fords were not flat towable. Then, we learned that 2019 FWD (front wheel drive) Explorers, with a 3.5L engine, might be flat towable. Needless to say, we are hoping to find one or two campers who are, actually, towing that car, before we buy one.
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Old 11-14-2019, 12:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NowIR1 View Post
Last month we were travelling west on 1-4, about 60 miles east of Tampa, FL. As always, I-4 was packed, but we were plugging along in the slow lane at 50-55 mph. All of a sudden, my wife and I hear an explosion, the motor home lurches and I see our tow car swing into the middle lane. Someone had hit us from the rear. By the grace of God, no one was injured. However, our tow car, a 2010 Ford Edge didn't survive. So, the search for a new tow car began. We decided to buy a new car so we could use it as a family car, as well as our toad. Surprise, Surprise, Ford doesn't make a 2020 car or SUV that is flat towable. In fact, we couldn't find any 2020 car or SUV that could be towed flat. However, we continued looking for options, and we may have found a solution - but we would love to have confirmation from real live users. It seems that 2019 FWD (front wheel drive) Ford Explorers, with a 3.5 engine, can be towed with 4 wheels on the ground. Is anyone out there using a 2019 Ford Explorer as their tow car?
You're not looking hard enough. These are the 2020 Ford vehicles that can be flat towed:



There are 2020 Chevy vehicles that can also be flat towed such as the Equinox.
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Old 11-14-2019, 01:56 PM   #8
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If it is an SUV you are after 2020 Jeep Grand Cherokee & 2020 Jeep Cherokees 4x4 models with a 2 speed transfer case are 4 down towable. Grand Cherokee would be the model on par with the Ford Explorer.
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:18 PM   #9
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Best thing is call Ford customer service.
Our 2018 FWD Explorer is Dolly, and Flat towable.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NowIR1 View Post
Thank you for your responses. I realize that dealership salespeople are not always the best sources of information, but that was where we learned that the 2020 Fords were not flat towable. Then, we learned that 2019 FWD (front wheel drive) Explorers, with a 3.5L engine, might be flat towable. Needless to say, we are hoping to find one or two campers who are, actually, towing that car, before we buy one.
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Old 11-15-2019, 11:14 PM   #10
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Sorry to hear about your trouble inTampa NowlR1.
Sounds like it was very scary and I'm glad you are all right. We just bought a motorhome a few months ago and have not purchased a vehicle to tow yet. So I'm interested in everyone's input.
The car we own now is not able to be flat towed so we're thinking of trading it for something we can.
I'm a little nervous about towing a car as we're not used to driving the motorhome yet!
Would the people responding to this topic suggest we delay the purchase of a toad until we are more comfortable and just rent a car where we vacation?
We are both retired now but don't plan to be gone all summer.
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Old 11-16-2019, 12:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spinner View Post
Sorry to hear about your trouble inTampa NowlR1.
Sounds like it was very scary and I'm glad you are all right. We just bought a motorhome a few months ago and have not purchased a vehicle to tow yet. So I'm interested in everyone's input.
The car we own now is not able to be flat towed so we're thinking of trading it for something we can.
I'm a little nervous about towing a car as we're not used to driving the motorhome yet!
Would the people responding to this topic suggest we delay the purchase of a toad until we are more comfortable and just rent a car where we vacation?
We are both retired now but don't plan to be gone all summer.
I would recommend that you get comfortable driving the RV by itself first. That probably won't take you too long though. If you really feel uncomfortable, identify the reasons why.

If you struggle to keep it between the lines-
There are many handling & suspension upgrades available and most are not that expensive.

If it's just unfamiliarity behind the wheel of something this big-
you can probably find an RV Driving school to help make you feel a little better behind the wheel.

Once you get comfortable in the driver seat, flat towing is pretty easy. I cannot even feel my toad behind me, but I do keep the rear view camera on just to keep tabs on it and make sure I'm clear if I happen to be passing someone.
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Old 11-20-2019, 06:34 PM   #12
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Smile Towing 2019 Ford Explorer

Yes, I have been towing a 2019 Ford Explorer since Dec 2018. Only the 3.5l engines are flat towable, so forget about the 2.3l. Prep only requires warming the engine for five minutes, press the brake, start the engine, place in Drive (cycle thru Reverse) and go! Might mention that my base plate wiring includes a hot wire for the battery so I do not need to disconnect the battery. After 10K towing miles we have had no problems. Replaced a 2016 Ford Focus which was flat towable but wasnít rugged enough for towing on bad roads. But had no problems with 15K miles of towing with the 2.0l engine. As for the 2020 Explorer, the engine lineup does not include an engine/transmission that is flat towable. Not recommended in the Owners Manual. A few new 2019ís still available but any used Explorer with either of the two 3.5l engines will work.
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Old 11-20-2019, 06:46 PM   #13
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Be careful! All equinoxes can not be flat towed! Information is very wrong. We got bad info from dealers, and by calling Chevy. We bought the 2019 FWD 2.0 equinox and it can not be flat towed after we were told it could. Look at the manual from the car. We ended up keeping it for my personal use, and buying a 2015 Jeep Wrangler to tow. Check your model first!
By the way, definitely practice driving without toad first. I drive the RV with the toad now and it is very comfortable.
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Old 11-20-2019, 08:20 PM   #14
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Towing an Explorer

Be careful. The 2019 Explorer is FRONT wheel drive. The 2020 is REAR wheel drive so everything changes.
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Old 11-20-2019, 09:13 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TLeenhouts View Post
Be careful. The 2019 Explorer is FRONT wheel drive. The 2020 is REAR wheel drive so everything changes.
I don't think the change to rear-wheel drive changes much for use as a Toad. Ford touts that the 2020 Explorer now has higher tow ratings. But towing a boat/trailer/etc behind your Dingy is not an option.
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Old 11-20-2019, 11:08 PM   #16
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If you are willing to expand your possibilities for a toad l am pulling a 2015 Ford F-150 Platinum with 4 doors and 4 wheel drive, transfer case is set up from the factory flat towable. I had to replace tow hooks with tow bar brackets and install wiring harness for
rear lights. Works great will post a picture if I can figure out how
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Old 11-20-2019, 11:18 PM   #17
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Old 11-21-2019, 07:16 AM   #18
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The new 2019 Ranger 4X4 is flat towable. The handbook tells how to hook up but is not well written. Just remember when pulling a toad you cannot back up. I am very pleased with my Ranger (I did install a lockable hard cover on the bed, so I almost have a SUV)

Happy Trails, JG
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Old 11-21-2019, 12:35 PM   #19
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Thanks, again, for all of your thoughtful responses. You shared lots of good information from owner's manuals, the Dinghy Towing Guide and other sources. But it was, especially, reassuring to hear from someone (Aglass611) who is actually towing a 2019 Explorer. We are headed to Tampa today to try to get one for our empty garage.
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Old 11-21-2019, 04:03 PM   #20
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Ford Explorer 3.5l Engine

Correction to my prior posting:

Place in NEUTRAL, turn off ignition, and then go. Cannot tow in Drive.
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