Ford expects to begin building the electric Explorer in June, second EV by the end of 2024

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Ford is gearing up to build the first electric Explorer models this summer. The first Ford Explorer EVs are now expected to reach customers in August. Ford also expects to begin production of its second EV by the end of 2024.

After delaying the launch of its all-electric Explorer, Ford wants to begin production in June. That’s about eight months later than expected.

Ford unveiled the electric version of its best-selling SUV in Europe last March. The electric SUV is the first EV spawned from a partnership with Volkswagen in 2020 to use its MEB platform. Ford says the electric Explorer “combines German engineering with striking American style.”

The Explorer will be the first EV built at Ford’s upgraded Cologne factory. Ford invested about $2 billion to upgrade the facility to build electric vehicles.

Despite the hype, Ford delayed the start of production by about eight months. Cologne-based media Kölnische Rundschau first reported the news last summer.

Ford said production would begin at the end of 2023, with sales opening in early 2024. However, the automaker pushed it back due to a new battery standard.

Ford electric Explorer SUV (Source: Ford)

Ford plans electric Explorer, second EV production

After a delay of over half a year, Ford wants to begin building the Explorer EV in June, according to German newspaper Automobilwoche.

A company spokesperson confirmed that the first deliveries are now scheduled for August in Cologne Tuesday.

Ford electric Explorer at Cologne plant (Source: Ford)

Series production of Ford’s second EV based on VW’s platform is planned by the end of 2024. Fords European headquarters is in Cologne, where it develops and produces vehicles.

The electric Ford Explorer is a “road-trip ready” mid-size SUV. It includes a massive movable touchscreen, 470 liters of storage, and Ford’s advanced driver assist.

It will be available in Europe in two trims – the Explorer and Explorer Premium. The base trim is expected to start under $50,000 (€45,000).

The new EVs are part of Ford’s plan to go all-electric in Europe by 2035. Ford’s lineup will include nine EVs. The electric Explorer is expected to play a big role in Ford’s goal to sell 600,000 EVs annually in Europe by 2026.

Electrek’s Take

Ford delaying EV production in Europe will likely set it further behind. The automaker is already pushing back around $12 billion in EV spending in the US.

Although it’s only eight months, this is a critical time for automakers to transition their supply chains and prepare for an electric future. More importantly, rivals are launching new models at a record pace.

By the time the electric Explorer begins rolling out, rivals like Tesla, VW, and Chinese automakers like BYD will have already ramped up output.

The electric Explorer, at $50,000 (€45,000) may not seem like a great deal compared to competitors in another six months.

BYD already announced it was slashing prices on its electric SUV, the Atto 3, by up to 15% in Germany. Will Ford be able to compete?

For those in the US, Ford confirmed it will launch an electric three-row SUV. The SUV is designed for road trips with a spaceous interior and up to 350 miles range. Ford already ruled out an electric Expedition, suggesting this will be the Explorer EV we’ve been waiting for.

Ford said the electric SUV will be affordable, but didn’t give specifics on pricing. The automaker is also launching its next-gen electric pickup in the US, called the T3 project. Ford’s CEO Jim Farley described it as being “like the Millennium Falcon – with a back porch attached.” Perhaps like Tesla’s Cybertruck?

We’ll have to wait and see with Ford’s next-gen EV platform due out in 2025. Stay tuned for the latest on Ford’s transition to EVs.

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