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2014 Ford Explorer: A Popular SUV

Long back in the year 1991, when Ford introduced its Ford Explorer a number one sport utility vehicle of that time, which eventually cemented the popularity of SUVs offered a rather rugged alternative to awkward station wagons and at that time it was considered a perfect vehicle. Ever since, the SUV landscape has gone through the tremendous change, but in 2014 as well Ford has kept its basics right and has introduced the all new 2014 Ford Explorer with that same old nostalgic feel. The excellent combination of power, refined interiors, fuel economy and much more has made it even more desirable than before.

To keep pace with the modern SUV market, Ford has adopted the carlike unibody structure to construct Ford, thus taking break from their truck like underpinnings, which is common in all their older models. The biggest advantage for Ford with this new body construction is that it offers more cabin space, improved fuel economy and comfortable ride, all these features come as a basic expectation from any family vehicle and Ford Explorer has managed to meet them all. From inside as well, this time Ford has kept its interiors upscale, adding seven passenger seat option along with a comprehensive list of safety and convenience features. There are also some advanced and unique options available like heated back seats, which are not very common in SUVs of the same price band. Second row seat belt airbags along with lane departure and lane warning systems are all newly added features for traditional 2014 Ford Explorer.

Ford has kept its engine standard V6 offering 290 horsepower, which is perfect to meet the needs of buyers, but to make it more interesting Ford has included 2.0 liter four cylinder engine as an added advantage. However, the buyer has to pay additionally for this engine but trust us it’s completely worthwhile because its power and fuel economy are best in this class. If you are still looking for the performance oriented Ford Explorer, than the company has also introduced its Explorer Sport Model with 3.5 liter turbocharged V6 engine with the power of generating 365 horsepower. Along with this, the sport version also offers firm suspension tuning and refurbished interior/exterior trim details.

Talking about the drawbacks of 2014 Ford Explorer, we got the conclusion that they mainly depend on the priority of the buyer. For example, if all member of your family are tall, than you might not find the second and third row seats comfortable as they are less roomier if compared to other crossovers. Same goes for its cargo space and its MyFord touch interface which has frequent glitches while operating. Also, the 2014 Ford Explorer feels bigger than it actually is while behind the wheel and is not at all an easy vehicle to maneuver while driving in tight spaces.

Possible alternative for 2014 Ford explorer are 2014 Chevrolet Traverse, 2014 Dodge Durango, 2014 Mazda CX-9 and Fords’ Sibling Ford Flex as they all are roomier, versatile and upscale with many comforts which are not available in 2014 Ford Explorer.

First Look: 2014 Mazda CX-9

Standing out from the current line up from the brand, the new 2014 Mazda CX-9 is not only the brand’s largest vehicle, but it’s also a holdover from another era at the automaker; the era before the brand decided to “go it alone” away from Ford and focus on engineering more lightness and fuel efficiency into its cars and crossovers. Although the 2014 Mazda CX-9 is not a class leader in gas mileage, like those other models, it still ranks as one of the better large crossover options if you need three rows of seating and a responsive, almost nimble driving demeanor.

It was only last year that the Mazda CX-9 received a modest set of upgrades with a new snout that closely matches the frond-end look of the recently redesigned CX-5 compact crossover, Mazda 3 compact car family and the Mazda 6 Sedan. Already, the Mazda CX-9 has been one of the better looking vehicles in its class but the Kodo ‘soul of motion’ design language applied  with only the new front end and rear details to the 2014 Mazda CX-9 is a good fit with the SUV’s existing side profile. A number of minor aesthetic changes to the cabin can be seen in the 2014 Mazda CX-9. The centre stack area has been redesigned to accommodate a 5.8 inch touchscreen and overall the interior look, while clearly carried over is the better fit with the CX-5’s somewhat more upright look. The dashboard in the CX-9 features a graceful waterfall design that flows into the door panels with uncommon flair.

Performance changes aren’t much for the 2014 Mazda CX-9 and that is a good thing. The 3.7 liter ‘MZR’ V-6 engine produces a 273 horsepower and runs on regular gas. Mated to a six speed automatic transmission with manual shift control, the engine accelerates the crossover from zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds for a front wheel drive configuration. An all wheel drive model needs 8.5 seconds for the same. The fuel economy is on par with that of other large crossovers at an EPA-estimated 19 mpg combined (17 mpg city/24 mpg highway) for front wheel drive models. The 2014 Mazda CX-9 AWD drops to 18 mpg combined (16 mpg city/22 mpg highway).

Offering amazingly strong acceleration for both around town driving and highway passing the Mazda CX-9 impresses with its agile responses. An accomplished highway cruiser, this SUV keeps road and wind noises to acceptable levels for backseat movie viewing and such. The steering, so precise, enable the driver to carve a consistent path no matter if one powers down the interstate or makes time on a rural two-way road. The steep rake of the windshields adds to the sporty vibe of the giant crossover. The suspension is a combination of compliance and poise and this is one of the best handling crossovers around.

Yes there are competitors like the Ford Explorer, Chevy Traverse, Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot and Nissan Pathfinder, but the 2014 Mazda CX-9 stands out with its powerful V6 engine, dynamic handling, agile responses and a stunning body.

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