There’s no feeling quite like hitting the road and getting out of town. Whatever flavour you favour – off-roading or heading into the desert to camp and stargaze around the fire – you’re in for a treat that breaks up the day-to-day of the work week and provides memories that last a lifetime.
Any extraordinary journey requires the right vehicle, but driving off the beaten track without fully understanding how to approach different conditions can be intimidating – and even dangerous. So here are some tips to help you get the most out of your journey and take on the world with confidence.
Feel the Sand Between Your… Tyres
As Robert Frost once opined, sometimes it’s taking the road less travelled that makes all the difference. But the trouble with roads less travelled is that they’re often also less paved, less comfortable, and sometimes covered in – or entirely made of – sand. When heading through tough terrain with sand, you want to avoid wheel slippage and keep momentum to avoid getting stuck. But sand, rocks or mud shouldn’t be enough to stop you getting where you want to go.
If you’re in an Explorer 4×4, you have a head start with Intelligent 4WD and Terrain Management, plus Hill Decent Control, which will give you the confidence you need to tackle the toughest off-road environments with ease.
Tow, Tow, Tow Your Boat (or ATV)
What good is a boat, jet ski, or quad bikes parked in a driveway? Without pulling power to reach the terrain you’re yearning, you’re stranded on land, and that’s no fun.
Before planning any trips with a heavy trailer, make sure you have a vehicle up for the job – and double check your owner’s manual to make sure your trailer is within the recommended towing limits. Also get to know any helpful tech your vehicle comes with. The Ford Explorer, for example, can tow more than 2,250 kg and uses advanced Trailer Sway Control technology to give you control and confidence at any speed to help get you out of the driveway and into the water or daring to take on the dunes.
They say gazing into the nighttime heavens is like locking eyes with the universe, and there are few better ways to end a day of tough off-roading after escaping the city.
The Explorer’s available dual-panel moonroof with power sunscreen covers the first and second rows, brightens up the interior giving you and your family their own personal skylight and a window to the stars – the ultimate HD display.
Enjoy the Sounds of Nature
There’s nothing quite like the blare of a horn, the rattling clatter of an ancient utility vehicle, or the clamour from a construction site to add another layer of frustration to the slog of a traffic jam.
Luckily, life isn’t all traffic jams, and once you’re in the wild remember to put your windows down and enjoy the sounds of nature. Whether that’s the swell of a mountaintop wind or the burbling of a roiling river is entirely up to you. Until you get there, though, the Explorer’s available 12-speaker in 10 locations – including two subwoofers – Sony system helps reduce distortion and enhance sound presence for a crisp and clean listening experience. For 2017, making the connection and smooth transition between devices and soothing Sony sounds, is the latest generation of Ford’s innovative high-tech SYNC®3 communications and entertainment system, which supports Arabic for the first time – both text and voice activation – enabling simpler control for Arabic-speaking drivers.
Located behind the third-row seats in the 2017 Ford Explorer, on the left-hand quarter panel trim, are four control buttons with which to PowerFold the entire row with one touch, opening up the boot to such a space that you can stow all the gadgets and gear you need for your weekend getaway adventure.
Best-in-class standard second-row head room, and third-row leg room will give your road-trippers more breathing space. Add to this the second-row 60/40 split bench with armrest and dual cup holders for added comfort and convenience and you may not even want to get out of the Explorer when you reach your destination.
Getting There Safely
Ford understands that it’s not only about the destination, but getting you there as safely as possible. The Intelligent 4WD Terrain Management System helps provide surefootedness in a variety of road conditions, while AdvanceTrac with Roll Stability Control and Curve Control enhances confidence in slippery conditions.
The strong unibody structure of Explorer helps to protect occupants should you be involved in a collision, and with seven standard airbags – dual-stage front, front-seat side, front-passenger knee and Safety Canopy System – and the offering of available automotive industry-exclusive inflatable rear safety belts for second-row outboard seating positions, you can rest-assured that your safety on your weekend getaway is in strong hands.
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