Want to see it in person? You can this weekend.
Ford is serious about performance beyond models like the Mustang and GT. Everyone should have access to fun behind the wheel within every vehicle segment. That's why the Blue Oval has been expanding its ST lineup to the Edge and Explorer. There was also the dearly departed Fiesta ST and Focus ST. And now the Ford Performance Racing School has something unique coming to this weekend's Woodward Dream Cruise in Detroit, Michigan.
This modified version of the Ford Explorer ST is described as "a work in progress" as more modifications and improvements are added. Engineers have done quite a lot already.
For starters, the SUV has received a custom fabricated four-passenger safety cage, Recaro racing seats with four-point safety harnesses for all four passengers and racing window nets for all doors. Brembo six-piston aluminum brake calipers are equipped up front with 16.5-inch vented rotors taken directly from the Mustang Shelby GT500. Then there's racing brake fluid and 5W-30 oil courtesy of Castrol, and track series wheels wearing Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 rubber. Power comes from the familiar 3.0-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 with 400 horsepower.
The exterior has been enhanced with a graphics package from Lue Creative. "Already fast and nimble, our goal with our modified vehicle is to take this already capable platform and turn up the volume a bit… further unleashing the beast into one capable of thrilling up to four people on the track - all in a safe and controlled manner," said the president of Ford Performance Racing School, Dan McKeever.
Anyone attending this weekend's live event can check out this track-ready SUV at the racing school's live display located in the middle of "Mustang Alley," a massive gathering of over 600 privately-owned Mustangs. Welcome to Detroit, folks. Ford's racing school has been around since 2006 and offers a variety of track programs for owners of new Ford Performance vehicles.
If you're dropping money on something like a Mustang Mach 1, you might as well learn how to drive it the way it was meant to be. Don't expect this specific Explorer ST to reach even limited production, but it does demonstrate the full extent of the SUV's capabilities beyond daily driving and off-roading.