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2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac

Overview
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2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Review

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The 2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac is the second generation of a vehicle that started a sub-trend: A truck, with sport-utility characteristics, four doors, a rather short cargo bed and an assortment of ingenious features to enhance the anticipated active lifestyles of its intended buyers. It's not quite a sport utility vehicle and it's not quite a truck. On the large size in this group are the Chevrolet Avalanche and Cadillac Escalade EXT, while more directly competitive in size is the Honda Ridgeline. The original Sport Trac was based on the Ford Explorer, as is the newest version. But the Explorer has grown up, both in size and sophistication, and so has the Sport Trac.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you want to be able to go just about anywhere, you require some truck-type cargo capacity but not necessarily a lot, you tow a trailer but not necessarily a great big one and you want the advantages of a separate body-on-frame construction and an available V8 engine, the 2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac deserves your attention.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you need a real sport utility vehicle with enclosed cargo space or a third-row seat, or you need a real truck with a full-size cargo bed, the Sport Trac is not for you.

What's New for 2009

New for 2009 is the addition of Trailer Sway Control to the AdvanceTrac stability control. New options for the Sport Trac include heated leather seats, heated side mirrors and next-generation navigation with SIRIUS Travel Link.

Driving the Explorer Sport Trac

Driving Impressions The 2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac's driving experience, both on pavement and off, is exceptionally good. No small amount of credit for this excellent behavior is due the fully-boxed frame,...

which is so remarkably stiff that visible movement between the passenger cab and cargo box is essentially undetectable, even under very rough conditions. Also playing a significant role is the independent rear suspension, a benefit borrowed from the Explorer, so that on the road the ride is smooth, even and comfortable, and off-road the wheels stay in contact with the surface and keep things going. For most folks the Sport Trac will be the best-handling, best riding truck they've ever driven.

Frame and Suspension
The fully-boxed frame and fully-independent suspension deliver a combination of ride smoothness, handling precision and off-road capability that is particularly noteworthy.

Versatile Cargo Box
The cargo box is made of composite material, so it won't rust and, with its three storage compartments, offers a lot of versatility for odds and ends of an active weekend.

2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Details
2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac photo Interior

Inside the Sport Trac everything fits well and is thoughtfully arranged. The seating is quite roomy and comfortable, in both the front and rear, and a long day behind the wheel should prove pleasant. One gripe: The odd door-pull handles are not at all intuitive even as to where they are, let alone how they work. On the good side, there's an optional heated windshield and rubber floor coverings make it easier to clean out the mud. The composite-material cargo box contains three storage bins with drain plugs. The largest is up forward under the cargo floor, requiring crawling into the cargo box to store your stuff, while the equivalent feature in the Honda Ridgeline is conveniently near the rear.

Exterior

The 2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac's exterior does a good job of striking that delicate balance between street style and off-road character, and the Ford designers have managed to make it look not exactly like a work truck, but not exactly like a soccer-mom sport utility vehicle, either. The roof rack, external cargo-box tie-downs, fairly large tires and prominent wheel arches give it a properly rugged image, while the big chrome grille and front-end treatment lend style.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Major standard equipment on the XLT includes power assists for windows, door locks and exterior mirrors, AM/FM stereo with single-disc CD player, power rear window, fog lamps, power outlets for front and rear seats and the cargo box, manual air conditioning, cruise control, outside temperature display, compass, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, 16-inch tires and AdvanceTrac, which includes the functions of traction and stability control and also features Roll Stability Control with Trailer Sway Control, which helps to inhibit potential rollovers. On the safety side the standard equipment includes front, front-side and side-curtain airbags. The standard engine is a 4.0-liter 210-horsepower V6 with a five-speed automatic transmission.

Optional Equipment

Major options include the Limited trim level, which adds 18-inch alloy wheels, step bars, six-way power driver's seat and some other trim items. Other options include upgrades to the sound system, leather seating, heated front seats, power-adjustable pedals, power moonroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, SYNC, navigation system, trailer towing package, a heated windshield and numerous other convenience and trim features. The optional four-wheel-drive system is operated by a button and includes a low range. The optional engine is the 4.6-liter V8 with six-speed automatic transmission.

Under the Hood

Most drivers will probably find the 4.0-liter V6 more than adequate for most of their driving, with 254 pound-feet of torque and plenty of acceleration to keep up with any likely traffic situation. But if your trips include filling the cargo box with dirt bikes and the inside with two or three buddies, then pulling a loaded trailer up hills, you'll probably want the V8. The biggest penalty with the larger engine would likely be real-world fuel economy, although you won't see a huge difference between the V6 and V8 in either city or highway EPA numbers.

4.0-liter V6
210 horsepower @ 5100 rpm
254 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20(2WD), 13/19 (4WD)

4.6-liter V8
292 horsepower @ 5000 rpm
315 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/21 (2WD), 14/19 (4WD)

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2009 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 184 Ratings for the 2007 - 2010 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.1/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

best mid size sports utility truck Ever Bar None

By on Wednesday, March 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "great price,drive/ride,comfortable,style....."

Cons: "better interior storage space, fuel efficiency"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Why Ford discontinued this model blows my mind! I am an owner from 2003 -2015; owning 2003 and 2010 model. For hard earned money you work for, it's money well spent. No major problems with the vehicle's engine or body construction, just maintenance and the normal odds and ends that come with most vehicle ownership. It's a good truck especially for women who need the storage capacity of the truck's bed, however without the big truck feel and driving/ parking issues some may find daunting to handle. Me I am a truck girl through and through, and my husband didn't think I needed anything larger. I disagreed at first , still desire a F-150 double cab ... or250 Harley or King Ranch,...oh well... needs and wants ... girl can dream. But this truck exceeded my expectations. My stepson drives my 2003 sports Trac. Runs well no major problems that I am aware of , other than the issues with replacing old and worn parts w a 10+yr old vehicle. Hope Ford brings it back."

I LIKE THIS VEHICLE 08 SPORT TRAC- ADRENALIN

By on Thursday, March 05, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 88,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "GOOD LOOKING MUCH BETTER THAN ANY COMPS"

Cons: "Sync system has trouble discerning names to call."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I have a Harley Davidson F150 and my SPORT TRAC ADRENALIN is just as fantastic as the Harley truck. My ADRENALIN rides great, accelerates very good, nice leather interior, and special appearance package is unique.I don't know why FORD quit making this vehicle."

Excellent platform

By on Tuesday, February 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "See above"

Cons: "Power is a little weak, but 0-60 not my aim."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have truly loved this vehicle and think it has been an excellent platform (explorer) with pickup mentality. The ford dependability and technology (serius radio, bluetooth MP3 audio, hands free calls, etc) is fantastic. I wanted to keep it for 150,000 miles. But,...sigh...I got in a wreck!!! (Ouch, my fault, to add insult to injury... No physical injury, and the vehicle protected me well!) Unfortunately, 2010 was the last year of production of this excellent vehicle....what were they thinking?? If you're interested in a second hand sport track... GET IT! Nuff said"

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Comfortable for 5, reliable, good gas mileage

By on Tuesday, December 16, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 200,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfort, gas mileage, reliable"

Cons: "Dealers."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this 2007 new. Now has 198,000 miles on it. I get 20 mpg on the highway with the 4.6 liter V8. Have not had any problems. It is comfortable and can easily haul 5 adults. I have pulled trailers and cars with it. I love it."

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Loved this vehicle

By on Friday, September 12, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Very comfortable vehicle to ride in for long dista"

Cons: "I really don't have any except for the gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"We loved this vehicle. We are sad to see it go but we are wanting something a little more economical. The gas mileage is great but not good enough for us. We would have recommended this vehicle to anyone, but since Ford no longer makes this model we can't. We have taken very good of this vehicle and hope the next owner will enjoy it also."

9 people out of 18 found this review helpful

My Dream Truck

By on Monday, September 08, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 71,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Awesome ride, everything I need."

Cons: "Cloth seats not as good as I expected."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I wanted a Sport Trac for years. In 2013 I finally decided to buy a new one. Went looking and learned the newest model available was the 2010 (why would Ford discontinue this truck?). It took a couple of months but finally found a 2010 (Red), immediately bought it. I can haul anything, the ride is comfortable and spacious. It's like driving a car with the benefits of a truck. I am frequently approached about selling it, but think I'll drive it forever (unless I get an incredible offer). Only adjustment for me was the gas mileage. I get about 18-19 in town, 19-22 on interstate trips. I guess not bad for a truck, but I was accustomed to a car with up to 30 mpg. Love this truck!!!!"

4 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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