The 2001 Ford Explorer is designed primarily for comfort and style, rather than the rugged off-road performance that sport utility vehicles (SUV) are normally associated with. The Ford Explorer Sport variant takes that same focus, but shrinks it down into a two-door SUV body. The smaller body results in noticeable improvements in performance, notably the tighter turning ability. The same focus on interior amenities is maintained as well. Many SUVs are very sparse with amenities, but even the stock Explorer Sport has enough to rival the average mid-price passenger vehicle. It is a small but solidly performing SUV that makes a practical everyday vehicle.
The 2001 Ford Explorer Sport serves a pretty limited niche overall in the lineup. The lack of model selection means that it is not as customizable as a standard Explorer. While it does perform a little better overall than the average Explorer, it is not by enough to be the sole selling feature. Overall, the Explorer Sport seems best suited for drivers that want a shorter length vehicle or want to get the equivalent of a somewhat kitted out Explorer XLS for less money than normal. The Explorer Sport is a good vehicle in its own right; it just does not have the same wide range of appeal a normal Explorer provides.
Body Styles: SUV
Engines: 4.0-liter six-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic
Models: Ford Explorer Sport
The 2001 Ford Explorer Sport receives a lot of minor redesigns, but no particularly major alternations to what it is loaded with. As a result, it offers improved performance, but the same features as older models.
The Ford Explorer Sport is a two-door SUV. Measuring 180.4 inches in total length, it is 10 inches smaller than the four-door Ford Explorer. The size puts it fairly close to an average sedan in overall length. Alloy wheels and a roof rack are standard equipment on all models. Most of the models also have step running boards as standard equipment.
The 2001 Ford Explorer Sport retains the comfort focus that distinguishes the Explorer from much of its competition. Standard equipment includes power locks, power mirrors, power windows, front console, AM/FM radio, CD player Mast audio, and air-conditioning. Since the Explorer Sport only has one model, it does not have the same range of interior options as the regular Explorer. Roughly speaking, it would be equivalent to the middle of the road Explorer XLS with optional features added in terms of interior amenities.
Performance & Handling
The 2001 Ford Explorer Sport adds to the already solid performance of the Ford Explorer it is based on. The six-cylinder engine provides good acceleration, pretty much on the same level as the regular model. The smaller size further reduces the turning circle, so it is about on the same level as many standard passenger cars. While not the smoothest riding vehicle, the 2001 Explorer Sport is a marked improvement over the 2000 Explorer Sport due to redesigns to the suspension.
The 2001 Ford Explorer Sport has dual-front airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, electronic brake force distribution, child safety seat anchors, and an engine immobilizer as standard equipment on every model. Side-curtain airbags are available as an optional feature.
EPA Fuel Economy
Ford Explorer Sport: 15/20 mpg city/highway
- Spacious interior
- Good safety performance
- Nice amount of standard amenities
You Won't Like
- Serves a very limited niche in the market.
The Explorer’s two-door cousin.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Chevrolet Tahoe
- GMC Denali
- Toyota Sequoia