Jones Ford Buckeye Compares 2016 Ford Explorer VS 2016 GMC Acadia Near Phoenix, AZ

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2016 Ford Explorer

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VS

2016 GMC Acadia

Safety Comparison

The middle row seatbelts optional on the Explorer inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The Acadia doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Explorer 4WD’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Acadia doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

The Explorer XLT/Limited/Sport/Platinum has standard Reverse Sensing System to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or, optionally, in front of the vehicle. The Acadia doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the Explorer and the Acadia have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, collision warning systems, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH, results indicate that the Ford Explorer is safer than the GMC Acadia:

Explorer

Acadia

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Hip Force

214 lbs.

318 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

The Explorer’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Acadia’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

There are over 74 percent more Ford dealers than there are GMC dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Explorer’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the Explorer’s reliability will be 6% better than the Acadia.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2015 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than GMC vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 12th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, GMC is ranked 16th, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

The Explorer has more powerful engines than the Acadia:

Horsepower

Torque

Explorer 2.3 turbo 4 cyl.

280 HP

310 lbs.-ft.

Explorer 3.5 DOHC V6

290 HP

255 lbs.-ft.

Explorer Sport/Platinum 3.5 turbo V6

365 HP

350 lbs.-ft.

Acadia SLE/SLT 3.6 DOHC V6

281 HP

266 lbs.-ft.

Acadia Denali 3.6 DOHC V6

288 HP

270 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford Explorer 2.3 EcoBoost is faster than the Acadia SLE/SLT:

Explorer

Acadia

Zero to 60 MPH

8.2 sec

8.4 sec

Quarter Mile

16.3 sec

16.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

84.5 MPH

83.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Explorer gets better fuel mileage than the Acadia:

Explorer

Acadia

2WD

2.3 EcoBoost/Auto

19 city/28 hwy

n/a

3.5 V6/Auto

17 city/24 hwy

15 city/22 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

4WD

2.3 EcoBoost/Auto

18 city/26 hwy

n/a

3.5 V6/Auto

16 city/23 hwy

15 city/22 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

3.5 EcoBoost V6/Auto

16 city/22 hwy

n/a

The Explorer has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Acadia doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Explorer’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Acadia:

Explorer

Acadia

Front Rotors

13.85 inches

12.8 inches

Rear Rotors

13.5 inches

13 inches

The Explorer stops much shorter than the Acadia:

Explorer

Acadia

60 to 0 MPH

123 feet

138 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The Explorer Base/XLT’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Acadia SL/SLE’s standard 65 series tires. The Explorer’s optional tires have a lower 50 series profile than the Acadia Denali’s 55 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Explorer has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Acadia’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Explorer has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Explorer flat and controlled during cornering. The Acadia’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The Explorer Limited 4WD handles at .80 G’s, while the Acadia SLT AWD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Explorer Limited 4WD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Acadia SLT AWD (27.7 seconds @ .63 average G’s vs. 28.2 seconds @ .59 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Explorer Base/XLT/Limited’s turning circle is 1.5 feet tighter than the Acadia’s (38.9 feet vs. 40.4 feet). The Explorer Sport’s turning circle is .4 feet tighter than the Acadia’s (40 feet vs. 40.4 feet).

For greater off-road capability the Explorer has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Acadia (7.8 vs. 7.6 inches), allowing the Explorer to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

The Ford Explorer may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 200 pounds less than the GMC Acadia.

The front grille of the Explorer uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Acadia doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Explorer has 1.1 inches more front headroom, 1.6 inches more front legroom, 1 inch more rear headroom, 2.7 inches more rear legroom and .1 inches more third row legroom than the Acadia.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Explorer has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Acadia doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Explorer Sport/Platinum’s optional second and third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Acadia doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Explorer’s cargo door can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Acadia doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its cargo door, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Explorer’s standard driver’s power window opens or closes with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Acadia’s standard driver’s power window switch has to be held the entire time to close it fully. The Explorer XLT/Limited/Sport/Platinum’s front power windows both open or close with one touch of the switches. The Acadia’s optional front passenger window doesn’t close automatically.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Explorer XLT/Limited/Sport/Platinum’s exterior keypad. The Acadia doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its OnStar ® can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

Intelligent Access standard on the Explorer XLT/Limited/Sport/Platinum allows you to unlock the driver’s door, cargo door and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading groceries, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The GMC Acadia doesn’t offer an advanced key system.

The Explorer’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Acadia’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted. The Explorer’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Explorer has a standard rear variable intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Acadia only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Explorer (except Base/XLT/Sport) detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Acadia doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

Both the Explorer and the Acadia offer available heated front seats. The Explorer Limited/Platinum also offers optional heated second row seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated second row seats aren’t available in the Acadia.

A built-in pollen filter removes pollen, exhaust fumes and other pollutants from the Explorer’s passenger compartment. This helps prevent lung and/or sinus irritation, which can trigger allergies or asthma. The Acadia doesn’t offer a filtration system.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Explorer (except Base/XLT) offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Acadia doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Explorer (except Base/XLT/Sport)’s optional Enhanced Active Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Acadia doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

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