2024 Mazda CX-90 vs Ford Explorer Comparison

2024 Mazda CX-90 vs Ford Explorer Detailed Comparison

In the realm of large SUVs, the 2024 Mazda CX-90 and 2023 Ford Explorer present compelling options with distinct characteristics. Mazda’s CX-90 aims for luxury with its premium features, stylish design, and powerful turbocharged engine options. On the other hand, the Ford Explorer offers a longstanding reputation, roomy interior, and multiple powertrain choices. While the CX-90 seeks to elevate Mazda’s SUV lineup to new heights of luxury, the Explorer competes in a crowded mid-size SUV market, where it faces formidable rivals. As we delve into their details, it becomes clear that these SUVs cater to different preferences and priorities, presenting buyers with an array of choices.

2024 Mazda CX-90


Car and Driver

The cabin of the Mazda CX-90 exudes elegance and can accommodate up to eight occupants. With its premium trims, the CX-90 showcases exquisite fabric upholstery on the dashboard and luxurious nappa leather seats. Even the base models maintain a stylish aesthetic, featuring standard leather upholstery on the Preferred trim. The infotainment system is easily accessible through a generous 10.3- or even larger 12.3-inch display, offering seamless integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for convenient smartphone connectivity. Optional upgrades include a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a high-quality 12-speaker Bose premium stereo system. Mazda equips the CX-90 with their advanced i-Activsense suite of driver-assistance features, including automated emergency braking and blind-spot monitoring.

Engine and Performance

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With the introduction of the Mazda CX-90, the brand brings forth a new and impressive powertrain option. The CX-90 is equipped with a turbocharged 3.3-liter inline-six engine, complemented by a 48-volt hybrid system. This combination delivers robust performance, with power outputs of 280 horsepower in non-S trims and an even more impressive 340 horsepower in S trims. For those seeking a greener option, the plug-in hybrid variant, derived from the European-market CX-60 SUV, offers a 323-horsepower setup. The CX-90 comes with an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive as standard across all models. The plug-in hybrid variant impresses with an electric driving range of approximately 26 miles. The inline-six engine achieves favorable fuel efficiency ratings of 24 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.


The 2024 Mazda CX-90 Select model starts at $39,595 and has standard all-wheel drive and a complete safety kit. The price steadily climbs as you travel up the series, with the top-tier S Premium Plus model costing $59,950.

Ford Explorer



Despite its somewhat uninspired interior design, the Ford Explorer offers a functional and comfortable cabin experience. However, the third-row seating lacks sufficient comfort for older kids and adults. The standard 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system is responsive but could benefit from a more intuitive interface. Upgrading to higher trims unlocks features like a 10.1-inch touchscreen and a rear-seat entertainment system. Safety is a priority with the inclusion of standard driver-assistance technology and various upgrade options. The Explorer provides peace of mind with its range of safety features, including forward-collision warning, blind-spot monitoring, and lane-departure warning.

Engine and Performance

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The Ford Explorer offers a range of engine options to suit different preferences. The base, XLT, and Limited trims feature a 300-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine, delivering adequate power. For those seeking more performance, the King Ranch, Platinum, and ST models come equipped with a 400-hp twin-turbocharged V-6 engine. A hybrid powertrain is also available, combining a V-6 engine with an electric motor for increased efficiency. The Explorer’s ride and handling are composed, though the ST model provides a more athletic driving experience. With various powertrain and drivetrain combinations, fuel economy ratings differ, with the hybrid models offering the best efficiency. The Explorer’s towing capacity reaches up to 5600 pounds, and a 10-speed automatic transmission comes standard.


The 2023 Ford Explorer offers a range of pricing options to cater to different budgets and preferences. Starting at $36,370 for the base model with rear-wheel drive, the XLT trim is recommended and priced from $38,570. The hybrid variant, while more affordable compared to some higher trims, comes in at just over $52,000. At the top of the range is the non-hybrid Platinum trim, priced at $54,275. All-wheel drive is available as an optional feature for an additional $2,000 across most variants. With a diverse lineup and pricing options, the 2023 Ford Explorer aims to accommodate various needs and budgets.

Comparison Table

2024 Mazda CX-90Ford Explorer
Engine3.3-liter inline-63 liter twin-turbo V-6
Power340 hp400 hp
Torque369 lb-ft415 lb-ft
Transmission8-speed automatic6-speed automatic
0-60 mph6.3 seconds5.2 seconds
Top speed130 mph146 mph
Combined/city/highway Mileage25/23/28 mpg20/18/24 mpg 
Performance stats


After comparing the 2024 Mazda CX-90 and Ford Explorer, it is evident that both SUVs have their own strengths and appeal to different buyers. The Mazda CX-90 showcases a stylish cabin design, premium features, and a new turbocharged engine, positioning it as a contender in the luxury segment. On the other hand, the Ford Explorer offers a functional and comfortable interior, a range of powertrain options, and a competitive pricing structure. While the CX-90 focuses on elegance and refined driving dynamics, the Explorer emphasizes versatility and family-friendly features. Ultimately, the choice between these two SUVs will depend on individual preferences, with the Mazda CX-90 catering to those seeking luxury and sophistication, and the Ford Explorer providing a well-rounded package at an attractive price point.

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