2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity

When it comes to towing, how much muscle can the 2015 Ford Explorer flex? Well as an exceptionally popular family hauler, the Explorer needs to balance passenger room and performance.

Make no mistake – this midsize SUV still packs some decent torque under the hood!

Depending on how you equip it, a properly configured 2015 Explorer can hitch up trailers and toys weighing anywhere from 2,000 to 5,000 pounds. That’s some solid light-duty towing capabilities! Whether you’re an outdoorsy weekend warrior towing dirt bikes or a road trip junkie pulling a small camper, the Explorer can likely handle it.

Of course payload capacities matter too. You want to make sure you have room for passengers and cargo after hitching something up back.

No worries, the Explorer delivers here as well, with the ability to carry over 1,250 pounds of stuff and people. Plus with available seating for up to seven, your whole crew can come along for the ride!

When it comes down to it, the 2015 Explorer has some pretty nice, well-rounded towing capacities. It can pull more than enough for most needs, while still emphasizing cabin space, family comfort, and available packed-in technology.

If you’re looking for an SUV that balances trailering abilities with everything else busy families require, the versatile Explorer could be a perfect fit.

2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity

2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity

How Much Can the 2015 Ford Explorer Tow?

The maximum towing capacity for a properly equipped 2015 Ford Explorer is 5,000 pounds. This means the Explorer can tow small-to-medium-sized trailers, boats, campers, and other recreational vehicles weighing up to 5,000 pounds.

Towing capacity is an important specification to consider if you plan to haul heavy loads with your vehicle. Understanding the limits helps ensure you stay within safe boundaries. Exceeding a vehicle’s max tow rating can cause instability, fishtailing, longer stopping distances, and accelerated wear.

Factors Impacting Towing Capacity

While 5,000 pounds is the maximum for 2015 Explorer models, the actual tow rating varies based on:

  • Engine – More powerful engines enable higher tow ratings
  • Drivetrain – All-wheel-drive (AWD) configurations generally allow bigger loads than front-wheel-drive (FWD)
  • Equipment – Towing packages boost capacity with items like hitches, wiring, and trailering features

We’ll break down how these factors impact the different 2015 Explorer trims next.

2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity By Engine Type

Ford offered the 2015 Explorer with three engine options:

  • 2.0L EcoBoost 4-cylinder
  • 3.5L Ti-VCT V6
  • 3.5L EcoBoost V6

Towing capacities range from 2,000 to 5,000 pounds depending on which engine powers your Explorer.

2.0L EcoBoost 4-Cylinder

  • Maximum Tow Rating: 2,000 pounds
  • Standard engine on base, XLT, and Limited trims
  • Least powerful option, best for lighter towing needs

3.5L Ti-VCT V6

  • Maximum Tow Rating: 5,000 pounds
  • Standard on Sport and Platinum trims
  • Provides solid mid-range power and torque

3.5L EcoBoost V6

  • Maximum Tow Rating: 5,000 pounds
  • Optional upgrade engine for all trims except Sport and Platinum
  • Delivers an extra boost of performance for max towing capabilities

So in summary, the 3.5L V6 or 3.5L EcoBoost V6 engines enable the highest possible 2015 Ford Explorer tow ratings, while the 2.0L EcoBoost trails behind.

2015 Ford Explorer Trailer Towing Package

To achieve the maximum 5,000 pound towing capacity, 2015 Ford Explorers need to add the Class IV Trailer Tow Package (52T). This includes:

  • 7-pin wiring harness – Provides power for trailer lights
  • 4-/7-pin connector – Allows different trailer plug types
  • Hitch receiver – Attaches to the trailer hitch ball
  • Trailer sway control – Helps control trailer swaying/fishtailing

This tow package comes standard on the Explorer Sport and Platinum trims. It’s an optional add-on for XLT and Limited models equipped with the 3.5L EcoBoost or 3.5L Ti-VCT V6 engines.

2015 Ford Explorer Payload Capacity

In addition to towing capacity, payload represents how much weight your vehicle can carry. This includes passengers, accessories, and cargo in the cabin and bed.

  • The 2015 Ford Explorer payload capacity is 1,265 pounds

That means you can pack over a half-ton of gear, equipment, and riders inside your Explorer on top of the towed load. Just be mindful of staying below payload limits for safety. Overloaded vehicles can suffer stability, braking, and handling issues.

2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity vs. Competitors

With a max tow rating of 5,000 pounds, the 2015 Explorer sits in the middle against rival midsize SUVs:

SUV Model Max Towing Capacity
2015 Ford Explorer 5,000 pounds
2015 Toyota Highlander 5,000 pounds
2015 Honda Pilot 5,000 pounds
2015 Chevrolet Traverse 5,000 pounds
2015 Dodge Durango 7,400 pounds
2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee 7,200 pounds

The Explorer matches or beats the Highlander, Pilot, and Traverse but trails the more truck-like Durango and Grand Cherokee. Still, 5,000 pounds covers basic towing needs for most owners.

2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity Chart

Here’s a comparison of all 2015 Ford SUV model maximum tow ratings:

2015 Ford SUV Model Max Towing Capacity
Ford Escape 3,500 pounds
Ford Edge 3,500 pounds
Ford Explorer 5,000 pounds
Ford Expedition 9,200 pounds

The Expedition stands out for its exceptional 9,200 pound trailering capabilities thanks to its heavy-duty truck platform.

FAQs on 2015 Ford Explorer Towing Capacity:

  • Q: What is the towing capacity of the 2015 Ford Explorer with the 2.0L EcoBoost engine?

A: The maximum towing capacity with the 2.0L EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine is 2,000 pounds.

  • Q: What transmission do I need to get the maximum towing capacity?

A: The 6-speed automatic transmission is required to achieve the max 5,000 pound tow ratings on 2015 Explorer models.

  • Q: Can I flat tow a 2015 Ford Explorer behind an RV?

A: No, the 2015 Explorer cannot be flat towed as it requires modifications. The best way to tow it is on a trailer or vehicle hauler.

  • Q: What is the lowest towing capacity for a 2015 Explorer?

A: The lowest tow capacity is 2,000 pounds with the base 2.0L EcoBoost engine in FWD configuration without the tow package.

  • Q: Will towing decrease my 2015 Explorer’s fuel economy?

A: Yes, expect reduced MPG while towing depending on factors like load weight and driving conditions. The heavier the trailer, the more it will impact efficiency.

  • Q: What is the Explorer’s vertical tow weight capacity?

A: Ford does not provide a specific vertical tongue weight limit for 2015 models. As a general rule of thumb, limit tongue weight to 10-15% of total towed weight.

  • Q: Can I put a hitch on a 2015 Explorer to tow?

A: Yes, Explorers equipped with the Class IV Tow Package include a standard hitch receiver to connect trailer hitches.

  • Q: Where can I find my vehicle’s towing information?

A: Check your owner’s manual or the door frame sticker for model-specific towing specs. Dealers also have access to tow capacity details.

  • Q: Will towing affect my Explorer’s warranty?

A: No, towing within Ford’s recommended capacity guidelines should not void your factory powertrain or bumper-to-bumper warranty coverage.

  • Q: What is the Explorer’s gross combined weight rating?

A: Ford does not publish gross combined weight ratings. But maximum GCWR typically equates to GVWR plus max tow rating.

Source: https://www.ford.com/suvs/explorer

More Ford Towing Capacity Guides:


With three engine options and towing capacities ranging from 2,000 to 5,000 pounds, the 2015 Ford Explorer provides solid versatility for light-duty to medium-duty towing.

Matching up with primary competitors, the Explorer holds its own with a maximum 5,000 pound tow rating across V6 configurations. Just be sure to equip the proper Tow Package for access to the full capabilities.

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