I love the illusion of the Ford Explorer ST’s loopy exhaust tips

I love the illusion of the Ford Explorer ST’s loopy exhaust tips

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: ford

Half of you probably already know what I’m talking about from the headline. For the other half: buckle up, buddy. Because if you have never looked closely at the tailpipes the Ford Explorer STYou are about to enter a borderland between truth and fakery, a zone entirely and exclusively occupied by the four chrome rings of deception that have been affixed to the back of every Explorer ST Ford has since built brought the high-performance variant onto the market in 2020.

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: Bob Sorokanich

I was inspired to write this after a visit to my local Lowe’s yesterday afternoon when I spotted a 2020-ish Explorer ST in the parking lot. Somehow this must have been the first time in my life that I’ve gotten close enough to an ST to understand what’s going on with those exhaust tips – and again I know I’m late on this and the Explorer Superfans all had their laughs and moved on. But this blew me away, and now I’m sharing it with you.

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: Bob Sorokanich

Take a close look at what’s going on here. The tips are polished dress-up bits that connect to a downward-pointing exhaust. Here’s another angle to help you better understand what’s going on.

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: Bob Sorokanich

And another angle:

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: Bob Sorokanich

Fraud! Illusion! A lying affront to everything that has to do with exhaust! And yet somehow... Not.

We can’t call these “fake exhaust tips” like what we’re seeing certain Lamborghini Miuras and most modern products of the VW Group. Unlike these examples, the exhaust actually flows through the tips installed on the Ford Explorer ST! Just in the craziest, most unexpected way possible.

I’m struggling to find an analogy here. It’s like having a trash can where the lid is glued tight and everything goes in and out through a trap door at the bottom. Or a house where the key to the front door opened a secret portal in a blank wall a few yards away.

I do not know. My brain is completely wrecked from the Explorer ST’s exhaust tips.

POV: You are the Lowe's parking lot in Brooklyn, NY.

POV: You are the Lowe’s parking lot in Brooklyn, NY.
photo: Bob Sorokanich

So they’re not “fake”, but they certainly don’t work in the way their image would suggest they would. They aren’t “functional” either – the car would work the same way if you removed them. But then again, that goes for any polished metal decorative ring that an automaker might add to the end of the actual exhaust pipes. So by definition, this is a real, working exhaust tip. One who happens to indulge in delightful, totally unexpected evasions.

I thought I would hate it but I love it. God bless you sneaky exhaust tips.

Image for article titled I Love the Deception of the Ford Explorer ST's Deranged Exhaust Tips

photo: Bob Sorokanich

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