Ford Media Center

Ford SUV Sales Deliver Best Start in Company History; Millennial, Women Buyers of Explorer Fueling Growth

  • Ford recorded 115,228 SUV sales at retail through the first two months of 2016, making for the best calendar year start for Ford SUVs in history – highlighted by a best-ever February
  • Explorer sales rose 18 percent last month over February 2015; Explorer is Ford’s best-selling SUV with millennial buyers ages 25 to 34, and the best-selling midsize SUV with women – according to Ford analysis of the most recent personal new vehicle registrations* in the U.S. from IHS Automotive
  • Escape, coming off a record sales year in 2015, was up 14 percent through the first two months of 2016, while Edge sales jumped 56 percent

DEARBORN, Mich., March 17, 2016 – Smartphones and skinny jeans, organic foods and reality TV. The wants of millennials have been well documented, and now there’s a new one to add to the list – the space a Ford Explorer offers.

Explorer is the most popular Ford SUV with millennial buyers ages 25 to 34, according to Ford analysis of the most recent personal new vehicle registrations in the U.S. from IHS Automotive – helping Explorer maintain its status as the best-selling midsize SUV in the country.

“It’s an example of need-based growth,” said Erich Merkle, Ford U.S. sales analyst. “Millennials have begun forming families and those families are growing – in terms of the number of children as well as the size of those children. Explorer provides the space those families need today and tomorrow, while maintaining the image they want to project.”

The trend mirrors that of millennials moving from urban areas and purchasing homes in the suburbs. According to National Association of Realtors®, the median age of first-time homebuyers is 30 – the age when many people settle down and begin having children.

At the same time, Explorer has become a hot seller with women. Explorer is the most preferred midsize SUV among women buyers, according to IHS personal registration data.

Sales of Explorer, Escape lead Ford SUVs to best start ever
Spurred in part by Explorer’s appeal to millennials and women, sales of Ford SUVs are off to their best calendar year start in history, posting increases in January and February that are double the increases of the domestic SUV market.

Year-to-date, Ford SUVs posted a record 115,228 sales at retail – up 16 percent over last year. Last month – the company’s best-ever February for SUVs – sales were up 28 percent over 2015, fueled by double-digit percentage increases for all six Ford SUV nameplates.

Explorer sales in the United States were up 18 percent in February and 7 percent year-to-date.

Similarly, Escape sales in the United States rose 14 percent in February and 5 percent year-to-date. The new 2017 Escape – with a host of available features including SYNC® 3, enhanced active park assist and two EcoBoost® engines – is due in showrooms this spring.  

Edge sales in the United States increased 91 percent in February and 56 percent year-to-date.

Sales are up across Ford’s entire SUV lineup in the United States. Expedition sales rose 22 percent in February and 19 percent year-to-date; Flex sales rose 77 percent last month, 56 percent year-to-date; Police Interceptor Utility was up 50 percent for February, 30 percent year-to-date.

Regional highlights tell coast-to-coast success stories
Across the country, Ford SUVs resonated with various buyer groups to create the best-ever two-month start. Over the same period a year ago:

  • Explorer sales in New York City were up 23 percent in February and 18 percent year-to-date; in Washington, D.C., Explorer was up 47 percent in February and 21 percent year-to-date
  • Edge sales in New York City were up 56 percent in February and 27 percent year-to-date; in San Francisco, Edge was up 57 percent in February and 22 percent year-to-date
  • Escape sales in Washington, D.C. were up 33 percent in February and 21 percent year-to-date; in Dallas, Escape was up 38 percent in February and 17 percent year-to-date


*IHS registration figures are based on all new personal registrations in the 2015 calendar year. Age detail based on head of household, which may not necessarily be the primary driver.

About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford cars, trucks, SUVs, electrified vehicles and Lincoln luxury vehicles, provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification, autonomous vehicles and mobility solutions. Ford employs approximately 191,000 people worldwide. For more information regarding Ford, its products and Ford Motor Credit Company, please visit

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