Just as the SUV craze was hitting full swing in the late '90s, racer-turned-tuner Steve Saleen had the brilliant idea to inject some added performance into the segment's hottest vehicle, the Ford Explorer, and putting the "sport" in Sport Utility Vehicle. The result is the Saleen XP8, which was built in limited numbers from 1998 and 2001, and one of these tuner SUVs just popped up for sale on Facebook classifieds for $12,800.
While official production numbers are unknown, it's believed that Saleen built around 265 of these tuned Explorers, and that is spread across three models – the V6-powered XP6, the supercharged XP8 and the naturally aspirated XP8 you see here. This one up for sale is no. 37, but more importantly, the seller says that this is one of only two that came painted in Tropic Green Metallic. Like he production figures, it's hard to verify that, but doing a quick image search shows that many were painted in either black or white.
Adding to the SUV's collectibility is the fact that there are just 42,600 original miles showing on the odometer. The Saleen-exclusive wheels and body kit all look to be in excellent condition, and the tan leather interior doesn't show any wear. Unfortunately, this XP8 wasn't equipped with Recaro bucket seats or the supercharger, but it should still handle well thanks to the standard suspension upgrade. Under the hood is the 5.0-liter V8 putting out 222 horsepower, while the added supercharger would have bumped this up to 286 hp; still far below the 400-hp output of the 2020 Explorer ST.
If you're looking for a vehicle you can drive and show, then this 1999 Saleen XP8 Ford Explorer is the way to go!
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