I have heard negative things about Explorers but in five years have not experienced them. I get 23 mpg hwy, which makes it the perfect travel car on my Ohio-Tenn trips for school. It conquered everything I threw at it as an immature 1st time 4wd owner (seriously I'm surprised this car is not stranded in a certain mudpit in Middle Tennessee). The most comfortable car, will haul it all, routine work - brakes,belts,etc. is dirt cheap (and I am a poor college student!). I have 155,000 on it now, a third of which is my doing, without a headache. As expected, transmission wear was easily solved with Lucas trans-fix additive. An $8 bottle has worked miracles for 17k miles.
Fold flat rear seats perfect for camping. Easy to maintain, oil easy to change, Unbelievable what all you can pack inside.
Only thing that ever went wrong - my rear window wiper fluid stopped spraying. My depression quickly faded as I had only used it twice in five years.