I bought my Explorer XLT with 59k miles on it and 3 years old. It is now 14 years old with 280k miles on it. The only major repair I have had was replacing the AC 2 years ago. I think it was about 1000 to replace it. I am searching for something else now because I am worried it might be on its last leg. Who knows, it may last another 100k miles Definitely recommend an Explorer!
I've owned this car since October 1997, buying it with about 11,000 miles. It now has over 203,000 miles and still running strong. The 302 V8 is a strong and efficient runner, with a strong and durable transmission. Pre-Ethanol highway economy 22 MPG. Post-Ethanol highway economy 18 MPG. Very practical car, tows 5500 lb loads with ease, plenty of ramp torque, and horsepower to run up hills with ease. Recurring issues: this car eats up upper/lower ball joints, water pumps, radiators. Subwoofer not a standard size. On the plus side: 190,000 miles on a fuel pump, 170,000 miles on the air conditioning system. Engine, tranny, fuel system, computer top notch reliable on this car.
Power train torque/power and reliability. Paint quality. Driving position and visibility are great. Handling very good (keep tires at 32 - 35 psi) for an SUV. Excellent JBL sound system.
Odd size JBL subwoofer has no easy replacement, can't get parts. Upper/lower ball joints, water pump quite problematic and expensive to replace. Replacement MOOG parts no better for reliability. E-10 Ethanol has driven fuel economy down from 22 MPG HWY to 18 MPG HWY. No known fix yet.
Bought new. XLT w/Leather, moonroof, JBL, etc. Routine maint w/oil changes every 3.5K mi. V-8 is powerful enough, but times have changed. Still can drive 100 MPH all day & stays cool. New CD changer. Wore out armrest & had it re-covered, then the coolant leaked out the very same day, but temp gauge never went up. Suspension is a little rocky when empty.Cost to repair etc., is about the present wholesale value (174K mi), so put in a crate motor for $5K rather than buy a new SUV. Beats a car payment. Sunroof rattle on bumpy roads that I fix with matchbook. Great stereo & acoustics, comfy (I'm 6'5"), AC blows ice cubes,tows 2 jetskis so effortlessly, you barely notice them. Keepin' it!
Front Seats, stereo, reliability, engine & tranny, sunroof, GREAT AC.
Independent rear suspension. Another 100 horsepower. Better stock roof- rack.
At present 145000 miles. Replaced lower ball joints 2X under warranty. Replaced with the ball joints that can be lubricated. Gas mileage has improved since increasing tire preasure to 32 to 35 lbs. (18 to 23 miles per gal highway). I wish it was better. Also use a good fuel injector cleaner every 3000 miles. I have serviced the transmission every 12 to 15000 miles & so far no problems. I find it a comfortable & fun vechile to drive. Excellent handling in snow. One other problem was the thermostate. I had to replace it 4 times. If yours needs to be replaced ask for a heavy duty one that is made in the USA. The automatic choke in the winter kills your gas mileage, since it is temperature sensative
Comfortable drivers seat. Sun roof. Electric mirrors.
Better undercoating aganist rust. More space between the accelerator and brake pedal. Better gas mileage.
We have a 2WD XLT with the 5.0 engine and it has been great vehicle with no serious issues. My only gripe is that there is no camber adjustment for the front end alignment and it eats front tires something awful.
Front seats with pull out thigh supports. Simply fantastic on long trips.