Bought this '96 Explorer used in '98.
Only problem with it was a sticky gas
pedal ($80 fix) and "Check Engine"
light refused to go off until fixed by
dealer. Other than that, for the past
six years it's been just regular
maintenance. My V8's got plenty of
power - but not having 4x4 has hurt me
a few times. It's a bit too light in
the back in the snow/ice. But for
decent conditions, this cars done been
what's been asked of it.
My '96 Explorer still looks good &
drives well. It hasn't been driven
hard - it's spent more days at
the airport than off-roading. I get an
oil change every 5,000 miles or so and
I haven't spent much time at all at the
repair shop (new brake pads and a new
thermostat). It's been recalled twice:
once because of the infamous Firestone
tires, and once for for something
having to do a weak front stabilzer bar
link (granted, both pretty serious). I
have to say I wasn't too impressed with
the way it drove until after I replaced
the Firestone tires with 4 brand new
Michelins. They made a huge difference
in stability and handling.
By far my favorite features are the 6-
CD changer and the power moonroof. I
also have found the extra cargo space
pretty useful over the years.
The manufacturer should have delivered
better tires from the start. Less of a
truck suspension and more of a luxury
car suspension would be nice.
Bought vehicle with 23k miles, now has
143k. Other than front hub failure at
64k ($400) and premature front
brake/rotor wear out (my fault for not
taking to Ford dealer)($700 total) car
has been very reliable.
Changed fluids, etc. at recommended
intervals at Jiffy Lube. Has not used
a drop of oil. Tuned up at 80k.
Runs great and expect to keep for
another couple of years.
V6 engine has enough power for my use
and not too bad on milage (15.92 m/g
over the last 1100 miles).
Cargo space, cruise control,
reliablity, and excellent tire wear on
16 tires. Four wheel drive in snow.
Despite excellent seats, the ride
quality is rough at slow speeds on
potholed streets. Grill is ugly.
This is the fifth Explorer we have
owned, and we're looking for #6. I have
NEVER been stranded by an Explorer.
Our '96 with V8 AWD is a true
workhorse. Handles snow, hills and
rough roads like a champ. Still had my
95 EB V-6 when we bought this one. No
comparison between powertrains. We both
have V-8 AWD now, and will always buy
them. 96 XLT now has 118k miles and
never needed a major repair. Built Ford
V-8 AWD is worth the price of
admission! Leather, power seats, CD and
sunroof give real luxury feel. Always
been a pleasure to drive.
Only complaints are that heater
controls malfunctioned and front pass.
pwr. seat only travels part of track.