I had this car for a little over a year. I had little to no complaints until recently. This car is great for day to day however it is dangerous in a accident. The narrow wheel base on this year is prone to rollover and leaves you with no options to really avoid an accident.
Powerful engine, great interior.
Gas! If you want a Explorer get one of the newer models with the improved stability.
Bought my Explorer new and have loved it for almost 11 years. It has performed like a champ on LA roads and in mountain and snow conditions. Recently, had to have radiator replaced 3x. It seems the new replacement Ford radiators are no good. They have each still been under warranty but the last one was only one day from being out of warranty. Sadly, I now plan to replace my Explorer because I don't want to chance having to replace the radiator again on my dime. This truck has really hauled everything for me and rides especially well when the back is loaded. If you are thinking of a '96 Explorer I say go for it. Mine still performs well & looks great inside and out.
Reliability, Truck-tuff with comfortable car-like interior.
Heater vent needs to be moved so that it doesn't pump directly on your accelerator foot. I have literally felt like I was burning my foot in order to get enough warmth in the cabin.
We bought our 96 Explorer XLT used with approx. 65K miles. Shipped it overseas where we drove it ALL OVER Europe and put over 70K trouble-free miles during the 3 years we were there. Just regular maintenance. My 18 year old daughter now drives it and it has almost 140K miles. Still young with lots of long miles left. This has been the most dependable vehicle we have owned.
We just passed 195,000 miles on this car and it still runs great. It has served my family well. The only problem we've encountered is a squeaking noise in the suspension that we cannot get rid of. It's a "cosmetic" problem as it doesn't affect the ride or handling. The body is great, not a sign of rust on the car that spent its first five years out in the elements of the northeast 24/7 (no garage).