Used 2003 Ford Explorer Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Ford Explorer - Consumer Reviews

2003 Ford Explorer

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329 Total Reviews

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Second Owner of a 2003
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By lassentrailer
on

Vehicle

2003 Ford Explorer XLT 4WD 4dr SUV (4.0L 6cyl 5A)


Review

I bought my Explorer from the same dealership that sold it to the original owner, and that owner had followed the service schedule to the letter (as shown in the Carfax report). It had 101,000 miles on it when I bought it in 2013, it's got 118,000 miles now. I don't much like trucks, being a sports car kind of driver, but I really like the Explorer (which btw handles WAY better than you'd expect, due no doubt to the IRS. I have emulated the first owner's habit of maintaining the snot out of it: new brakes/rotors, transmission flush and fill, cooling system the same (differentials and transfer case next). I am quite happy with my Explorer.


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Best suv ever
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By devildog8821
on

Vehicle

2003 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer AWD 4dr SUV (4.6L 8cyl 5A)


Review

I absolutely love my explorer had it for 2 years and no major problems bought it when it had 75000 miles on it and it now has 115000 miles. One thing I learned is its not the vehicle it's the driver that makes stupid mistakes. Just cause its an suv doesn't mean it's meant for off road use. I also disagree with the gas mileage I have the 4.6 v8 and it gets 17.2 in the city and 24 on the highway absolutely love the fact that when I fill it u p it says 387 miles to empty and it only costs about 65 to fill it up. Absolutely love it!!!


Favorite Features

The V8 has the right enough power and torque to haul a most anything and it's absolutely perfect the way it knows when to shift into 4 wheel drive.


Suggested Improvements

Could do a better job at painting it to last but 11 yrs in an Ohio winter and the only wrong is the paint is peeling on top.


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Won't go past 100,000 miles
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By johcar
on

Vehicle

2003 Ford Explorer XLT Sport 4WD 4dr SUV (4.0L 6cyl 5A)


Review

Nice enough vehicle except access to the back seat in the 2 door model is close to zero since the driver's seat only moves forward/back 2". I'll never have a two door SUV again. With only 80,000 miles on it, the timing chain(s) are making noise. Apparently it was a recall issue that previous owners never took care of. It is expected to go out at 100K or so. Repair bill is $3200.00. Ford should honor this recall even though it's ten years old. I feel like I got screwed here, and I was happy with two previous Rangers, -a 98 and 01.


Favorite Features

The ride is very rigid. I'm used to it but it's a bit much. Can't really get to the back seat from the driver side. I have to crawl through the back hatch to lower the back seats. I do like the simple switch to go into 4x4.


Suggested Improvements

Visibility is limited at the top of the windshield with that temp/compass housing then the bulky mirror below that. Add a GPS and looking for places/addresses or sight seeing makes this the wrong vehicle. The shorter wheel base is quite noticeable on the freeway making steering quite touchy. I doubt towing a trailer could be safe.


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Old Faithful
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By tykesmom2007
on

Vehicle

2003 Ford Explorer XLT Rwd 4dr SUV (4.0L 6cyl 5A)


Review

I've owned my 2003 Explorer XLT for 11 years now, and have had no problems whatsoever. Although "Old Faithful" is now a "second car" (I bought a 2014 Escape SE for my 100 mile commute to work), it still tows boats, hauls canoes, transports the dogs, and is our favorite vehicle for camping trips. I've never had any trouble with this SUV, and plan to drive it 'til it drops - maybe in another 300,000 miles or so!


Favorite Features

Great towing power, reasonable gas mileage for its size, good sized cargo area, extremely dependable


Suggested Improvements

I could have cried when I saw the new model Explorers! Nothing like this tried and true truck in my driveway! The new Explorer is a beautiful SUV, no doubt, but it just doesn't give off that "trucklike toughness" that I love in my Old Faithful!


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2003 Ford Explorer 4.0 V6, Great SUV
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By smithhh9156
on

Vehicle

2003 Ford Explorer XLT Rwd 4dr SUV (4.0L 6cyl 5A)


Review

We have a 2003 Ford Explorer 4.0 v6 2wd with 113k. Love it! We have had 0 problems with it besides the oil temp gauge going out. Has leather that's in nice condition, only tear is on driver side and probably one inch long, but really thin. On the side of the seat... We have 3rd row also.


Favorite Features

We have the power fold down DVD player, 3rd row, for a v6 has plenty of power, very reliable, wouldn't be scared to hop in it right now and got to CA. Btw I'm in NC, pulls trailers with no problems. And I'm 6'2 and I have plenty of room.


Suggested Improvements

The plastics seem to fade and get weatherd. But that's from being outdoors, Only complaint


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