1996 Ford Explorer Consumer Review: Going the distance with it

1996 Ford Explorer - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

133 Total Reviews

XL 2dr SUV (4.0L V6 5-speed Manual)

Build Quality
Reliability Value
Going the distance with it
By Dweeze on


1996 Ford Explorer XL 2dr SUV


Bought this SUV new, out of necessity, in 2005 when my 1987 Bronco II died on the highway Xmas night with 140K miles. Nearly 14 years and 164K miles later, I have never once regretted that decision. The original engine is still as powerful and the original transmission is still as smooth as the day I drove it off the lot. It is showing signs of age, however, as some of the interior hardware is beginning to fail and the rust is creeping up underneath the rocker panels. Despite the extremely tempting offer to ditch this SUV in the "cash for clunkers" program, I am sticking with my Explorer until the bitter end. The scrap metal heap would not be a fitting end for such a reliable vehicle.

Best Features

Handling & maneuverability; engine well matched to transmission; still looks better than any SUV out there

Worst Features

As others have mentioned, the rust will probably spell the demise of this vehicle before its engine and transmission days are done.
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