1996 Ford Explorer Consumer Review: SUV Self-Cannibalism

1996 Ford Explorer - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

133 Total Reviews

XLT 4dr SUV (4.0L V6 4x4 5-speed Manual)

Build Quality
Reliability Value
SUV Self-Cannibalism
By Angelos on


1996 Ford Explorer XLT 4dr SUV 4WD


In 12 years and 115K miles of not-so-hard driving, our $36,000 Exploder has eaten its transmission, eaten its torque converter, has blown out its manifold gaskets and has cracked a cylinder head. I expect to replace items such as starters, alternators, shocks, even Air Mass Meters and O2 sensors. But I cannot abide a vehicle that self-destructs major systems years and tens of thousands of miles before the end of their standard service lives under relatively easy use. If I could sell our Exploder to the Marines to use for target practice, I'd do it in a New York minute.

Best Features

Cargo capacity Snow-ice capability

Worst Features

Make the bean counters who ordered the flywheel to be made from glorified aluminum foil to pay for replacement torque converters. Ditto for the cracked cylinder heads, a problem that Ford supposedly fixed before 1996. HA!
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