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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • I am sorry that your dealer either had trouble diagnosing the problem and/or was reluctant to make it right. I would suggest that, for any future concerns, you find a service department who is concerned with customer satisfaction. Unfortunately, many major car dealers seem to be having trouble in these areas.
  • I get so tired of these "slippery slopes"!


    There are complaints on every vehicle board on this site, be it a Chevy Trailblazer, Honda Pilot, Jeep Grand Cherokee, VW Touareg, Kia Sportage, and on and on... It's pretty much the same each time, an individual has a problem and unfortunately has a dealer who can't diagnose it, doesn't know how to fix it, or just doesn't care about customer service and is unwilling to make it right. So he vents his frustrations.


    But then for some reason you people, who seem to have it out for Ford, blow it all out of proportion and make all sorts of slippery arguments. "Yeah, Ford made a really bad product this time. Don't buy one of these, or you will have problems, too. They are bad. If you have to buy one for whatever reason, get a big warranty, you'll definately need it." And all of this is based on a personal experience and/or some negative posts, with nothing to support all of the claims made.


    In fact, all of the evidence (and industry leaders, and experts' opinions, and market research and studies, and independent secondary researchers, and investigational organizations, etc. etc!) show just the opposite. They all show that the Explorer is an overall reliable choice, and if you buy one you don't have any greater chance of having some kind of problem than the average car.


    So, you people keep it up. Keep making your unsupported and incomplete arguments. And I'll keep citing facts and research (from people who actually know what they are talking about) that show you are wrong.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    It'll work fine, unless the seat is up. Then you'll have a problem. Keep the seat down, and it's fine, otherwise, you need to take it out.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I have to wonder though - these problems I have never experienced on any of my Explorers, so...... blown speakers? 13,000 mile brakes? I can get somewhere between 30,000 to 60,000 miles out of a set of brakes on every Explorer I've owned, if they can only get 13,500 out of theirs, and the speakers are blown too, I am starting to understand what's wrong with their truck.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    My wife's Explorer got 32,000 miles on the original brakes. She probably could have gone 35K, but she is a teacher and we took advantage of a vacation period and had the brakes changed. As far as the speakers are concerned, the only way I know to blow speakers is to turn them up all the way with the wrong kind of song playing. A song heavy in bass will blow speakers if you turn them up all the way.... Overall it's been an OK SUV. I purchased a extended warranty to cover the rear end. It's almost out of warranty with 35,500 miles on it!
  • ottavottav Posts: 31
    I was just on the website looking at the 2006 Mountaineer. It looks great, and they've addressed a lot of the complaints of my 2002. My question to you: my lease is up on September 10. Will the 2006's be in the showroom by then? If not, do you think there is a way to extend my Red Carpet Lease a few months so I can wait for one?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    It should be entering in the market just around when your lease is up. I would call RedCarpet Lease and ask if you could extend it pending the purchase of a vehicle that has not yet been released. Moreso, I don't see why they wouldn't be able to do so.
  • jcat707jcat707 Posts: 168
    That new Mountaineer interior is looks really nice and finally there will be a DVD Navigation system.
  • ottavottav Posts: 31
    Thanks. I'll give it a try.

    I'm really impressed on the number of improvements they've made to the 2006. From the interior to the stiffer frame and new IRS. From earlier reports I had read, this was only going to be a minor update. It's changed my mind to not get a leftover 2005 and wait for a 2006.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Your dealer can get you a lease extension month to month until the new model is in, or until a car you order comes in. You just keep making your monthly payment, and keep your car, Ford Credit is happy. See your participating Lincoln-Mercury dealer. No problem.
  • 02xls02xls Posts: 40
    Chevy Trailblazer 5 out of 5

    Jeep Grand Cherokee 5 out of 5

    Nissan Pathfinder 5 out of 5

    Dodge Durango 5 out of 5

    Mitsubishi Montero 5 out of 5

    Buick Rendezvous 5 out of 5

    Hyundai Santa Fe 5 out of 5


    This is what RELIABILITY RANKINGS the so called industry leading EXPERTS at MSN Autos (AIS) gave these makes and models. These are the same ones who as you pointed out earlier gave the Explorer 4 out of 5. You are right,"not bad for any mid-sized SUV!" Did you read the list of trucks that the EXPERTS ranked higher than the Explorer? The Trailblazer? Rendezvous? Santa Fe? Are you serious???


    CR-- "Expert testing" "survey 675,000 consumers annually" Please refer to the 2004 Annual Auto Issue, there on page 81 you will find the Ford Explorer on a list titled USED CARS TO AVOID. Also in a section referring to reliability the Explorer falls below average for predicted reliability landing behind the Highlander,4-Runner,Pathfinder,Montero,Rendezvous,Murano and Pilot. There is a bright spot from CR that you also pointed out, because the Explorers reliability has risen to AVERAGE, CR can now RECOMMEND this truck. I personally am not one to accept AVERAGE! I guess for all those who want to live with mediocrity, this is the SUV for you.


    Recalls-- BOB You do not have to quote any of your so called EXPERTS or Gov't Offices, just look on Edmunds and you will easily find at least one Recall on the Explorer. It's not a big deal, but I wanted to point this out because you so boldly stated "NONE!" were issued. Is that fluid for the Tranny any kind of Recall? Maybe that's just a letter to owners pointing out some sort of screw-up.


    Recent Press Release-- Ford sales dropped 5.4% in January. Ford to cut production this quarter after posting weak sales month in January. Ford to offer Interest-Free loans in an effort to boost sales. This does include the Explorer. (Maybe alot of people out there want better than AVERAGE!)


    Post #2223---"I have worn out my brake pads at 13,500 miles(not used to driving something so heavy!)my dealer is going to replace them(and turn the rotors if necessary, they feel a bit warped) FOC." Now BOB, first of all what did you drive before that made the tank of an Explorer feel so heavy? A Focus? The rotors felt like they needed to be turned after 13,500 miles? I don't know BOB, I'm not sure what to make of this. You say these things then change your story and blame it on some tire situation. I know what I think of this but I will keep those thoughts to myself.


    I can't thank you enough for pointing out all of this Gov't and Expert info., I have learned quite a bit. Mainly, that if I had known then, what I know now, I never would have purchased an Explorer and I am certainly not foolish enough to ever do it again.
  • svofan2svofan2 Posts: 440
    ANT you would be really a NICE guy if you could find something about the 2006 EXPLORER...I know...I know...IT will be similar....but Mountanier has always been 2 notches above in looks....thanks anyways....
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Under the skin, you know it'll be the same. What differs will be interior 2-tone color senario, and rear LED tail-lights on white background as the Mountaineer sports.


    Out of the 2, I prefer the Explorer front fascia. Looks a bit more sportier, over the Mountaineers which looks a bit more car-like and sophisticated. Which is perfectly fine, according to the persons taste. Currently, I liked the Mountaineer because of it's sharp crease/angles in it's front fascia. Made it different. I feel the new one was softened up a bit, but again... All personal taste.


    The Explorer Sport Trac concept's front fascia, is very similar to what the Explorer will sport. The top grill, and bottom fascia are evidently bisected by the solid bumper area. It has a "hint" of new Audi's front fascia. It has that horse collar form as you saw, with the bi-secting bumper area. And the bumper area is (in my taste/opnion) a bit better integrated into the top grill, and bottom fascia.


    Obviously in the higher trims like Limited, you'll have more touch of chrome in the front fascia over the base version. And the usual round of tech toys, from the DVD based Navigation system, to the power folding 3rd row seats.
  • Thank you for bringing some of your own research to the table, now we should be able to have discussions which are more interesting. It is frustrating to try and debate someone who doesn't support their claims. Good work by the way.


    I never tried to make the argument that the Explorer is among the best in reliability. I was countering your claims that is was un-reliable, to be avoided, definately will have problems, etc. I am happy to come to an agreement with you that it is "average." What model year did CR list as to be avoided? I just find it interesting that everyone on this forum agrees that the 1991-2001 Explorers were really reliable, durable long-lasting trucks; and now even though CR indicates improving reliability and other indicators are showing average or above, you still try to say they aren't as good as they were.


    Of course Ford and GM still have a way to go to match the quality of the imports. Don't snub Hyundai, they are making dramatic improvements in quality, spending very large sums of money and implementing impressive new technologies and processes. Interesting you should mention the Trailblazer and Rendezvous, their sibling the GMC Envoy was actually rated 4/5 by AIS also. I still consider 4/5 to be above average, on a 5-point scale. I'd say three was average.


    I stated that the NHTSA ODI had not issued any recalls for the Explorer based on consumer complaints, even though they had conducted three investigations. That was to show that either there are not as many people out there complaining as you lead on, or that their complaints are the individual dealers' (service departments') fault and not Fords. There are no recalls '04 and above, I'm not sure if the letter for the tranny additive counts. It's not showing up yet if it does. For '02 models there are 4 recalls, concerning the liftgate and running board lights. For a good comparison, take a look at the '02 Chevy Trailblazer, they are pretty scary: "front lower control arm brackets may fracture... result in separation of the front lower control arm from the frame- loss of vehicle control, resulting in a crash; vehicle can roll when the transmission is in "park" and a crash could result without warning; air bag inflator could fracture at a weld during a deployment, pieces of the inflator could strike and injure vehicle occupants and the air bag cushion would not inflate fully, reducing the capability of the bag to protect the driver; In a crash missing welds could degrade performance of the third row seat and safety belt anchorage and occupants could receive greater injuries; windshield wipers can cease operation while in use, causing reduced visibility resulting in a crash." Way more serious that the X.


    Here's the whole story behind post #2223, which I had abbreviated for use as an example of how a good relationship with your service department can make a big difference. I noticed during a very high-speed run on the freeway that I was getting a very slight vibration in the steering wheel upon light brake application. I consulted some friends who know more about vehicle mechanics than I do and they said it was most likely warped brake rotors. This made sense to me because I know I have been very hard on the brakes. If you read my profile you will see that before this I drove a Mazda 626 which weighed about 2,850 lbs. The Explorer is about 4,475 lbs. That's a big difference! I had to adjust my driving style big-time. Anyways, when I told my service advisor about the vibration she thought it would be warped rotors as well. I told her not to fix those that day as I wanted to wait until it got worse before I shelled out the dough (I assumed that, as normal wear items, pads and rotors would be excluded from my warranty, as stated by the papers at time of purchase). However, she suprised me by saying she'd get them taken care of under warranty. However it turned out a tire was out of balance and causing the vibration under certain conditions. Even if it had been the rotors, why would that mean that Ford had definately used a cheap supplier or installed them incorrectly? Those are the kinds of slippery slope arguments which irritate me. Doesn't driving style play a big part in brake life?


    The main thing I don't understand is how everyone can agree (even you yourself have said) that the older Explorers last a very long time relatively trouble-free, and we have both done research showing that the newer models are rated as good or better as their predecessors, but yet you still try to put them down and call them unreliable. It doesn't make sense.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,452
    i think my '02 explorer has pretty good brakes. just over 40k, still on originals, no pedal vibration. although i try not to use the brakes, i have to drive in an urban setting when commuting and take lots of trips with a heavy load(not towing though). they still have good 'feel', although i'm pretty sure i will have to get them serviced before i hit 50k, but you never know.

    the transmission issue may be what is termed a 'customer satisfaction program', or something like that.
  • ottavottav Posts: 31

    Do you think the 2006 will be significantly more expensive than a 2005?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Hardly, prices will increase by a few hundreds, but mainly to reflect the changes. Otherwise they will level off at what you currently see now.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,661
    and the floor shifter, the Mountaineer is now competing (in my mind, that is) with Jeep Grand Cherokee Hemi...
  • ottavottav Posts: 31

    Are any of the '06 going to be two-tone, or are they all going to be monochromatic? Also, in the literature, it seems that they are not going to have the cladding that the current models have. Is the bottom part going to be steel?
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