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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • cathmaccathmac Posts: 49
    I know that CR gets its reliability data from its members, a method that has obvious limitations but no obvious actual reliability bias that I'm aware of. What methodology does JD Powers use and do they rate the reliability of used vehicles? I'm familiar with the JD Power's term "initial quality" used in new car advertising but it never occurred to me they might have used car data.

    Do they buy the new vehicles themselves, as CR does?

    I like the NHTSA info when making a used car purchase so I I can bring any potentially expensive issues to the attention of the mechanic doing the pre-purchase inspection. Even if I have another Subaru dealer doing the inspection I wouldn't assume they are going to be familiar with all of the Recalls, TSBs, or certainly consumer complaints that haven't resulted in a Recall or TSB.

    "Straightline" link but it doesn't seem to take me to any safety score info, Varmint or otherwise.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110

    You need to click on one of the links near the top of Varmint's page. It's a link to a .pdf file which requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view it. If your browser isn't set up to handle those files you may need to install the reader (Varmint provides a link on his page!)

    tidester, host
  • FYI... yesterday I got in the mail a JD Power survey on my 2003 Mountaineer that I purchased new. Asked if I still had it and asked me to then take the survey. Survey was very inclusive and took 20 minutes to complete.
  • I now have 7922 miles on a 2006 Explorer, V8 with the 6 speed tranny. My average MPG for the entire time: 15.63 MPG, with about two thirds of that mileage on the highway. The best mileage so far: 17.5 MPG at a steady 65-70, and the worst: 11.6 on a tankfull mostly around town in 30-35 degree weather.
    Other likes and dislikes: I love the seats, the ride, the QUIETNESS; I HATE the inside door pull handles (moronic CAREFULL ! You will be dinging OTHER people's doors as the heavy door gets out of your grasp and slams the car next to you !!), and I HATE the GLARE off of the tacky chrome rims around the speedo and tack (I finally resorted to putting strips of black electrical tape on them to reduce the windshield glare). Troubles so far (which are typical Ford quality issues): 1) defective turn signal switch (just like my 2000 Ranger !!!!), replaced under warranty; 2) faulty blower motor switch (replaced); 3) LR tire out of round (Michelin, replaced); 4) exhaust hanger bracket broke off (replaced); 5) left rear passenger door not aligned (wow...I thought this type of stuff was supposed to be OVER). They cannot seem to get it to latch properly. ???? And, 6) the driver's side running light will not last. I suspect a wiring harnesss short someplace. The "Blue Dumbell Dealer" is still trying to fix it. DO NOT believe the hype about "IMPROVED FUEL ECONOMY". Over what, an M 1 Abrahms tank ??
    But, so far, so good. I hope a year from now I don't wish I would have bought a 4 Runner or a Pilot. Wish me luck. I have a feeling I'm gonna need it.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,919
    My understanding is that JD Power gets its sample from DMV type records, so they are sampling actual owners from the entire pool of owners in the country. Maybe Virgiesmom can clarify if the questionnaire is out of the blue or if he requested it through the panel you can join at their web site.

    Here's another link to the safety page that I learned about from Varmint.

    Steve, Host
  • mtnman1mtnman1 Westerville, OhioPosts: 371
    I don't understand some of you people that get on here and complain about a vehicle that apparently you must not have liked before you bought. If you had such a negative attitude about Ford Quality Issues, then I have to ask why would any intelligent life form buy another one. I have never heard so much whining. Obviously, out of the thousands of Explorers that are sold each year there are going to be some that have problems and this forum lets those people vent. But come on. It seems to me that you already didn't think much of Ford. Why didn't you buy a Honda or Toyota?
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,919
    Warranties are a big part of buying a car and it's natural to compare various makes and features of cars. If a thread doesn't interest you, please use your down arrow and navigate to the next post.

    Steve, Host
  • mtnman1mtnman1 Westerville, OhioPosts: 371
    Whatever there Steve O. It just seemed off topic to me. I'll try not to comment on such things in the future.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,919
    Hi Hoganj55, your post has been moved to the existing Explorer Problems discussion. Here's the link:

    hoganj55, "Ford Explorer: Problems & Solutions" #4895, 16 Mar 2006 5:28 pm

    Please continue over there.

    For anyone wanting to discuss buying a new or used Explorer, please check out the Ford Explorer/Mercury Mountaineer: Prices Paid & Buying Experience discussion.

    Steve, Host
  • I did not request to be on the survey. If I recall a few months after I purchased the 2003 Mountaineer I received a survey from them on the initial quality of vehicle and dealership. Perhaps that initiated this 3 year follow-up.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    1,700 for an Extra care warranty for 100,000 miles ('05 Taurus)

    Whats wrong with that?
  • cathmaccathmac Posts: 49
    In order for the comparison to the Subaru "Gold Plus" warranty to be valid, the "Extra Care" which is one step down from the "Premium Care" would need to essentially offer bumper to bumper coverage comparable to the original Manufacurers 3yr / 36K warranty (this is how Subaru describes their Gold Plus warranty).

    Subaru OB (AWD) 7yr/100K,
    "Gold Plus", $0 Ded = (MSRP) $2,460.00

    Ford Taurus (FWD) 7yr/100K
    "Premium" , $0 Ded = (MSRP)$2,820.00 (assuming a 25% discount)

    My experience trying to comparison shop, on 4 different websites, for the Explorer warranty tells me the most I am probably going to save on a Ford warranty is 15%. In which case my expectation is that the best I could do for a Ford backed "Premium Care" warranty --with the most comprehensive coverage-- on the Taurus is about $2,400 compared to the best discounted price on the Subaru OB, 40% off or $1,400. As I pointed out earlier, the Subaru warranty is covering an AWD vehicle so one would actually expect that warranty to be more expensive, all other factors being equal.

    Even though the Ford "Extra Care" coverage would seem to be less comprehensive than the Subaru "Gold Plus" coverage, at $1,700 the Ford Taurus warranty is still $300 more expensive even though it's covering a less complicated vehicle, (FWD as opposed to AWD).
  • bitusabitusa Posts: 60

    Wow! Sorry you are having so many problems with your '06 Explorer. I bought one for my wife. We have put about 8,500 miles on it so far. We have not had one problem with it. Our average fuel economy (ours is a V6) is 17.8 mpg. Mostly around town driving. I'm surprised by your mileage since the V8 and V6 are rated very similar.

    Have the same likes as you, but don't have the glare problem, and believe it or not, I'm used to the door handles where they are, but did have an instance or two where I had to put a little pressure on the armrest to keep the door from swinging out too quickly. (My wife is still not a fan of the handles.) I heard that the interior designers have already made a door handle change on the next one coming in September.

    But overall, we love the Explorer. My wife says the best vehicle she has ever driven. Her favorite feature is the suede and leather seats. Man, are they comfortable.
  • mtnman1mtnman1 Westerville, OhioPosts: 371
    My 2004 Mountaineer AWD V-8 has always gotten good highway gas mileage. This past weekend we drove from Columbus to Pittsburgh. Had two lane and 4 lane driving since we don't like to drive I-70. Got 21 miles per on the way there and got 20.4 miles coming back. Last summer driving to myrtle beach going 70 to 75 miles per hour we usualy got 20 miles per gallon on the trip down and the trip back. This is better than what it was estimated to get. Around town mileage in the winter is very bad though. I get about 12 to 13 miles per gallon in that situation. I new from the research before I bought the vehicle that fuel economy was not one of it's highlights. I didn't really think twice about that. I was buying an SUV. If I wanted good fuel economy I would have bought a pretend SUV. I think it has a lot to do with how you break it in. I have a 2003 Sonata V-6 that I drive to Cincinnati about twice per month. I always get 29 to 30 miles per gallon. It was rated to get 26 highway. These are not just what the trip computer says. I always randomly check mine by using a calculator. I find the trip computer is very accurate.
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    The Ford ESPs are basically insurance policies. The rates are determined by actuarys based on the real world cost of repair datas.

    Keep in mind that a warranty for a more complicated vehicle will also cost more. Accordingly a lower priced warranty with the same exact coverage means that that vehicle has a history of lower repair costs.

    Unfortunately, every dealer has different markup practices on these warranties and the markup is HUGE! like designer clothes HUGE and by designer I mean Versace or Armini! So its hard to compare between dealerships if you don't call around.

  • comancoman Posts: 11
    My new 06 4Runner has a lot of gear whine in the same speed range as your Explorer had and Toyota won't fix it either. While Toyota may have better overall quality stats than Ford, my experience shows their service is no better.

    I owned a 97 Mountaineer previously and I actually had fewer problems and better service than I've gotten so far with Toyota. Just the luck of the draw, I guess.
  • mtnman1mtnman1 Westerville, OhioPosts: 371
    I owned a 97 Mountaineer previously and I actually had fewer problems and better service than I've gotten so far with Toyota.

    Coman, that just can't be true. A toyota having more problems than a Ford product. No way. All those people out there that own Toyotas will be crushed and devastated by this news. My god, I think I'll just go jump in my 2004 Mountaineer and drive to the nearest bridge and jump off. I'm just flabbergasted. NOT!

    Good luck in the future with your new Toyota.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I'm going to be eating some crap from chuck1 here - but my wife's 04 Mountaineer is shifting strangely, kinda slidddddding into home, IYKWIM. Going in tomorrow to have it serviced and checked. Probably, they'll try a reflash first. That fixed my 02 like a charm, and it was one of the smoothest transmissions I'd ever had after that. However, this one was one of the trannies with the wrong fluid in it, and by the time they got the fix out, mine was lunch meat, so it's already been rebuilt once.

    My dealer though is great on service, never an excuse, nor a harsh word. They always give me a free loaner, and treat me like gold there.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    Well - at least you admit it.

    Maybe the pesky solenoid.....
  • kwikbillkwikbill Posts: 4
    I had the same problem with my 04 Explorer...and after several tries...fluid additive (from a TSB) didnt even help,reprogramming the computer codes,(worked for a week or two, then same thing), they finally changed out the solenoid, and that cured the problem, and have had no problem with it since just tell them to change out that solenoid, and that should cure the problem.
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