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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    have not decided whether to pony up the $19.95 access to "the fix" section yet, but thanks for the link.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    I know what you're talking about, and I too have front and rear mud flaps, along with tubular steps, rather than running boards. For what it's worth, I painstakingly re-detail my truck every six months (a weekend project requiring a garage) with Zaino products (, and I also apply Zaino to the insides of the doors, etc. This is time-consuming, but it's time well spent. During the winter, I periodically rinse these areas (along with running her through a soft brush car wash every week or two), and with the amount of salt on the roads this time of year, it's hard to do much more than that. At any rate, Zaino products not only provide for a gorgeous finish, but that finish is also very durable and protective, assuming that one takes the time to periodically wash off accumulated grime, salt, etc.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,666
    I need some additional explanation, as a friend made an offer that I do not know if it will save me money or cost me friend is a Ford retiree, and he offered me use of the “Z” plan,
    which he says will allow me to purchase any vehicle under Ford’s banner at “3% over DEALER
    COST”...( if I am not mistaken, A-plan if for Ford employees/retirees, X-plan if for their
    immediate family members, Z-plan is for non-relations...correct me if I am wrong)’s the
    bottom line questions...1) if “dealer cost” is defined as Edmund’s invoice cost, and if Z-plan is
    3% over that, there are already dealers out there who will sell a car at Edmund’s invoice, and Z-plan would cost me money rather than save me money...if “dealer cost” is defined as including all other holdbacks, etc., then Z-plan would be a great deal...does anyone familiar with Ford plans know how “dealer cost” is defined?...2) Also, my friend said that since he was a salaried employee, as opposed to an hourly (unionized) employee, his plan will also allow the discount on Jaguar and Land, while I could consider Mountaineer or Aviator under the Ford/LM brands, does anyone know the discount on Land Rover Discovery, since Edmunds has no listing
    other than MSRP?...3) do employee discount plans only cover new cars, or does it cover used,
    too, since I would, in the future, consider a 2 or 3 year old Jaguar XJ8L???...thanks for any
    helpful information...

  • cubescubes Posts: 29
    I believe that the Z-Plan (for retirees) allows for the same pricing as the A-Plan (current employees) which is definitely below invoice.

    I have a copy of the Ford invoice for my 99 E350 Club Wagon and the numbers are as follows:
    MSRP: $30540
    INVOICE: $26699.60
    MEMO (Invoice Less Holdback): $25801.60
    A-PLAN: $25421.60
    There are some additional figures of $2555 and $23122.00 with no headers attached to them so I really can't tell what they mean. Keep in mind that this info is three years old and things may have changed a bit.

    X-Plan is pricing for Ford Partner companies and their employees and/or members. That pricing is A-Plan + 4%. That's what I used for our Mountaineer.

    Regarding Jag and LR plans, if they are structured like X-Plan, I believe that they are a fixed dollar amount discounts. And if my memory serves me correctly, not very good discounts at that.
  • cubescubes Posts: 29
    X-Plan pricing is as follows:

    Ford/Mercury/THINK - A-Plan+4%+$150
    Lincoln - A-Plan+4%+$250
    Volvo - A-Plan+2%
    Land Rover - Dealer Invoice+4%
    Mazda - E-Plan+5.3% (E-plan is Mazda Employee Price)
    Jaguar - Cash allowance of $500-$1500 depending on model

    SuperDuty F450-F750, T-Bird, Volvo XC90, Range Rover and Aston Martins are not included.

     Here's some additional info regarding the X-Plan program:

    *   You can lease or buy your vehicle through this program.  However, depending on the brand selected, you may be required to obtain the lease through the respective brands credit source. [Ford Credit]
    *   You are eligible for all public incentives plus many incentives normally paid to the dealer. Some special offers may not be compatible with this offer so check with your dealer to determine which incentives you are eligible for.
    *   Prior model year vehicles are only eligible through March 31st of the current model year.
    *   Used vehicles are not eligible.
    *   Trade-in allowances are not covered by this program and will likely represent the wholesale value of your trade-in. (may be lower than expected)
    *   Dealer Participation in this program is voluntary.
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,666
    you for taking the time to looks like Z-plan may be worthwhile after all
  • I am presently looking at buying a 2002 XLT with 3rd row, aux. heat/air, V8, tow package, 6 CD. It was built in 12/01 and has the older front seats with no headrests. Is this something I should be concerned about? I have been offered a price of $36,000 CDN or approx. $24,000 US, which from shopping around seems like a good deal. I am only concerned with the lack of the headrests, leather steering wheel and side heated mirrors. I am hoping to hear from other owners of the earlier 2002, not 2002.5 Explorers about their impressions. Any info would be of great help. Thanks in advance.
  • gregb5gregb5 Posts: 82
    The headrest issue doesn't bother me, since I'm only 5'8" tall. The seat gives adequate support to my neck. If you're tall and it bothers you it could be a problem.
    As for the other items:
    Leather wheel- had one on my '95, and despite regularly cleaning and conditioning, the leather began to look terrible and I wound up covering it. I prefer the plastic for the long run.
    Mirror heaters- I live in Pennsylvania and can say that it's very rare that they would be of any use here. Don't know about your climate but I imagine you could live without them.

    The one change that I would not mind having from the 2002.5 is the shoulder belt in the middle of the second row.

    The 2002.5 comes with fog lights, which the early ones didn't have. I bought the kit from Ford for about $200 and installed them myself.

    Good luck!
  • I am interesting in factory ordering an Explorer. My local dealer's "build sheet" has different "invoice" prices than the invoice prices on Ford's/Edmunds' website. The dealer is also insisting on a Ford Dealer Advertising Fund assessment as well as the doc fee.

    I realize the dealer makes a tidy profit with holdback and the Blue Oval rebate, but still have a couple of questions:

    1. Has anyone purchased at or below invoice recently (and kept the rebate/financing incentive)?
    2. Did the FDAF and doc fee added to the "X dollars over/under invoice" pricing?
    3. How long does it take for an order to come in from the factory?
    4. Is the deposit refundable (say the vehicle comes in after the rebates expire)?

    Any input would be greatly appreciated!

  • Thank you for the input. I did not receive as much feedback as I hoped but I did decide to go ahead and purchase the Explorer anyways. The dealer came down another $2500 and with the 0 per cent financing and no payment for 99 days here in Canada (a Wayne Gretzky promotion with Ford Canada), I couldn't be happier. Thus far I am greatly impressed with the vehicle, it is very comfortable and well laid out. I had a Nissan Pathfinder a couple of years ago and miss some of its niceties such as the leather and steering wheel controls for the stereo but now that I have a young family those items became less of a priority. The V8 is great and I am sure that I will be very happy with my decision. Can't wait to see how it pulls a trailer this summer.
  • I've got an 03 Explorer XLT, it's great, like it very much. Recently, there are whistles come from outside of the passenger side. It happens occasionally, mainly on local road at low speed. I am guessing it comes from the antenna, but not sure. Anyone have the same experience? Thanks!
  • jv312jv312 Posts: 32
    a few people here complained about the whistle & road noise on the passenger side in previous posts. I have an 02.5 Explorer and mine has minor noise but due to the channel vent visors I added. The antenna is a good guess, but if you look at some of the older posts from summer you might get some quick answers.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    FWIW, I'm currently using ANCO's "winter" wiper blades (awesome) and they definitely create more wind noise at high speeds, since these wiper arms are shrouded in rubber, rather than being of the more "open" architecture of summer blades.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    you get much more wind skipping with them. no real good choices here.. you have skip blobs on the glass on the highway, or you put the regular blades on and ice them up, and they don't clear, they smear.
  • heintz1heintz1 Posts: 52
    My Anco winter blades wipe very well even at high speeds, and I've not noticed any skipping so far.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    I run Ancos because they last, but their winter blades sure skip and leave funny patches on the highway in my 2000.
  • jposter, in your #824 post, you said:
    "Question, on 2 separate vehicles I drove I heard a sort of wistle noise that appeared to be coming from the passenger side? Is this common? Anyone else notice something like this. It seemed very faint and came and went depending upon the speed and direction of travel (maybe the wind direction too?) I'm thinking tire noise or something related to the mast antenna? Any comments welcome"
    I am wondering if you've figured it out or not. My 03 XLT has the same problem. I also guess it comes from the antenna, but really not sure. Thank you for any comment!
  • tonyd39tonyd39 Posts: 12
    I'm considering the immediate purchase of a new 2003 Explorer XLT, XLT Sport, or EB. The XLT comes with the 16" Michelin's. The XLT Sport and EB come with the 17" BFG's? Which tires and/or tire size is safer? I read a posting on here which states that the 17" tires/rims raise the center of gravity by approx 2" which may lead to increased rollovers. Is this a true statement? Are the 16" tires/rims "safer" on the 2003 Explorer then the 17" versions. Lastly ... does anyone know if the rollover side airbags are safe if young children are sitting in the second row seat? The children would either be in booster seats or not in any type of car seat. Thanks
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    both brands are Michelin units and have good reputations. there is something to the argument that the 17-inchers will increase instability at the limits of control, no formal testing availiable to the public on any of the variables. there is a government "rollover" rating that is a computed magic number, no driving tests at all are used in working it out.

    the air curtain airbags, if you've seen a set ever in discharged position at a car show or meet, are meant to keep from scrambling your brains inside your head banging on the roofline as the vehicle rolls over. they won't reach down to the level of anybody under junior high level... they're supposed to be, at least at Ford, a soft-deployment bag because you should have the half second to do that. so they shouldn't come into play with booster or child seats at all unless the seat is not fastened down, or breaks loose. and at that point, if the seat and the child is a loose missle, probably won't make a difference there, either.

    so there should be no major threat unless you drive a truck like it was a Miata, and you're playing fighter pilot. in that case, you're going roofing, not 4-wheeling, to use somebody else's wonderful phrase.

    I doubt anybody has any hard numbers of the "001% of all accidents involving children in car seats, rollovers, and goats...." type at all.
  • gregb5gregb5 Posts: 82
    The 16" is 29.1 inches in height. The 17" is 29.9 inches in height. That raises the center of gravity by .4 inches, which is minimal.

    I doubt there is any difference at all in the "safety" of the two tires. Pick the model you like best, and be content with the knowledge that the new body style is a lot better than previous versions in that respect.

    If it really concerns you, shop for a station wagon.
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