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Ford Explorer Mercury Mountaineer 2005 and earlier



  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    That would be Ricardo Montalbán (aka Khan from Star Trek!). Along with Lee Iacocca, he is often credited with having saved Chrysler from bankruptcy.

    tidester, host
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    FWIW, I have a Mountaineer Premier, and am having no problems with the leather seats. I had an 02 Mountaineer with the same seats, kept for 3 years, no problems. However, my friend has an 03 Aviator, and although he has not noticed it, his seat looks like hell to me.......... So I know what you may be talking about.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    I decided to replace my 2002 Mountaineer RWD V8 with a 2005 Toyota Sienna XLE Limited. Guess what? The "sophisticated" 3.3 V6 in the Sienna, rated at 19 city and 26 highway, is thus far only able to produce 19 MPG, while the Mountaineer V8 is rated 14 city and 19 highway and produces 17MPG for me. The Sienna is fancy and rides smoothly and quietly, but the mileage is a real disappointment.

    It would be a big mistake to put much faith in the EPA mileage numbers. Unfortunately, I think that the EPA stickers are having a big influence on buying decisions. I am trying to sell the Mountaineer (v8, audiophile, curtain air bags, tow, etc - everything except the sun roof, running boards, and AWD), and have found that the resale values have fallen off of a cliff. According to the computer databases, the resale value should be $14,250. I was asking $12,500, but everyone lost interest when I told them the mileage is 93,000. Today I noticed an ad by someone else in southern CA asking just $12,900 for a 2002 V8 AWD Mountaineer with only 23,000 miles, so I am lowering my price to $11,000 and will see what happens.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    Don't know how many miles are on your Toyota, but if it's less than 12,000 it's not the time to measure mpg. Motors, (especially Japanese) are "tight" when new and do not produce the "true gas mileage" until the motors have a few miles on them. Also, the resale for SUV's is now terrible. I was looking at a NEW EDDIE BAUER EXPEDITION at $28,000.00 after all rebates in Southern California. I also saw a '04 Explorer Limited w/the V6 and front wheel drive at just $15,000.00 with less than 30,000 miles on the dealer's lot. Remember, blue books, black books, edmunds, are all guides. IT'S WHAT YOUR LOCAL MARKET WILL BEAR when a used car is involved. I hate to tell you this---but your used SUV is going to be a tough sell! Good luck and keep us posted!
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,703
    I would think it is quite reasonable for anyone to run when they see your vehicle has 93K miles...not to bash American cars, but when one sees you are just shy of the magic 100,000 miles, when everything supposedly "falls apart", and there is certainly no more warranty left, it would be a surprise if folks lined up to buy your vehicle...I suppose with gas at $2 gallon, used and new SUV sales are dropping, add those factors to your 93K and I believe you have quite a challenge on your hands...good luck...
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    ... just shy of the magic 100,000 miles, when everything supposedly "falls apart"

    The key word there is "supposedly." There is nothing more special about 100,000 miles than 90,000 or 110,000 with the only clear trend being the more miles you put on the more things "fall apart." All cars, regardless of origin, suffer the same indignities of aging and wear.

    tidester, host
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Ironically I had a friends that woudl constantly buy Accords for the past 2 decades... And never failed, at the 70K mark, the transmission would die.... The first time "Well, it can happen to anyone" she said... The 2nd next one, "Well, maybe it's just bad luck"... ON the 3rd time, her excuse was "Ok, there's something wrong with this picture"... and on the fourth one, "Ok I've HAD IT!!!"

    Now she's on her 2nd Explorer with 120K miles, yet she cringed at 70K, 80K, 90K, now she's in the "WOW, I'm still running with my original A/C compressor".
  • daryll44daryll44 Posts: 307
    Your "Honda vs Ford" story MAY be true, but it sounds very suspicious frankly. I am a happy Mountaineer owner, but even saying that I have to agree with the original poster. Truth be told, used car values generally reflect an American car worth near zero at 100,000 miles while Japanese cars have a less steep depreciation curve not reflecting "near zero" residual value until 150,000 miles.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    "Truth be told, used car values generally reflect an American car worth near zero at 100,000 miles while Japanese cars have a less steep depreciation curve not reflecting "near zero" residual value until 150,000 miles."

    As a Ford Explorer owner, and one that tries to buy American cars, I do have to agree with this statement!
  • fitguyfitguy Posts: 222
    "Remember when Ricaldo Mantalbaum (or whatever the heck his name was) huckstered "fine corinthian leather" for Chrysler."

    I think his pitch was "Rich Corinthian Leather"- and you're right, I've test driven a lot of cars over the past couple of years and the leather is crap until you get to BMW/MB/Lexus/Infinity/etc. I have the first car I've ever owned with leather, and all my kids do is complain in the winter that the seats are cold (of course, wife & I are nice and toasty with the heated seats!) Give me high-quality cloth anyday! :surprise:
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    "add those factors to your 93K and I believe you have quite a challenge on your hands...good luck..."

    I once tried to sell a beautiful gold Grand Marquis that had 93,000 miles on the clock. The car looked and ran like new, but the mileage was indeed a big turn-off to potential buyers UNTIL, I put 1 OWNER in the ad. Once I did that, it sold right away. Seems that mitigated the mileage stigma.

    I think you'll be able to market your Mountaineer just fine, you may need to do some creative advertising, but lots of people know that a well maintained Ford isn't done at 90,000 miles.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    Thanks nvbanker for the suggestion about "one owner."

    My Mountaineer had three factory defects - a pinched fuel tank vent line, a bad differential (probably not assembled properly), and a spot in the paint on one door, all quickly repaired under warranty. Since then, the only failure has been a little idler pully on the front of the engine. I strongly suspect that it will run to 150,000 miles or more with few problems. I am only getting rid of it due to the rough ride, not any concern over it falling apart..

    The car it replaced, a 1996 Impala SS, was another matter. The transmission failed twice in 120,000 mostly highway miles, the seat tracks broke (bad design, weak plastic between the metal parts), a spring came through the seat and tore my pants, and the factory carpet only lasted about 12,000 miles between changes uptil I upgraded to the Cadillac carpet.

    We also sold our 1994 Thunderbird LX V8 at about 120,000 miles. It was an excellent car. Besides occasional replacement of the warped front brake rotors (a known design flaw), it only had a few minor problems, all of which cost less than $1,700 to repair.

    I gave away my 1984 Pontiac Sunbird LE Turbo when it had run approximately 160,000 miles, and the engine, turbo, and transmission had never been out of the car.

    We gave away my mother's 1970 AMC Ambassador with 140,000 miles on it, and it only needed a few minor repairs.

    If used American brand vehicles with at or over 100,000 miles, then why do Edmunds and the others show such high values for them?
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    If used American brand vehicles with at or over 100,000 miles, then why do Edmunds and the others show such high values for them?

    It doesn't matter what anybody shows for them, but what they will sell for in your local market. I believe "Ant" is in Southern California as I am. Gas is still well over two dollars a gallon. Brand new and used SUV's are "just sitting" on dealer's lot. No one's buying. It's also been my experience that selling a car/suv on your own that is valued over $5,000.00 is a very tough sell.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    I'm in Miami, but close enough heh... I haven't seen anything below $2 in years... and I'm talking YEARS. The market here for used truck based SUV isn't very good actually. A friend of mine wanted to trade in his 2001 Explorer Sport, with 42K miles and $5K is the best he could do. Obviously he didn't even bother, he just decided not to buy anything anyways. He was going to replace it with a car based vehicle, and chances are the Explorer will outlast that other vehicle twice over. And to think he paid $23K just 4 years ago for it....
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    Just curious, did you try trading in the Explorer when you bought the Toyota?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    "Many mid-size SUVs have been similarly affected. says a 2-year-old Ford Explorer, long America's favorite SUV by sales volume, is worth about 5.5 percent less now than a 2-year-old Explorer was worth a year ago. Average price to buy one now: about $15,000."

    Rising gasoline prices have motorists rethinking SUV purchases (Newsday)

    Steve, Host
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    ANT14 - Several dealers had already told me that they did not want anything with higher mileage, and one said that 60,000 was their limit. It took me over three months to sell my 1996 Impala SS, a "hot" model, so I will not be surprised if it takes four or more months to sell the Mountaineer. Besides the ads, I need to make time to park it in Santa Ana and other such places with large working class populations.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    "Several dealers had already told me that they did not want anything with higher mileage, and one said that 60,000 was their limit."

    Yes, your right. Banks do not like to finance vehicles with higher miles. Way too much risk!
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    It seems to me that there is too much risk on both sides - the lenders making loans to people who are buying what they can not afford, and the buyers taking on a loan on a rapidly depreciating item. Too bad that people do not pay cash for vehicles.

    This probably a factor in Ford's rapidly declining Explorer, Mountaineer, Expedition and Excursion sales - if people are buying what they can not afford, they may also be barely able to afford the fuel. The effect of the fuel price increases is magnified by the fact that so many consumers are swimming in debt. I certainly regret ever having financed a vehicle purchase.

    I understand that the 2006 Explorer and Mountaineer may obtain better mileage with the new 3-valve V8. I wonder how much better?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Just a tad, although the certification from the EPA isn't in yet... if so, I'll let you know.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well - ahem - having just rented an 05 Navigator in Santa Fe for 4 days and driven the snot out of it, I can give you a little info on mileage. Using the onboard fuel computer only (I'm way to lazy to use a pencil), the 05 Navigator averaged exactly 1MPG more than my 03 Navigator does in very similar driving. The one variable I couldn't equalize was altitude - which was a difference of 1500 ft to 7500 ft. - a huge difference. The mileage differential may have been a lot better if the altitude had been the same. Also, the 05 only had 5000 miles on it, hardly broken in, and mine has 28,000 miles on it, well broken in.

    Clearly though, the 3V is more efficient, or the 6 sp. transmission helps, or both. The 05 did better, and is more fun to drive too.
  • lateralglateralg Posts: 929
    It should deliver better MPG. Check the transmission ratios:
    1 - 4.17
    2 - 2.34
    3 - 1.52
    4 - 1.14
    5 - 0.86
    6 - 0.69
    Rear Axle 3.55

    These are for the 2006 Mountaineer, which should be the same.

    Did you play much with the transmission?
    * Kickdown at various speeds & gears?
    * Manually upshifting & downshifting.?
    How smooth were the shifts?
  • marsha7marsha7 Posts: 3,703
    I do agree with you, nothing TRULY magical about 90K, 100, 120K, but once a car breaks 6 digits at 100K, potential trade-in at many car dealers will not get you top dollar...not much different from 90K, but there is still a psychological barrier that anything, American or Asian, at 100K, its best years are behind it, not ahead of it...maybe Benz has a reputation for just being "broken in" at 125-150K, but no Big 3 vehicle has that rep...values do drop precipitiously (sp?) once it breaks 100K...
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    ... but there is still a psychological barrier ...

    I can't argue with that! :)

    tidester, host
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    It appears the transmission is a shift by wire setup - there is no linkage feel at all like there is traditionally - it feels like a Mattel joystick - a little less satisfying than I would like personally, but that's beside the point. If you want to go to manumatic mode you take it out of Overdrive by moving the selector over to the right, you get the Overdrive Off warning in the message center, and you're in manual select, and in 4th gear. From there you can go all the way back to 1st if you want to. Kickdowns are easy and prompt, and in automatic, you can do a kickdown from 6th to 1st in one shift if you want to, pretty darn fast. The shifts are like butter, by the way. You don't even feel them, unless you're under hard acceleration.

    I think it's the finest transmission I've ever seen. If it holds up, it's perfect.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    And the abuse that monster can take. This is one of those "overly engineered" items Ford has recently done.
  • lateralglateralg Posts: 929

    Why do you say "ZF"?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    That is who builds the transmissions. Same transmission being used in some LandRover's and Jaguars. ZF Friedrichshafen AG and Ford Motor Company formed a joint venture - ZF Transmission Tech. Not only do they contribute to CVT transmission in Batavia, but are involved in the next generation of 6 speed automatic transmission to be used in RWD vehicles (high capacity that is).
  • lateralglateralg Posts: 929
    "That is who builds the transmissions."

    That's not what I heard ... are you sure? I need to know in order to settle a bet.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Heh, where did they say the transmission came from ?

    Here's a link that will help you win your bet.

    And if you need a link that marries ZF into the new Navigator then$D7$A2$3
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