Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 2005 Ford Explorer one of our worst vehicles on record. "Avoid like the plague" is putting it lightly.

The 2002-2005 Explorer has a very well-established record of expensive transmission failure at under 100k miles. The Explorer has an enclosed transmission which is typically replaced with a rebuilt transmission at a cost of almost $3,000.

Adding insult to injury, the 2002-2005 Explorer also has a massive problem with the rear panel cracking. While it's a minor annoyance compared to transmission failure, ironically the crack usually goes right through the Ford logo.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
26,339 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Ford Explorer engine problems

engine problem

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2005 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #6

Nov 122004

Explorer 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,550 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Explorer. While driving approximately 60 mph with the cruise control system engaged, the scds deactivated without intention. The vehicle was restarted and she resumed normal vehicle operation. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for inspection. The technician was unable to duplicate the failure, therefore no repairs were made. The failure mileage was 1,550. The current mileage was 45,000. The consumer stated on several occasions, the cruise control would not resume after the brake was applied to reduce the speed. When the vehicle was restarted the system would work properly. Updated 11/04/09

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #5

Jun 122006

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Explorer. While driving 40 mph with the cruise control activated, all of the warning lights illuminated and the vehicle slowed down. The contact pulled over and the vehicle stalled. The dealer could not diagnose the cause of the failure. The current mileage was 46,000 and failure mileage was 20,000.

- Mexico, NY, USA

problem #4

Mar 032008

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,235 miles
While driving the 2005 Ford Explorer XLT, 4X4 (4.0 L, 6-cyl, advance trac with roll stability control) vehicle, the cruise control was engaged at approximately 48 mph. Less than 5 seconds later, while driving between 48 mph and 50 mph the vehicle engine shut-off. Ford car/truck dealer was notified that the engine shut-off while the vehicle cruise control was engaged at approximately 50 mph. During the past two years the Ford car/truck dealer was previously notified that engine failure had also occurred five separate times immediately after the cruise control was engaged.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #3

Jun 122006

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • miles


2005 Explorer with multiple problems with the engine and transmission. Customer states the vehicle has been to the dealer on 3 separate occasions for shutting off and passing gears almost causing accidents. There was a knocking noise coming from the engine area. The vehicle jerked into passing gear while the consumer was trying to accelerate. The transmission gasket was replaced. The cruise control would not engage. The left turn signal bulb was replaced.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #2

Jul 052006

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,500 miles
- the contact stated that while driving the 2005 Ford Explorer with 30500 failure mileage on six different occasions at any rate of speed the vehicle stalled without any warning and had to be restarted in neutral. The vehicle was taken to the dealer on three separate occasions, and the problem could not be duplicated. The cruise control would not engage. Updated 04/05/07.

- Pontevedra Beach, FL, USA

problem #1

Mar 092007

Explorer 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,750 miles
Our vehicle is a 2005 Ford Explorer. With the cruise control set and coasting with the coast button down to 30 mph the car shuts off. We just had the car checked at courtesy Ford in portland Oregon and were told that everything checks out and there is nothing wrong with the car. Service was able to reproduce our car shutting off with the cruise control on when coasting to 30 mph. I filed a complaint with Ford customer care and was also told that all systems checked out and there is nothing wrong with our car. Courtesy Ford was not able to reproduce this problem in 3 other newer model Explorer, but today were able to reproduce this problem in 2 other 2005 Explorer.

- Milwaukie, OR, USA

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