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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
118,388 miles
Total Complaints:
4 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (2 reports)
  2. replace windshield (2 reports)
2005 Ford Explorer windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2005 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #4

Nov 022016

Explorer XLT 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 132,300 miles


We bought this car for our granddaughter. I'm so happy this happened before we gave it to her. This is a total black mark on Fords Quality that I always thought they had. I've been a Ford owner for many years, this has me rethinking whether I want to own another one. Terrible design!! They ought to be ashamed of themselves. I'm just happy nobody was hurt. Okay Ford it's time you owned up to the design flaw and fix it!!

- , Wolfe City, TX, USA

problem #3

Sep 012016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 168,000 miles

I had just picked my 4 year old daughter up from day care. We went into my home to get ready for my son's open house at school and to wait for my wife and son to get home. They arrived about 20 minutes after a got home and they greeted me with confusion as they asked what had happened to the back glass of my 2005 Ford Explorer. I had no idea. Everything was fine when I arrived home. I went out to see what they were fussing about and was greeted with a shattered back window. The panel underneath the window was bent and the glass had looked like it literally exploded. Glass was everywhere! The vehicle was sitting idle for at least 20 minutes. What if we were still in the vehicle when the glass exploded? My daughter would have been hit with the glass! Someone at Ford needs to fix this problem because, judging from other instances and research, this isn't the first time it has happened.

- , Washington, PA, USA

problem #2

Sep 032015

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,250 miles

click to see larger images

rear window exploded rear window exploded rear window exploded

I have always had Fords. 35 years ago I tried to branch out and bought a Buick and it was nothing but trouble. That was before they had "lemon" laws, so I couldn't do much about it than return to Fords. I bought this Explorer new 10 years ago. It is my personal daily vehicle. It had the tiny crack in the lift gate by the insignia that everyone of them get but that was just cosmetic. So I return from the supermarket in 90 degree weather and I pull up the lift gate and stick my head in to grab my bags, when the hinge that attaches to the glass part of the lift gate fails and the lift gate crashes on the back of my head. The torque was so great it bent the other hinge and shatters the glass all over and completely cracks the gate. I am waiting for the adjuster to make an appointment to see the disaster. Of course it's a 3 day weekend. I have a $500 deductible. I just switched to this insurance company 3 days ago. I had my previous company for 15 years and never made a claim. Whats' this new company (cheaper) going to do? What's Ford (the company I am so loyal to) going to do?

- , St. Anne, IL, USA

problem #1

May 242010

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles

top section of rear window was open +when i went to shut it-----it just exploded into a a million pieces+cut me in several places ---i was luckey on that-----the back panel by the ford emblem also had a crack ----there is no reason that window should have exploded like that--waitin on a adjuster+then down to the ford dealership where i am sure they will blow me off

- , Melbourne, FL, USA

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