Notes: How can we give the 2001 model year a "seal of pretty good" when it has some problems with a slipping transmission and a known problem with the speed activation control switch? Because it's not the 2002. That's how.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 4
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,492 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.

2001 Ford Explorer engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #13

Jun 122008


  • 80,016 miles


The contact owns a 2001 Ford Explorer. While driving 75 mph, the contact activated the cruise control. She began hearing a clicking noise and smelled something burning. He deactivated the cruise control, but the burning smell persisted. The contact did not continue to drive the vehicle. He received a safety recall notice three months ago, but the switch was never disconnected or repaired. NHTSA campaign id number 07V336000 (vehicle speed control) was referenced. The current and failure mileages were 80,016.

- Gillette, WY, USA

problem #12

Mar 262008

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Received recall notice in August 2007 for problems with speed control on 2001 Ford Explorer. Called local Ford dealer, was told no parts shipped from Ford yet, will be December before they get them. Called in Jan 08, still no parts, will be March before they get them, called March 26, 2008 was told no part shipped, will be end of may at the earliest. Ford Motor Company knew of the problem way before the recall notices were sent out in August 07. Ford would have spent months denying there was a problem and then more time trying to find a work around before finally admitting they had no choice but to follow gov.'t guidelines and do a recall - months if not longer before the letters were sent out. Plenty of time to know how many vehicles were effected and get the parts ordered. It will be a minimum of 1 year since the problem was noticed and letters sent before the parts actually arrive at the dealers for repair of problem. Inexcusable! and the NHTSA should be doing more than ignoring it!

- Altoona, IA, USA

problem #11

Jan 022008

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 153,000 miles
On Wednesday January 2, 2008 a rollover accident occured on my wifes 2001 Ford Explorer. She was driving home when she set her cruise control to 60 mph. When she hit her brakes to release the cruise control and slow down, the vehicle did not slow down and her cruise control did not release. She was able to get the vehicle slowed down to approximately 40 mph when she came to a T in the road. She was unable to make the turn and the vehicle rolled over with her and 2 young children in the vehicle.

- Hickory Creek, TX, USA

problem #10

Aug 272007

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


The contact owns a 2001 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that she received a recall for the vehicle speed control (NHTSA campaign id # 07V336000). The dealer disconnected the wiring harness and stated that the parts would be available in December of 2007. The manufacturer stated that the parts would not be available until March of 2008. As of January 3, 2008, the dealer had not repaired the vehicle. The current mileage was 75,000 and there had been no failure to date.

- Dolver, DE, USA

problem #9

Sep 112007

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The contact owns a 2001 Ford Explorer. The contact received a recall notice in August of 2007 for NHTSA campaign id number 07V336000 (vehicle speed control). A month later, he took his vehicle to have the speed control switch deactivated and the dealer informed him that the parts would be unavailable until October. On October 11, 2007, the contact called the dealer and they stated that the parts would remain unavailable until January of 2008. There had been no failure to date. The current mileage was 45,000.

- Willing, WV, USA

problem #8

Mar 082007

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles
- the contact stated that while his 2001 Ford Explorer was parked in the driveway, the vehicle caught on fire underneath the hood. The fire damaged the entire front end of the vehicle, the electrical wiring, piping and anything that was concerning plastic melted in the vehicle. The fire dpeartment stated that this falure was common with Ford Explorer, that the cruise control switch would get stuck and catch on fire. Contact can provide incident report and pictures. Jrb

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #7

Aug 182006

Explorer 4WD

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,584 miles


: the contact stated while driving 55 mph, the throttle and speed control stuck causing the vehicle to surge over 90 mph. The cruise control was not in use at the time. The brakes would not work and the contact stated the constant pressure to the brakes caused them to smoke and almost catch on fire. There were no lights illuminated on the dashboard prior to the incident. The dealership was alerted. There were no problems with the vehicle's cruise control prior to the incident.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #6

Aug 272005

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Ford Explorer. The contact stated cruise control was not working properly. She had the cruise control set at 35 mph while going up a hill, but was pulled over by the police, and they stated she was going approximately 65 mph. The consumer showed the police that this was what actually happened. This happened 7 times in the last 4 months. The on/off switch that was used to disengage the cruise control will not work, and the contact had to apply the brakes hard to disengage the cruise control. The contact has not been to a service dealer to have the vehicle inspected, and has not contacted the manufacturer. The contact stated the lights on the steering wheel did not illuminate. The fuse has been replaced to remedy this situation, but it did not fix the lights problem.

- Windsor, CA, USA

problem #5

Jan 262005

Explorer 8-cyl

  • 34,800 miles
While the vehicle was parked a fire started under the hood. The vehicle was totaled. The problem may be related to the cruise control as other Ford model vehicles.

- Pine Beach, NJ, USA

problem #4

Oct 262003

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
Vehicle was parked in the garage for an hour when all of a sudden it caught on fire along with consumer's home. Results showed that there was a short with the cruise control switch under the hood.

- Fontana, CA, USA

problem #3

Feb 042005

Explorer 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,000 miles


Was driving approximately 50 mph heard a popping noise. Noticed white smoke coming from steering column. No flames appeared. Pulled vehicle over and shut everything down. Contacted police and towed the truck. At the mechanic's shop was informed that the cruise control cable was pinched off and started the electrical fire. No injuries reported.

- Oshkosh, WI, USA

problem #2

May 262002


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Vehicle idles to low and causes it to cut off. Took to dealer 4 times, and they could not fix the problem. Passenger side seat would not lock, also consumer states vehicle is experiencing poor gas mileage..

- Alpharetta, GA, USA

problem #1

Jan 272001


  • miles
Vehicle idled up and down and up and down all the time like its was recycling. Vehicle experienced some loss of power. In may of 2001, consumer took vehicle into dealer for a sulphur smell. Dealer told consumer that vehicle was fine. On 31st of may, engine light came on, and would not go out. Took back to dealer, and the dealer stated consumer needed a new engine. Also, vehicle would not stay on raod when ground was wet. Dealer replaced stabilizer.

- Topsham, ME, USA

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