Notes: The 2002 Ford Explorer is hands-down our worst vehicle 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.

Another common problem for the 2002-2003 Explorer is wheel bearing failure at around 90k miles, with a typical repair bill of $500 to $1000 depending on how many wheel bearings failed.

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:
101,745 miles
Total Complaints:
2 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace ignition key cylinder (2 reports)
2002 Ford Explorer accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2002 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #2

Jul 102010

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles


The ignition cylinder fell off and we couldn't start the car and we were stranded and had to have the car towed. We're still waiting on how much it's going to be. This is so frustrating. I don't think I will ever buy a Ford again.

- , Elgin, IL, USA

problem #1

Nov 202006

Explorer Limited 4WD 4.6L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,490 miles

My dad has a 1974 Datsun pickup truck that still has it's original working ignition cylinder...Ford, get your act together. Your producing high grade junk.

- , Lemoore, CA, USA

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