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.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
84,710 miles
Total Complaints:
2 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (1 reports)
  2. replaced emergency brakes (1 reports)
2002 Ford Explorer brakes problems

brakes problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Ford Explorer:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2002 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #2

Sep 182008

Explorer XLT 6 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles


I kept hearing a noise coming from the rear wheels that sounded like a marble dropping on a floor. This was most noticed when driving through a parking lot and maybe 5mph. I first suspected that maybe a CV joint was going bad, so I took it to a garage. The mechanic pulled the rear wheels and the emergency brakes fell out in pieces. The noise is now gone but the cost to replace the brakes was about $191.00

Now I need all 4 struts and the mechanic just found a broken rear coil spring.

Back in June, I had to have the entire transmission rebuilt ($2,100). This suv was great for the first 4 years of ownership and I didn't have to spend a dime for anything except the yearly inspection. Now everything is going bad. Owned many Fords in my lifetime and this might be my last.

- , Huntingdon, PA, USA

problem #1

Feb 012008

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,419 miles

Not covered under any insurance, so I am driving without an emergency brake! I wish I would have heard about this site... my son joked today that I was dumb, because lemons cost much less at a grocery store than ford.

- , Lloydminster, Saskatchewan, Canada

Not what you are looking for?