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:
72,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. placed clutch packs on both rear wheels (1 reports)
2002 Ford Explorer transmission problems

transmission problem

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2002 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #1

Jul 112007

(reported on)

Explorer Eddie Bauer V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


After a couple previous repairs on this low mileage vehicle I thought I was in the clear unti the grinding noise appeared as I turned a corner. Service Dept stated the both clutch packs needed to be replace at a cost of $1000. I hit the ceiling on this one. Ford Motor decided to split the cost with me because of the low mileage issue. I reluctantly paid the $500 (my half) to get the thing back on the road. So now I'm still making payments and I've had this SUV in the shop 3 time now in less than 2 years and under 75000 miles. Yeah I was pissed. The repair story continues and it gets "better"

- , Leicester, NC, USA

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