Notes: The 2003 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.

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.


definitely annoying
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
124,274 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace wiper motor (1 reports)
2003 Ford Explorer windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2003 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #1

Feb 062014

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,274 miles


I had this car from a dealer but used. I purchased from Ontario and when I drove down to Quebec Province I needed to check if it's driveable in Quebec Province. Quebec mechanical inspection certify me that it's not fit to drive unless I need to repair some job done. So I fixed spring, safety SRS sensor light, changed brake pads and disks. Driver seat was not moving cause of motors malfunction but it's OK, I don't need to move the chair. After I fixed it was driving in Quebec Province.

- , Saint-Lambert, QC, Canada

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