Notes: The 2004 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 2002-2005 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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
61,480 miles
Total Complaints:
4 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (4 reports)
2004 Ford Explorer accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #4

Oct 102008

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,920 miles


Plastic interior molding faded from the sun. To expensive to replace

- , Brooklyn, NY, US

problem #3

Jun 012011

Explorer XLT 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,000 miles

Both Front Door Panels at the window have totally washed out and faded coloring. I don't use chemicals to clean them so it is not a chemical reaction. It is really unnerving that a Ford Motor product that we have always purchased and that we own 3 varieties of at this time has this type of problems. This is not the only problem. We have a multiplicity of them and upon looking up other complaints my main ones are the ones at the very top of the list so i know its not me. This car has never been subjected to children as we are an older couple and it has had no abuse. After much thought I would never purchase another Ford Motor product and we have only purchased them all our lives

- , Pass Christian, MS, USA

problem #2

Jul 072005

Explorer XLT 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 25,000 miles

its so ugly, it is literally almost white on the door panels !

- , Fisherville, KY, US

problem #1

May 012010

Explorer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles

The plastic on the top of the interior driver and passenger door panel has been bleached white by the sun. Again this is complete crap. The panels on the back doors are fine because the factory tint on the back windows are darker than the front. Again I say this is just poor materials used. Ive had a few cars in my life and most were much older than 6yrs and Ive seen no breakdown like this.

- , Norcross, GA, USA

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