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.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
104,000 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. suv should be made with 3 sets of carseat anchors (1 reports)
2004 Ford Explorer seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2004 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #1

Nov 022011

Explorer Eddie Bauer V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles


The back seat only has 2 sets of car seat anchors for the carseat tethers. I can only anchor 2 carseats from the bottom and the top. I have 2 toddler convertible car seats, and an infant rear facing carseat and they all have to be in the back seat. It is unsafe to only have 2 sets. Even my Honda Accord has 3 sets of anchors. The reason I bought the suv was specifically for the children and the space for the carseats, so they wouldn't all have to be shoved together in the back of a midsized car. Very disappointed in Ford for this safety inconsistency.

- , Lexington, SC, USA

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