Notes: The 2005 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.

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
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
76,577 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Ford Explorer brakes problems

brakes problem

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2005 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #5

Sep 172016


  • 110,000 miles


Vehicle engine while traveling, generally at high rates of speed greater than 40mph, will randomly turn off. There are no warning lights, no indication on the instrument panel. The engine just turns off. The only way of knowing is once the gas pedal is depressed to increase speed and then realized the car had turned off. This is happening more frequently. I had to by a new car. Explorer just sits in the driveway. This happen randomly with no notice and generally while traveling at speeds above 40 mph

- Weatherford, TX, USA

problem #4

Apr 012016


  • 116,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving, a grinding noise emitted from the front passenger side wheel. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the front passenger side brake caliper failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 116,000.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #3

Apr 292009


  • miles
I was driving the vehicle at 60 mph when the car in front of me slammed on their brakes and when I attempted to stop nothing happened and I hit the car in front of me wrecking my truck and bruising myself badly.

- Adrian, MI, USA

problem #2

Apr 072014


  • 76,884 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Explorer. The contact stated that while driving 30-55 mph, the brakes engaged independently. Additionally, the 4X4 high light and the ABS warning light were illuminated after the failure. The vehicle was not taken to a dealer or an independent mechanic. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 76,884 and the current mileage was 77,459.

- Wilmington , NC, USA

problem #1

Mar 182011


  • 80,000 miles
Because of the recent GM recall ignition issue, I thought I should let someone know about the serious similar issue I had 3 times before I traded my car in. The car would just shut off while driving. And all 3 times, I pulled to the side of the road and restarted the car and continued on my way. I was lucky to have a place to pull over safely. I took it to my mechanic twice, found nothing wrong. Took it to Ford and they found nothing wrong. I traded the 2005 for a 2011. I also told the dealer that I traded it into about the engine just shutting off for no reason and to check out the problem before they sold it again.

- Truckee, CA, USA

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