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:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
8,000 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #1

Mar 262006

Explorer 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles


: the contact stated the vehicle was placed in park while running and the emergency brake applied. As the contact was standing outside the vehicle and releasing the parking brake, the vehicle engaged into reverse, and caught the contact in the side. The vehicle proceeded to drag the contact into a 4 lane highway then ran over the contact and pinned the contact's leg. The contact was ran over by the driver's side front tire and trapped. A bystander watched the accident take place and to release the contact from underneath the vehicle, the bystander was required to drive back over the leg to save the life of the contact. Major injuries were sustained to the leg and side. The police were contacted to investigate the incident and provided a written report. The vehicle has remained parked and has not been taken to the dealership.

- San Jose, CA, USA

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