Notes: The previous generation of Explorer was so awful that the redesign in 2006 was greeted with much optimism. That didn't last long.

The transmission continues to be the Explorer's worst reliability problem. Owners report shifting hard & lunging, typically starting as low as 40k miles with a $1,600 average repair bill. On top of that, the radiator is prone to failure around 60k miles. Repairs for the radiator run $500 to $1,000 & many owners report they've had to replace the radiator multiple times for leaks, indicating a possible design defect in the OEM replacement parts.

Ford did make some significant changes to improve handling and safety. Electronic stability control was added in addition to side impact air bags, but beyond that this is a vehicle that should be avoided at all costs.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
55,050 miles
Total Complaints:
2 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (2 reports)
2006 Ford Explorer engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Ford Explorer Owner Comments

problem #2

Nov 162009

Explorer XLT V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles


About 2-3 months ago, I first noticed my engine reving on my 2006 Ford Explorer and was unable to accelerate. It stopped almost immediately, but the next time it happened, I saw my coolant light was on. Took it to the Ford house and they said I had a radiator leak and it would cost $1100 to fix. I've since talked with 2 radiator repair shops that both quoted me $490.00. The only catch, there is a national back order on radiators for the 2006 Explorer. Wonder how many more are having this issue?

- Pat R., Lewisville, TX, USA

problem #1

Jul 152009

Explorer XLT

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,053 miles

My '06 Ford Explorer losses power and makes becomes very loud every time the AC is on. It is always resolved when you turn the air off.

- ctorres76, Albuquerque, NM, US

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