pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
61,100 miles
Total Complaints:
27 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (13 reports)
  2. replace panel / fill with epoxy (11 reports)
  3. replace entire panel (3 reports)
2004 Lincoln Aviator body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2004 Lincoln Aviator Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #27

Aug 032015

Aviator 4.6L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles


This is a well documented event - please see http://www.fordproblems.com/trends/cracked-rear-panel/ for a complete description

- Stephen M., Walpole, MA, US

problem #26

Sep 022015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,231 miles

I have just purchased my Aviator in January 2015. So far it has been in the shop more than half the time that I've had it. The most disappointing it the most recent knowledge of the hairline crack that I have on my lift gate. I'm not sure what to do about except take it to a body shop. Unfortunately, this will be costly. I need to know if there has been a recall. Or if there will be one in the near future.

- Kyra S., Wilmington, NC, US

problem #25

Apr 012012

Aviator 4WD SUV 4.6L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles

I would like to have the panel replaced, it leaks and is the only mark on the vehicle

- TDonald D., Lancaster, SC, US

problem #24

Apr 122012

Aviator AWD V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles


Ford SUV are notorious with this, I have seen many, and I mean many Fords with a crack down the center of the rear lift gate panel body-trim. Ford should have recalled all the SUV and specifically replaced or repaired this for any customer that needed to do so.


problem #23

May 012012

Aviator V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

The rear panel cracked and I just used a clean caulking to seal it. Then the rear lock went, probably from getting too much water. Started looking at other Ford SUV vehicles and was surprised how many had the exact same defect.

- mekll, Turtle Creek, PA, US

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problem #22

Jul 012009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 250,000 miles

Ford should replace the cracked lift gate panel at their cost. They had knowledge of the inferior product and did nothing except keep producing and using it for approximately 5 years or more. In my eyes they deceived the public by continuing to use a faulty product. Stealing from the customer is the only way to describe the legalized extortion of the Ford motor company has been allowed to get away with!!!!

- mjg7664, Springfield, PA, US

problem #21

Jun 062013


  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,542 miles


Pissed that Ford would allow this. I always thought Ford was better than other car companies.

Has reduced the amount I can get on a trade in or private sale. I fear that water will come in a rot out the metal under the panel and then the entire lift gate will have to be replaced.

- catmandu12, Newburyport, MA, US

problem #20

May 012014

Aviator Limited 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

click to see larger images

crack in the rear panel

Having paid top dollar for this vehicle and maintaining it with great diligence, I expected that it would be reliable and long lasting. The crack on the lift gate is just one of many complaints I have about this vehicle. While it is a gorgeous and well riding car, the reliability has been troublesome and costly. This rear crack will now interfere with my ability to re-sell this car. Dammit!

- Mary O., Huntersville, NC, US

problem #19

Oct 152012

Aviator V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles

The back panel just split straight down by the Lincoln logo piece. I put clear caulking on to seal it. Over the next year the other side of the metal logo piece started to crack. It is about half way down the whole piece so I caulked that as well. This car has had very gentle use and only has 40,000 miles, no off road use, so there is no reason for this.

I have been watching Ford vehicles on the road though and have seen one other Aviator with the same problem and about 5-6 Ford Explorers with it. I just started watching about 2 months ago out of curiosity so I am sure there are many more. As you can see, I don't drive much so am not on the road much and it is all local. I can imagine what I would find if I drove to many different areas. And we are all probably sitting around thinking we somehow caused this or are the only ones with the problem. Not so. Obviously a problem generated by Ford's poor workmanship.

- mekll, Turtle Creek, PA, US

problem #18

Feb 232014

Aviator Ultimate AWD 4.6L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,895 miles

I have always been the one to detail all the cars and the Lincoln isn't excluded from that, with that said we have had a lot of snow over the last two months and it has been bitter cold outside and this past weekend it was in the lower 70's in terms of temperature, so I decided to detail it and get all the sand and salt off of it from all the snow plows clearing the roads. I get the truck cleaned an the only thing else I have to do is the back and liftgate, I leave the liftgate last and as im washing I notice a huge crack to the right of the Lincoln emblem all the way from the glass to the to chrome license plate surround and is a bout half an inch width split, I the notice less than an inch crack to the left of the Lincoln emblem, I too it to the local Lincoln dealership an I was told this: 1. its no longer under warranty, 2. they know about it and ford isn't calling a body defect recall, 3. that I will have to pay out of pocket for the liftglass portion to be replaced which has the cracked emblem piece on it and I was quoted almost $900 to fix it, this is bs I paid almost $50000 for this Aviator 10 years ago and Lincoln is supposed to be considered a luxury car company well not fixing this isn't not what defines a luxury car company, needless to say I guess I will just keep it can sell it people wont buy it because of the crack they want me to fix it and dealerships wont give what its worth because of the crack, now I understand why Lincoln discontinued the Aviator in 2005 it didn't live up to luxury car standards, BIG FAT FAIL FORD MOTOR COMPANY, WONDER IF HENRY FORD WOULD ACCEPT THIS KIND OF TREATMENT IF HE WAS STILL ALIVE.........

- Justin W., Mechanicsville, VA, US

problem #17

Jun 012012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles


Have the same problem as everyone else, cracked rear liftgate.... Typical response from all US manufacturers (Ford, GM, Chrysler)... we are fully aware of the problem, and we will do absolutely NOTHING to make it right/fix/repair it! Thanks for all your loyal business over the years, ye faithful US consumers, but this is YOUR problem and not ours!

- Scott P., Clarksburg, WV, US

problem #16

Sep 012008

Aviator V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles


- Ben M., Bayonne, NJ, US

problem #15

Mar 062006


  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles

Again, a stress fracture. Same Spot. No real fix. Spoke to Lincoln corporate.

- agoldmine, Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #14

Jul 022007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 14,000 miles

Again #5 for same issue and so sick of no car and rental fee. No real fix

- agoldmine, Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #13

Feb 052007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,000 miles

4th time and cost me for rental again and 5 days no car!

- agoldmine, Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #12

Jul 062009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,000 miles

This is such a freakin' pain in the ass. They expect you to accept this as just a small problem. Well 6 times is not a problem it is a manufacture defect.

- agoldmine, Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #11

Aug 042008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,000 miles

Lincoln says this is not a recall. Then what is???

- agoldmine, Los Angeles, CA, US

problem #10

Apr 072011

Aviator LX V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

This has been repaired under warranty one time in 2009 but when taking back to the dealer they would not own up to responsibility.

- Bob K., Chatham, VA, US

problem #9

Jun 082010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

Rear window/door panel on my 2004 Lincold Avaitor has a stress crack in it that eminates int he narrow protion of the panel at the Lincoln emblem.

- Ed S., Sun Lakes, AZ, US

problem #8

Jan 082011

Aviator 8 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,600 miles

click to see larger images

crack in the rear panel crack in the rear panel crack in the rear panel crack in the rear panel crack in the rear panel crack in the rear panel

I have taken such great care of this vehicle as I use it in my career as a REALTOR, transporting Clients on showings of homes. It has always been a comfortable and my Clients have enjoyed the benefits of the vehicle. I had the rear window wiper blade replaced in January 2011 After several days of inclement weather, I washed and detailed the car myself which I have always done, and noticed what I thought was a scratch beside the emblem on the panel beneath the window unit. I took the car to my dealer where I had the blades replaced, thinking that possibly they had scratched it, but was told this was a problem that these cars were experiencing and that the only resolution was to replace the panel or paint the scratch. I bought the paint fro the dealer to match my color number, but over the next days, the crack continued to lengthen and widen, making it an eyesore. I am sorely disappointed in the lack of concern by Ford-Lincoln since there are quite a number of these cars on the road and once the same damage is repeated on these vehicles, the public knows this is not an isolated incident, that so many cars would have the same problem. Stand behind your Commitment to Quality Ford Lincoln....RECALL THIS ISSUE AND FIX THE CARS FOR THE LOYAL OWNERS.

- maggief1, Cumming, GA, US

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