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How Reliable Are Ford Explorers?

Published on Jul 31, 2023 by Levi McDanel

The Ford Explorer is a popular SUV because it has a solid price point and generally favorable reviews. Both urban and rural car owners like the feel and capabilities of the Ford Explorer. This is largely because it has a comfortable family-friendly size and is easy to handle.


That said, if you are in the market for a new SUV, you likely have a handful of questions. First and foremost, “Is the Ford Explorer reliable?” 


It is a valid question and one that we will break down in more detail below.

Ford Explorer Reliability

It is unlikely that the Ford Explorer would be so popular if it was not reliable. However, specifics are what you came here for. And while U.S. News & World Report ranks the 2023 model at an 83/100, which is considered “Great”.


Sure, reliability of the Ford Explorer by year might adjust slightly, but the 2022 model had a overall reliability score of 81/100, demonstrating ongoing high marks for reliability. 


When looking at Ford Explorer reliability by year, you will see some improvements in more recent Ford Explorer models. For instance, the 2020 Ford Explorer held a score of 74 for Quality and Reliability.


So is the Ford Explorer reliable? All signs point to yes!

Ford Explorer Maintenance

Like any vehicle, the Ford Explorer is going to require regular maintenance. You might think that since maintenance is routine, it should not be lumped into a conversation about reliability. However, we feel it is worth noting. 


If your car requires a significant amount of ongoing maintenance, for instance, this plays a role in how reliable it is. Overall, the Ford Explorer requires less unscheduled maintenance than the average vehicle. This is promising for those who are trying to stick to a budget when it comes to their automobile costs. 


Additionally, the cost to insure a Ford Explorer averages to about $1,795 a year. With regular maintenance, a low sticker price, and manageable insurance costs, there are many consumers who prefer the Ford Explorer on price point alone. 


But along with high safety ratings and low sticker prices, what else is there to love about the Ford Explorer?

Ford Explorer Features

The Ford Explorer is popular because of its large cargo hold, for starters. The space it provides can be beneficial for any type of driver, whether for business or pleasure. Additionally, the Ford Explorer comes with a suite of attractive safety features.


For instance, available auto high-beams can turn on automatically in low-light conditions. This is helpful, enabling you to keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel. A rearview camera is another simple, but helpful feature. This lets you know if anything is behind you to avoid injuries or accidents caused while reversing.


Adaptive cruise control is another popular feature. This feature allows you to remain in cruise, while the vehicle automatically adjusts the speed to the traffic around you. Just another feature to demonstrate the practicality and overall benefit of the Ford Explorer.


From navigation screens in the latest models to wireless charging for your mobile device, the Ford Explorer has considered its passengers. 

Ford Explorer Models

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There are many consumers who want to know which Ford Explorer years to avoid just as much as which Ford Explorer years are the best. This is a valid question, and as mentioned earlier, Ford Explorer reliability by year can, like reliability of any vehicle, vary slightly.


Overall, the models of the early 2000’s are not as highly regarded as the models of today. The 2002 Ford Explorer, for example, had a handful of reported transmission issues. Additionally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Association notes 14 recalls affiliated with the 2002 Ford Explorer. 


In addition to the recalls, the agency notes 3,615 complaints. Not a hot year. However, when discussing the 2023 Ford Explorer, the agency has only listed a single complaint. The 2022 model has a mere 50 complaints


While it can be argued that the newer models have had less time to accumulate complaints, the current low number is a promising sign for the future of the Ford Explorer. 

Check Out Our Models

Whether you have a Ford Explorer on your mind, or you see yourself behind the wheel of some other Ford truck, check out our inventory. We are always happy to help you navigate your options and choose something that works for you.


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