1997 Ford Aerostar XLT Sport 3.0 litre from North America


Great to lug a ton of gear around in, reliable


Power steering pump blew up 300 kilometres ago.

The van eats brakes, have replaced both front and rear twice and rear once by themselves, plus new rear drums, I think due to anti-lock rears.

Hard on tyres and alignment, has eaten a set of top of the range Canadian Tyre in 70,000 km, despite several alignments and rotating the tyres.

Engine was totally gutless until a dealer replaced some chips in the computer, afterwards whilst overtaking there would emit a distressing series of clicks from under the dash and the engine would respond by heaving away.

After the power steering pump was replaced, the new one was three times as noisey as the original, and I don't know why, but we started getting a random series of what can be only described as hissing from behind the passenger's seat, maybe a electrical switch?

BTW, when we asked why the power steering was as noisey as it was we were told by the dealer "it's just the way it is with those things"...

General Comments:

Cannot fault the practicality of the van.

It has been a reliable vehicle, despite the annoying problems.

On the highway, it is very comfy to drive and be a passenger in, even at time when I've really overloaded the thing.

Other than the items I've mentioned, it has been a great wagon, hence the high marks, it's not hard to see why people hang on to them.

Never drive this thing in the snow without really good snowies or sticking on some iron, it is absolutely uselss, it was a embarrasment to me several times last year...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 1st January, 2004

1997 Ford Aerostar EXL 4.0 from North America


A good performer if a small van is needed for towing


Nothing to date. Only regular maintenance needed. Recall on all wheel drive transfer box. No problem with us and the dealer was very good.

General Comments:

Not as smooth as other vans. A bit of a bear in city traffic.

We used it to pull a trailer and was always amazed it could haul a 4,000 lb trailer 5 people and all the camping stuff with no problems.

AWD is great in the snow, but uses a bit of gas the rest of the year.

Comfortable to drive best going in a straight line as it tends to lean around corners. Stereo is OK at the best. Air conditioner is good.

Only complaint would be gas mileage and poor handling. Otherwise 6 years and 100,000 kilometers and no real problems. No plans on getting rid of it in next couple of years.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 13th September, 2003

1997 Ford Aerostar XLT 4liter from North America


Great van


After 80000 miles a steady low sound is coming from the airfilter box at idle. This sound will go away once I depress the accelerator. Diagnostics at Ford did not register this anomaly. Radiator coolant temperature is not affected by this noise. Car seems to operate normal once the sound fades away after stepping on the gaspedal.

General Comments:

Great van,

4 liter is the right size.

Carry large loads,

Seats are easy removable.

Replacing spark-plugs is a virtual pain

It is a quiet vehicle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th September, 2003

1997 Ford Aerostar LX 4.0 from North America


Great family/utility vehicle with decent gas mileage and performance


The air conditioner is a little on the weak side. I haven't had it diagnosed. Hopefully it's just a recharge or clutch issue.

General Comments:

I really like this van. It holds a lot of cargo. The only inconvenience is the seats weigh nearly 80 pounds. Removing them is definitely a 2-guy operation.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th January, 2003

1997 Ford Aerostar XLT Extended 4.0 V6 from North America


A reliable family vehicle


Engine valves needed to be replaced at 20,000 miles. This was done by dealer under warranty.

Sliding door has needed to be repaired two times; it would not fully close even when closed forcefully.

Ford AM/FM/CD player has been replaced once at 50,000 miles, and the replacement unit does not play CDs anymore.

Driver's side front captain's seat back needs to be repaired; will not return to fully upright position.

Like most Fords, this vehicle needs front brake pads to be replaced at 15 - 20,000 mile intervals, depending on how hard they are used.

Rear axle pinion gears needed to be replaced at 75,000 miles. Expensive ($1000) job replaced by dealer under extended warranty.

Interior body integrity is fair. Many screws for the panels on the rear hatch and sliding door have loosened over time and then popped out. Cracks have appeared in the door panels for both the front doors. Driver arm rest needs repair. Screws for all interior panels need to be tightened one by one on a regular basis. Many rattles have developed that cannot be pinpointed by owner.

General Comments:

This van is roomy, seats seven comfortably, and has been well utilized by this growing family.

It is been extremely reliable and has never broken down and stranded us for any reason. We have been diligent about scheduled maintenance and have changed the oil every 3000 miles. It still does not burn or use any oil between oil changes.

The van is an excellent freeway vehicle and after replacing the lousy stock Ford shocks with KYB Gas-A-Just shocks the ride improved significantly.

Rear A/C is a must and combined with the standard A/C, quickly cools the interior on hot days.

It has been used for mostly around town and regional trips within Southern California. It performed flawlessly on a recent 1700 mile trip to the mountains of New Mexico. Cruising at 85 with a full load of passengers and luggage was not a problem.

Gas mileage has been 13 to 15 mpg around town and 17 to 20 mpg on longer highway trips.

Dated design of interior lacks cup holder for three rear passengers. Many spills by children sitting there over the years. Cloth interior and carpeting came clean after complete detailing.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 31st December, 2002