Good vehicle for good price
Transmission at 100,000 miles.
Plastic seat recliner.
Very good towing power with SOHC V6 motor.
Very versatile for hauling, even for such a small vehicle. Back seats fold flat.
Transmission is okay. Shifts are very smooth, but mushy feeling. Prefer firmer shifts.
4 wheel drive with control track is okay. The Control track system is supposed to sense slippery conditions in 4 whd auto, but does not do it very well. 4 whd high works well, and engages with a flip of the dial.
Gas mileage averages 15 mpg combined city and highway.
A lot of rattles inside the cabin.
Brakes perform very well, but are mushy.
I have had no problems with rotors wearing fast. I commute up and down the San Bernardino mountains every day, and after one year, my brake pads showed very little wear.
My gear ratio is 3.55, I would prefer the 3.73s for going up and down mountains.
Get rid of factory shocks. My Explorer Sport had lots of body roll.
I got Monroe Sensamtic shocks, and now it handles much better. I give the handling a D+ with factory shocks. With the Monroe Sensamatics, I give it a B-.
I can tow a 3000 lb tent trailer 65mph up a 6% grade with the SOHC V6.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 9th August, 2003