1997 Ford Explorer XLT 4.0 S.O.H.C. from Australia and New Zealand




Oxygen sensors replaced.

General Comments:

Has a few rattles on rough roads.

Completely reliable vehicle.

Proper and regular servicing is the key to getting the best out of it.

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

Review Date: 14th April, 2003

1997 Ford Explorer XLT 4.0lt from Australia and New Zealand


More power than Tim the Toolman could ask for


Recalled by Ford for :-

Oil Pump alteration.

Cruise control problem.

Engine earth alteration.

Replacement of Bridgestone tyres.

Problems I encountered:-

After driving through shallow water (300mm) the transfer case took in water meaning the truck stayed in 4WD all the time. The dealer made a modification to the breather and changed the oil under warranty.

Numerous squeaks and rattles. The dealer could not trace them.

The fuel gauge sender is notoriously inaccurate. Going uphill or down could be different by 1/4 of a tank.

General Comments:

Powerful and comfortable with reasonable fuel economy

25 mpg on trip.

18 mpg around town.

20 mpg on trip towing 1.2 tonne jet boat.

Interior looks a bit plasticky.

I've been told earlier models have a problem with timing belt tensioners. It happened to my mate with a 1997 XLT at 90000km. The engine has to be stripped and a modified tensioner installed. Cost up to $5000NZ.

Telltale signs are a knocking noise when idling, (louder and deeper than tappet noise)

Great stereo

Great 5 speed Auto

Great 4WD selection with auto 4WD system.

Assembly from USA far below that of Japanese equivalent.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 1st March, 2003

30th Aug 2006, 12:45

I'm amazed you guys get Home Improvement in Australia.

1997 Ford Explorer XLT 4.0L SOHC from North America


A very comfortable SUV that rides like a sedan

General Comments:

The Explorer gives great performance at low cost compared to other SUVs in its class.

The leather seats are very comfortable and ergonomic.

Buttons are easy to find while driving to minimize the time your eyes are off of the road.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd November, 2001

1997 Ford Explorer Sport 3.0 DOHC from North America


A sporty yet cramped truck disguised as an SUV


Don't even get me started on the recalls!

Signal light lever has been replaced three times due to malfunctioning.

"Service Engine Soon" light stays on more than it's off.

It's been six (yes 6) weeks that I've had my name on the proverbial waiting list to have my tires replaced. I guess the day after I become human road kill, the dealership will phone my house to inform my next of kin to finally bring it in.

General Comments:

This SUV senses EVERY bump, and textured road surface. It's ride is too jolty and stiff. I've driven other SUV's that were a pleasure to operate.

Since I have the 2-door Sport model, space is somewhat less than it's 4-door versions. I'm 6'1" tall, and with the front seat pushed ALL the way back, my knees still brush up against the steering column. If you're not vertically challenged, go with the 4-door.

Back seat is chintzy. No back support, and with the price I paid for this SUV, you think Ford would make one with more than 1" of padding.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 29th July, 2001

10th Jan 2002, 17:27

In 1997 the engine used in a Ford Explorer Sport was a 4.0L. I also think that the ride quality is what it should be. If you want a carlike ride buy a minivan or a Rav 4.

1997 Ford Explorer XLT AWD 5.0 from North America


Vehicle has great potential


The vehicle was purchased from Regency Ford in New Orleans, LA and the problems below surfaced within the first 90 days of ownership. The dealer did not cover any of the work performed below. Keyless Entry quit working and had to replace the control unit. PCV Valve sensor went out and needed to be replaced. Check Engine Light comes on intermittently although no error or problem exists. Air conditioner's blend door became stuck and only hot air flowed from vents. Fuel send unit would report fuel levels erraticly and needed to be replaced.

General Comments:

Vehicle has great potential. Good concept. Great performance. Poor gas mileage at best. Horrible dealer service and customer service. Very expensive maintenence.

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

Review Date: 16th July, 2001

1st Oct 2002, 21:37

Chances are that your blend door wasn't stuck. I have one that is broken. I've been searching the Internet and have found many other people with the same problem. To my knowledge, Ford is doing nothing regarding replacement, except charging us for the repair and parts. I hope this helps in some way.

1997 Ford Explorer XLT 4.0 from North America


I will never buy another Ford!!!


Tail gate electric door lock disengaged from the motor. Can only use the key to lock and unlock.

Brakes developed a pulsating thump. Replaced the pads and rotors. The thump is still there.

Oversteers seriously.

General Comments:

Nice looking, very comfortable, with very responsive power.

All the recalls!!! Sway bar links, cam idler, tires. What's next???

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 31st May, 2001

1997 Ford Explorer Sport 4.0L V6 (205cu. in.) from North America


A really fun to drive SUV


Tire blowouts.

Shortlasting brake pads/rotors.

"Check engine" light.

Bulbs burnout.

General Comments:

I am 16 and I got an Explorer Sport for my birthday. I had been looking at other 4 wheel drive SUV's and almost bought a 93 2-door Chevy Blazer but I read up on the reliability of them and it said avoid that model. The review for the Explorer was much better.

I put a bugflector on it and replaced the OEM air filter with a K&N filtercharger. This gave me a couple extra horses. I have a lot planned on upgrades however. I plan to keep my Explorer till I die (well, maybe not that long but hey it's a great truck).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th December, 2000