10th Feb 2007, 21:56

Vehicles with high centers of gravity are not flawed in design. If incompetent drivers can't handle them that is NOT the manufacturer's fault. We've owned 3 of those "poorly designed" Explorers. None of ours ever rolled because we have a bit more driving skill than the average Corolla driver. We live in a lawsuit-happy society. Of course people sue car manufacturers for EVERYTHING. They sue restaurants for giving them coffee that is too hot.

11th Feb 2007, 09:10

The Explorer has a short width that, combined with its high center of gravity, causes the vehicle to flip at any speed. The ORIGINAL ENGINEER on the project wrote an urgent memo in 1989 stating the car was unsafe and needed a redesign before the public got its hands on it and Ford, AS USUAL, decided profits over people. Now thousands of people have died in these death traps.

I don't care if you've driven a million miles in them. People are still driving Pintos and Corvairs around, but they aren't any safer.

Do some research on how truly dangerous Explorers are. You'll learn something.

11th Feb 2007, 12:00

I tend to agree with 21:56. However, is there something particularly dangerous about the Explorer compared to other trucks, 4x4's, and SUV's? If so, what years? Does it include the redesign in 2002 where the wheelbase was extended? At some point, it needs to be recognized that a 4x4 is designed to have high clearance for its intended off-road use. The question becomes, are there some high-clearance vehicles that have narrow and short wheelbases that make them more danger prone, or is the argument simply that all 4x4's, trucks, and SUV's are inherently unsafe? It is largely agreed that the Isuzu Trooper was the front page example of unstable SUV's, with its narrow wheel base and high center of gravity. The old Ramcharger, Blazer, and Bronco from the 1980's also had warnings about how high-clearance vehicles do not handle like cars and should not be driven fast in corners or driven with sudden high speed maneuvers. The question is, is the old Ramcharger/Blazer/Bronco, with their wider stance, less prone to rollover than the Explorer? Also at some point, as suggested by 21:56, people have to take a little responsibility for their own driving habits. You can't engineer every danger out of existence, or we would have no electrical appliances, tall buildings, airplanes, or even cars. If people have driven "millions of miles" in a vehicle, it does tend to make a good case that the vehicle must be pretty safe after all. At what point do we decide that the only way to keep people safe while traveling is to tranquilize them, pack them in crates, and ship them cross country in refrigerator cars?

11th Feb 2007, 17:20

As has been stated many times, the Explorer was inherentl unsafe until its SECOND redesign in 2002.

Yes, people should be held liable for their own bad driving habits, but that is NOT what we are discussing here. The Explorer and other SUVs do NOT behave normally in emergency conditions and often in normal conditions, so people are UNABLE to safety guide the vehicle regardless of their driving abilities. To put it simply, it's the equivalent of turning the steering wheel right and the car goes left - how is a normal driver supposed to deal with that?

As for me, I'll take a safe and predictable car that doesn't have government warnings all over it telling me how unsafe the vehicle is.

11th Feb 2007, 19:41

Drivers who cannot handle driving a vehicle with a high center of gravity should stick to more sedate vehicles and leave SUV's to people who possess driving skills. The Ford Explorer had no inherent defects. It was simply one of MANY (including a LOT of Japanese) SUV's that drivers could not drive because of a total lack of ability to understand physics and how objects behave in motion (sort of like the people who argue that if a Corolla collides with a Hummer, the Hummer will be demolished and the Corolla unscratched). Any competent driver would never have the slightest problem with any year of Explorer. My wife has driven Explorers since 1998. Even she is savvy enough not to roll one. It really takes a very incompetent driver to roll ANY vehicle in normal driving situations.

12th Feb 2007, 07:36

I agree about the explorer being an unsafe vehicle. The whole Firestone tire blowout problem was because of Fords design of the explorer and the unusual center of gravity in that vehicle. Its not a SUV problem, it's an Explorer problem.

To prove how unsafe the explorer is. There is a bulletin board in U-Haul that forbids the rental of a U-Haul trailer to Ford Explorers, but not other SUVs. Think about that.

12th Feb 2007, 08:57

This is blatantly untrue, and you are living in a fantasyland if you think 60% of the US driving population (the amount of SUVs sold per year) have any type of quality driving skills.

Once again, suggest you do some research on how the Explorer until 2002 is one of the most unsafe cars ever.

12th Feb 2007, 08:59

So you're saying SUV drivers are incompetent? After all, ONLY SUVs have the government warning stickers, not regular cars.

12th Feb 2007, 10:11

9:59 fails to do any proper research into the Ford Explorer issue. There is an inherent design flaw present in first and second generation vehicles that had nothing to do with tires. The tires only exacerbated the problem. Oh, and I love the parts about the Explorer having nonlamanated glass, seatbelts that don't retract properly, and roofs that cave in once the vehicle flips.


12th Feb 2007, 14:28

Did you know that U-Haul has a Memo that prohibits rental of trailers to all Ford Explorer owners. I attempted to rent a trailer in the Sarasota Fl. area and was denied due to "safety perceptions" associated with Ford Explorers. A memo was adopted by U-Haul outlining this action. It involves all Explorers of all years! I read it and it was explicit.

12th Feb 2007, 15:46

Like I said... they gave one to me... differnt times with different u-haul dealers. guess they don't follow the rules very well. not like I'm complaining...

12th Feb 2007, 16:14

The comment about U-Haul is 100% true. Here is the proof.


12th Feb 2007, 16:33

We've driven Explorers for 10 years now, and no company has ever refused us a rental trailer. Some people will resort to making up stuff just to try and prove a fallacy. Oh, and since when is FORD responsible for FIRESTONE making defective tires???

12th Feb 2007, 16:46

Looks like 16:14 blew 16:33 out of the water. These SUV owners will say anything rather than admit the truth about their vehicles.

And the tires were only ONE of the inherently deadly flaws in the Explorer.

12th Feb 2007, 22:57

With regard to comment 16:14: It CLEARLY STATES, that it is "NOT RELATED TO SAFETY ISSUES".

13th Feb 2007, 08:23

Yet where did all the lawsuits originate from? oh, that's right, SAFETY ISSUES.

Do you really think Uhaul would issue such an edict if the lawsuits were over something like fading paint or defective radios.

Uhaul obviously does not want to risk its trailers being a FACTOR in a SAFETY RELATED lawsuit.

13th Feb 2007, 08:39

This was not Firestone's fault. The Explorer was the only vehicle that used these tires that had the problems that were reported. The Explorer's faulty engineering design was the cause of the problem with the tires.

As far as the U-Haul thing goes, I am glad someone brought some facts to the conversation. What do you Explorer owners have to say now?