1997 Ford Explorer User Reviews

1997 Ford Explorer Review Ratings

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Average Ratings from 37 reviews

  • Performance:3.6 out of 5 stars3.6 out of 5 stars3.6 out of 5 stars3.6 out of 5 stars3.6 out of 5 stars 3.6 / 5
  • Appearance:3.5 out of 5 stars3.5 out of 5 stars3.5 out of 5 stars3.5 out of 5 stars3.5 out of 5 stars 3.5 / 5
  • Build Quality:3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars3.9 out of 5 stars 3.9 / 5
  • Overall: 4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars 4 / 5

Review Highlights Click to filter reviews below

PROS
"power" 11 reviews
"ride" 10 reviews
"space" 6 reviews
"comfortable car" 5 reviews
"handling" 5 reviews
CONS
"fuel economy" 15 reviews
"power" 5 reviews
"brakes" 4 reviews
"handling" 2 reviews
"expensive car" 2 reviews

User Reviews

Displaying 1 - 10 of 37 1997 Ford Explorer reviews.

StarCruiser writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT SUV Review
Appearance:
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Family Car:
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5

Pros

Everything about it.

Cons

None.

StarCruiser
125

Love Our Explorer! It's The Best!!! — [Original Review: 01/17/09] This is my wife's vehicle. It has 245,000 miles and just keeps on going. Very dependable. She is the original owner and has had no trouble with it. She purchased the extended warranty and never had to use it. It still has the original tranny and engine. As far as maintenance, all we've done is change the oil and rotate the tires every 3k to 6k miles. With high mileage comes some replacement of parts, but they have been minor things like a new voltage regulator or an O2 sensor, but all things considered, you have to expect something to go wrong! Gas mileage is not bad at all, paint finish is good except we had to repaint the black strips between the windows. It's been a wonderful vehicle and we look forward to many more miles and many more years without a car payment!! [UPDATE: 08.06.2014] The Explorer is no longer our primary vehicle but it still gets used quite a bit. Originally it was used for EVERYTHING: commuting to/from work, hauling trailers full of home construction stuff or motorcycles, vacations in excess of 1500 miles, etc. Now it's used for errands and commuting to work when it's raining out. We've got about 700 miles to go to break the 300k mile mark on the original transmission and engine! The heat and air still work perfectly! The gas mileage isn't bad considering the age of the vehicle - gets around 13mpg around town. The compression is reduce but still has some pretty good "get-up-and-go." The only issues that have developed are the electronic door locks are screwy, the hydraulic cylinders no longer hold the back window up, and the lumbar support no longer holds air on either seat. An anti-sway bar, u-joints, shocks, and radiator have had to be replaced; however, we've not had a car payment in so long that it's all worth it! The Explorer still runs great! We call it our "Rescue Vehicle" because it's so dependable and trustworthy, and always available to bail out one of the kids when they break down and need a vehicle temporarily. We still love our Explorer!

Primary Use: Commuting to work

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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Joel writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
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Overall:
4

Pros

nice handling, decent interior, good cargo room, spacious front seats, suv-looks
4wd

Cons

wimpy giddiup on steep hills, center of gravity not low enough, needs more ground clearance, very aggressive tires needed for snow

85

Not Bad For A Truck, But It Could Use More Power, And A Lower Center Of Gravity — i think it's a nice vehicle overall. but due to a high profile and narrow stance, it does like to lean on fast turns. it has a decent-sized 4.0 v6 which is pretty good on acceleration for a truck but requires quite a push going up steep hills. the interior has well placed switches and a good display of gauges.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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Randy writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT AWD SUV Review
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Cargo Capacity:
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Fuel Economy:
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4

Pros

Decent work truck, wish it wasn't so rusty.

Cons

Crappy gas mileage. 14 on a good day, 11 in a head wind. I used to drive a Suburban with a 454 that did that...

755

97 Ford Explorer — Crappy gas mileage with the V-8, has full time 4WD. B.F. Goodrich All Terrain Radial T/A's on it, darned expensive tire, nearly $200 each. Finish wearing off aluminum alloy rims, not impressed. Has moonroof, has leaked, headliner all stained. No rust. Only 85,000 (supposedly) miles. Very rusty undercarriage (New York car)Added a leaf in each rear spring, saggy butt. Welded a crack in the catalytic converter shut, dumb thing has 4 catalytic converters at $200 each, and two mufflers. Over $1000 exhaust system on a $3500 truck. Leather interior nice, has the AM/FM/Casette/6 CD changer radio, crappy AM reception. Wish it had posi-trac like the last one I had.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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Rafael writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT SUV Review
Back Seats:
Cargo Capacity:
Family Car:
Fuel Economy:
Front Seats:
Handling:
Maintenance Cost:
Price:
Power:
Reliability:
Looks/Style:
Overall:
4

Pros

Durable

Cons

Hmm... More power?

65

Tonka Craftsman!!! — the best well spent 3000 bucks!!! I bought this used in 2007 and it worked great. Given the circumstances that it seems that it was crashed and fixed before selling it to me, It was very durable and trusty. I sold it a week ago... almost cried, hopefully next owner will restore her and have some fun.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
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gigglepig writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
4

Pros

they can be had for cheap and are reasonably reliable.

Cons

plastic parts break constantly

gigglepig
35

There Is Nothing Special About This Vehicle — It handles well for an SUV and is well powered. High marks for reliability and fuel economy. The exterior is nothing special and the interior is sparse. Off road the car is enjoyable but boring on road. Ride quality is nice but not excellent.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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zerotap writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XL 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
4

Pros

Great Value as long as you get one that has been maintained. Expect to put some money into it with replacing worn parts and what not, but if you find a well maintained rig a great bargain.

Cons

Like any used car, avoid ones that need excessive amounts of maint at time of purchase. My general experience when buying used rigs with over a hundred k is expect about 2 grand worth of work in first couple years of ownership, anything over that is something to avoid.

zerotap
35

Be Smart Before You Buy, And Make Sure It Won't Need More Than 2 Grand Of Work. — Performance- Stock V6 is kinda ho' hum on acceleration, but then again a SUV is not a racing car. I am eventually gonna do a superchip, cold air intake, and exhaust to get another 20hp or so. Build Quality- The used 97 I got is pretty damn good overall. I need to do a couple minor things for the interior, but those I can find at the junk yard pretty cheap. As far as squeaks and rattles, just the normal on suspension, road noise is OK, but not really loud, and handling is pretty good for regular driving. I haven't done any off roading on it yet. Appearance- I would say the interior of the used 97 I got is a 9 out of 10. There are a couple of little things I need to do, but for a car that is over 10 years old it's very clean. Cost of Ownership- When I bought the car I knew I would have to put some money on top of what I paid for it. So far nothing unusual. It needed new brakes, Rea Sway Bar work, and some new lower ball joins. I have to point out that this rig has 122K on it, so over all not bad. Just normal wear and needing to replace a few things. Main thing is the eninge and transmission is still in tip top shape, running and idling like new. Cost of Ownership- I just got it, but I can allready say that gas milleage isn't that great. Maybe 14-15 city, around 20 hwy. Then again it's an SUV and a heavy rig to boot. So I didn't buy the rig expecting to get 20-30 mpg. Fun Factor- Car is awesome to drive. It handles well for city driving as long as you don't treat it like a wannabe race car, and I can't wait to see how it does with a bit of off roading when I stiffin up the suspension, and chasi next year.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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Steve writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

good off road, never been stuck,

Cons

Not so great on gas.... 20-25 mpg at best on highway

45

Explorer — Its a tank with 167,000 miles..... Good Rescue car. Great 4x4, never gets stuck. Good for hauling people or small trailers. Ok on Gas, but not great. Good looking and not alot of rust on the truck. I would not trade it in for anything else right now. Its great for what I use it for.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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swede06 writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
4

Pros

Comfort, Space

Cons

Not the best mileage

swede06
25

Great Overall — Repairs-invested some money into it, but it's good to go and has been very reliable! It's a fun, comfortable, safe, spacious car to drive! I need to downsize to a small car soon and will defiantly miss it, don't want to sell it!

Primary Use: Commuting to work

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Blade writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
5

Pros

You can carry your family and go any where you want.

Cons

She burns a lot of gas.

45

I Recomnened This Truck To A Family That Is Big. — I love this truck cause she has 225,500 miles on her and she still keeps on trucking. The truck has some minor problems her and there but not as many as the newer ones. The really cool thing about this truck is that it has a 6 disc changer.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

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Salaam writes:
1997 Ford Explorer 4 Dr XLT 4WD SUV Review
Appearance:
Performance:
Quality:
Overall:
3

Pros

For space with cargo or family,

Cons

Brake,Rotor, Axel problems.

25

Good For Hauling Or Off-roading! — Engine is average and has more utility like performance. This year od model has many recalls, engine and trans seems to become un-alligned easily. Price is cheap but re-sale value is too low. Packs mileage fast and gas wont keep up.

Primary Use: Commuting to work

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Displaying 1 - 10 of 37 1997 Ford Explorer reviews.

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Reviews From Other Years

2014 Ford Explorer Reviews

Best Vehicle I Have Ever Owned By TMACWEBDESIGN

The Ford Explorer is the best vehicle I have ever owned . I like to buy american also looked at the Lincoln MKX which was noisy in comparison . I believe Lincoln has become an over priced Ford . Go wi... Read More

Great Suv Probably Best In Its Class/size By Divinejudge1

This SUV was very nice! It felt as nice as some Range Rovers my friends own that are only 5 years old. On that alone I believe this SUV is a great value and worth considering as a buy. I'm not a fan o... Read More

Read all 4 2014 Ford Explorer reviews

2013 Ford Explorer Reviews

Best Vehicle I Have Ever Owned By TimmySEO

I like everything about the Ford Explorer . My favorite is the technology , so far advanced compared to the competition . I read reviews on the MyFord touch that were negative . Maybe if you are lik... Read More

Nice Looker By kidscoach

A great improvement in interior design and grade of materials. A few more amenities I would suggest, heated second row seats, more cup holders, ambient lighting around the headliner, second row adjust... Read More

Read all 5 2013 Ford Explorer reviews

2012 Ford Explorer Reviews

Feels Good, Looks Good. By mikepetrey

Like the appearance and performance. Smooth riding SUV with all the luxuries. The air conditioning is very cold, the heat is very warm. All power features have always worked with no problems whatso... Read More

Solid Family Car, Vary Happy With It For The Most Part. By Jay

I wish I had opted for the Limited, memory seats and the intelligent cruise control would have been great features but were not options in the XLT. The interior is pretty roomy for a midsized SUV, but... Read More

Read all 3 2012 Ford Explorer reviews

2011 Ford Explorer Reviews

Good Vehicle. By Ken

Could use a little more power. The 3.5L V6 is just not quite enough. However, I'm sure my mileage is much better than if it had a V8, so I'm not really complaining all that much. Otherwise, a very nic... Read More

Super Fun, Sporty Suv With The Looks To Boot! By gacowgirl79

So far this is my most favorite SUV I have ever owned. I have owned an explorer before but it was nothing compared to this one! With this one, I am just looking for a reason to get behind the wheel ... Read More

Read all 3 2011 Ford Explorer reviews

2010 Ford Explorer Reviews

Lots Of Toys On The Limited Awd By goldy

Accelerator responsiveness with the 6 speed transmission and the v8 is lousy. The 6 speed wants to be in 2nd when starting and shifts very quickly to 6th even when going only 30mph.6 speed is only goo... Read More

Best Mid-sized Suv Out! By Billy

This is my 2nt Ford Explorer and definitely not my last! This vehicle is built Ford tough and is fun to drive. Comfortably seats 7 and the 3rd row seat is very roomy for a mid-sized SUV. I wish I wa... Read More

Read all 2010 Ford Explorer reviews

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