Overall, the Ford Explorer is & has been a safe & reliable vehicle that has kept me mobile for the past 12 years.
Like: -It's up high & I see all around me well, much better than I ever did in a car. -It's 4X4 so I can go from grocery shopping & running the kids to school to 4-wheeling in the cuts, or drive right out over the dunes & park it sea side (both of which I have done many, many times!) -The back & middle seats lay down so I can pack it full if need be. With the back & middle seats down, I can even fit a twin size air mattress in the back for car camping in the cuts, or emergency shelter. -It's a 7 seater so my large family always has room. -The—now outdated, but then quite cool—technical parts of the vehicle, such as the electronic mileage counter, direction sensor, time counter, diagnostic check, etc., were modern & handy. -The fact that it's big & roomy & actually shaped like an SUV, in a time when most SUVs look like crossovers & are generally hideous. -The rough ride of it... it never was a smooth ride, a lot of SUVs feel just like driving a car. Not the Explorer, it has a masculine feel to it when you're driving & that's very appealing to me. -The heating/cooling vents/controls. It's very nice to have vents all the way in the back & to also be able to hand control of the climate controls over to the back passengers, rather than having to deal with that on my own. Dislike: -The transmission went out at 67,000 miles & had to be completely rebuilt. After reading up on this, that was an extremely common problem with this particular model years. Nice. Overall, it's my favorite of all the vehicles that I have ever owned. I've had this '05 Explorer since November of '06... nearly 12 years we've been together now! I really can't see letting her go. Probably be together till the day she passes over to the other side ;D