"I recently purchased a 2002 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer with the 4.6 Liter SOHC V8 and Four-Wheel Drive. I can say honestly that I haven't been happier about a vehicle I have bought.
I was originally concerned about getting it since it is five years old and had 61,000 miles on it. Well, It now has almost 70,000 on it, has been to the Beach (Literally on it), in mud (Never once got stuck), and has been driven all over town and on the highways. I feel secure, it has pretty decent get-up-and-go, and is sure footed in the corners or under hard braking.
I read a lot of car magazines, like Motor Trend, Car & Driver, and Road & Track, and so I did a little of my own testing.
With mine being an Eddie Bauer with a V8, I got it to run to 60 in about 8 seconds. The fastest I had it was 110, maybe 112. There is a speed governor, so it tops out right around there. My average MPG in town is around 13, and on the highway I get about 20-21. Not great, but I've driven worse.
Off-Road, the suspension travel leaves something to be desired. Numerous times I have encountered un-even terrain and gotten stuck. Well, not stuck, but couldn't go forward without a running start. Two tires come off the ground and even in four low, it won't go. When it has all four down, it seems like it is unstoppable by the elements of nature. I'm sure that I could get it stuck should I try, but I think I'll leave that to the guys that don't care about what they drive.
The interior is extreamly comfortable, decently quiet, the stereo is clear and can get pretty loud, there is room for all five people (I have the five passenger model), and the view out is relatively good. One comment I get from alot of people is that fact that the rear windows go all the way down. The adults like that. With the window lock on, the Children have no control of the window and it proves to be very helpful with three to six year olds in the back. Cargo room is abundant, I have yet to use the roof racks cause I can fit everything I need in the back.
I would strongly recommend that a person looking for a reliable mid-size sport utility stop by a Ford dealer or used-car lot, or heck, even your neighbors house to take a look at an Explorer. You can go wrong!"
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