1997 Explorer

Consumer Reviews

1997 Ford Explorer

1997 Ford Explorer

Review Score

3.9 out of 5 stars

3.9

17 Reviews
82% of drivers recommend this car
Score Breakdown
4.1 out of 5 stars Comfort
4.1 out of 5 stars Value for the Money
3.9 out of 5 stars Interior Design
3.9 out of 5 stars Reliability
3.9 out of 5 stars Performance
3.9 out of 5 stars Exterior Styling

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What Drivers Are Saying

1 - 10 of 17 reviews

5 out of 5 stars

A lot of car for the money

by Once a Chevy Man but now I see the light. from Fairfax, Virginia on Thu Feb 07 2008

I have had an Explorer for seven years now. It has been a reliable car that has always performed for me. I have maintained it normally, oil changes, regular maintenance but it has never required repairs out of the ordinary. This car has gotten a lot of bad press, I believe this is because it has been out selling the competition for so long that the public is now beginning to look at it as the "establishment". I believe that this is just a sign of a product that is designed at built properly and is just better than anything else out there. I love the features and comfort of this car and I have used the four wheel drive on my mountain property and it has gone places that others fear to go and it has begged to do it again. This car just can't be beat for the cost!!

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Does recommend this car!!

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

got my moneys worth and a little extra

by shwick from deleware county on Sat Feb 04 2012

i wanted a car...but i wound up buying the 97 explorer xlt...im so glad i did it. although gas mileage isnt that good, it pays off in other areas of driving; acceleration is very impressive..while it can climb to 90 in a rather quick amount of time..i was very suprised. snow and ice is no match with the right tires..the sound of the engine lets you never forget you have power right their waiting for when you step on it..the radio was decent but i changed it;plenty of cargo space..and it is very heavy so you know everyone will be safe if buckled up right in the worst of cases.the seatbelts in the explorer are also very good..they're tight but not constricting. 4/5 overall. go get one

4 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

Very good suv

by Brazilian Guy from Campos do Jord?o, S?o Paulo, Brazil on Sat Jun 14 2014

I have an Explorer XLT 4WD 1997 and love this car. Fuel consumption is high for the V6, but the strength is exceptional diversity, especially when I needed the four-wheel drive and compact. The comfort and the inner space are unbeatable! The trunk is great and maintenance is almost zero. The best value in the category. Recommend!

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsReliability
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Off-roading

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

More than I bargained for...

by OldFaithful from North Port, FL on Sun Aug 12 2012

I have a 1997 Ford Explorer Sport 4x4. It has leather, sunroof, power driver's seat and plenty of room for the day to day. I have had it since 2009. I bought the vehicle when my foreign car was totaled. I love sitting up high in this truck. It feels solid on the local roads, but sometimes (since it's top heavy) I sway with the wind on the highway. I love my truck. I have only used to 4x4 once, playing around in the mud. It was a blast! I love the extra boost I get with the SOHC 205HP. EPA estimates 16/20 and I see (combined) 18-21 although most times I drive below speed limits to reach that 21.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
3 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
3 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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5 out of 5 stars

I Loved This Vehicle

by Emerald Lady from Central New York on Fri Jan 30 2009

I bought this SUV used in 2004. First 4-wheel drive I've ever owned. Got me through a lot of snow through the years and only had to put it in 4-wheel drive a couple of times. Very comfortable, plenty of leg room front and back. Went for quite a while before any problems. Just sold it recently to get something newer, when sold there was rust around the rear fenders, the check engine light was on and both of the arm lifts on the back storage area had broken off. It had over 170,000 miles on it. If I could afford to own 2 vehicles I would still have it and wouldn't have gotten rid of it till it died on me completely.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

Ford Explorer Sport a great value for the $$$

by SavvyOne from Dallas, TX on Tue Oct 11 2011

Bought this SUV new in 1998 and it has been a great car/truck. Had to replace ball joints and do some clutch/master cylinder work, but the engine is in top notch condition at 116K miles. It is more comfortable than our Nissan or Honda. The AC will freeze you out and the heater works great too! The steering is extremely responsive... this vehicle will turn on a dime! It rides best on Michelin tires. There's just nothing bad to say about it. This was my second one. I bought the first one the first year Ford built them and I traded it for this one! They can easy go 250 - 300K.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

my little explorer

by hobby car person from northern Iowa on Sat Jan 04 2014

this has been a very fun suv to drive. I like the way it handles in all kinds of road conditions( even though it's only 2wd). it only has 125,000 miles on it and is starting to show some wear. I think I could recomend this type of vehicle for someone who is looking for a compact, yet sporty little truck.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Transporting family

Does recommend this car!!

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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5 out of 5 stars

It just won't stop

by truchtec from Minnesota on Thu Apr 29 2010

I bought this explore for 2k about three years ago. it had over 196000 miles on it and I just needed something to get me around seeing that the car I owned at the time died. my explore now has over 260000 miles on it and the engine hasn't even been touched. It still has the original injectors in it! the only major repairs so far are I replaced the balljoints, which I did myself. took half a day. Me and my explorer have been all over the place. I was in a band and the ford hauled all the gear when we went on tour. I have nicknamed it the trooper because it just won't stop, and it is beyond execllent in the snow. the only thing I don't like about the truck is the underpowered V8, but other than that I don't think I could ever part with it.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
2 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

21 out of 22 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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5 out of 5 stars

GREAT VEHICLE

by Lee from Breinigsville on Sat Jul 13 2013

I bought the 97 Expolrer used. So far it's been great. Very comfortable to drive and has a lot of power. This is the Limited Edition with all the options. Power seats with seat memory for the remotes, power sun roof, rear controles for the A/C, even a message center to monitor the vehicle systems. This monitors everything from fuel range to oil change. The center console has a fold out cell phone which can be unplugged, but it was a nice feature in it's day. The cup holders are deep enough to hold a 20 oz cup of coffee without falling over. The one draw back is the fuel economy. This has the V-8 engine. A lot of power, but I average between 14 to 16 mpg. I am very happy with it despite the milage. I would recommend this vehicle.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Work

Does recommend this car!!

5 out of 6 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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5 out of 5 stars

I love this car bad fuel milage though

by I like driving from Richmond, VA on Tue Sep 30 2008

I have had this car since 1997 it work perfectly never had any trouble. I have driven it over 150,000 miles and I have only had to replace the battery which is standard repair

5 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsReliability
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling

Purchased a New car

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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Our Take on the 1997 Ford Explorer

What do you really want in a sport-utility vehicle?

Sure, somewhere in the back of your mind you see yourself on some remote dirt road, far from freeways and commuting, close to a stunning sunset reflected in a pristine mountain lake.

But if you're like most, the real-world gotta-have checklist is different. Lots of interior space, a pleasant ride and enough power to keep up with the herd is more likely to show up here.

The Ford Explorer has always scored well in the first two categories, but the power of its standard 160-horsepower, 4.0-liter V6 was strictly ho-hum compared to the sixes offered in virtually all of its competitors.

Still is, in fact.

Ford's initial cure for the basic V6 blahs... Read More