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I just drove a 2002...

Discussion in 'Auto Industry News' started by Stephen, March 6, 2001.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Well, I've taken the afternoon off here, and my son and I took the Explorer to get the oil changed. Well, there was a tan 2002 XLT sitting outside the dealership. We parked our Explorer right next to it and gave it a real good look. Stylewise, my son and I both agree, ours is vastly superior. The new truck is very angular, and then goes rounded in the back. The back of it looks very similar to a Windstar Minivan. We also both agreed that someone who had never seen an Explorer before, would have picked ours as the new model, and the 2002 as the vehicle it replaced. The new one doesnt look as modern or as smooth as ours.

    Then we took ours around to have the oil changed, and got ahold of a salesman to take the new Explorer (their only one) out for a spin. He stuck on a tag, gave us the keys and let us go nuts. We drove around the immediate area for a little while, then got out on 270 where I was able to get it up to about 90MPH. The 2002 drives just like a minivan, no truckiness at all. As I've said before, if I were to drive this thing every day I'd pick the 2002 because of the carlike ride, but I prefer the ride of my 97. Not harsh, but its truck and it doesnt pretend not to be one. Where the 2002 is vastly superior to my 97 is in high speed operation. Despite its boxier appearance, the new truck (car) is obviously more aerodynamic. Its a windy day and there wasnt as much wind rush or jounce. It also cruised very comfortably at 90MPH, when the steering was released it tracked straight as an arrow, while my 97 is very jittery anywhere over 75-80.

    The interior of the 2002 is also not as well laid out, as well designed, or as good looking as the one in my 97. The gauges, console, dash materials are all a lot cheaper. This was a loaded model too with leather seats...but oddly no leather wrapped steering wheel?!? All in all, I was impressed with the way the truck drove, but I am not interested in purchasing one. It drives like a minivan though, so it'll probably sell 100,000 units more a year than the old Explorer ever did.

    Also, I looked at the tires. Michelin XW4 Radials. Same tires my Cadillac had. An offroader no more.
     
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  3. Jamers

    Jamers New Member

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  4. mrsteve

    mrsteve Active Member

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    Hey Stephen which dealership was it? I'd be interested in taking an up close look at the new Explorer.

    Steve
     
  5. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    Ourisman Ford in Bethesda Steve.
     
  6. drmoore71

    drmoore71 Elite Explorer

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    way to go, stephen, thanks for the review. i kinda figures that the new ones would be like that, sort of boring compared to our, uh, "more exciting to drive" older ones.
     
  7. Dre

    Dre Elite Explorer

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    to be honest, I kind of liked it though. Just visited the dealership that had a few. That third seat made my wife smile, heck I don't even know why, we have two kids.
    Anyway, it doeasn't feel like a truck and looks like Ford makes it harder for people to modify. I still like my 94 better though. Price tag was something that plays a role here too.


    Later.
     
  8. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    The XLT I drove was $32K.
     
  9. DarkFox1

    DarkFox1 Well-Known Member

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    cool, I saw one today on my way home from class, at first I thought it was an expedition.. it is larger than our models. As it got closer I noticed it had the front end of the new rangers that I like, thats a plus.. its wider, perhaps not a plus for offroading, but an overall looks plus, and it has those cool taillights the explorer sport has :p I must say I was very impressed in person. It would look very nice with a lift, some nice aggressive tires and a chrome guard package
     
  10. Dre

    Dre Elite Explorer

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    with both, front and rear independend suspensions it's gonna be kind of hard to lift it. Will there be even a possibility of lifting the body? Heck, what are we talking about???? This thing just came out.... I'm wondering, who's gonna be the first one on the group that'll get one.
    we should give him/her a huge welcome party and a cigar.

    I think that rather then spending $32K on a "soccer mom" and "grocery getter" car I would prefer a LR Disco for $34K out the door fully equiped ready for the trail.

    just my opinion though,
     
  11. mrsteve

    mrsteve Active Member

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    Yeah I think I'd much rather have the Land Rover. Especially cause everyone has Explorers, and you know this new one is gonna sell like crazy.

    Steve
     
  12. FlyAU

    FlyAU Well-Known Member

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  13. DarkFox1

    DarkFox1 Well-Known Member

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    lol, I could only imagine my truck with $32k worth of mods, I wouldn't know where to start
     
  14. Dre

    Dre Elite Explorer

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    Actually I noticed that Ford kind of targets the "soccer mom" market a lot. We already talked about that. They don't really give rat's a** about off roading. I went to the Chicago auto show. Land Rover had a big screen and was showing Discovery on all kinds of trails, safaris and what's not. They showed how good their truck performs off road to prove the point that it will perform as well on regular road in any condition.
    Straight axle front, straight axle rear, coils in all four corners, lockers front and rear.....
    I can go on.
    Ford makes better CAR, not better truck. To be honets, I think that our "American" SUV market is really leaning more towards a car-like, very comfortable, big vehicle. Recent developements: Explorer, Expedition, Excursion, Trail Blazer, Tahoe, Suburban, Escalade, Cherokke, Grand Cherokee and even Wrangler...... what's next?

    well OK, I'm putting my flame suit right now.......:)
     
  15. TheMattDaddy

    TheMattDaddy Active Member

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    I agree that the explorer is getting too car like. I second all the comments on LandRovers; I love those things!! Now that they've come down in price, I may can consider one in a few years ;). Perhaps, I guess, Ford can afford to begin making Explorers more car-like since they own Land Rover.
     
  16. DarkFox1

    DarkFox1 Well-Known Member

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    I can agree with that, but I do not agree that the american market is going car like. have you seen these excuses for minivans they are calling suvs these days? everywhere I go I see the hyndai "suv" or the highlander by toyota, the things have like a 1/2 HP gerbil with a carrot in front of him under the hood. it takes these little bugs 12-13 14 seconds to get to 60. many of them are FWD, those that are not are either AWD or RWD with IRS. if anything, the american market is the one holding on to real vehicles, while the rest of the world fades into tiny little things that run on beans. I do not like the idea of the lack of straight axles.. but ya, we have talked about it before, market goes where the money is, not visa versa.

    The soccer mom thing is a phase.. remember the obsession back in the 60s with muscle cars? once the women realize they can't handle a vehicle this large, they will stop buying them and go back to their sluggish minivans :)
     
  17. jimbo74

    jimbo74 Elite Exploder

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    ok the new 2002 explorer has irs rear and i think it is also awd.

    on another note "women cant handle such large vehicles and will eventually go back to their minivans" all those dinky little sports utes are a lot smaller than a minivan. we had an aerostar and i am pretty sure it was about the same size as my xplorer. also my aerostar was fast with its 183 3.0
     
  18. JDraper

    JDraper Somewhat Functional Moderator Emeritus

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    Now I'm real glad I got an '01 instead of waiting on the '02. I can't stand minivans. I use a company D***e minivan quite a bit, and I don't think I could stomach a 4x4 that had aspirations of being one. The independent suspension would be nice, but I think I'll stick with a Truck.
     
  19. '96explorereddiebauer

    '96explorereddiebauer Well-Known Member

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    In my opinion, for $32k, I'd rather get a Chrysler Town & Country with tons more room and power and a whole lot more luxurious than the Explorer. Why do people buy sport utilities when they don't really take them off road, especially soccer moms??? What they really need is a minivan. Ford needs to build a more off road oriented sport utitily than a soccer mom oriented one. But it's just my opinion.
     
    Last edited: March 11, 2001
  20. Stephen

    Stephen Moderator In Memoriam Elite In Memoriam

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    But they wouldnt sell as many.

    Gotta remember Ford is a profit oriented company, profit is king. This is what the customer wants, so this is what they get. Truthfully I would have loved the new Explorer before I came to this site and saw what my Explorer is capable of. I may not have any mods on my Explorer, but I like knowing that it has that capability if we ever get the urge.
     
  21. SteveVB

    SteveVB Elite Explorer

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    I was at Oursman today , missed the Explorer though ( wasnt looking, checking F350s and Excursions for fun) , but the price point seems puzzling to me- you can get a decently equipt Expedition for 30-35 seems like Ford may be trading sales in one line to capture them in another- is the Expedition going away? With the Explorers increased size and the prices becoming closer together why would I buy the Expedition over the Explorer, or the Explorer over the Expediton. Seems too blurry to me- they are not different enough Ford could save a few bucks by getting rid of one of the models.

    Just rambling
     

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