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Need opinions! Looking for 2nd gen Ex, Mounty, or Ranger - best powertrain combo

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by masospaghetti, June 24, 2011.

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  1. masospaghetti

    masospaghetti Elite Explorer

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    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 XLT, OHV, 4D, 4x4, 5M
    Looking to buy a 95-2001'ish explorer, mountaineer, or ranger. Above all, the vehicle needs to be reliable, as I would be driving across the country. It also needs 4WD.

    I've eliminated any vehicle with the 4.0 SOHC already because of timing chain problems. This leaves the 3.0 vulcan, 4.0 OHV, and 5.0 OHV (and possibly the 4.6?) Which is the most trouble free motor?

    For transmissions, what should I look for? I've heard bad things about all of the V6 automatic transmissions, and heard that the later V8 transmissions are better - is this true? Again, reliability as a priority.

    Thanks all.
     
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  3. Paraphoe

    Paraphoe Go big or go home Elite Explorer

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    Go for the 5.0 Mounty/Explorer. From my understanding that is the most 'bulletproof' drivetrain.
     
  4. masospaghetti

    masospaghetti Elite Explorer

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    The V8 changed transmissions at some point, right? is one significantly better than the other?
     
  5. Brandon96

    Brandon96 Well-Known Member

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    No, if I'm not mistaken the 5.0 had the 4R70W throughout it's time in the Explorer/Mountaineer. IIRC it was the viscous coupling in the transfer case that was switched up in '99 which made the setup absolutely bulletproof.

    Best combo in my opinion would be the '99-'01 5.0 Explorer/Mountaineer.
     
  6. 2000StreetRod

    2000StreetRod Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    mechanical diode in 1998

    The 1998 and later 4R70W incorporated a "Mechanical Diode" which is a significant improvement. The 1999 and later utilized a higher pressure returnless fuel system with the fuel pressure regulator in the fuel tank. PATS may also have been implemented in 1999. 2WD is more reliable than 4WD, gets better fuel economy but has less capability in snow, ice and off road.
     
  7. masospaghetti

    masospaghetti Elite Explorer

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    Thanks for the replies.

    If I go with the 4R55E or 5R55E, is one significantly more reliable than the other, or are they both troublesome? I heard they are notorious for a bad valve body gasket.
     

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