2nd Gen V8 Daily Driver - 130-140k Miles? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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2nd Gen V8 Daily Driver - 130-140k Miles?


New Member
October 4, 2009
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City, State
Belmont, CA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Eddie Bauer 4WD
I've been looking into possibly getting a 2nd gen as a daily driver, since I'm tired of driving and putting miles on my 06 Powerstroke F250 every day.

I was finding a lot of decent mileage V6 models, but decided I would probably rather have a V8 so I can tow with it once in a while. The problem is that I can only seem to find V8 models in the 125-150k mile range with most falling about in the middle of that. The starting/list prices for these fall around $4200-$5000 in my area pretty consistently.

I had a 2003 V8 Eddie Bauer with about 90k miles on it which was great mechanically, but I was very disappointed with some paint issues and electrical problems I had with it which eventually led to me selling it and buying the F250.

I'm very interested in picking one up, but looking at one with that mileage I just want to hear from some owners if this would be a good idea to keep as a daily driver (probably 15k miles/year) for about 2 years or so until I save up some money to finish my track car and then buy maybe an 06+ EB/Limited.

I guess my main concerns would be that the transmission will give out on me, or other serious mechanical problems like that. I've heard that the 4R70W is sort of hit or miss... most people seem to have great luck with them forever or have them go out somewhere in the 100k mile range. Of course I'm only looking at ones that have been well maintained which I'm confident will help.

My plan is to switch to this as a daily driver for a while so I just want to make sure it isn't likely to turn into a money pit defeating the entire purpose of getting it. Thank guys!

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I've owned (3) 2nd gen V8's.

In all honesty, they're pushed as "bulletproof" as a drivetrain as you can get in an Explorer. I have to say that I agree to a degree.

I was somewhat spoiled with my '95 V6 ControlTrac, as I never had to put anything into the drivetrain, and until the new owner decided to smoke it by being an idiot, it was still running flawlessly at 240k+ on the original trans and drivetrain components, aside from wheel bearings.

My '97 that replaced it had issues from the start. The transfer case, which is very sensitive to matching tire circumferences due to the viscous coupler in the AWD system, needed to be replaced. Then I needed to replace a front pinion bearing. CV axles. Hubs. Shocks. Tires.

When I sold that one, I had every intention of buying another V6, and nixing the V8 for the problems I had with the last one, but I couldn't find one right away that I liked. So, I ended up with another V8 Ex. The 2000 (106k+ miles) that replaced it was a much better truck, though I did replace the wheel bearings on the front, as well as the sway bar bushings and the end links (PO actually did the end links) and the shocks. That one always did better, and didn't have any issues (knock on wood)

My new 2000 (172k+ miles) had a trans rebuilt when the torque converter went out about 6,000 miles ago, so it's fresh, but it did have issues at one time. That one is getting ball joints this weekend, and beyond that I haven't really noticed anything, the drivetrain does run well. I wasn't afraid of the truck as it was maintained mechanically very well.

That is my experience. They're good, not necessarily bulletproof- so I'm not blowing smoke, but it really depends on how it was maintained. I wouldn't be afraid of those miles at all if it was maintained. :thumbsup:

Joe pretty much summed it up, but I wouldnt pay that much for ANY 2nd gen.

I paid 2900$ for my 2000 Limited V8, and aside from balljoints, and hubs, there are no mechanical issues besides my trans is slowly going out on me (I think), but im also being told it could just be a valve body issue.

I had a 92' with I believe 230,000, original engine, trans was JUST replaced at like 220k, truck was great aside from rust, and bad shocks.

I had a 95' V6 Lemon, had trans issues, ran weird, retarted starter, :)p:), and needed quite a bit of work, I think it only had about 140k.

I had a 95' V6 Sport, loved it. 146k when I sold it, needed nothing but shackles, and balljoints. Original trans, engine, etc ran great drove great.

After having a V8, I wont go back to a V6 :)

What Joe said.

I researched 2nd gens with the V8 6 years ago when I wanted a 4 door after I became a parent. There is so much "good press" on 5.0 equipped Explorers on this site. I had owned one 1st gen Sport and two 2nd gen Sports before this.

I have not had any issues with the drivetrain on my truck. I scored mine with low miles and immediately fed it a steady diet of synthetic fluids. I figure this truck might just last forever (it's currently got 80,000 miles on it).

Believe the hype!
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Thanks you guys. Positive feedback on them definitely makes me more comfortable getting one with the mileage. I'd love one with lower mileage but just can't find any.

I'm definitely not going to pay $5k for a 2nd gen unless it's low mileage so if I decide on one I'm going to offer considerably less and see what happens.

I've been finding good deals on Pathfinders too but I'd be giving up the towing ability which would be nice to have.

I'm on my third 2nd Gen V8 as well.

I got my 98 5.0 with 150K on the clock, and all i did to that was one new hub, new cv axle, and rear u joints. Sold it at 165K because it needed new tires, the other cv axle, and i was unemployed and knew i could turn a profit on it.

I got my 97 5.0 with 179K on the clock. It was kind of a POS. I won't miss seeing it go when i get it unburried from the snow and sell it.

Now I have my 01 5.0, and so far, except for some non-mechanical issues that are getting fixed within the week, I love it.

Agreed!! I have over 240K miles on my 97 5.0 EB 2WD; bought it with about 35K on it. Truck has been outstanding overall, but especially from a drivetrain perspective. I finally had to do a water pump at about 230K, other than than have done nothing but maintenance to the engine and transmission. Still only uses about a quart of oil between changes.


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You rarely hear about problems with the major components of the 5.0L V8 because it is the 302 Windsor engine that's been around since the 1960's. There is a ton of knowledge available on it from when they were used in the mustangs (pre 1995). All the major kinks were worked out along the way making it very reliable.

The major con with these seems to be the front driveshafts, ball joints, the camshaft position sensor, and possibly the radiator. I personally prefer the Borg Warner 4404 transfer case with the mechanical viscous coupling. Because I understand it's operation better and there are less systems to fail. If it goes bad the troubleshooting isn't terribly difficult.

I am of course partial since I own one.

Is it worth $2500 with a new fog lamp? :)

Is it worth $2500 with a new fog lamp? :)

2350 :D

I didn't realize it was a 2001. As long as there's ZERO mechanical issues, I'd pay maybe 2700. But at that price it's gotta be immaculate.

I see that right front bumper scuff combined with the hood sitting ****eyed- and I'd be nervous about how hard it touched something... :)

I see that right front bumper scuff combined with the hood sitting ****eyed- and I'd be nervous about how hard it touched something... :)

His idea of no rips in the seat aren't the same as mine. Unless I'm seeing things the drivers seat has one hell of a rip on the right side.

Thanks for the lead... I saw that one listed online but leather interior is a requirement. I'd also rather have the grey than the tan leather but I have to stop being picky about everything haha

His idea of no rips in the seat aren't the same as mine. Unless I'm seeing things the drivers seat has one hell of a rip on the right side.

Wrong, Dan- back in the day, not all Mountaineers were optioned out. In this case, a Mounty stripper, that is part of a Conair aftermarket seat heater. You insert the hairdryer in there. It is supposed to be housed where the cupholders used to be. :D

Orteganator- stick long enough and we'll have this thing picked apart and worth $350... :D

Keep looking. I spent two months looking for the "right one." I was very picky too. I just bought a second gen last weekend with only 100,000 miles, the color I wanted, with all the options I wanted as well as some I didn't even know about. I had to drive about a 130 miles to get it though. Most of them were in the 130,000-190,000 mile range, but every once in awhile one pops up with less.

I bought my 96 with 162k for $1,400. I have put a new EGR valve and water pump on it, along with routine maintenance. It runs very strong and I don't anticipate any major problems. If it has been maintained, that mileage is nothing to worry about.

I'd take a well maintaned 150k truck over a questionably maintained 80k truck all day...

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