Which one to Buy? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

  • Explorer Forum license plate frames are available 2 for $12, or 4 for $17. For photos and more details CLICK HERE

Which one to Buy?


September 1, 2014
Reaction score
City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
1995 Jeep YJ (Wrangler)
So I really want an Eddie Bauer 01 v8 explorer. They just arent coming up for sale around me in the past months with low miles. Its not like they come up overpriced, they do not come up at all under 150k.

So what I am looking at are two fully loaded Mountaineers. one is a 2001 with 117k on it. The other one is a 2000 with just under 90k on it. Both are AWD V8's and pretty much immaculate inside. Both are one owner vehicles.

The 2000 is actually considerably cheaper, but they guy still wants over $3k which is through the roof compared to the exact some thing wth 145k on it that I see people asking $1200-$2000 for. At $1200-$2k others have been up for a while with the owner regularly reducing the price. All I have been looking at are V8's. Kinda is telling me that the 3800 this one seller wants for the 90k 2000 Mountaineer may be crazy. I figured I would send him links to some others for sale and give him $3k cash, and cut it out right there.

I really do not know what differences there may be between these two years though. Also, how would the 01 Mountaineer fully loaded compare to an 01 Eddie Bauer Fully Loaded? Im a Ford Guy, but I do own a Lincoln MKZ since they are the same thing along with an F150, and am putting a 2001 Explorer 302 I got with 80k into my Jeep Wrangler. Retrofitting to old Mustang A9L EEC-IV though for the Jeep.

Buying a Mercury is the same thing anyway. Ive torn into these vehicles a bunch of times. If I remember correctly both these years Im looking at use the return-less fuel system that runs at the crazy high 65psi. I have shelves of the V8 parts. I just cant remember all the time what I pulled from what.

Anything I should be aware of? Should I hold out for the 01 Eddie Bauer that I would like more? Either way I am only buying a V8 AWD thats fully loaded. I dont care about the heated seats, but every other options I can get I would like.

Also, I own my own shop. I have a lift, and fully stocked on tools any everything I need to make one of these like new. Im also a welder and can take care of anything properly before I undercoat my new addition. Im going to see the 2000 this weekend to go over the undercarriage and maybe even buy it. I have dana 44 axles all the time because I build them, and may swap in a solid axle front down the road when whatever I get has run out of road life and starts hitting the trails. I primarily get narrow 44's for Jeep swaps. Of course for that I would put in a manual shift 4x4 case and sell the AWD crap for parts. In the meantime, I love AWD for on road bad conditions driving. It beats the hell out of 4x4 in Ice, Snow, and extremely heavy rains. Off road though, true 4x4 makes AWD look like a joke in the mud, 2-3ft+ of snow, and loose off camber sand/rocks. Thats where this will be destined for once it gets around 180k.

In the meantime, which one is the best ride, most features, etc?

Thanks for the help.

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

Your post was quite long and I don't have time to read the entire thing. The Explorer and Mountaineer are identical except for some trim differences. I own both and personally think the Mountaineer is better looking, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There are next to no differences between the 2000 and 2001 model years mechanically and none visually. Actually I can think of no differences.

Prices vary by location. In my area (north GA) the prices are up a bit because fuel prices are way down. It's getting harder and harder to find clean low mileage (under 150k) examples these days.

I paid around $2000-$2200 for my Mountaineers 3 1/2 years ago. I've paid as little as $1500 about 18 months ago for an XLT and as much as $4200 for a near perfect EB 4 years ago (all V8's and one AWD, though AWD does not bring a premium in GA, nor is it desirable, due to the increased weight and mechanical complexity ).

The nice thing about southern vehicles is no rust. The down side can be that the paint can take a beating in the sun if they haven't been garaged. The Ford interiors hold up very well to the heat. The driver's seat bottoms and center console lids are usually torn, but replacement cover's are available (leather seat bottom cover's runaround $200 and the enter console covers are around $20).

The choice is yours. The V8's should be good to 300K+ with regular maintenance and the V8 transmissions are pretty strong as well.

I've had both a 2000 AWD Mounty (current driver) and a new 2001 2WD V8 Mounty Premier.

There is no difference between the two years.

The lower mileage is worth the difference in price, in my opinion.

I paid $3000 for my 2000 in 2012 and it had 62000 original verified miles on it.

I wouldn't sell it for that today.

But then, I have put a lot into it, 4406 swap, lift, exhaust, and on and on.


You're going to have to go look at them then decide what value you place on each. After this many years, how the owner(s) treated them can mean the most.

Up north I would concentrate on the body, corrosion checking. I hunted for a while until I found the 98 Limited that has no rust at all, even though it's rougher otherwise. I can fix the other things.

Look for the one with the least body seam rust(you must get underneath it and look at all the body seams), because that cannot be fixed. Choose the one with the best interior condition, and the features that you want.

The 99-01 Limited's have horrible flat front seats, but they also have the only leather arm rests and console lid. It's hard to know what options a truck has without the VIN # or knowing it's a Limited. I was after a fully loaded Mountaineer, but instead of calling dozens of people because descriptions don't list everything, I hunted a Limited. I can swap the moldings etc, to make the truck what I want.

The Mountaineers have a better looking roof rack than the Explorer, your Eddie Bauer model is a color and trim option, and has most options except the memory seat.

Stick with the 302 of course, and try to find one that you think they took care of the trans well(fluid/filter regularly).

In those 2000/01 model years you have the side airbags to deal with. Some have the airbag light on due to poor wiring connections at the seat, or the resistor inside that connection. That is an issue some people have with those trucks, try to find one that doesn't have the airbag light on(it's hard to fix it sometimes).