My buddy here in Denver got a 2001 Ford Explorer V-8, and carps on me constantly about how much better HIS car is than my MDX. Anyone driven the Explorer? Any websites that compare the two head-to-head?
I wouldn't worry about it. Ask him how much horsepower his V-8 has, then tell him you have 240 in a V6 with better gas mileage and just as much room inside. I don't want to insult your friend, but he may be putting down the MDX because he want's to feel better about his Exploder. The MDX is better
....sounds like your friend is a bit jealous, in my opinion. Don't get me wrong, I think the Explorer is a fine truck. But, it is a truck. Measurement wise, the MDX is essentially the same size as the Explorer however, it is 5 inches wider.
Your MDX will accomodate more passengers and take them there in WAY more comfort than the Explorer will.
At acura.com, there is a comparison feature that may help you a bit.
The Explorer that got a good score in the IIHS test was the result of changes that Ford made after the initial "new" Explorer did not do well in the crash test. Rumor is that it only scored "marginal." So much for getting things done right the first time.
Not too worry, the explorer is a unqualified p.o.s.. I had a 97 Explorer (still do, no one wants to buy it) and it was brutal. Ride quality was awful (passengers continually complaining - not my driving) and reliability was appalling. I bought it used (2 yrs old) hoping to avoid the new car depreciation but will still lose about $8000 Canadian over two years...Not to mention the $1500 or so I had to put in it...
The 2002 Explorers were redone and apparently handle better but I would not touch it with a ten foot pole. Your buddy made a bad decision and is trying to justify the purchase.
A year ago, my wife and I were very interested in the new Explorer; at a local auto show, I literally got on my back and crawled under the truck to check it out -- and for the most part I liked what I saw. My wife, meanwhile, had climbed into the driver's seat, and DID NOT like what she saw -- compared to our '93 XLT, this new XLT had dash and door panels that looked like they were made from recycled milk jugs spray-painted black. She then led me to another SUV that she had seen earlier -- the MDX. It was love at first sight for both of us, and it hasn't diminished a bit over its first 5600 miles (we picked it up on 7/2). I can't compare the MDX's ride with the new Explorer, but it's WAY better than the ride of any of the older Explorers.
Ford has been plagued with quality problems lately, too; I think Nick Scheele can bring them back to where they were once, but it will take a few years.
Given the choice, I'd take the MDX in a heartbeat!
Remind him that FORD stands for Fix Or Repair Daily. The ExploDer is a piece of garbage. Sure on paper, it offers a IRS, V8, etc etc. but keep it for a couple of years and you will understand why it is nicknamed the exploder. Ford claims that Quality is Job 1, but they continue to have poor reliability across their entire line. Your friend is dreaming if he thinks that the exploder is in the same league as the MDX. what a Joke!
Anyways, before i found the MDX, I was looking at the 2002 explorer. The Explorer build quality, design and interior appeared cheap. And, IF you get the third seat in the explorer, when the third seat is folded down, the cargo space isnt anything close to being flat. I think the ford engineers had a serious brain cramp when they worked on the storage of the third seat. However, that's just an opinion.
I used to visit the Explorer newgroups when I was considering the Explorer and that's where I initially found out about the MDX. So i guess the Explorer is good for something; having people direct you away from it to an MDX.
Hey tell your buddy that the MDX handles great on turns and curves without reducing speed when climbing or going downhill at
the mountains, specially when you're going to Big Bear or Lake Arrowhead, CA. with snow!
After owning two Accords, I wanted a SUV and bought a new 1996 Exploder XLT (V-8). It was without a doubt the worst vehicle I have ever owned (and I've owned British). Got rid of it after 16 months for a 1998 Accord V-6 Coupe. Got the SUV bug again and ordered a 2002 MDX Red Touring Nav. Looking forward to March.
Just a note to you all...the '02 Explorer has the new IRS (independent rear suspension). This is supposed to be the breakthru of a lifetime...according to Ford.
However, it is good for on-road...but it really SUCKED off-road...and i don't use the work "sucked" very often.
By design, the rear half-shaft/axle goes THROUGH the frame! Now, this may make the frame stronger (according to Ford)...i doubt it. This may create more room for the 3rd row seat...i agree. However, the axle has ONLY SO MUCH up-and-down travel because it is limited by the frame itself! Therefore, these axles have EXTREMELY limited wheel articulation...maybe worst of ANY SUV! This proves one thing...Ford is doing the same mistake as the Merc. ML. Why have a vehicle with FRAME and LOW range, when it has a totally useless suspension and no skidplates! Mind boggling, isn't it??!! Just gives me migraines thinking about it!
I definitely favor the GMC Envoy over the Explorer. But, of course, like you all, i think the MDX is way ahead of these vehicles.
Lots of good info for you here . . . . I think the key point is that the MDX is car-based and the Exploder is truck based. This gives the MDX a huge advantage for ride quality. This, plus the width, gives the MDX much more stability. I throw the X into turns without hesitation - something I wouldn't do with a high and narrow vehicle.
Comparably equipped, the Exploder (a truck with the heart of a Pinto?!?) costs almost as much as the MDX.
If you really want to think twice, look at the '03 Honda Pilot, the new Volvo SUV, or some of the other Euro-sport utility vehicles. Or, wait till the '03 MDX comes out with new features and more power (speculation, on my part).
Thanks for all the good info. I should tell you guys that I rode in the back seat of my buddy's Explorer on the way to Vail and back from Denver. What an upholsteric nightmare! My knees were ALWAYS touching the passenger seat back in front of me, and there is NO recline for that 2nd row of seats. Ouch!
My MDX 2nd row is very comfortable, much more roomy, and RECLINES...
Check this link out for the NHTSA web site regarding its consumer complaint database and compare the number of complaints for the MDX (only one) versus the 126 complaints for the Ford Explorer (comparing model year 2001). Here's the link: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems/complain/index.cfm