SMOOTH OPERATOR: 2020 FORD EXPEDITION
Having been around the last three-decades, the recipe behind the Ford Expedition is simple, truck capabilities with a dose of family comfort. With room for 8-passangers and the ability to tow nearly as much as the F-150 pickup truck, it offers the ability to haul more than just your family to the lake house… the in-laws can tag along too. However, as the last 11-years have been dragged out, the Expedition surely lived passed its prime and was due for heavy revamp. Thankfully that happened in 2018.
It may be rolling on two years old, but this is our first time getting up close and personal.
We’ve gone back and forth on how we want to organize our opinion on the new Expedition. Its hard process considering the F-150 was released in 2015 and has now been totally revamped for 2021. Does this make the Expedition already outdated three years into the mix? Probably not. Ford avoided the dramatic details of a polarizing look that could fade off in a few years. Instead the Expedition is short of majestic – its large stature is certainly stately and graceful. It’s a look that will age well… even if it goes for another 11-year streak.
Carrying the Ford DNA of the F-150, there is a lot of familiarity under its sheet metal with an all-new aluminum body and chassis. This transformation helps saves weight, but in something that’s already as big as house… don’t suspect people to notice its slimmer waste line. Keeping to the simple rule of thumb, Ford ultimately offers the Expedition with only one engine option verses the five choice in the F-150 and it’s the cream of the crop 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V-6. It’s the standard standalone engine amongst all trim levels that offers 375-horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. However, keep things special for the top end of the spectrum, the Platinum, as seen in this article boosts 400-horsepower with 480 lb-ft of torque traveling through a smooth operating 10-speed automatic.
With only six-cylinders under the hood, we’d never know it unless we released that hatch. The Expedition is one quick cookie taking six and half seconds to 60-mph. And it sounds good too – we’re pretty sure Ford is pumping in artificial V-8 notes into the cabin, but we surely don’t care. Now we tried to drive it like how our parents drove back in the 1900’s but it didn’t seem to matter when it came to our fuel economy, something this big is always going to be a teen figure sort of mpg. However, on the highway, it managed to be quite the nice crusader averaging 24-mpg after a 200-mile highway test.
Being the brute of the SUV world, the Expedition drives as big as it looks. But it doesn’t always feel that way with its heavily assisted electronic steering and live rear axle. It glosses over the road smoother than buttercream icing on a freshly baked cake. It may not handle like a Focus RS but it wasn’t engineered with that targeted consumer in mind either. At least its easy to park.
It comes as no surprise than that the interior volume is about as big as Sir Elton John’s wardrobe. Suited for eight passengers, good luck finding an excuse to get out of carpool. This does mean however there is plenty of room to stretch out and with the 2nd Row Captains Chairs coming in as an option, occupants will have to verbally annoy each verses physically.
Pricing can be a little eye-watering as it starts at $52,810 for the entry level XLT. It does however features a hefty dose of standard equipment like power reclining and power folding third row seats and SYNC3 with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto Connectivity. The Platinum on the other hand comes in an all-exclusive price of $77,085 with a long list of standard equipment that will surpass any CVS receipt. Featuring equipment like the panoramic roof, massaging front seats, heated second row seats and Ford’s 360 Co-Pilot Assist with Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Assist, Forward Collision Assist, 360-degree view camera and rear-cross traffic detection there is no shortage of available comforting distractions.
Here in lies a problem however. Given the release of the all-new 2021 Ford F-150, we can’t help but think the interior of the Expedition is a bit, well chinsky and on the dated side of the Ford family. Even in our most expensive Platinum model, it didn’t quite feel as expensive as its near $80,000 price tag let on. The clunky plastics and cheaper materials give off a robust, pickup truck vibe. Granted it is the exact same interior as the F-150. Ford attempted to executed an upscale vibe as in they did incorporate nicely appointed leather seats, leather wrapped door panes and leather wrapped padding over the dash. But should a more premium, opulent interior be desired, perhaps the Lincoln Navigator would be a more suitable direction with its starting price of $76,185
VEHICLE: 2020 FORD EXPEDITION PLATINUM
BASE PRICE: $52,810
AS-TESTED PRICE: $79,075
ENGINE: 3.5-LITER TWIN-TURBOCHARGED ECOBOOST V-6
HP | TORQUE: 400-HP |480 LB-FT OF TORQUE
DRIVETRAIN: FOUR-WHEEL DRIVE
MPG: 17 | 22 | 19 (CITY | HIGHWAY | COMBINED)
AS TESTED MPG: 17.7-MPG COMBINED | 24.5-MPG HIGHWAY (200-MILES AT 75-MPH)
FUEL RANGE: 370-MILES
0-60 MPH: ±6.0 SECONDS