Monday, October 22, 2018

2018 Ford Expedition Platinum AWD: A More Affordable Alternative To The Fullsize Luxury SUVs

Highlight: In its first year out the gate, the redesign Ford Expedition was the best in its segment in terms of new-vehicle build quality, according to quality guru J. D. Power.

Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $81,815 (Base Model: $53,085)

Seating Capacity: 7 or 8

Standard Safety Features: airbags; ABS; an electronic stability control system; a perimeter alarm; a tire pressure monitoring system; a rearview camera; reverse sensing system; a trailer sway control system; power adjustable brake pedals; an automatic rearview mirror; and a hillstart system

XLT Standard Equipment: 18-inch tires; 10-speed automatic transmission; rear privacy glass; running boards; a rear cargo management system; front and second row cloth seats; a power driver’s seat; a third row flat seat; a rotary dial gear shift; an in-vehicle smart car charging system; a manually operated tilt/telescopic steering wheel; an automatic start-stop gas saving feature; a keyless entry system; and a push button ignition system   

Platinum Standard Equipment: 22-inch wheels; a hands free, foot-activated liftgate; a panoramic roof; power running boards; a heated steering wheel; a dual zone temperature control system; a radar activated cruise control system; power adjustable pedals with memory; power front seats with driver’s memory; leather seats; heated second row seats; power tilt/telescopic steering wheel with memory; a 360-degree camera; a blind spot information system with trailer tow monitoring; an enhanced automatic parking parallel and perpendicular system; a lane keep assist system; a power folding sideview mirrors; a pre-collision pedestrian and forward collision warning system; a rain-sensing wiper system (front only); a navigation system; Apple CarPlay and Android; a terrain management system; LED taillamps; a heated steering wheel; tow hooks; a roof rack; a dual zone automatic temperature control; heated/ventilated front seats; second row heated seats; rear center console with wood accents; and automatic high beam headlights

Options: leather second row bucket seats; a heavy duty trailer tow package; a reversible cargo mat and a rear seat entertainment system

Other Trim Level: XLT; Limited; and Sport

Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a 9-speaker audio system AM/FM/CD with satellite radio

Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes

USB Connectivity: Yes

Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 3 years or 36,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 3.5-liter, 6-cylinder/375-hp

Recommended Fuel: Regular

Towing Capacity: 9,300 lbs

Standard Fuel Mileage:


What’s New: Ford’s fullsize SUV, which is powered by a 6-cylinder engine, has been reworked inside and out. Besides Ford’s trademark name, the eight passenger vehicle is all new for the 2018 model year.

Why: At a time when we thought Ford had given up on the long in the tooth Expedition, the 2018 fullsize SUV has definitely made all of us take a second look at the gigantic land yacht.

The all-new Expedition is everything the world has come to expect from America’s best-selling vehicle, the F-series pick up, except this body-on-frame vehicle is capable of carrying up to 8 people.

The fullsize vehicle is available in a variety of trims and price points. The new Expedition can be configured, with a rear wheel drive, or a four wheel drive system. The three-row vehicle driving modes can be adjusted to weather rain, ice, gravel, sand or snow.

The big body SUV is powered by a 6-cylinder, 385-horsepower engine. It’s as fuel efficient and just as powerful as the 8-cylinder engines found in many of its competitors. And the vehicle has a standard towing capacity of 9,300 pounds. Not only is the SUV great for taking family trips, but for pulling a boat too.

Unlike the other vehicles in the segment, this SUV rides more like a car, as opposed to a truck. We here that GM is making changes to the suspension systems of their next-gen Tahoe and Yukon to match the Expedition.

The Expedition follows the theme of many of Ford’s newest models, offering an easy to use infotainment, which consists of the audio, ventilation and navigation systems. Ford also replaces the traditional shift gear, with a new rotary dial system.

The eight passenger vehicle is available with class-leading power articulating massaging front seats. In addition to offering a dual rear entertainment center, the Expedition is available with an in vehicle WiFi service that is capable of connecting up to 10 mobile devices.

The Expedition easily accommodates passengers in both the second and third rows. There is also adequate legroom too. This vehicle is designed for long haul cross country trips. And the Expedition is able to carry both cargo and people simultaneously due to a variety of seating configuration. Even when the third row is in use, there is adequate cargo space available.

Lastly, the restyled SUV, which can run in the same league as the Cadillac Escalade and Infiniti QX80, is available with the latest high tech safety driving aids. Depending on the trim, the Expedition can be outfitted with such high-tech features as a pedestrian detection collision system to a perpendicular and parallel parking system.

But: It’s just big and a lot of vehicle to maneuver despite all of the semi self-driving aids.

Moreover, we found the second row bucket seats somewhat of a challenge to relock in place, after using the power switch to fold down the seat. Lastly, a speed sign indicator should be relocated from the centered-placed infotainment center to the instrument gauge, so that it is in direct view of the driver sight.

Lastly, the price is just astounding, as is the case with most vehicles today. We could have never imagined the pricing of the Expedition overlapping the luxury fullsize SUVs like the Escalade and the QX80.

Verdict: The all-new Expedition takes all of the components that make both single cab and super duty cab F-series trucks so adoring and wraps it into a three-row SUV. This new reworked SUV is leap years over the competition, too.

Unlike the competitors, the fullsize SUV is powered by a fuel-efficient 6-cylinder engine, offers a parallel and perpendicular driver assist system and is outfitted with massaging front seats. Moreover, unlike traditional body on frame SUVs, the Expedition handles more like a car.

So, no matter the needs or the price point, this fullsize SUV can fulfill everyone's wishes. And for those buyers, who are looking for many of the features one expects in the Lincoln Navigator, the Expedition Platinum could save you a cool $20,000. Added to that, the higher end Platinum model will even make luxury SUV buyers, who are considering an Infiniti QX80, a Cadillac Escalade or a GMC Yukon Denali, trade down, so to speak, to this all-new Ford.

Competition: Chevy Tahoe; GMC Yukon; and Nissan Armada

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