2015 Ford Expedition: First Look

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By David Boldt

In the almost 18 years since Ford's Expedition first rolled into showrooms (at that time significantly based off the F-150), there has been a sea of change in the SUV market. However, despite incremental sales over the past several model years, there remains the big-family, trailer-towing buyer in need of a capable SUV. And nothing says "towing" quite like Ford's body-on-frame full-size Expedition and long-wheelbase EL.

With a host of updates for 2015, the folks at Ford hope to keep the Expedition relevant until all-new models can fit into Ford's updated/upgraded product plan, which could include many of the same upgrades seen on the next-generation 2015 Ford F-150.

First things first: While aluminum exists on the '15 Expedition, its use is confined to those ancillary pieces typically reserved for the lightweight alloy and not — we'll emphasize — for the entire body structure. In short, this is not the SUV derivative of Ford's '15 F-Series. Instead, exterior changes are limited to a new front clip (featuring available LED fog lamps), optional 22-inch wheels and a redesigned rear hatch. At the reveal it was difficult to gauge the extent of the changes relative to the existing model, but there's far greater commonality between the new Expedition and today's F-Series than there exists with the all-new F-Series. Compared to the 2015 F-Series (if you choose to do so) there's little shared beyond the EcoBoost V-6 and — of course — the Ford logo.

 

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Inside, interior updates are clearly evident, especially on the new Platinum edition Expedition. What is described as "lush leather seating" is available in a new Brunello leather, a red wine color featuring tuxedo-stripe accents and French-seamed stitching. And if it's simply not your time for red wine, you can also choose black leather with Agate Gray accents. The Platinum will sit at the top of the trim triangle, with XLT and Limited providing the other two initial choices; a new King Ranch edition will be available later.

Of course, a newish Ford wouldn't be newish without the latest technologies, including Sync with MyFord Touch, push-button start and a blind spot information system. We had hoped Ford's truck division, through marketing, messaging or tweets, might simply tell customers to shut up and drive, but it hasn't happened yet.

Real change can be seen under the hood, where the Expedition's current 5.4-liter V-8 is no longer available. The only powertrain will be Ford's well-received and popular 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, delivering more power and performance than the outgoing V-8 while promising better fuel efficiency. Combine that with the segment's only independent rear suspension and three selectable (albeit optional) drive modes — Comfort, Normal and Sport — and you have the makings of a sophisticated player.

At the end of the day, Ford loyalists will be satisfied with the full menu of upgrades, while Chevrolet loyalists — with an all-new Tahoe/Suburban on the way — will have little reason to stray, save for the EcoBoost V-6. These are interesting times, with an increasing variety of interesting trucks.

To read the full Ford press release, click here.

 

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Comments

I never saw any stories on here about the new 2015 yukon/tahoes, so what makes the expedition so special?

A truck (US, CA and AU) or lorry (UK and Ireland) is a motor vehicle designed to transport cargo. Trucks vary greatly in size, power, and configuration, with the smallest being mechanically similar to an automobile. Commercial trucks can be very large and powerful, and may be configured to mount specialized equipment, such as in the case of fire trucks and concrete mixers and suction excavators. Modern trucks are largely powered by diesel engines exclusively, although small to medium size trucks with gasoline engines exist in America.

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According this from Wikipedia a truck is powered by a diesel engine!

Then as a secondary comment it states the some gasoline engine small and medium trucks exist in Merica.

To preempt the bashers; I am not saying Unibody sucks, there are some darn nice ones and several classic SUVS that have switched to that team... their just not "trucks" to me.

To me, a truck is has a dedicated separate frame that is designed for work transferring big power and loads.

When doing this marvelous work, frames flex so they don't break. Mounting body on the frame isolates the passenger envelope from the harshness of the work. Pickups have separate boxes to allow even more flex for greater load capacity. I have overloaded several pickups for short hauls that would have creases the sheet metal of avalanches, which would mean bending a ridgeline's frame as it's integral.

When a truck is not really needed, the consumer gets extra durability from the frame. Ever have a foot go through rusted floor boards, how solid is that for working loads or how safe is that Unibody in a collision?

In case anyone is interested, I had a 2006 half-ton Suburban which was a lemon but rode nicely, then a 2007 Yukon XL 3/4 ton which was nice. Bought a King Ranch Expedition in 2012. It actually pulls better than the 3/4 ton Yukon. 40k miles thus far no issues (nor should there be). Otherwise, the air suspension is fabulous and the ride is amazing. Overall, the Expedition is my hands down favorite vehicle I ever had, after 5 GM's in a row ('89 short cab reg box 4x4 Silverado, '97 2 dr 4x4 Tahoe, '03 crew cab 2500 Duramax, '06 Suburban Z71, '07 Yukon XL 3/4.)

@Unclebud

Hang on to that Expedition--depreciation on those babies is really awful. After five to seven years you should be out of the woods.

There is good news for you though. My sis and her husband bought one back around 2001. Drove the wheels off of it. It was in horrible wrecks. Would not quit.

One of their kids drives it today.

I don't see anything wrong with this Expedition, it has clean lines and the interior is nice. What is wrong with covering CUVs? If it doesn't have a balcony then it is not a truck? You need a balcony to mount a lawn chair on.

Booorrrrinnnngg!!! This thing is a FOSSIL just like the Super Dooty truck line! I can barely tell the difference between this and the 1997 model. LMAO

@Papa Jim I plan on it. They don't build them like this anymore. It's a brick house. One of my 3 boys is sure to figure a way to tear it up though in another decade. I guess I'd rather they learn to drive in a tank.

I will say though, I think Ford missed an opportunity to jump ahead in this segment. When they were releasing 4 new engines in the F-150, they should have done the same in the Expedition. The suburban had gotten STALE and GM was broke. They had a window of opportunity to close the gap between Ford and GM in the full size SUV segment and they let it slip away...

Hopefully big SUVs are making a come back. I would like to see Ram do an SUV version of a pickup, more like a modern Excursion with a 6.7 Cummins with that sleek but tough Ram HD styling. This Expedition needs an elocker rear diff. Ford has always fitted open rear diffs on Expeditions.

@BAF0 - Not too long ago, if an OEM offered a diesel engine on light cars and trucks, you jumped on it and never looked back. Things are a lot different now and we're questioning the sanity of running a diesel engine in anything less than heavy duty commercial trucks, tour buses and heavy equipment.
The past advantages of diesel engines just don't work out like they used to. You're now seeing increased take rate of gasoline engines in medium duty trucks, up to class 6 (F-650). In anything less than 3/4 ton trucks, it's more of a 'diesel fetish' with consumers.

Usually the SUV is released a year after an all-new truck hits the market (that it's based on). A staggered release helps OEMs get everything right on each model. Ford really needs to focus all its attention on the next F-150 right now and can't afford to F' up its release. The all-new Expedition will come along a year or two later, especially if it's all-aluminum too. Last time around, the all-new Expedition arrived a year before the current F-150.

This Ford biased site is a joke why dont we see an article on the 2015 Yukon/Tahoe/Suburban. But we get one for the 1997 Expedition. Mark Williams you're a joke!

Mark Williams should go join Mike Levine at FURD.

@unclebud

Sorry, Bud, but the whole segment is old hat. I happen to want a Suburban. My last Ford was a stinker and my 2009 Chevy has been a gem.

Considering the number of parts and systems that the big station wagons share with half ton trucks, I'm guessing a late model used Suburban is on my radar.

Not Black, not white.

The colors GM calls Silver Birch, or Granite would be top choices. I'd love to find an older Suburban with a 454 V8 but they are rarely seen anymore in decent condition.

The Expedition would be ok though. I like the seats that fold flat.

I rented a Suburban 3 years ago and was disappointed with the lack of power. I couldn't even spin the wheels in 2wd mode from a stand still in the wet!!! (traction control was off). I bet the Expedition EcoBoost can! The Suburban is getting way too soft, as it had NO LOW RANGE! GM needs to offer the 6.2 in the regular SUVs, not just the premium ones if it is going to try to compete with the EcoBoost V6. Also, they all need a diesel option!

I'm really glad to be seeing this coverage. I think all the large truck based SUV's have a place here. Maybe some coverage on the new line of GM's too. What's new with the sequoia? If they moved to the new interior / exterior of the tundra.

It's funny to think that the avalanche was derived from the suburban, and avalanche part / designs made it to the new Silveradoe in the form of number step, maybe some bed lighting or how the lock is integrated into the tailgate now as it first showed up on the avalanche. These are all giant family lines working together.

Can you imagine an Armada with that new cummins motor? I for one will be ordering this new Expedition in EL form. Would love a new F-150 but with three kids under 4 now and possibly more on the way along with dogs. I can finally tow a travel trailer and have everyone along.

I've had F150, avalanches, Denali XL, and wanted to move to expedition/ ford line. The 2007+ GM cannot hold up to the wear and tear of the kids. The 5.4 just didn't do it for me. Think I will finally be a happy camper. No pun intended.

...and saying something truthful about Fords that is negative gets ol Lou going, he don't want no (double negative on purpose) bad talk about Phords.

@papa jim, got you, the GM 5.3s with direct injection will most likely be alot more reliable then Lou's egoboost

In the argument of truck vs car, there are many "official" descriptions. One thing that stands out however, is the fact that it must have some means to be exciusively a cargo vehicle and that description has become a seriously grey area for many people, both consumer and manufacturer. Trucks are being shipped into America as passenger vehicles, only to be modified on a wholesale basis into a cargo-only vehicle. Interestingly, these 'trucks' are of a unibody-style construction which plays with that body-on-frame argument again in both directions. So does a truck really need to be BoF? Is an SUV a car or a truck? Exactly what IS a truck?

IMHO, an SUV that is NOT a BoF model cannot be called a truck--it's a car first and foremost and essentially qualifies as a station wagon. Even a minivan is nothing more than a station wagon on steroids. If you go back to the '40s and '50s, one of the most popular light trucks was really built on a station wagon platform--with NO allowance for installing passenger seats behind the front row. Ford is essentially returning to this concept with the Transit van, while Chrysler is doing the same with its Caravan Cargo. Yes, these are trucks, but SUVs with fold-down seats aren't. That same Caravan with fold-down seats is NOT a truck, but a passenger vehicle with expandable cargo capacity.

Conversely, while a modern crew cab pickup does qualify as a truck, its now abysmally-small cargo bed almost disqualifies it as a working vehicle because of it's lack of real carrying capacity by available square footage. At only four and a half feet long, almost any load of lumber, pipe or other larger load simply will not fit in that bed while the level of luxury inside has made them far more a passenger-centric vehicle than a work vehicle. As such, the manufacturers have blurred the lines even more of what makes a truck a truck and a car a car.

Worse, with unibody construction at least one manufacturer has demonstrated that is is possible to build a light-duty pickup truck with car-like features--In fact, even the American big three did it consistently through the '60s '70s and even '80s with the El Camino, Ranchero and Rampage and even more recently overseas with the Holden Commodore Ute and Ford Falcon Ute. But let's not forget at least one of the older European efforts with the Volkswagen Rabbit Pickup--a FWD light duty rig that can still be found on the roads in some parts of the country.

So honestly the definition of a truck isn't based on the platform carrying it, but rather its primary purpose of carrying cargo vs carrying people.

Looks like Ford is going all Euro. No V8's. Awesome 2.7L turbo
coming. Good luck with that. lol

"I would really like to meet Hemi V8 in real life."

Posted by: Big Al from Oz | Feb 21, 2014 6:50:05 PM

I would like to meet you too! Let me know when your in the states.

2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee has Eco diesel.

Unrivaled. The Grand Cherokee sets extraordinary standards for performance, luxury, Best-in-Class Highway Fuel Economy of 30 MPG+ and attention to detail.

Kool aid makes me sick lolololololololololololololololol

@Roadwhale: you might end up seeing a Chrysler front wheel drive lught truck, optional awd, is my guess, Cobsidering the promaster has pretty good capabilities. The midsize truck with seating for 3 in a regular cab has about gone by the wayside. A front wheel drive would free up the big centerhump, awd though would take some tunnel space for the rear axle drivetrain. If it was east west mounted, shifter cables could be used for a manual trans.

I just can't see a truck that only seats 2 being very pratical, I know Tremors and R/T Rams only sear 2, they buy it for performance, which I wouldn't do.

Even in full size trucks the front middle seat is mostly good for kids.

I am sure some grumbling will come from that suggestion, like we need fullframe..like a Jeep Comanche didn't have full frame.

@Charlie: I don't think they would all like the dismall 6.2 Ford mileage. Maybe if they tow alot, still, it's an engine that needs revved to maje torque.Oj for some toy, but in a big heavy suv, nah. Ford is throwing in the towell on low revving v-8s.

You just can't beat those Ford Trucks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czyaZmYz9FQ

Same old body with a new grill. Forget it Ford, you will never be able to compete with GM's Tahoe, Yukon, or Suburban. Ford has been trying for years to beat GM's suvs with no luck. With GM's new suvs coming out, Ford should have saved their money on this old style Expedition. Ford, you lose again just like when you tried putting the Excursion up against the Suburban.

@Greg, the Excursion was overkill for a 8-9 passenger SUV, which made it both laughable and appealing. That's why I think Ram should have a go with its 2500 coil spring setup. Much better suited to an SUV. Sadly, the Suburban 2500 appears to be no longer. That would have been good with the fully-boxed frame, LML Duramax, and Allison. The 5.3 is just a grocery getter.

WHAT, WAIT A MINUTE BREAK OUT THE PENS AND PAPER TRX TOM SAID SOMETHING GOOD BOUT GM. WRITE THIS DOWN ON THE CALENDER! LOL


@papa jim, got you, the GM 5.3s with direct injection will most likely be alot more reliable then Lou's egoboost

Posted by: TRX 4 Tom "Someday the people that own a Ford are going to want an automobile"-John Dodge | Feb 22, 2014 9:49:04 AM

@trxtom (Ram coils replace Crown Vic) - the EB3.5 has the appropriate power characteristics for this kind of vehicle.
The EB3.5 still does not have the level of durability that I would want. It still has a higher problem rate than the rest of the normally aspirated Ford engine line. If I wanted a truck with that level of problems I would have no problems buying a Ram.

I'd like them to cover body on frame SUVs. They have the same frame/enignes and insides as the trucks just more seating. Which some people take out to haul stuff in a safer dry area.

This guy uses his Sub 1984 and 1984 blazer for work 6.2s and his newest 1995 6.5L Sub for work all with over 200,000 miles one them
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IpTCk3KwTII

@Lou_BC
Turbo gasoline engines will improve. Ford will learn from it's current Eco Boost engines, whether 3, 4 or 6 cylinders.

The 2.7 Eco Boost will be a different animal.

Light turbo diesels had some reliability issues early on in the mid 90s until the early noughts.

Many early turbo diesels had cylinder head problems relating to heat. Nissan even had a grenading 3 litre diesel in the Patrol.

Turbo gasoline engines are different from diesel because of the additional heat they generate. As materials and engineering improve, like with diesel, I don't forsee any major problems with turbo gasoline engines.

Just with the ridiculous diesel fuel and emission regulations in the US has presented problems we don't have with our diesels.

Gas and diesel engines will advance with electric supercharging and new problems will arise.

This is all in the name of progress.

As I tell the young guys at work, 'if you aren't making mistakes then you are not trying'.

@Big Al, well said! I think the 2.7 will be great. Hopefully Australia gets it as an option in the Ranger and Everest and see how it compares to your 3.2 diesel. I haven't heard much about electric supercharging for a while. About 10 years ago, I was 4x4ing and camping in Toolangi State Forest, near Melbourne. We used electric blowers to keep the fire going and then I thought... "why not use these types of things for electric supercharging?" But I since learned it's not that easy to generate enough airflow and pressure from a regular alternator for consistent use. If you increase the alternator size, you might as well drive it straight from the crankshaft. It will be interesting to see how electric turbocharging pans out for VW.

@Big Al from Oz, @Alex - I do agree that if one never risks failure then one never advances or grows.

The EB3.5 has a higher problem rate than the NA engines but statistically that problem rate is dropping.

I'm sure that if FCA put a TTDI engine into one of their vehicles, it would turn out to be the greatest thing ever ;)

Case in point: the Rambo crowd thinks that the Raptor cargo ratings suck but a similar number in a Ram is fine.

I double checked and I was right, The site is called Pickup trucks.com not sure how a SUV fits in there.

I was really glad to see this sight reporting on this type of truck. I would really like them to compare the new Expedition EL to the new Suburban. I know these are not pickups but they are as close as I can get with the my primary role as a father of 5 and the need to get to work when the snow gets really deep up here. I laugh at all those who push for minivans and then try to go down my gravel road in December - March.

@Mark Williams or whoever you want to call yourself.

Quit the crap, really.

It's getting long in the tooth.

You want to debate, but it has to be on your terms.

Learn how to debate, then we might be able to have a decent debate.

Opinions are good, but if they are only your view to support Ford, then how good are they.

@ Joe, I don't think it's as much about the SUV but more about Mark Williams being a piece of poop Ford buttkisser. I mean really, you"re gonna put up an article on the ford suv release and not the GM offering.

Mark Williams is pure garbage. That's probably why he got canned from his last job.

I didn't know it was 1997 again! This full-sized SUV looks 20 years out of date. Talk about getting your full amortization out of your old tooling. Why didn't they use the exterior front sheet metal from the new 2015 F-150 on it? It doesn't make sense.

The Ecoboost option is good news. I wonder if the N/A 5.0L will be offered as a no cost option for those concerned about reliability of a small displacement TTV6 motor?

I'm shocked there is no news, article or story about the 2015 Tahoe. I'd like to see a "first look" on one of those as well.

How many trolls accused Mike Levine of being biased toward Ford, but didn't actually know that he drove a Toyota Tacoma (at that time)? It's the same trolls that keep threatening to go to other sites and never come back to this one. Go on, piss off, nobody cares. ;) Ford just releases more news worthy stories than GM, so seriously get over it or talk to your local psychiatrist.

does it have tempered or laminated glass?

Eventually the full size body on frame SUVs will disappear. Ford might not want to invest too much in a product that will eventually go the way of the Crown Vic and Grand Marquis. Ford was wise to spend the money on the new F-150, Escape, and the Mustang. This Expedition is not that bad and there will be enough sales. In this case let GM have most of the large SUV sales, it is better to concentrate on pickups and crossovers.

@LouBC,
"I'm sure that if FCA put a TTDI engine into one of their vehicles, it would turn out to be the greatest thing ever ;)

Case in point: the Rambo crowd thinks that the Raptor cargo ratings suck but a similar number in a Ram is fine."


Posted by: Lou_BC | Feb 22, 2014 4:30:25 PM

Chrysler offers something better than Ford's Eco boost. It's called the Eco Diesel. Blows Ford's Eco out of the water in it's purpose. Fuel economy. (see 2014 30+mpg jeep Grand Cherokee)

Their are plenty of Ram 1500 Eco Diesel models that have plenty of payload and towing numbers. Compared to the Raptor with that gas guzzling 6.2L

@hemi v8

My wife says I'm easily confused, so your last comment really baffles me. You are concerned that a 6.2 Ford engine is a gas guzzler but you seem to be unconcerned over the ridiculous MSRP of the Eco Diesel 1500 Ram.

Me, I just don't care. I truly do not mind paying extra for the PERFORMANCE I want. I just want the best.

Ford should install this product on their V6 Eco assembly line. lol

http://www.autonews.com/article/20140215/OEM10/302179988/audio-system-gives-smaller-engines-a-v-8-vroom#

GIT R DONE!

@papa jim, ". I just want the best."

Me too. That's why I am getting a class kicking 6.4L Hemi Power Wagon. ;)

People accuse PUTC of having a Ford bias. I could care less though. The sales figures speak for themselves. As dry as the full size SUV market is, that is one are GM seems to still be doing okay. It is also the area where they are outselling Ford by a long shot.

For 2013 Ford sold a total of 38,350 Expeditions (I couldn't tell whether this figure includes the EL or not). http://www.goodcarbadcar.net/2011/01/ford-expedition-sales-figures.html

By contrast Chevy sold 83,502 Tahoes in 2013 and 51,260 Suburbans. I won't even include the GMCs because I think I made my point already. Regardless of how Pro-Ford anyone claims that this site is, the numbers speak for themselves and that explains why little $$$ was put into the new Expedition and why there is little hype surrounding it.

http://www.goodcarbadcar.net/2011/01/chevrolet-tahoe-sales-figures.html

http://www.goodcarbadcar.net/2011/01/chevrolet-suburban-sales-figures.html

Rather have a bronco.

They could probablly get more wieght out of it if they had normal sized 16 inch wheels insted of stupid ghetto 22 inchers.

@ Hemiv8. How long is it going to take you to get a power wagon? Are they available now or are you still waiting? That's all we've heard from you for a long time now that you will get one. By the time you get one everyone else will have something better. They are nice trucks but get it or shut up.

@BAFO
I don't think anyone here, maybe with the exception of Michigan Bob has been "bombarding" this site lately with brand propaganda. The issue at hand for this particular article is that the full-sized SUV market has diminished dramatically from it's heyday. Like I posted earlier, compared to the GM SUV's, Ford has very little market share. With that in mind, it would be expected that Ford will be criticized for whatever it does in the full-sized SUV market, since there isn't much money in that market.
It is to be expected that people here won't like the new Expedition and have their own preferences. I have no use for a full-sized SUV, I will stick with my truck. If I did need a full-sized SUV I would RUN to the GM SUVs.
I do realize some people buy into the PUTC is Ford sponsored conspiracy theory and I take no issue with those who do. I respect their opinions as much as anyone else's opinion. What I don't respect or have any tolerance for is when people such as yourself say "Fiat" in place of Ram or "Fiat Ram", with the sole purpose of provoking a reaction. So what if Ram/Dodge/Chrysler is owned by Fiat? Let me tell you something, considering how much debt the U.S. owes to China, you might as well start saying that us Americans are Chinese by that same line of logic, since China practically "owns" us.

You are so right Big Al.



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