If you have a big family, or like to haul people around, or like to haul lots of stuff around, the Ford Expedition is for you. It had the capability of seating up to nine adults very comfortably until the front bench seat was discontinued, scaling that back to a party of eight. The Expedition also offers plenty of room in its cargo area for luggage. And while you are planning your next adventure away from home, if you need to take along a recreational vehicle like a boat, motorcycles, 4-wheelers, or even a smaller car, the towing capacity on this brute is 9,200 pounds when properly equipped.
The First Generation was between 1997 and 2002 when the Ford Expedition replaced the Ford Bronco. It was based on Ford's F-150 and it's a truck all the way, except for on the inside; that's where things got a lot cushier. The 1997 Expedition lineup was the XLT and the Eddie Bauer. It came with a 4.6L 215 hp and a 5.4L V-8 engine, respectively.
The Expedition could seat nine people if you opted for the first row bench seat, other than that, you could go with captain's chairs seating in the first or second row. So many perks were available on the base model but you could opt for leather seats, illuminated running boards, heated side mirrors, dual zone climate control, a power moon roof and Ford's Mach stereo system. The Eddie Bauer model came equipped with all of the above as standards.
In 1999 the Expedition received a refresh with a new front grille and a new bumper with fog lights. Both engines were given more horsepower and torque. In 2000, a hidden radio antenna was integrated into the rear window, and the models were available with side view mirrors with lane departure indicators and rear park assist with backup sensors. In 2002, the Eddie Bauer Premier trim was discontinued.
The Second Generation was between 2003 and 2006. The new 2003 Ford Expedition was the very first full-size SUV to have a fully independent suspension when it became equipped with a new four-wheel drive independent long-travel suspension system. In 2004, the Eddie Bauer Premier trim was brought back and it featured monochromatic paint, special alloy wheels, and blacked-out headlights. Also in this year, an Expedition XLT Sport model became available. In 2005, the Expedition was equipped with new roof racks and a new Limited model replaced the Eddie Bauer Premier model, but the regular Eddie Bauer remained in the lineup.
The Limited model offered chrome accents throughout along with a chrome tipped exhaust pipe, and power folding side view mirrors. An even more upscale model, the Western -inspired King Ranch trim could be had with Castano leather seats with all the bells and whistles. Also in 2005, a 5.4L Triton V-8 replaced the 4.6L engine, and became standard on all models.
A new version of the four-speed transmission became updated with the 4R70W automatic. In 2006, two new metallic exterior paint colors were offered and the King Ranch received a standard chrome tipped exhaust pipe. Stand alone options now included safety canopy side curtain airbags, ultrasonic rear park assist, and manual headrests were replaced by adjustable headrests on the front seats.
The Third Generation began in 2007 to present. The year 2007 saw an updated version of the Expedition that included upgraded materials and even more creature comforts to enjoy in the lofty cabin. If you were used to the pneumatic air-ride suspension from the previous generations, it was carried over to keep everyone happy. And this feature really came in handy for small children, the disabled, older adults, and older dogs-so kudos to Ford for that.
Also in 2007, the new 6-speed Intelligent Automatic Transmission with Dual Overdrive Gears was introduced. The powertrain offered the 5.4L Triton V-8 that gave you 300 hp and 365 lb-ft of torque. This SUV was not all show and no go, people. If you wanted to talk to the people in the back row, the SoundScreen laminated acoustic solar tinted windshield helped to reduce outside noise for a more enjoyable experience.
In 2008, a rearview backup camera was added and deployable/retractable running boards were available. In 2009, the front beach seat was no longer. Now standard with the models was Ford's FlexFuel capability with Ford's exclusive EasyFuel capless gas tank. The 5.4L V-8 had a horsepower boost making it 310 hp and also in this year, maximum towing capacity was rated at 9,200 pounds.
Ford SYNC became available and was steering wheel accessible along with voice commands to activate it. This was standard on Eddie Bauer and the King Ranch. Second row outboard heated seats came standard on the Limited and King Ranch models for both bench and bucket seats. In 2010, Ford's MyKey became available along with trailer sway control and U.S. News & World Report ranked the 2010 Expedition as 6th among the top 11 full-size SUVs. Eddie Bauer gave the option of rain sensing windshield wipers but they were standard on the Limited and King Ranch models.
In 2011, HD Radio became standard across the board and a dual DVD headrest entertainment system became an option. The Limited gained a chrome front grille in this year. In 2012, second row heated seats became an option for the XLT Premium and the Limited and King Ranch models now offered a standard Front Park Assist.
In 2013, the XL and XLT Sport were dropped from the lineup leaving XLT, XLT Premium, Limited and King Ranch trims. The Limited and King Ranch offered chrome-clad wheels, chrome roof racks, and side mirrors. In 2014 the lineup changed to the XLT, Limited and the King Ranch.
The Adaptive Pneumatic Air-Ride was replaced with a new Nivomat adaptive hydraulic load leveling suspension in 2014. In 2015, the Expedition received a subtle, yet noticeable new look along with a new engine, higher quality interior, and an optional revised four-wheel independent suspension system. The Expedition was the very first Ford model in the U.S. to offer a continuously controlled damping system.
The 2015 lineup offered the following trim levels for the Expedition and the Expedition EL (the EL is 15" longer overall), the XLT, Limited, King Ranch and a new Platinum trim. Numerous options included the Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert, and a rearview camera which were standard in the Platinum trim. The Platinum trim offered a red wine Brunello leather interior that had tuxedo-stripe accents and French seam stitching. Off road electronics included Hill Ascent and Hill Descent control along with Ford Truck Apps that offered information such as real-time traction control system status, off-road orientation/geometry and 4x4 system status.
The new engine for the Expedition was a turbocharged 3.5L V-6 that gave 365 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. The V-8 was no longer available as the new turbocharged V-6 would outperform the V-8 in both power and fuel economy. During an Edmunds test track run, the Expedition Platinum 4x4 went from zero to 60 mph in a mere 6.5 seconds, blowing away full-size SUV competitors with V-8 engines and leaving them in the dust.
In 2016 the Ford Expedition was offered in the following trim levels: XLT, Limited, King Ranch and Platinum. The MyFord Touch was replaced with the new SYNC 3 Infotainment system. All models were offered in two-wheel and four-wheel drive and had the capacity to seat up to 8 adults. The XLT had more standards than you can shake a stick at with automatic headlights, LED fog lights, parking sensors, a rearview camera, a six-way power driver's seat and a one-touch fold-flat third row seat. If you opted for the upgrade packages, the sky's the limit.
The Limited included all of the XLT's standards, and options as well as front parking sensors, automatic windshield wipers and heated second-row seats. Add upgrade packages to receive a sunroof, retractable running boards, and a navigation system and with other upgrades, the troposphere's the limit.
The Western-chic King Ranch had all the Limited offered along with unique exterior styling and paint and an interior embellished with wood grain trim and premium leather upholstery. The Platinum offered all the King Ranch did minus the Western overtones and it came with a standard sunroof. Add stand alone options and the universe is the limit.
The Ford Expedition has grown, literally, into one of the largest capacity SUVs on the market that offers a whopping 108 cubic feet in the standard models with the rear seat folded and if you opt for the extended length you can get 130.8 cubic feet of storage with the rear seats folded. Now, that is one big honkin' SUV.
Angela Krause Ford Lincoln on Mansell Road in Alpharetta, Georgia has a full inventory of new and used Ford Expeditions. We are convenient to Norcross, Cumming, Roswell, Sandy Springs and Milton; Fulton County, Forsyth County, all of North Georgia; and we are just off GA 400 near the Atlanta Humane Society on Mansell Road. If you love to travel, you can Go Further in a Ford Expedition.