I’m still morning loosing the Excursion, but oh well. Ford did come back with a larger Expedition for 2007. Expedition EL, with a Super Duty looking grill that I’m now use to and like the grill flowing into the power dome hood. A new smooth 6-speed auto minus a dip stick has two overdrives (.86 and .69 to 1). This is the trend for improved mpg. The only engine is the proven 5.4L with 300 horse and 365 torque. With 40% of Expedition owners towing, Ford raised the max to 9200 lb towing capacity. The EL model with 4WD has a towing capacity of 8650 pounds. The Gross Combined Weight Rating is 15,000#’s.
Ford took us to Oregon to try out the new Expedition, stopping in Astoria on the Lewis and Clark trail where several movies where made, like Gooneys, Free Willey and Pirates of the Caribbean. Being from Colorado, I don’t get to the ocean often, so crossing the Columbia River into Washington and back on a ferry was a thrill.
With the SUV market shrinking 40% in the last two years, Ford knows the importance of keeping it’s customer base with new products. The redesigned Expedition should make them happy with increased towing capacity, and a longer EL version. Handling is improved with a new five-link design Independent Rear Suspension with the axle shafts going threw the boxed frame rails for a lower stance.
I took the new Expedition through the winding Washington hills as fast the tires would hold me. It handled superbly, with no resemblance of the old leaning SUV’s we drove a few years back. The standard AdvanceTrac electronic stability control and Roll Stability Control makes the difference on tall vehicles. Just like the Explorer, you can feel the influence Volvo has made on handling and safety improvements on Ford SUV’s. IRS suspension allows that 3rd row seat leg room, and now optional Powerfold third row folds flat by pushing a button.
The 6-speed tranny (6R75) has a manual mode as they all should. Control is good. The shifter stick looks classy, wish it was in the F150. The frame is all boxed with some hydro forming making it stiffer, more as a percentage than the F150. The external mirrors have a two tone look I like, they even help with noise as does the thicker side glass. Quite Steel used in the F150 is in the Expedition. Lot of work went in to make the Expedition a quite and comfortable ride, at least until you load the teenagers and they find the volume button.
The dash layout is the way I’d do it. At a glance you know what’s happening under the hood. 20″ wheels are an option with 5 wheel choices. Air ride with auto leveling is one of my favorite options along with heated and cooled seats.
Here are pictures of the reinforcing in the Expeditions engine compartment. All designed to absorb the shock of a crash and keep it out of the cabin. Right, bridges over the Columbia River. We had 9 Expeditions on a ferry crossing the river.
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