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Ford Excursion vs Chevy Suburban/GMC Yukon XL - The battle of the titans



  • leerleer Posts: 1
    I just bought a 2004 Eddie Bauer X PSD with 45,500 miles on it. We love it except for one problem. When driving down the road with the drivers window open we smell diesel exhaust inside the vehilce.

    Also with the defroster on at a stop light we smell diesel exhaust in the vehicle.

    Have you ever experienced this with yours.

  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,614
    don't own an excursion or suburban, but my jaw is dropping out at this post. see graphic >>> :surprise:. i have an '02 explorer v8. many times with 4 passengers and cargo box on the top, i have averaged 18-19 mpg. this truck loves 80 mph. drive it till the low fuel light comes on. 12mpg not towing? :confuse:
  • I have a 2000 Excursion (we call it the X-Box) and love it. I have tasked it to pull several different duties including kid/sports team hauler, recreational trailer tow vehicle and fruit trailer tow vehicle during harvest and it does them all with exceptional ease and comfort. I have the 7.3 Powerstroke and will never go back to a gas engine in my truck, the price of diesel be damned! I towed a 12,000# dump trailer with it several weeks ago, and I had enough power to spin the tires on a gravel road.

    I was very disappointed to hear that Ford was ending production of the Excursion this year because by wife and I had already discussed buying a new one in '07 or '08. I have owned Chevy Suburbans, and Ford Broncos and found that the Excursion is the superior vehicle by far. My X-Box has about 120,000 miles on it and the only work (non-maintenance) that I have done was replace the door lock actuators (warranty), replace an o-ring on an oil cooler line and replace a cam position sensor; pretty good track record considering my last Suburban needed a new motor at 101,000.

    I hear complaints that the Excursion "rides too much like a truck". My response is always, "I hope so, it is a truck." It's a lot more truck than my F-150. It’s funny because I bought the F-150 (with the Triton V-8) for the farm, but the Excursion kicks the 150’s tail in every aspect except hauling dirty or bulky materials. I guess that I’ll end up replacing the Excursion with a Superduty crew cab in 2-3 years, but I will definitely miss that 3rd row seating and the interior cargo space. I hope Ford finds a way to fill the Excursion’s niche, possibly some 3rd party customizer will build a stretched out F-350 with 3rd row seating in the future.

    That’s my two cents; I’ll never go back to a Suburban…
  • ahightowerahightower DFWPosts: 460
    I think it's a shame they quit making the Excursion. I havea Yukon XL because it was less expensive and plenty capable for my needs, but there are people who need the Excursion. And I believe the interior is a bit roomier too. Sometimes I wish I had one for that fact, but what we have is plenty for the kids at this young age.

    I have heard that the replacement for the Excursion will be out next year. It is basically going to be a long wheelbase Expedition, i.e., light duty versus medium duty frame. It supposed to carry the "super duty" stying features though. It will probably be more comfortable but less capable, like the Suburban. Although they do make a medium-duty Suburban 2500. If they would put a diesel in there, you would have your next vehicle.
  • Let me tell you about myself. I’m single and enjoy seeing the country and often drive cross-country—about every other year. I typically spend as much as two months away from home when I do repair work on two properties I own. I need to carry a lot of tools, often more than 1000 pounds of tools and gear, and I sleep in my truck.

    I drove a 1983 Chevy K5 Blazer with a 6.2 liter diesel engine for 15 years. I replace the stock fuel tank with a 37-gallon replacement tank and two 10-gallon auxilary tanks for 57 gallons total. It gives me great range and it was a huge help on long trips when diesel is sometimes hard to find. I put bigger springs on the front of the truck, and kept the stock double shock setup up front and stock rear shocks, which I found, gave the best ride. With 32 inch all terrain tires, and all that weight of diesel engine in front and fuel tanks in the back, my truck would outperform anything in the snow. I could safely drive in conditions where other four-wheel drive trucks needed chains on all four tires.

    At 265,000 miles, while the body and paint were perfect, the seats were shot, and the front axles probably needed to be replaced, and the second engine was tired and using coolant. Rather than put a pair of ¾ Suburban axles on it I decided to sell it and buy a new truck.

    I removed the rear seat most of the time I owned it. Instead I kept a futon in the back and would sleep in it when traveling.

    I waited and waited for Chevrolet to come out with a good diesel motor--they did! And I’m still waiting to see a modern Duramax Suburban. Finally I bought a 1-ton Chevy Silverado K3500 Dually, brand new in 2001. It is an extended cab and has the Duramax engine with Allison transmission—which I feel is a fabulous power train. I will probably get a camper back for it at some point. It is a little big for the use I put it to. It has a 53 gallon replacement tank that gives me over 750 miles to a tank. I lose a little fuel economy to the dually tires and heavier drive train, but feel more comfortable driving it on the highway--especially out west where freeway speeds are much faster.

    I like beefy one-ton suspension. That means bigger brakes, heavier duty springs, axles, etc. If you are a guy like me who drives trucks into the ground, then you can appreciate this sort of vehicle. I’ll sacrifice ride for longevity, but I do wish for better fuel economy.

    Here is what would I really like to see on the marketplace--a diesel Tahoe and a diesel Suburban. In either case I’d want a ¾ ton or 1-ton driveline with a Duramax/Allison or else a Duramax/6-speed-manual.

    Come on Chevrolet, you idiots deserve to lose market share because you are lost in space—everyone wants one of these—BUILD IT!

    Size is fabulous, but fuel economy is more important. A diesel Tahoe with a ¾ ton suspension would make a good daily driver and also a capable plow, tow vehicle, or RV, and get good fuel economy.

    Put a Duramax in a Tahoe and see 20 mpg! Put a 6 speed manual transmission on the back of it and get 22 mpg if you are easy on the throttle. In stop-and-go traffic my fuel economy does not suffer at all. I get 15 mpg, and nearly 17 on the freeway at 70 mph-—the Duramax makes any truck into a great commuter car. Towing you will lose fuel economy, because fuel economy is a function of weight, but it will not lose much compared with a gas-guzzler burning 7 miles to the gallon.

    I like to travel and I like to drive until I can’t drive any more when driving cross-country. I appreciate passing fueling stops—driving range needs to be great because diesel is not always easy to find. I’d put the biggest fuel tank I could fit on it. With 50 gallons you’d have a range of 1000 miles. I’d want 75 gallons for a 1500-mile range. Imagine driving off road—you could sustain yourself for a long time. Imagine driving down the Baja Peninsula where fuel is sometimes hard to find and being able to drive right by their sleazy looking service stations.

    I appreciate size. I sometimes pull a 5000-pound trailer. Mostly, I like interior space that I use for living space when traveling. I’d fold down the rear seats and leave them down. I'd make a midget RV out of it. I don’t care about the third row seat, or even the second row. My choice would be to keep the second row folded down and toss the third row seat right out. I’d consider putting an Espar diesel heater in it also now that I live in a colder climate again.

    When I drive cross-country I like to sleep in the back and carry a DC powered icebox full of food. A nimble vehicle like a Tahoe or Suburban can handle logging roads, deep snow.

    A diesel Suburban or Tahoe is a versatile vehicle. Who is screwing up at GM? I'd like to know?

    Now if you put a gas engine in a Suburban, you have the biggest gas hog around, that suddenly becomes impractical for high mileage use. SUV stands for Suddenly Useless Vehicle.

    Wake up Chevrolet and do something, or else I’ll have to build one myself!
  • I'd like more details on your project. I might want to build one.

    Please email me at:

    I can't seem to pull up your email address off the forum.
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    The big prob that everyone is ignoring is the cost of a DMax powered Burb. MSRP would be >$55K for a well equipped version. The 8.1L gasser provides excellent power, (about 450 ft. lbs) for less than $1000 over the base 6.0L price ine the 2500 series burb.
    This doesn't even address the design cost probs GM would incur. The Allison tranny will not fit in the tunnel space in a burb. GM would have to use the HD series truck frame to make room.
    Don't get your hopes up on seeing DMax Burb's with the 07 redesign. I am sure GM will bank on offering up a hybrid version by 08 or 09. That coupled with DOD should yield very respectable MPG numbers and performance.
  • I have been having the same problem. Have you been able to get rid of the exhuast smell?
  • ahightowerahightower DFWPosts: 460
    There is finally some info out on the new Expedition and Expedition EL (long wheelbase, Suburban/Yukon XL competitor). It looks goood. Roughly equal size, power, and towing capacity, IRS with flat folding third row (seems to be the main gripe about the 2007 GMs), probably still has a really nice interior. Can't wait to see some test drives and comparison tests!
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971
    There are some links and pics in the Straightline Blog.

    Steve, Host

    Need help navigating? - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • Well GM did it again, Contradicted themselves. They have said that they cant put the duramax in a suburban cause they have to run the allison, and it doesnt fit. Well you can buy a brand new cargo van with a 6.6 duramax and on the back of that d-max is a 4l80e, the same transmission as the 3/4 subs they currently make. Yes the dmax is a detuned 6.6 (250 hp) but it fits in the vans, why cant they wake up and stuff one in a sub???? a 250 hp dmax is better than a 6.0 gas hog. It is my own investigation that MOST diesel subs of the earlyer body style were nothing more than highway crusers. Yes some pulled things, but most did most of there driving on with nothign behind them, untill they were sold by there first owner to someone who either charished that vehicle, or bought it to use it. Usually the second or third owner is the one who pulled the crap out of them. Yes the 4l80e isnt as tough as the allison, but if most of them wont pull more than a boat, or a camper more than 5% of the time that 80e will work just fine! From somone who has build a dmax-allison suburban, it woudl have been alot less screwing around if i could have skipped the lift kit and just put in a 4l80e. If i build another one it more than likely will have the 80E instead of screwing around with the allison. Come On GM.... Just Build one already! while your at it build a H1 wiht a dmax too, What the heck how about a rear drive car again!!! sure with the diesel in that too. "humm, maybe i should make one and take it to the drag strip......"
  • kevins3kevins3 Posts: 10
    I bought my Excursion because chevy was too small and after My wife was almost killed in a windstar!! To elaberate the left side of the windstar opened up like a sardine can. Wanted her safe not to be a target!
  • ahightowerahightower DFWPosts: 460
    Did you get a great deal? I still see a few remaining Excursions on the lots around here. All that's left are Limited turbodiesels, which would be great. I'm not in the market right now, otherwise I'd be all over these last of what I consider a very good vehicle.
  • kevins3kevins3 Posts: 10
    I paid cash and think I got a good deal after they gave me clear coat,winter floor matts and molded mud flaps it was 45,000 out the door
  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,020
    A national newspaper is looking to interview consumers who just purchased or are looking to purchase a large SUV. Please send an e-mail to no later than Wednesday May 10, 2006 by 5:00 PM PST/8:00 PM EST containing your daytime contact information and the vehicle you are interested in purchasing or just purchased (please provide approx. date of purchase).

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  • sfaradaysfaraday Posts: 5
    I am in the market for a 2003-2006 used large 3/4 ton SUV. We presently have a 94 Suburban 1500 which has been oustanding for my wife, 5 kids, dog, 3 cats, 2 Kayaks, canoe, camping gear, hockey gear, soccer gear, baseball gear,towing a travel trailer and me. But We are now having to move into a larger 32 foot Trailer. We hate to give up our suburban which we have had for 11 years choice.. We will only be pulling the trailer 3 or 4 times a year but I am told we will need more pull power to comply with the law and to do the job properly.

    Any suggestions? what should I buy

    Yukon XL 2500
    Suburban 2500
    oe Excursion Diesel?
  • oniscusoniscus Posts: 10
    Excursion diesel with be a good fit for your needs. Own a 2007 burb 1500 ltz :shades: myself.
  • tjr2tjr2 Posts: 1
    I own a 2003 Excursion, 6L Diesel, leather trim, DVD and so on. 4 Kids, wife and sporting events galore. Interestingly enough, I am looking to trade it in the next few weeks. Let me know if you or anyone is interested.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971
    There's a Sell Your Car link on the home page you should check out. We just stick to car talk in the discussions and let the ads live elsewhere.

    Steve, Host

    Need help navigating? - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

This discussion has been closed.