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Ford Expedition

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  • mfullmermfullmer Posts: 819
    GM, after two weeks of negotiations, decided not to let me end my lease early on the Bravada. I think they baled because I had originally told them I would buy a Yukon but a couple of weeks later, while I was at the dealership for one my many trips, I was talking to the service advisor about the Expy. Who knows. So now I'm trying to transfer my lease and I'm hoping to soon. I can't handle another 16 months with the POS that the Bravada has turned out to be.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    I am sure you meant Promises Over Substance! :-)

    tidester, host
  • mfullmermfullmer Posts: 819
    Ok, so I finally drove the Expedition on Saturday. I was very impressed with ride but now I have the following questions/remarks:

    1. I'm not sure whether to get the bench middle seat or Captain Chairs. I'm not sure I like the "minivan" look of the Captains Chairs. I also wonder about the hole left by the middle seat when all the seats are down. On the pro side: I cannot believe they didn't put an armrest in the middle seat and I really don't need to haul more than 7 people.

    2. I don't understand why Ford doesn't link the Memory seats to the radio/HVAC settings (ala: GM). Also, the "exit" function only moves the seat back (and not down). I keep the seat all the way up when I drive and I found myself hitting my knee on the steering wheel when getting out since it doesn't move the seat down. Plus I have to "jump" into the seat when I get in.

    3. I really HATE the japanese style steering wheel tilt lever. I can see myself never messing with it (which results in hitting my knees on it like I said in number 2).

    4. Love the power fold rear seats. And the room back there!!!!

    5. The leather seats are AWEFUL. I'm not sure they don't use a top-grade vinyl and just say it's leather.

    Ok, so this is the first Ford I've ever looked at seriously. I know I shouldn't compare it to GM but thats all I know. It's sad to see Ford takes so long to copy the technology of the others. (Remember how Ford didn't even have an AUTOMATIC power antenna until 1988!!!!! That's ridiculous!)
  • jrc346jrc346 Posts: 337
    I know exactly what you are saying on some of these things. The leather is rough and firm but is actually of higher quality than the previous Expedition. It just has all sorts of stuff in it to keep it from cracking and staining. Where as GM's leather is in most cars very soft to the touch. However 4 years down the road people in my family have had it crack and wear through on the seats edge. Like my 1999 Expedition. It has the soft leather in it and its even starting to wear on the edge (side closest to the door) because of the stresses of entry and exit.
    I totally agree with you on the Japanese steering wheel adjuster too. I can't stand those and much prefer the spring operated lever.
    I have owned Ford's for some time now so I'm not up to date with GM's technology. I was surprised to hear that they have memory for the radio and HVAC. THATS COOL! I guess its not the memory for the HVAC that I'm crazy about with the changing seasons/temps here in Michigan. However memory radio would be terrific! For now my wife just uses FM1 and I use FM2. It works but there are still more stations that I would like to have on memory.
    I guess the next step for you is to decide if these gripes you have are things that you can live with or not. Not that I'm trying to talk you into or out of an Expedition (I like them alot), But maybe the Yukon or Tahoe is a better choice? They do have soft leather seats, the spring loaded steering wheel adjustment and probably have those memory settings that you mentioned. Anyway keep us all updated and have a wonderful holiday!
  • mfullmer wrote, "It's sad to see Ford takes so long to copy the technology of the others."

    If I may, I'd like to add some factual data here. For example, while Ford started putting fuel injection on their cars generally in 83, and had the entire fleet of engines converted to Multi-port FI by 1987, GM continued to build some cars with throttle body FI until 2 years ago. Not all of them, but some engines were never converted until they were replaced by new engines. In fact, the 1990 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham I had still had a carburetor on top of a Chevy 350 motor! I started spotting coil on plug technology in Ford engines in 1998. GM just began using it last year on some engines. Yes, Cadillac had the famous V-8-6-4 failure in 1980, technology, but it didn't work. The 4.1 aluminum Cadillac engine was a fully modern design, but failed usually by about 40,000 miles in everything they used it in. I lost 3 of them.

    Now, I'll agree with you, that the Ford trucks, including the Navigator I have is missing some stuff I would like to have - the memory profile is one. The Continental has had that since 95, tying the mirrors, seat position HVAC controls and radio preferences to the driver. But the trucks don't get it. They should. Also, reclining seatbacks should be power, not manual. I too hate the new tilt wheel. I see the Volvo has them too. But comparing apples to apples, the Cadillac Escalade, Johnny come lately that it was, didn't even get electronic climate control until 2002, and still has the Chevy dash and stereo controls.
    The EB Expedition and Navigator had Electronic Climate since 1998, as did the EB Explorer and Mountaineer in the upscale version. The new Explorer and Expedition have independent rear suspension, allowing those "power" back seats to fall flat into the floor. NOBODY has that technology other than Ford yet. They have the keypad on the door, and if you've ever wanted to leave the car running while you ran into the house, it's great. The IRS eliminates all of the pitch and yaw the old versions, and all of the GM versions have and contributes greatly to handling.

    GM is still putting out pushrod engines and calling them groundbreaking, while Ford is introducing an ever growing fleet of overhead cam engines in the 3 and 4 valve per cylinder iterations. Even the small 6 cylinder engine in the Explorer is of OHC design. The engine in the Town Car, Crown vic and Grand Marquis has been of OHC design since 1993. Not that GM still makes that platform, but their competition, if you can call it that, is the Impala, with the pushrod V-6 updated from about 1975 when Buick brought it out. It's a good engine, I still have one, but it's not a technological marvel even today.

    So I have some complaints with Ford too, but on the technology front, I have not seen GM taking the lead since about 1986, which is why I'm in Ford stuff now. As for the power antenna, I for one was disappointed when Ford "cheaped out" and eliminated the separate button to raise and lower the power antenna. It took away my choice to leave it up when I turned the car off, and wore out the motor.
  • jrc346jrc346 Posts: 337
    Navigator3740-You make some very good points. I was thinking of doing exactly what you did listing the Expeditions many assets. The reason I didn't was because I figured that Mfullmer had already known about those features and just had concerns with the ones that he posted. I also agree that Ford has more "high tech" engines than GM, but I am disappointed that their (GM's) motors always feel more torquey. The 5.4L 260 HP V8 in my Expedition defiantly doesn't feel that big. I know it pushes alot of weight and its AWD but my friends 2000 Yukon XL kills my Expy off the line. I guess there are trade offs. GM is having problems with piston slap and such. Where Fords 5.4L V8 during 1999 and 2000 have head gasket leaking (oil) problems but is otherwise an excellent engine. It just seems that all car companies have some edge somewhere.

    Mfullmer- What I'm doing when I say look at the Yukon or Tahoe is just pointing out two other capitable vehicles. This is coming from a Ford guy too;-) I know that you are fed up with GM so maybe this (going Ford) is a good change. However this is Expeditions first year. Ford did alot to make sure that there wont be any problems but things do show up on first year vehicles. So far there has only been 1 major problem on the 4x4 Expeditions and there is a fix for that. So I guess I'm just trying to caution. The Ford Expedition is a terrific new SUV and has ALOT to offer, but since it is a first year vehicle it may not be totally free from recalls and defects (something that I think you are trying to get away from). If I was in the market for a new SUV now I would get the Expedition because (1)I am a Ford guy and (2) because my past experiences with Ford first year vehicles has been relatively positive.

    I became a Ford guy in 1986 after GM gave me a Lemon Cutlas Ciera. I know its not much of a car to begin with but its how they handled the problem that made me switch car companies.
  • mardynmardyn Posts: 12
    Hello all, I'm pretty serious on getting a new '03 Expedition later this week... have a coupla' questions. Any answers would be appreciated...

    With a 5.4L 2wd & 3.73 rear gear, what kinda' fuel milage can one realistcally expect? City? Highway @ 70 mph? Any thoughts?

    Also, I don't really like the massive center console that runs all the way to the dash. I'd much prefer the floor area between the driver & passeger areas to be open. I wonder if there is carpet under the console?

    btw, price here in DFW area is apprximately $32,906.00 drive out (no DVD, but has power fold rear seat)

    Anything else I', missing here? Again, any imputs would be appreciated.

    Thanks
    David Berry
  • JRC: I'm facinated that you get beat. I have raced my partner in his same year Tahoe, and cream him every time. Maybe I'm lucky? I'll admit I like how the GMs drive, but I can't get past what I consider to be archaic technology I find on the OVERDRIVE models....


    Mr. Berry, you're going to get horrible mileage, ok? If you're buying for mileage, you're looking at the wrong vehicle. Realistically, you're going to get 13 city, 16 HWY in an Expedition, no matter what you do. And I can't believe you want the console out. Where would you put your "stuff"? On the seat? Exactly the reason I LIKE the big SUVs...... Whatever.

  • I rented an 03 Expedition from Hertz in Phoenix last Thursday, and took it to Glendale and back. There were 3 to 6 passengers throughout the day for those of you who cringe because I'm wasting resources, but that's another board.


    I think the new version Expedition drives nicer than my current Navigator. I'm really impressed with how well it holds a lane, and the old pitch & yaw from the live axle is now gone. I'm not in love with the dash appearance, and I hate that tilt wheel, but from a performance perspective, this truck felt like solid gold. No rattles, squeaks or air noise, everything worked perfectly, and the power was great. I'm very impressed. Usually on a rental, you can find a problem. Not on this one. I did note it was averaging 13 MPG, which is no surprise at all.

  • jrc346jrc346 Posts: 337
    Thanks for your encouraging words on the new Expedition. This vehicle sounds more and more like my next vehicle, though probably in a year or so. I think I may have to test drive one myself ;-) In what year did the Navigators get 300 HP? If your Navigator has 260 like mine then maybe I just dont know how to drag (lol who thought anyone would be racing SUV's? Haha).
    On plus side I do get 2 more MPG than my buddy with his Yukon XL.
  • The Nav got 300hp mid year 1999. Mine however, was a very early 99, and has the 260hp engine, which has never left me wanting for power BTW. Even towing old Chevy's back from California on trailers, it goes up Baker grade (a local radiator buster) without even breaking a sweat, or dropping speed. And it will dust my partner's 99 Tahoe-it's not even a close race. What do you know about head gasket problems? I have 64,000 trouble free miles on mine. Haven't heard about this.
  • mardynmardyn Posts: 12
    Regarding my question about milage on the '03 Expedition: I know the thing gets horrible milage, 15-16 on the highway is awful. My '00 F250SD w/PSD avarages 17.7 in town, but it's time to trade to take advantage of tax (depeciation) write offs for my business. I'd really like a diesel in the Expedition but understand that's still about a year out or so ('04?).

    Also, on the console deal, I lke the main part of the console between the seats, just dont like the extension up to the dash. I'm thinking about getting a regualar truck style console, which is plenty good to hold all my junk.

    Anyway, stopped by another dealer this morning and they've offered another $1000.00 bucks for my trade... price difference is now at $10815.00 drive out. That's a pretty good deal I beleive.
    ('03 Expedition, Eddie Bauer. 5.4L, power rear seat, but no DVD). Any thoughts?

    Thanks
    David Berry
  • jrc346jrc346 Posts: 337
    I guess that there was a problem at one of the 5.4L V8 factories. Where one corner of the head wouldn't get machined completely leaving a little bump in that corner. So when the head was installed onto the block the head wouldn't be down flat on the block. The head gasket normally wouldn't blow (coolant and oil) but would just leak alot of oil and people were complaining of a strong oil smell inside the car. Ford is doing free replacments on all engines with this issue. It effects mostly 1999 engines and some 2000's. However it doesn't effect ALL 5.4's. In fact I dont think that this is a large problem. I too have been fortunate. 72,000 trouble free miles:-) I love this beast!
  • mfullmermfullmer Posts: 819
    First, let me say, that since I "discovered" the Expedition I haven't even looked back at the Tahoe/Yukon. My main reason for moving from a mid-size to a full-size is the rear seat but I didn't want to have to take the seats out when I didn't need them.

    Regarding the engine stuff. I'm not into the technical stuff although I do remember (as my parents have owned car dealerships since the mid 70's) that those early to mid 80's Fords were nothing to brag about. This was period when many dealers wouldn't even consider a "For Sale" trade opting instead to just wholesale every Ford they took in. Remember the old acronym for F-O-R-D???

    And just to be technical. The Explorer has had the option of Electronic Climate Control since it was redesigned for the '95 model year.

    But that has all changed now. They are leading the pack with quality (mechanical) and I just don't understand why they are not using the full extent of the technology available.

    Although it's not a point I would reject the Expedition for, having the memory linked to the HVAC and Stereo is a big deal to me. My Partner hates the automatic control of the HVAC and likes to always adjust the fan and temp. I, on the other hand, leave it on auto and 69 or 70 at all times.

    Because these are small things I'm definitely NOT discounting the Expedition. It just seems like Ford, while they have come a long way, still lags in some areas.

    Regarding the issue of the suspension changes. I'm glad they did it for the Expedition but I really think the blame comes from the Marketing people. Until just recently the Full-Size Sport Utes were being designed and marketed to Full-Size truck owners. They are just now realizing that their real customers are just as much Large Sedan/Minivan owners who don't really want a "trucky" feel.
  • bytrebytre Posts: 2
    I saw a switch for this in a 4x2 eb I test drove today and asked about it - the dealer was clueless. I also see it as an option on some option pricing lists, and it appears to be mutually exclusive with the Advancetrac system.

    I cannot seem to find much solid technical data on it though, only a brief description that it levels things out when heavily loaded. I need a little more info to make an informed decision if this is a feature I want instead of advancetrac, or if my information is bogus.

    Any help would be appreciated. We want to buy before the end of the year.
  • bbmdbbmd Posts: 4
    I was disappointed that Ford still offered the same two engines despite the other improvements in the '03 Expeditions. Does anyone know of any plans to offer a new engine with better towing capacity in 2004 or beyond editions of the vehicle?
  • 5.4l 3v with 300hp arriving in 2004. New trans and slight improvement in mpg.
  • Not so sure on the 2003s, but prior to that, your 4x2 came with rear loan leveling, which is an air spring now very common with several Ford products. The one you tested evidently had air springs on all 4 corners, an option, no doubt. The 4x4 Eddie Bauer came that way, I think. XLT had it as an option.


    On older Lincolns, the Air Springs were programmed to fail at about 6 years, and were expensive to replace. I've not seen that failure rate on the trucks yet, but they're just getting to that 6 year mark. We'll see.

  • will probably show up in CY03 as an 04 model. Reports from Blue Oval News indicate at least one 04 F150 has already been built with the 3V engine. Ford has increased engine output before at mid year, the 99 Navigator was one example as stated in a post above. With GM ready to go up to 350 hp in the upcoming Tahoe/Yukons/Burbs Ford must move soon.
  • Does anyone have the new Navagation system, and what do they think of it? I am looking at a new '03 EB, and would like to get the Navigation, but to tell the truth, it looks a little cheesy. I have seen much better looking systems on other vehicles. I only saw it for a few minutes, and the sales guy did not really know anything about it. Any experience out there with it?

    Thanks.
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