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Ford Expedition



  • bodymanbodyman Posts: 23
    We get very little near the coast, some winters we don't get any. When we do, it is rarely more than 4"-5". That's why I did not get 4WD.
    I am more concerned with the back end breaking loose in curves. I realize each vehicle has it's limits, and traction is also relative to tire design.
    This my first SUV, and I just wondered if 2WD sucked on snowy or icy roads.
  • I've never driven the 2WD so I can't comment on that - I'd just call in sick and snooze on the couch on the snowy days! It probably acts an awful lot like a pickup - real light in the back. It isn't something a few tubes of sand can't fix though. I used to put sand in my Wrangler even though it was 4WD. It really made it sit down into the mush nicely.
  • tonyd39tonyd39 Posts: 12
    Three 2003 XLT 4x4 Questions:

    A.) I'm considering the purchase of a new 2003 XLT that looks to have been manufactured in the July/August 2002 time frame. Does anyone know if any changes have been made to XLT models that are more recently made (i.e. December 2002 or January 2003). Or are/were there any problems with the initial 03's manufactured during the Summer of 2002?

    B.) The XLT i'm looking at is a 4x4 with the 5.4 engine. It has the AdvanceTrack option, and side curtains with the rollover sensors. What does everyone think about these two options? Are they worth it? What is the advantage to using AdvanceTrack if you have auto 4x4? Does AdvanceTrack effect gas mileage.

    (C.) Lastly anyone know of any safety issues with the side curtain airbags with young kids sitting in the 2nd row seats?

  • I bought a 2003 that was made in July too! I know that they have deleted the underhood light, 3 of the side scuff plates, spare is a steel wheel instead of the aluminum one. These changes happened at the end of 2002. Saw these changes at (search for Expedition).

    I have the side curtain airbags and know that in the sales brochure it has a picture of them. It looks like airbags are curtains and come down and protect the side glass areas. They don't fire into the passengers space like you would at first think an airbag would do. They stay inflated up to 6 seconds. I have an infant and have zero concerns about this!

    I didn't want Advance Trak because you get open differenials instead of the standard limited slip ones. Also it is expensive and is something else that could go wrong, especially since that technology on the Expy is so new. No gas milage differences.
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    I will add one comment on the AdvanceTrac.

    I have an 03 Expy with that feature. We have not had any serious snow storms here in Minneapolis yet, but we have had snow. I have taken the vehicle out to a parking lot to play with the AdvanceTrac feature and I think it is pretty damn sweet. It won't overcome the laws of physics but I had a heck of a time getting the vehicle to break loose during turns and evasive maneuvers. I am very happy we got it.

    I don't do a lot of off-roading so I don't miss the LSD. The open differential with the Advance Trac has an electronic traction control feature to it that basically serves the same function as the LSD. Read the following link:

    If you don't live in a snowy area I'm not sure AdvanceTrac would have as many benefits. It would still help in dry conditions but you would really have to be in a world of hurt for it to kick in, IMHO.
  • davantdavant Posts: 294

    I see you did the dual post thing, I addressed pricing in the other one. The side airbags have no proven utility but peace of mind. The feds haven't tested them but we all agree you'll be glad you have them when called upon. In theory the bags sound great but all passengers in our vehicle will be belted in at all times. The 2/3 coverage they provide the second row will probably protect them from some glass, lose objects, and pad flailing limbs. Those seated in the third row get a great view of side, passenger, and drivers airbags inflating (depending on direction & speed or impact) but no airbag (unless mother-in-law is seated there). The other more interesting features to me are the pre-tensioners that suck up seatbelt slack, and the staggered airbag deployment force based on seat postion, weight, etc.
  • I am currently looking at purchasing a 03 EB 4x2 5.4L with power 3rd seat, 2nd row captain chairs, and a sunroof. I was wondering what would be a good deal on this vehicle OTD? Any other options (Advancetrac, etc) do people find they really like or wish they would have gotten after owning for a while. Looks like invoice in my region (NE FL) is $36K according to Edmunds.

    I have been reading about the problems with the new model and wonder if anyone has positive or negative feedback about buying the vehicle due to these specific problems(mirrors, seats, whining, etc.).

    Finally, I am also looking at the Sequoia. The biggest difference to me I guess is the price for the Toyota but they last and have good resale values. I have almost ruled out the Tahoe due to the 3rd seat configuration and archaic looking dash. It does have a lot of bells and whistles but that is about it and most I can deal without I think.

    All comments and feedback is appreciated. I want to make an informed decision when I buy. Right now, I really like the Exp and especially the price I think I should be able to get it for opposed to my other favorite(Sequoia).

    Anybody know if Ford will up the rebate and/or continue with the dealer incentive($500 ends 1-31)? I found out Tahoe's rebate is going to $2500 from $2k on Feb. 1st.

  • Could someone tell me exactly what all an out-the-door price should include and specifically if it includes taxes when it is talked about?
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    You are in the same situation I was this past fall. I really liked both the Sequoia and the Expedition. I was looking at a 4x4 LTD Sequoia and a 4x4 Eddie Bauer Expedition. I picked the Expedition and here is why:

    1) I bought the Expy for $100 over invoice with an additional $1K rebate. The Sequoia would have cost me somewhere between $3K and $4K more for a comparable vehicle.

    2) With my insurance company, which I've had for 22 years (and I'm only 38), the Sequoia was $500 more per year to insure. I don't think most companies penalize you that much for the Sequoia but mine does. I wasn't about to switch agents just for a vehicle. He provides great customer service and I have never had an issue with a claim. This was probably the single biggest factor in my decision. I am certain the Sequoia will hold its value better, but the $3K+ difference in purchase price added to the additional $3500 over 7 years it would have cost to insure was just too much of a bump for me.

    3) Like I alluded to above, I am a buy 'em and hold 'em type. If I got rid of the vehicle after two years I think the Toyota would have been a better buy, but in the long term (7 years or so)I think the depreciation will be less of a factor. I'm sure the Toyota will still be worth more, but I think there will be less of a gap.

    4) I figure I can buy a Ford extended warranty for less that $2K if I decide I might need it. I can have bumper to bumper coverage for 100K miles, which is better than the Toyota factory warranty.

    5) We actually did like the Expy almost as much as the Toyota. I think it has better features, like the power third row. The reliability was the only potential downside.

    6) Our Expy has had less than stellar reliability so far. There are some owners who haven't been back to the dealer yet, but I am not one of them. I've had a couple of rattles, the front end growl, the mirror issue, and now my rear differential is leaking. I don't think the mirrors on the Sequoia tilt down, so I could always disable the feature on the Expy, but I do like it so we leave it on. It will be at the dealer today as a matter of fact for the differential.

    7) We owned a 95 Explorer before the Expy. It had quite a few issues during the 3/36 warranty. It was in the shop probably 6-10 times. Nothing major that left us stranded, but more than enough to be a hassle. However, we got all of the bugs worked out during that period and other than routine maintenance, the only money I put into it was a new thermostat. It was 7.5 years old and had 85K miles.

    8) I do have the AdvanceTrac and love it so far. One big concern I had with the Sequoia was the over active traction control or stability control system where some people were left stranded in an intersection with no power due to the hyper sensitive system. That sounds truly spooky.

    9) One final note. Everyone's mileage seems to vary. Every vehicle is different. My friend who owns a 4x4 Sequoia claims to get 16 mpg in combined driving. That seems pretty good compared to the average. Our Expy only gets about 12-13 mpg which sounds slightly lower than the average Expy. I didn't buy the vehicle for the mileage, but I do think that it is the single most disappointing aspect of the vehicle. I was hoping to squeak out at least 14 mpg.

    Hopefully my ramblings help a little bit.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Powertrip, to me, out the door pricing means the price it takes for me to "legally" drive off the dealer lot.

    That means the sales price, taxes and all licensing fees have been paid so all I have left to do is wait for my plates to arrive in the mail and notify my insurance carrier that I've gotten a different/additional car.

    Anyone think of any other gotchas? Rebates in the mail?

    Steve, Host
  • wkohlerwkohler Posts: 74
    First, Steve's right; OTD should cover everything to drive off the lot. Rebates normally go to the dealer unless other arrangements have been made between the dealer and the buyer.
    Second, I must have an early Eddie Bauer Expedition as I've noticed I have all the "extra" stuff; i.e.; light under the hood, scuff plates, center A/C vent, trailer hitch plug, etc. So far (1800 miles), the vehicle has not been a problem; no issue with leaks, mirrors, funny noises, etc.
    Third: I'd like to say that after 5 suburbans, this is my first Ford experience. Why did I but a Ford? Just wanted something different for a change I guess. I do find some things that I just need to get used to: You can't "mix" the ceiling and floor outlets for the rear HVAC system on the Ford, I prefer the outside air temp (OAT) and compass readouts in the rear view mirror, there is no "neutral" position for the 4X4 system; and,you have to manually turn off the 4 wheel drive system when turning off the vehicle. I'm used to the suburban "resetting" to 2 wheel drive when the ignition is turned off. The turn signal, wiper, high beam stalk is managed differently on the Ford.
    Please don't take these as dislikes or Ford bashing. I do like the Expedition, but just need to become more familiar with Ford's interpetation of system controls.
    Bottom line? So far a great vehicle! Hope the "honeymoon" continues.
  • tonyd39tonyd39 Posts: 12
    OK ... now my dealer has a demo XLT 4x4 Premium with 5k miles with the 4.6L engine, leather, moonroof, 6-CD, reverse sensor, safety canopy, and DVD. They are offering this at a cost of approx $ 1,100 below invoice. The questions now are (a) is the demo pricing fair, and (b) is the XLT premium with the features above a better vehicle then the XLT 4x4 Popular with 5.4L, AdvanceTrac, Captains cloth, safety canopy, and 6-CD. I do not do a lot of hauling as the XLT will be used by the wife. Is the 5.4L and the AdvandTrack worth passing up to get the demo XLT premium with the leather, moonroof, and DVD, reverse sensor, canopy, etc?
  • davantdavant Posts: 294

    Demo price seems fair, see the other board for more on driving/choice/price. I like the leather but not the little engine that could. There's really no 'better' to it, they're both mighty-fine SUV's. Drive them both, not only with the sales person but on your own for an hour or so. Run an errand, drive like you do everyday. If you don't mind the demo and can live with the revier 4.6 go for it. 75% of folks get the 5.4, mileage is only 1 MPG diff and $700. Pssst, EB is sweet...
  • davantdavant Posts: 294
    As Steve said, OTD is just that, everything to get the keys and wave bye-bye without blue lights behind you. You'll have to pay $740 destination fee but that's in the sticker. I think all dealers charge 'administrative fees' for every vehicle sold that range from about $150-500 (pre-printed on the Purchase Order). I've found over the last 5 cars or so that they're generally unavoidable so don't ask they be, "thrown in to seal the deal". The only other 'gotchas' I know of are the paint & fabric protection that's usually pushed at point of sale, it's bad juju. I wasn't offered an extended warranty (probably would have bought the 6yr/100K mile Ford ESP if I was) but typically one is offered. If it isn't Ford it's a big profit item and may or may not be a good company, do homework ahead of time. Beware of the finance officer genie, he/she claims to grant your wish but has mystical powers. In other words, know your financing options or go through your own institution or you could be putting a percent or more back in the dealers wallet if you 'renegotiate' terms with that, "I can't believe I just bought it" gleam in your eye.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Sometimes your salesperson doesn't quite understand the meaning of an "out the door" price!

    New Car Buyer Proves The Importance Of Getting It In Writing (WABC NY)

    Steve, Host
  • davantdavant Posts: 294
    The link in 1066 describes illegal action on the part of the dealership. The customer had a signed contract legally binding for a certain price. Although you sign a statement to reconcile errors it may or may not include a gross price adjustment. Legally the dealer, or any vendor, can't charge your credit card without consent, that part isn't up to a judge.
    Just trying to help and not scare the crap out of everyone who drives away happy. Writing does matter...
  • On a similar note as the postings about a written contract, my suggestion is when shopping for a car--bring a calculator!!

    I shopped on-line last summer looking for a 2002 Expy. with the features I wanted. I found a few locally. I first tried Thomas Ford in Beverly, Mass. What a joke. First, the truck's running board was damaged--like it'd scraped driving it too close to the door pulling it into or out of the showroom. When I pointed that out, the salesman didn't even acknowledge the damage was there. Didn't want to even hear it!!! As for the price: they'd come down on the 42K sticker to somewhere around 35K. I was interested (pending fixing the damage). Interested, that is UNTIL he kept giving me monthly payment quotes (with the promoted 0.0% financing) that would EQUAL the 42K sticker. It was like they thought I was so stupid I couldn't do basic math. When I brought attention to the fact the monthly payments equaled exactly the 42 sticker price, "That's the best we can do."

    I walked out. (Fortunately, as a radio DJ, I enjoyed bashing them the next few shifts I had!)

    In any event, before signing the contract, double-check their figures and math.

    (Side note: I closed a deal on a Expt at Rodman Ford in Foxboro, Mass. and it was much easier to deal with them than Thomas)
  • I own a 4x2 with the limited slip rear end. It's lousy in snow, on ice and even when the pavement is simply damp. I am sure quite a bit of this is due to the rear wheel drive and my being used to front wheel drive vehicles, although I've now owned my Expy for nearly 2 years.

    I would say this, had I known it was going to behave so poorly I would have opted for the 4x4. Adding 200 pounds of weight in the rear end helps a little. See my post 688 from March 02.
  • I just discovered this board and found this note. We are close to filing lemon law on our 2003 EB due to the climate controlled seats. The heat has not worked correctly since we got it, going from burning hot to shutting itself off and not coming back on unless you shut the car off. The dealership had the car 4 times now since Sept and replaced everything on the seats. The dealer told me the engineer has told him of 113 similar cases so far.
    So Caroline913, if it helps, there are others experiencing the problem.
  • delta8delta8 Posts: 1
    We just bought an 03 EB in Dec. and the DVD will not load up. We took it back to the dealer who removed it and is sending it in for repair. Has anyone else had problems with their system? Also, I thought the system was supposed to come with wireless headphones, but the dealer said the wireless headphones aren't being produced until later in the year. Does anyone know if and when wireless headphones will be available?
  • clpurnellclpurnell Posts: 1,087
    last year (before thanksgiving) I got a quote on an expy eb 4x2 5.4l With roof and DVD. Sticker was 41k+ There offer was 33160. I would say a good deal would be invoice - rebates here in texas that is 2k so 34k with no more than 36.5k otd seeing as taxes are 6.25% here
  • mlm4mlm4 Posts: 401
    A few weeks ago I rented a 4x4 '03 Expedition XLT with about 2500 miles on it from Hertz. I actually reserved an Explorer, thinking it would be nice to have 4WD in Boston in January, if needed. When I arrived at my #1 Club Gold space I found an Expy there. My first thought was, "I don't know if I want such a huge vehicle for driving the streets of Boston." But having already driven an Explorer I thought I would give the Expy a try, partially because I was also planning to drive to Cape Cod and Maine over a three-day period.

    Overall, over the 500-plus miles of driving I really liked the new Expedition. I neglected to check which motor it had, but I think it was the 5.4 (since I hear the 4.6 is wimpy). It was comfortable, quiet and smooth and was easy to handle despite it's size. Although the track is only about an inch wider than my '99 Tahoe, it feels much wider than that. I was able to negotiate the narrow streets of Boston, but I wouldn't recommend it for people not used to driving big trucks. Parking requires care and patience. Seats were comfy, driving position was good once I got the adjustable pedals all the way back, and the manual climate controls were touchy but we were able to stay comfortable with an occassional tweak of the temp knob. Fit and finish were good (by Ford standards). Visibility was good, except that I find Ford places the inside rear-view mirror much lower on the windshield (on all their vehicles) than GM does, which obstructs more of my view (being 6'2"). Gas mileage was around 15 mpg (mostly highway miles). My 5.7L V8 Tahoe gets just under 16 city, and just under 18 highway.

    OK, now for the critical review:
    Tailgate is huge, and requires lots of space behind the truck to open it.
    Compass and outside temp readouts not visible to other passengers.
    No front dual-zone climate control available (not counting the rear seat controls).
    I noticed a grinding noise from the front axle. I grazed through the board and found some mentions of it and a TSB, but didn't see any follow-ups. Seems like a common problem?
    Hard to get in and out without either stepping on the running board or grazing my pant legs on it. Being tall, I don't usually use the step.
    Not that a rental would have this, but Ford doesn't offer a satellite radio option on any Expy.
    Dash vent bezels felt cheap when rotated.
    Large side mirrors are nice, but when frozen with a small amount of ice are immobile. No power fold feature.

    Anyway, even though functionally it is a great truck, I can't help think that there are some key luxury features (such as the dual-zone climate controls and satellite radio) that GM offers on it's trucks missing from the Expy.
  • Well the wife won out. Decided to go with the dealer demo 2003 XLT premium with the 4.6L engine with leather, 6-CD, moonroof, safety canopy, and reverse sense. The demo price with Ford rebates just seemed to good to pass up. I just hope I dont regret the smaller engine and that I didn't go with the other XLT with less features but the bigger 5.4L engine. I guess time will tell.
  • I just purchased a new 2003 XLT. My question centers around the proper useage of the 2nd row and 3rd row seat belts. My kids will be sitting in these seats. When they put on their seatbelts should they pull them out all the way and then let the seatbelts themselves retract to where it is tight around them, OR should they just buckle the seatbelt and rely on the seatbelt to auto-tighten in the event of a suddent stop or force. I guess in other words what is the proper use of the seat belts.
  • davantdavant Posts: 294

    Glad you liked it. Put your feet up and relax, this could take awhile. I'd like to point out a few things, mostly opinion mind you, but some based on facts you may not be aware of.

    If it didn't feel 'revy' it was probably the 5.4L and your MPG matches up. I do agree it's a big beast but I feel, as I think you do, that handling inspires confidence as it doesn't drive like a nearly 3-ton vehicle. Large but not cumbersome, a fluid balance of nimble versus stable if you will. Steering is top-notch because one of the 100+ improvements for '03 was rack & pinion, not like your Tahoe or previous Expies that have recirculating ball (which way did the road go?). The hood was raised 4" which may exaggerate the feeling that the rear view mirror was lowered. Based on a buddies '02 side-by-side it didn't change but an inch or so. I'm the same height as you and agree, it can obstruct, but at 5,700 pounds, how bad could it, LOL? Not that you would find one as a rental but the Eddie Bauer offers digital set & forget temp controls and mirror/seat/pedal memory for two drivers.

    I drove all the GM/Chevy's (except Caddi) before buying an Expie 4x2 Eddie-B with 5.4L. I like the higher torque and (albeit slightly lower) HP at useable/comfy RPM's Ford offers. Not that specs matter that much but compare the RPM's required at peak HP and torque for GM motors versus Ford. GM wins the peak spec race but not the torque one, and at what RPM? Will you rev that high without being laughed at by every other driver? Ford has it where it counts, towing and going with ease under 2,500 RPM's in day to day driving. Not a speed buggy, but strong and capable.

    I agree the tailgate is a whopper when open. I suggest folks who park with the rear close the garage door opening put some cushy weather-stripping on the frame/molding so the paint isn't damaged. I caught this early enough to prevent damage, I hope others do too.

    I never thought we needed a heads up display visible to all occupants showing the time/temp/drivers BP but hey, there's always next year, Ford engineers might be reading this. Driver/passenger dual zone controls (except front back as you mentioned) are there but are cleverly disguised as vent open/close controls, or you can argue over who owns the single knob, archaic but effective. I can't help but wonder how the Amish feel about this?

    There are others who have the 4WD grinding TSB and are satisfied it's fixed, look for that at forums if you can't find it here. I adopted a left foot step-board-swing in and hop-out to avoid the dirty pants or scraped legs. Sat-radio? Not anytime soon as Ford still hasn't mastered GPS, one thing at a time, LOL. Side mirrors have deicers, at least our EB does, Navi offers power fold mirrors this year, maybe Expie in '04. I think Lincoln needed that, power running boards, and power tailgate, (maybe a power back-scratcher) to justify the price (Expie x1.3).

    Both GM and Ford build great SUV's as does Toyota/Lexus (^$), and by this time next year maybe Nissan (Titan-in-law). I think Ford is king for now and selling an extended length and 24v power plant equipped model would keep them on the throne. Despite the many features and upgrades GM/Chevy offers, they've become 'stale' (dashboard, antiquated steering) and have resorted to infini-gizmos in an effort to wow & woo buyers. Remember, beneath every silky adorned GM/Chevy full size SUV exterior lies a live axle and leaf springs. I challenge every prospective GM/Chevy buyer to try this test. Drive on a road festooned with small potholes (alternate sides work best) at various speeds short of airborne/warp. Then try the same road in an Expie since they all have Independent Rear Suspension. Now tell me that you like GM/Chevy better! You won't be able too as you'll still be spitting out expensive dental work from round one. Thanks for your patience and postings!
  • davantdavant Posts: 294

    Have all occupants buckle up normally. Don't extend the belts fully so they ratchet while retracting unless you are using a child seat that permanently mounts to the vehicle. Trust Ford's system to do it's job , it's been tested. If you feel like you want to push the envelope securely belt in yourself in plus sack(s) of dog food in rows 2 and/or 3 and do a 15 MPH brake check, you'll sleep better.

    Congrats on the new Expie, you done good. Keep in touch.
  • mlm4mlm4 Posts: 401
    Dave -

    Thanks for your thoughts on the Expedition. I agree that one of the big advantages of this truck over the GM products is the IRS, and I took notice of the great ride with my rental. I'm sure in time GM will do the same -- GM and Ford seem to leap-frog each other with their designs.

    It may sound petty to complain about lack of dual-zone climate control, but the Amish are not paying $35-40k for their buggies either. I have dual-zone in my Bonneville, and my experience is that female body temperatures are always way above or below my (male) temp, so on long trips to keep everyone happy, dual-zone is a great thing to have. Considering that it is now available on the Navigator, why not the Expedition, which is a great long-trip vehicle and has no bargain-basement price either. Just an example. At these prices, I guess I'm just a bit fussy.
  • davantdavant Posts: 294

    You're not fussy, you just want everything I want too without having to buy a Navigator. I enjoy hearing about experiences and trying to understand others points of view, thanks for sharing. I've done alot of homework and hope some of it has value to prospective buyers or at least makes a few people smile.

    At least the Expie's optional temp controlled seats give each front passenger a choice to heat or freeze from the bottom up. Reading other posts, even that takes a few minutes to kick in (I think I divorced the frozen bottom one already though).

    I smell a rework from GM soon or they could start lagging. If they're both not careful the next frog leaping could really be a Nissan Unicorn.

  • I just noticed on the XLT i purchased that two of the tires (one front and one rear) seem to have a "bump" in the rubber on the sidewalls. By bumps I mean that if you rub your hand along the sidewall you can feel a "mound" and visibly see this as well. It's not exactly a bubble but it doesn't appear to be normal. Can somone explain what this is, what the cause is, and if this is something I should addres with the dealership. Could it be caused by overinflation and/or hitting a pot hole?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Depends on what you mean by bump. I had "mold" marks on my Kirkland/Costco tires a few years ago. They were noticable from certain angles but had no effect on the tire. They looked and felt like "waves."

    Since you have the same bump on two of the tires, I'm guessing that this is all it is.

    Steve, Host
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