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



  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    That's a lot of miles on a rig period, regardless of make, whether the engine has been rebuilt or not. That's terrific!

    Steve, Host
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    I'll second that! Wow!

    tidester, host
  • I have owned three Excursions since 2000. Would hate to see them go. Each year they seem to get better in driving ,comfort, handling and new features. I currently own a 2004 Ex. Eddie Bauer. Best one I have owned. I have also tried the Suburban for test drives and a little TESTING. I'll give the Chev, the better ride. As for the construction of the overall vehicle, Ford has the Sub beat hands down. Although Ford may ride like a truck, it also performs like one to. Tough to beat the towing capacity of the V-5 Hitch and the tough drivetrain. Also the Ex. has superior inside area. Alot of space for things and people.
          Cya later, Andrew
  • Thank you! I do take pride in maintaining my vehicles well. I had to rebiuld the transmission once at 141,000 miles, mainly because an ex-girlfriend threw it into reverse at 60mph on the highway when the truk only had 8000 miles on it. The tranny ran in a hobbled condition for the next 133,000 miles until I had it rebuilt. It's been almost 200,000 miles since then. At this point all I have for current issues are a little rust (and a couple of holes), and the need to replace the rear AC evaporator. I converted it from R-12 to R-134a when I replace the front AC evap in 2000.
  • Heh. Who knew that this thread would survive un-archived for so long? Five years is a decent chunk of time.


    But anyways, I think in another five years it won't be a battle between the Suburban and the Excursion. Once the Japanese completely sink their teeth into this gold mine of a market, it'll be a battle of (the real) Titan and the Sequoia.
  • chrisdcchrisdc Posts: 3
    I am in the market for an '01 or '02 Suburban or Excursion. I've read most of this discussion and haven't seen anyone adress my question. I really learned a lot about both trucks, but I'm still undecided. I commute 40 miles each way to work so the better mileage of the PSD looks good. But, at a $3000-$4000 premium that's a lot of gas I could have been filling up with in the Suburban. I have 4 kids and do a good bit of traveling so I need space for "stuff" but heavy towing is not a concern of mine. I've driven an 01 Sub and wasn't impressed with the lack of seat adjustments, but that might not have been their best power seating option. I have yet to drive an Excursion, either gas or deisel, so that may be the deciding factor. But what I'm really wanting to know is there any difference between the 4WD systems on these trucks? I currently own a '90 Jeep Grand Wagoneer and I like that I can switch into 4WD when my driveway ices, or that I can occassionaly hook up a chain and pull someone or something out of a ditch. I will not be doing any major off-road drivimg, but I want the ability if needed. Thanks for your replys...
  • beatfarmerbeatfarmer Posts: 244
    Coming in late but here it goes.

    If heavy towing is not a concern, then you might be better served with a 1500 Surburban with the 5.3 and 3.42 rear.

    The Ex is based on the SD truck line and rides like the 3/4 ton truck it is. With the PSD or V-10 it makes a great towing vehicle. With the 5.4, it is underpowered.

    The Sub come in 1500 1/2 ton or 2500 3/4 ton. Both have a "softer" ride than the Ex. 2500 come with either the 6.0 or 8.1 engines. The 2500 is in the same class towing wise as the Ex.

    1500 Subs can be found with either a part time shift on the fly 4x4 system or an auto 4x4 system. 2500 Subs and the Ex are both part time systems. Neither vehicle will do well off road, due to their length and weight. The Ex is quite heavy, especially with the PSD

    Drive both the 1500 and 2500 Subs and drive both the gas and PSD Ex. Buy the one you like.

    WARNING!! Buying a big, powerful truck can lead to excessive purchasing of toys (boats, campers, etc). Use with caution ; )
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    "Every year the editors at vote on the "most wanted" vehicles. Now it's your turn. Forget about what you think ought to win based on stats and specs; choose the vehicle you'd want parked in your driveway. Vote today: this survey will only be available for a limited time."

    Consumers' Most Wanted Vehicles for 2005

    Steve, Host
  • psd1psd1 Posts: 2
    You pretty much don't like the Excursion. Let me tell you that the Excursion is one of the most coolest vehicles ever and you own it in 7.3L V8 Powerstroke turbo diesel which is even better, for more power, and good speed. Because you own it in diesel you have better fuel milege which means that the fuel doesn't run out as fast. If you compare the Excursion to the Suburban I would stick more with your Excursion simply because It's more powerful you could use it for just about anything Hauling Trailers etc. and saves more fuel than the Suburban.

    The Suburban on the other hand is a good truck but the only bad thing is, is that because it's a big truck (not bigger than the Excursion) and is a gasoline (v8) it'll struggle more with lot's of cargo than the Excursion and it'll use up more fuel for less work, this is why I would stick with the Excursion best. It's more of getting a V10 gas powered truck I mean it's very strong and fast but disposes of too too much fuel do to the amount of work that it does. Just stick with your Excursion diesel your better of and you'll save more money on fuel. It would be nice if they actually had a Suburban powered by diesel (6.6L 8cyl Duramax Diesel) but I guess they don't have any of those in diesel. It's still good though I like the Suburban but It's not as economic and powerful as your Excursion.
  • psd1psd1 Posts: 2
    By the way If you want you can even trade in your Ford Excursion for the all new 6.0L V8 Powerstroke turbo diesel. This engine is supurve it's the best of it's class it's a lot better than the 7.3L and more powerful, and it's faster. I know people that own these in 6.0L and they tell me that they are so amaized on how good this engine is it's a little bit quieter than before (7.3L) and it's much better.

    This one of course does a lot more work, and it's more economici and better.

    Think about this
  • tdohtdoh Posts: 298
    Well with diesel prices now at $3.10/gallon and up in my area (Northern California), the savings isn't as great these days...
  • starrow68starrow68 Posts: 1,142
    Been driving the '00 Excursion for almost 5 years and 45k miles of dog show weekends, light loads mostly. I have borrowed a friend's car trailer, steel, not aluminum and load on an '02 Corvette Coupe but have only done it on flat treks up to now for a couple trips. Decided to haul to the track at Reno-Fernley this past weekend and had a great trip. Took it slow within about 5mph of the speed limit in CA and then nothing over 65mph in NV, well except for a couple straight downhill runs. Going slow on return was partly a function of a guy from the track with a limping 3rd gear in a C4 Vette who had to slow going up hills. Putting close to 5k#'s on the rear really settles the Ex down, V10 with towing package, so it rides very comfortable. Most surprising thing was the mileage, filled up out by Vacaville Friday AM, lower price for Chevron, and didn't fill up again until I was inbound Sunday PM about Dixon. Got 12.5mpg, going slow probably was a major factor since I've gotten just under 14mpg when not towing but going at speed limit and maybe a little more with a full load of dogs and gear. After 30 years in Sub's, three different models all going 150k to 178k, I have to say the Ex is a comfortable hauler and so far pretty bullet proof.
  • Been driving the 2005 Durango 5.7L Hemi. Filled up at freeway, drove 80mph for about 200 miles with 3 passengers and plenty of stuff in the back, filled up again, and got about 12 USmpg. Wonder what your neighbor was doing to get only 8mpg.
  • I think that once Chevy comes out with there desil in there suburban then it will take over the excursion. The chevy rides and handels better with a less boxy looking suburban. It might take the desil suburban a couple of years to take off though just because of the new look that there comming out with. The only people that would stick with the excursion are the people that have to tow a lot a lot and the dihard ford buyers.

    On a side note...Why havent any of the manufactures come out with a dually suv desil?
  • ahightowerahightower TXPosts: 539
    On a side note...Why havent any of the manufactures come out with a dually suv desil?

    Dual rear wheels are used to increase payload capacity. You can't put enough weight inside the back of an SUV (probably) or use a 5th wheel trailer hitch to warrant the dually wheels. If there is some rare occasion that you put something that extraordinarily heavy in the back of your suburban or excursion, it is not common enough to make up enough market demand to profitably produce a dually SUV.
  • ahightowerahightower TXPosts: 539
    I wonder why Dodge doesn't make a full size SUV based on the Ram pickup chassis? That would be cool. I like the Dodge Ram styling best of all the full size pickups, and the Hemi engine is supposed to be great. The Durango is just not useful for a large family because there is so little room in and behind the third row.
  • I own a 2003 1500 LT Suburban. It's my second Suburban. We live in CT and the gas prices (as everywhere) have been painful. We have one child, two large dogs and lead a very active lifestyle requiring lots of gear. I started feeling very guilty owning this large vehicle as gas prices were rising throughout the summer and went researching station wagons. The only one I would consider buying(due to cargo space and safety) was a used Mercedes E Wagon. I test drove one, very nice indeed but the dealer kept referring to all that "it had" and I kept replying "my Suburban has that" over and over. Once I parked the Mercedes I said "do you have satellite radio or Onstar"..No they didn't. They had something similar to Onstar that worked "sometimes". I left Mercedes realizing that I loved my Suburban even more than I loved it before, big as it is and leaving the car salesman stumped that I didn't want the Mercedes "as most people would have." :)
  • I finally retired the 1992 Suburban. It's sitting in my driveway awaiting its next assignment with 353,000 miles on it. My new vehicle is a 2002 Chevy Suburban 4x4 1500.
  • After owning a couple of diesel suburbans, two 1994's and a 96, i was waiting for GM to get rolling on there new style duramax sub. Too long in waiting makes a guy get a little crazy, and jsut start building. What i ended up with is basiclly a 03 Duramax Suburban. I know why GM wont build them..... They are too much fun! Brute power and economy come together. 20 mpg, all the room to do what you please, and rides like a dream. GM will eventually make the diesel suburban again, but it will be a V6 power plant, not the 8. If anyone makes it to North Dakota, and wants to test drive my Dmax Sub, e-mail me, i will let you take it out. It will put a smile on your face.
  • Earlier this year I traded a 1500 Suburban for a Diesel Excursion because my Suburban was crapping out in just about everything. Plus it was having a hard time pulling loads of 2500 across country, pretty bad for a vehicle that supposed to haul a lot more. At any rate the excursion is awesome, but sucks to drive around town. I get 12.5-14 towing or not. It all depends on how babied it is. I wonder if there is a way to pull more mpg out, but its nice that diesel has been a little cheaper lately. At any rate, if you tow anything, Hands down the Excursion destroys even the HD suburban.
  • 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: 12,036
    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:
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • 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 TXPosts: 539
    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 TXPosts: 539
    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!
This discussion has been closed.