12 Best Family Cars: 2019 Ford Expedition
- Still fresh after a complete revamp for 2018
- It’s a tough body-on-frame truck that tows well
- It’s a refined 7- or 8-seat family hauler with a plush ride
- Excellent connectivity, good fuel economy
- Available adaptive cruise control
- Pricing starts at $52,130 | Price Yours
The Expedition was fully redesigned just last year, so little has changed with Ford’s large body-on-frame SUV for 2019. That’s not an issue, though, because the 2019 Ford Expedition still has what it takes to earn a coveted spot on KBB’s list of 12 Best Family Cars. Ford’s big family hauler is still available in standard-length form or as an Expedition Max, the latter with a 9.1-inch-longer wheelbase and about an extra foot (11.9 inches) of overall length. Both of these Expedition models can be ordered with captain’s chairs or a bench in the middle row.
As a traditional full-size SUV, the Expedition is built on a sturdy steel frame related to that of the company’s F-150. Like that best-selling pickup truck, the Expedition uses aluminum body panels, which help trim some 300 pounds of weight from the vehicle. You won’t find a V8 under that long hood; rather, the 2019 Expedition has a turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 that produces 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque in the XLT and Limited models, or 400 horsepower and 480 lb-ft of torque in the Platinum flagship. A 10-speed automatic transmission is standard across the board.
Fuel economy always is a concern with large SUVs, but here the Expedition does better than expected. Two-wheel-drive Expeditions have laudable EPA figures of 17 mpg city, 24 mpg highway, while 4-wheel-drive models are nearly as good, returning as much as 17 city and 22 highway. With its 23.6-gallon fuel tank (27.8 gallons in the Max), the big Ford family hauler can travel well over 500 miles on a tank. Although this impressive workhorse can tow up to 9,300 pounds, it’s equipped with independent rear suspension that contributes to comfortable long-distance cruising.
Besides its handsome and thoroughly modern styling, some thoughtful touches make the Expedition shine. A few examples: Privacy glass is standard on the second and third rows and tailgate, and the reclining center bench seat can be slid fore or aft depending on varying leg room needs. Also, while a leather-wrapped steering wheel is fitted to all models, the XLT benefits from tri-zone electronic temperature control, an 8-inch touch screen and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto compatibility. New this year is a Special Edition Package that’s enticing with its 22-inch black wheels, 360-degree split-view camera, heavy-duty towing package and LED headlamps.
Other options worth considering include a $1,570 towing package that fits the 2019 Expedition with a heavy-duty radiator, Ford’s helpful Pro Trailer Back Up Assist, 3.73:1 rear gearing and an integrated brake controller. Similarly impressive is the $1,650 off-road package, which includes an electronic limited-slip differential (with 3.73:1 gearing), 265/65R-18 all-terrain tires, specially tuned shock absorbers and skidplate protection for the fuel tank and underbody.
It’s a Best Buy Winner!
The final feather in the Expedition’s cap? It’s KBB’s Full-Size SUV Best Buy Award winner for 2019, beating out the likes of the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban. Here’s how we described the big Ford SUV in our report:
“The Expedition looks substantial because it is. Over 17 feet long in standard wheelbase form and weighing a minimum of 5,300 pounds, this full-size SUV has a dominating presence on the road. That presence is further highlighted by a bold, chrome face with a big Ford blue oval in the center. A crisp body line runs just above the door handles. Everything about the new Expedition looks chiseled and sharp. Chrome accents and roof rails add more glitz to the Platinum Edition we tested, as do the 22-inch wheels. The Platinum Edition comes with full-length power-deploying side steps, a feature that makes it easier to get into and out of the Expedition. That same level of modern luxury continues inside, where the all-black interior was set off by cool-brown wood accents.”
More 2019 Ford Expedition
Pricing for the 2-wheel-drive 2019 Ford Expedition starts at $52,130, with the foot-longer Expedition Max beginning at $54,815. Be warned: The Platinum version of the opulent 4-wheel-drive Expedition Max, with options, can exceed $80,000.