Ford Leaves Expedition Largely Alone for 2015

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Many criticized the latest Lincoln (NYSE:F) Navigator for going far enough with its mild refresh, and next to the rest of Lincoln’s overhauled lineup, those were legitimate concerns. However, the Lincoln looks like a downright different car when compared to the 2015 Ford Expedition, which the company revealed on Wednesday.

The Expedition — Ford’s largest SUV — has a lightly modified front fascia and rear quarters, but all in all, it’s remarkably similar to the outgoing model. Buyers can still choose from the 119-inch or 131-inch wheelbase, and it still has the independent rear suspension.

However, like the Navigator, the Expedition no longer comes carrying Ford’s 5.4-liter V8, instead being powered by Ford’s 3.5-liter turbocharged EcoBoost. Before you balk, know that Ford says the new unit is more powerful, more fuel efficient, and offers more low-end torque than the outgoing V8; in a full-size body-on-frame SUV, are you really looking for much more than that?

“Expedition becoming the latest Ford utility vehicle to wear the EcoBoost badge will be exciting for customers,” said Doug Scott, Ford truck group marketing manager, in the company’s statement. “Increased torque and horsepower, combined with new levels of efficiency and an advanced suspension not only will make Expedition more fun to drive, but also easier to own. This is another ‘and’ solution from Ford.”

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Engine choices aside, it’s rather uncompetitive of Ford to leave the Expedition virtually untouched while its chief competition, the Chevrolet Suburban, gets a complete redesign for 2015. Presumably, Ford has scheduled a full redesign of the Expedition pending the reception of its new F-150 and its aluminum structure.

Rather than invest millions into have a new model for the sake of having a new model, Ford appears to be waiting until it can build an Expedition around the frame that will be launched later this year as the 2015 F-150. Essentially, if the F-150 works out, Chevy’s new models will have their hands full competing with a lighter, more agile framed Expedition.

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