Expedition gets high-tech goodies

Ford will offer the 2015 Expedition with one engine, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, which is more powerful than the outgoing 5.4-liter V-8.
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The re-engineered 2015 Ford Expedition, which goes on sale this fall, gets high-tech features including the MyFord Touch infotainment system, blind-spot detection and electric power steering.

The SUV also receives its first EcoBoost engine, which has direct fuel injection and turbocharging.

Ford is taking the wraps off the 2015 Expedition at a media event tonight on the eve of its official unveiling Wednesday at the DFW Auto Show in Dallas.

Texas accounts for the most Expedition sales of any state, Ford says, with one of every five Expeditions sold in the United States delivered there. Houston is the nation's largest Expedition market, followed by Dallas.

The Expedition will come in two wheelbases: 119 inches and 131 inches. Both versions have three rows of seats.

Ford will offer the Expedition with one engine, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, which is more powerful than the outgoing 5.4-liter V-8. The current F-150 pickup powered by the same V-6 is rated at 365 hp and 420 pounds-feet. of torque. The current 5.4-liter V-8 cranks out 310 hp and 365 pounds-feet of torque.

The 2015 Expedition's fuel economy has not been certified.

Now that the Expedition has an EcoBoost engine, the only Ford brand vehicles without an EcoBoost are the C-Max Hybrid and E-series commercial van.

The 2015 Expedition's electronic suspension has a continuously controlled damping system that receives 46 inputs from the body, steering and brakes to constantly adjust the vehicle's ride to road conditions.

The Expedition is the first Ford brand vehicle to offer the damping system in the United States. Previously only Lincoln vehicles had it.

Inside, the updated center stack is dominated by an 8-inch touch screen with Sync and MyFord Touch. Sound comes from an available 10-speaker, 700-watt Sony audio system.

The 2015 Expedition has a new, top-of-the-line Platinum trim level. The Platinum model, also available in the 2015 F-150, features soft-touch leather with premium appointments.

The Expedition also comes in XLT, Limited and King Ranch models. King Ranch is the top-of-the-line trim level on the current Expedition.

The 2015 Expedition's electronic suspension has a continuously controlled damping system that receives 46 inputs from the body, steering and brakes to constantly adjust the vehicle's ride to road conditions. It is the first Ford brand vehicle to offer the damping system in the United States.

The 2015 Expedition gets a new front end with available LED fog lights for what Ford calls a "fresh, aggressive look."

The Expedition's body is mostly steel, unlike the attention-grabbing 2015 F-150, whose body is aluminum.

Ford has not announced pricing. The 2014 Expedition starts at $42,630, including shipping.

The unveiling of the Expedition comes less than a month after Ford took the wraps off its luxury sibling, the 2015 Lincoln Navigator.

The Expedition debuted in 1996 as Ford's answer to the dominant Chevrolet Suburban.

Ford sold 38,350 Expeditions in 2013. Expedition sales have held steady at or just below 40,000 since bottoming out at 31,655 in the recession year of 2009. Expedition sales peaked at 233,125 in 1999.

Ford manufactures the Expedition at its Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville, where the company also makes its F-series Super Duty pickup.

You can reach Bradford Wernle at bwernle@crain.com.


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