Ford Motor Co. is redesigning its largest but aged SUV in hopes of boosting sales in one of the industry’s hottest segments.
The 2018 Ford Expedition’s sweeping overhaul includes a slimmed-down aluminum body, updated powertrain, more interior legroom and 40 new technology features designed to make long drives more comfortable. Ford’s full-size family hauler hasn’t been retooled and updated in 20 years, and while its U.S. sales rose 44 percent in 2016, in recent years, it has trailed competitors such as the Dodge Durango, Chevrolet Tahoe and Chevrolet Suburban.
Ford officials are counting on the makeover to make the Expedition more competitive and dominant in a large SUV market that grew 15 percent to 621,277 vehicles in 2016.
“It really sets the new standard in the segment,” said Craig Patterson, Ford’s large SUV marketing manager.
The Expedition, unveiled Tuesday in Dallas ahead of the Chicago Auto Show, went on the same diet as its F-150 and Super Duty counterparts. The new aluminum body shaves about 300 pounds, a weight savings Ford expects will result in better fuel economy, although it did not provide specifics. The current model gets about 15 mpg city/21 highway.