Hoevner won't comment on whether Ford might consider dropping the F-150's coming 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6 under the hood of the new Expedition, though from our point of view, that seems inevitable.
Perhaps Ford bet that Dak Prescott would get the Cowboys to the Super Bowl, as it chose to unveil the new, aluminum-bodied 2018 Expedition in Dallas at the Cowboys' new headquarters and training facility, a couple of days ahead of its official premiere at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show. Nissan just redesigned the Armada, Infiniti the QX80, and Toyota is expected to redesign the Sequoia.
The new 2018 Ford Expedition was introduced Tuesday, Feb. 7, and is touted as having the most driver-assist technology in the SUV segment. The automaker didn't have to shut down the Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville to retool the body shop for the shift from a steel body to aluminum, which is good because utility vehicles of all shapes and sizes are still hot right now. Globally, SUVs have grown 80 percent in the past five years, up to 1.7 million in 2016. There is also the extended Expedition Max, which is about 8 inches longer.
Ford did not release expected fuel economy or pricing for the new SUV.
Even the drive is more adaptable, with Expedition's all-new Terrain Management SystemTM that lets customers choose between drive modes for optimal vehicle handling in different conditions.
The new Expedition should be hitting dealerships this fall.
A new 22-inch wheel option also will add (unsprung) weight. The automaker says 50% of all Expedition buyers value towing, and 15% tow at least monthly.
Visually, the beltline is higher.
In all, massive improvements and an impressive list of tech features make what was already a class-leading SUV a much more enticing proposition, if not only because the current Expedition still has the stench of pre-recession build quality all over it. The headlamps are nicely integrated into the grille.
It has a sliding second row with individual seats that can tip and slide forward for easy access to the back. The third row will recline and retains its previous power-folding feature.
Meanwhile, Ford will have the Bronco SUV to accompany the Ranger pickup, on top of the Explorer and Expedition.
Like the last-generation Expedition, with the second and third row folded down, owners can fit 4x8 sheets of plywood flat in the cargo area.
The moveable parcel shelf lets you pop open the rear window without the whole tailgate in order to get to groceries and other shopping items without bags falling out as the tailgate opens.
In-vehicle Wi-Fi works for up to 10 devices, and the signal extends 50 feet-perfect in a campground.
The Expedition grows 4.0 inches longer on a 3.0-in. longer wheelbase. It also offers Sync Connect to use FordPass on your phone for starting, locking, or locating your vehicle remotely. The Expedition seats up to seven or eight, depending on whether the middle row has two captain's chairs or a bench seat.
Active park assist, 360-degree cameras, trailer backup assist, lane alerts, adaptive cruise control, new traffic monitoring radar and cameras, and a collision and blind spot detection system.