Overview & Reviews
From its yacht-like boulevard cruisers of the early '70s to its more recent Super Duty pickups, Ford has long catered to buyers with king-sized transportation needs. The Ford Excursion followed in this tradition. This full-size SUV was manufactured between 2000 and 2005, and holds the distinction of being the longest and heaviest sport-utility vehicle ever produced.
With seating for up to nine passengers and a tow rating of 11,000 pounds (when properly equipped), the Excursion was mecca for SUV buyers with super-sized hauling needs. But its gargantuan proportions came at a price. Driving and parking a vehicle of this scale presented major challenges. And as you'd expect, fuel economy was dismal.
The Ford Excursion ultimately fell victim to high gas prices. Declining sales prompted Ford to retire the mega-size SUV after the 2005 model year. If you need a big SUV but not necessarily one that's the biggest in its class, we'd encourage you to explore less unwieldy, more fuel-efficient alternatives. But a used Ford Excursion could be a decent choice for those who have a genuine need for this level of roominess and towing capability.
Most Recent Ford Excursion
Built on Ford's F-250 Super Duty truck platform, the four-door Ford Excursion was the largest SUV in Ford's lineup, based on overall size and interior room. It was available with either two- or four-wheel drive.
In its first year of production, the Excursion was offered in just two trim levels: the base XLT and the more upscale Limited. The Eddie Bauer trim level made its debut in model year 2003 as a midlevel alternative, falling between the XLT and the Limited. In 2004, trim levels were revised to reflect the following hierarchy: base XLS, XLT, Eddie Bauer and top-of-the-line Limited.
Excursions were initially available with three engines. The standard engine on both XLTs and Limiteds was a 5.4-liter V8 good for 255 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque, with both a 310-hp 6.8-liter V10 and a 235-hp 7.3-liter turbodiesel V8 offered as options. In 2001, the 7.3-liter turbodiesel saw its power increase to 250 hp. The Excursion's 7.3-liter turbodiesel was phased out in 2004 to make way for a new 325-hp, 6.0-liter turbodiesel V8 that also offered more torque and cleaner emissions.
All engines were governed by a four-speed automatic transmission, except for the 6.0-liter turbodiesel, which had a five-speed automatic. In a test involving a 2000 Ford Excursion equipped with the 6.8-liter V10, our editors averaged just 12.4 mpg in combined city and highway driving. Of all these choices, the 6.0-liter turbodiesel was the pick of the litter: With 560 lb-ft of torque, it was best suited for hauling heavy loads, and it delivered the best cruising range to boot.
Base-model Excursions boasted a generous standard features list, offering amenities like a rear air-conditioner, cruise control, full power accessories and a CD player. Pricier trim levels got you goodies like rear audio controls, power-adjustable pedals, a premium audio system and heated front seats. Options like an in-dash six-disc CD changer and a DVD-based rear-seat entertainment system were available across some trim levels.
The Excursion's interior was more utilitarian than elegant, with a no-frills dashboard that came courtesy of the Super Duty pickup. Top-tier trim levels were a bit more stylish. The Eddie Bauer model featured a cabin with a two-tone color scheme, and the Limited trim offered an interior with cherry wood accents. Nine passengers could be seated in XLS and XLT models; other models seated only eight as a result of their front captain's chairs. Excursions offered 146.4 cubic feet of maximum cargo space. This is the most capacity ever offered in a full-size SUV, but it still felt short of the cubic footage available in a full-size van -- arguably a better choice for large families.
In editorial reviews, the Ford Excursion's size prevented it from scoring high marks as a daily driver. Steering feel was vague, and ride quality was rough and bouncy. Routine trips down the expressway were a chore, as continual steering correction was needed to keep the big Ford from wandering out of its lane. Acceleration was leisurely no matter which drivetrain you selected, as the engines were tasked with motivating more than 7,000 pounds of vehicle. In consumer reviews, the Excursion was praised for its roomy interior and panned for its interior styling and poor fuel economy.
Past Ford Excursions
On the market for a mere five years, the Ford Excursion was a single-generation vehicle. Although we think GM's heavy-duty series Chevrolet Suburban and GMC Yukon XL are better choices on the used market, if you're dead set on getting an Excursion, we'd recommend a 2004 or 2005 model with the optional 6.0-liter turbodiesel.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 498.00
The Biggest and Best SUV Ever Created - 2003 Ford Excursion
By Kurt Young - October 25 - 7:14 am
My current Excursion is my best Excursion by far. My first was the Limited 6.8L V10. My current Excursion exceeds and surpasses in all categories. I'll keep this one as long as parts are made for it. I see other SUVs on the road and wonder why bother. I've added after market airbag shocks which has increased the towing capabilities and smoothness of ride while towing. I tow a 10K lbs travel trailer year round, and my excursion has no problem whether pulling passes in Montana or on the long flats of Florida.
what a beast - 2003 Ford Excursion
By george dougherty - October 20 - 4:33 pm
Great truck - purchased in 2003 new. 180k miles. no major issues and still runs great. Last week a Dodge Ram rear ended me at thirty five miles an hour while I was stopped at a light. His truck is trashed, broken rad., power steering fluid all over the place, need to be towed. My fender is dented and tail light broken. has been on the beach, in 20 inches of snow, towed horses and other cars out of snow drifts, and has suffered my wife hitting posts etc. It keeps on going strong.
Luv my Ex - 2002 Ford Excursion
By Jack - July 18 - 11:08 am
bumper paint and exterior plastic finishes are lacking
This beast is Awesome - 2002 Ford Excursion
By davenfla - July 31 - 5:18 am
This truck is not made for a daily driver unless you are toting an army of kids, 10K + for towing, or need cavernous space for stuff. I bought this PSD 7.3 Ex for long trips, carrying 6 adults, one large dog and 10K boat. There is nothing made today that can come close, and do it effortlessly, everytime. In fact, on flat ground as I have described above, I still get 14.5 MPG. Sure there are new vehicles who can match "on paper" what the beast does but can it do it for 500k miles? Expect this PSD to outlive the vehicle, so if you keep it, be prepared to "rebuild" the vehicle a few times during it's lifetime. The Ex performs best with some after market suspension modifications, and a tuner.
Love my Ex - 2000 Ford Excursion
By stovetop - August 9 - 5:35 am
Bought it because my family outgrew the ext cab 150, many, many trips from IL to PA and many parts in between. Wouldnt trade it for anything and now have a 6" lift with 35's on it, but its no longer my daily driver. It has the 4.30 rear end in it, so I never got better than 11 on the highway, now I only get 10, but it pulls anything I put behind it. She has 190K on the clock, and paid for so Im keeping this until the wheels fall off, put em back on and keep driving it. When the V-10 gives up, Im doing the 7.3L swap....
Best vehicle I have owned - 2000 Ford Excursion
By kentwilkens - June 11 - 6:37 pm
over 250k kilometers and counting. Rock solid vehicle. Needs maintenance like any other, brakes, etc. Seats are still almost as good as new, leather. Recommend getting JBL shorty headers to replace the stock manifolds, which will eventually blow off the bolts. Gives 30% hp increase over stock. Better mileage with the headers, on the highway that is, in the city, you just get there a bit quicker.
12 1/2 years - first repair! - 2001 Ford Excursion
By islandlife1 - March 20 - 7:28 pm
Unbelievable, but other than regular maintenance such as oil changes, battery, tire and wiper replacement there has never been one thing wrong with this truck. Just replaced the fuel pump, had it completely checked out, everything in perfect condition. Have loved this truck since the first day. Okay, lousy mileage, but use it for hauling and long distance trips. Purchased 3 days before 9/11 - still own with no intention of replacing. This truck far surpasses the Suburban by having a better turning base, more pick up and much more comfortable. A true Texas truck!!!
Perfect SUV! - 2000 Ford Excursion
By pacquio78 - November 11 - 12:44 am
As Many Of The People Who've Read My Review On The 99' ML430 I Drive My Cars Until They're Dead! And My Excursion 2WD Limited 7.3 Is No Exception! Driven It About 250,000 Miles Now! And The Reliability Is Absolutely Perfect! I Proved Everyone Wrong Who Said Don't Buy An American Car When I Bought My Big Blue! (It's A Dark Blue-Purplish Color) She's A Little Dented Up Here And There, But Overall Still An Excellent Vehicle! I'm Keeping This Until The Wheels Fall Off! Though I Can't Say That's Gonna Happen!
When you have to take everything with you! - 2003 Ford Excursion
By chuckt6 - October 15 - 1:18 pm
2 big dogs(50 lbs and 90 lbs), 3 kids, The wife and I, and all our travel stuff fit fine in this monster. We purchased ours in 2010 with 122,000 miles on it. We've put 20K miles on it with minimal problems. We did replaced the ball joints($900) and put in new spark plugs($600). Great value for the vehicle, all leather, and comfortable. We purchased ours from a private party for $7400. The V10 engine is a gas hog, but will go for 300K miles. Same engine used in buses and limo's. Average about 12 mpg, but it that is better than driving two cars and getting 20 mpg in each car.
expected much more - 2005 Ford Excursion
By mar18 - March 20 - 10:44 pm
i decided to buy an excursion diesel to be able to tow the toy hauler and bring the family along. i was very dissapointed with the quality performance and fuel mileage. i got 14 mpg on the highway (i have a light foot). when towing the 8000lb toyhauler i got 7mpg on the highway and had to go peddal to the floor on every hill and the truck still slowed down to 40 mph and struggled to make it up small hills. the truck overheated on me 3 times while towing in tow-haul mode so i started towing without it. the truck always struggled with the trailer. My 5.7 liter tundra towed the same trailer without a problem. I always thought ford was the best of all american car makers. obviously i was wrong