Performance » 7
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PERFORMANCE | 7 out of 10
Loads of towing ability and civilized road manners
Sufficient power for any situation
Over-the-road comfort is good and the handling feels balanced
Kelley Blue Book
The 2008 Ford Expedition surprises in terms of overall speed and acceleration, but its heft shows when it comes time to turn, though not nearly as much as you might expect.
The 2008 Ford Expedition is available with just one engine on all trim levels, "a 5.4-liter V8 making 300 horsepower and 365 pound-feet of torque," according to Edmunds. They add that either "two-wheel or four-wheel drive (with low-range gearing) is offered." ConsumerGuide writes that the engine allows for impressive acceleration and finds that the Expedition has "sufficient power for any situation." Kelley Blue Book adds while they "weren't overwhelmed by the 5.4-liter V8's acceleration while towing, the Expedition seemed fully up to the task." Of the reviews read by TheCarConnection.com, Motor Trend offers one of the most critical reviews of the engine, saying that the Ford Expedition "feels sluggish right out of the gate," and "you can tell there's a lot of weight here, and the engine doesn't seem interested in compensating." For a hard number to hang your hat on, Edmunds says their test Ford Expedition 4WD "accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 8.9 seconds," which they feel is "a decent time for this class."
Along with one engine, the Ford Expedition 2008 lineup is available with "a six-speed automatic transmission with manual-shift capability," according to Edmunds. The transmission fares well with reviewers, as ConsumerGuide claims "the alert 6-speed automatic transmission is always in the right gear." Cars.com adds that the automatic is a plus, and "it never made a harsh shift" during their test period. Once again, however, Motor Trend weighs in with a negative assessment, saying "sure, there are six speeds, but without a true manual mode, the tranny hunts with the same fervor as Dick Cheney."
On SUVs the size of the 2008 Ford Expedition, fuel economy will always be a sore point. Cars.com notes that Ford claims their new six-speed transmission "improves performance and gas mileage" over the old model's four-speed automatic, but the EPA still rates the 2008 Ford Expedition at 12 mpg city and 18 mpg highway. On the heavier, stretched version of the Ford Expedition 2008, ConsumerGuide says that their "4WD Expedition EL averaged 13.4 mpg."
The 2008 Ford Expedition is large, but that doesn't mean it can't handle decently. ConsumerGuide reviewers are surprised to find that the Ford Expedition 2008 lineup boasts "impressive agility for large SUVs" and that the "nicely weighted steering has a natural feel." Most other reviewers agree, with Kelley Blue Book chiming in that "the driving impression feels connected to the road, helped in no small part by steering with a good degree of precision." Overall ride quality is equally impressive, and Cars.com reviewers write that they are "a bit surprised by the Expedition's exceptional ride quality," noting "body roll has been reined in fairly well." The one gripe that arises frequently from reviewers is brake pedal feel, as Cars.com finds that the Ford Expedition's "brake pedal has the same spongy feel that plagues the smaller Explorer Sport Trac." Aside from the pedal feel, Motor Trend says that brakes are "strong and a match for the cumbersome curb weight."
The 2008 Ford Expedition offers surprisingly good handling and decent acceleration, but at the cost of a thirsty engine.