- Superior ride and handling compared to most other truck-based SUVs
- Spacious third-row seat
- Premium leather in King Ranch model
- Single powertrain
- Rough engine
- Interior can feel cheap
Truck toughness and a roomy three-row interior make the 2010 Ford Expedition a very well-rounded full-size SUV.
The design of the latest 2010 Ford Expedition dates back to 2007, but the big SUV shows no sign of aging thanks to its aggressive looks, generous cabin, and excellent towing ability. The Expedition is a fully truck-based SUV and actually rides on a similar platform to Ford’s F-150 pickup.
Customers don’t have much choice when it comes to engine options, as the 2010 Ford Expedition is available with only a 310-horsepower 5.4-liter flex-fuel V-8. This is matched to a class-exclusive six-speed automatic transmission that drives either the rear wheels or all four wheels depending on the model.
Two body styles are available: a regular-length model and a long-wheelbase Expedition EL offering 14.8 inches of additional overall length and 130.8 cubic feet of cargo space—including 24 cubic feet more behind the third-row seat than the standard model. The wheelbase of the Expedition EL stretches 131 inches, making it one of the biggest SUVs on the market.
Despite its size, driving the Expedition is relatively easy thanks to its responsive handling and acceleration. However, the 5.4-liter V-8 can feel a little labored once the vehicle is fully loaded, and the ride is certainly no match for the newer generation of car-based crossovers.
For 2010, the Expedition gets a boost in its safety credentials thanks to the addition of Ford’s Trailer Sway Control as standard. Trailer Sway Control works in conjunction with the Expedition’s stability control to detect trailer sway through the motions of the vehicle and to take measures—such as applying precise braking and reducing engine torque—to bring both vehicle and trailer under control.
Other standard safety features include side-impact airbags and a three-row Safety Canopy rollover detection system with stability control. There's also an optional backup camera, which we strongly recommend due to the Expedition’s poor rear visibility. Also available is Ford’s programmable MyKey system, which allows parents to limit how fast their kids can drive the SUV.
The 2010 Expedition is available in XLT, Eddie Bauer, Limited, and King Ranch trim levels, and each of these is offered as a stretched EL version. Ford’s SYNC voice-activated hands-free communications and entertainment system is a standard feature on Eddie Bauer, Limited, and King Ranch trim levels. The pick of the bunch is the King Ranch edition, which offers a special trim and a unique leather interior. The only letdown across most of the model line is the cheap plastic panel that covers the top of the dash.
The Expedition might share a lot with the F-150 pickup, but it’s no utilitarian workhorse. Making life easier is a generous equipment list that includes an optional DVD-based navigation with a 6.5-inch color touchscreen and voice activation, as well as a 340-watt AM/FM stereo with MP3 playback, an in-dash six-CD changer, six speakers, a subwoofer, and a standard iPod jack. A keyless entry keypad, heated power mirrors, air conditioning, an electrochromic rearview mirror, illuminated visors, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel are all standard across the Expedition range. Also available is a voice-activated navigation system with Sirius Travel Link that provides access to up-to-the-minute information and entertainment content such as traffic and weather updates.
2010 Ford Expedition
Styling of the 2010 Ford Expedition, though safe, remains a strong suit, but the SUV is still let down by its subpar interior.
Benefiting from the styling revamp of 2007, the 2010 Ford Expedition remains top dog in Ford's SUV lineup, which it accomplishes with aplomb.
The 2010 Ford Expedition "is available in four trim levels," according to Edmunds, which lists them as "XLT, Eddie Bauer, Limited and new King Ranch." Aside from a few variations on the exterior, all trim levels of the 2010 Ford Expedition feature what Kelley Blue Book describes as "Ford's now-signature four-bar grille" that "sits front and center," along with a "raised 'powerdome' hood, new headlamps and larger wheel 'lips.'" Edmunds reports that the exterior differences, though minor, are noticeable and mostly include bigger wheels on more expensive trim levels and "gold body cladding and running boards" on the Eddie Bauer trim, which changes to a "monochromatic paint job" on the 2010 Ford Expedition in Limited trim.
While the exterior of the 2010 Ford Expedition lineup doesn't draw any significant criticisms in reviews read by TheCarConnection.com, the same can’t be said about the interior. Edmunds asserts that "the interior controls and displays aren't always easy to read or use." ConsumerGuide adds that "most controls" on the Ford Expedition are "logically placed, though the switchgear lacks a precision feel," and the navigation system "absorbs most audio functions, awkwardly combining pushbutton and touch screen operation, and its screen washes out in even moderate sunlight." Furthermore, Motor Trend finds that "the instrument panel, with its mix of round and rectangular gauges and chrome, plastic, and wood trim, appears retro for the sake of being retro and at the expense of good function." It’s not all bad as Kelley Blue Book reviewers discover, stating that "driver and passengers will enjoy tone-on-tone leather," along with "a stylish center stack on the instrument panel and cup holders galore."
2010 Ford Expedition
The 2010 Ford Expedition accelerates and handles well for a vehicle of this size, although the lack of a high-horsepower engine option means performance withers once the vehicle is fully loaded.
Experts at TheCarConnection.com find that the 2010 Ford Expedition offers respectable speed and acceleration—better than one might expect for such a large vehicle. Going around corners reminds you of the Expedition’s truck roots, but the SUV’s handling always remains compliant and is a step above many of its rivals.
The 2010 Ford Expedition is available with just one engine on all trim levels, "a 5.4-liter V-8 making 310-horsepower and 365-pound-feet of torque," according to Edmunds. ConsumerGuide states that the engine allows for impressive acceleration and finds the Expedition has "sufficient power for any situation." Kelley Blue Book reviewers "weren't overwhelmed by the 5.4-liter V8's acceleration while towing, [but] the Expedition seemed fully up to the task." Edmunds notes that either "two-wheel or four-wheel drive (with low-range gearing) is offered." In terms of acceleration, Edmunds observes that the Expedition four-wheel-drive model "accelerated from zero to 60 mph in 8.9 seconds," which they feel is "a decent time for this class."
On the flipside, Motor Trend considers the engine disappointing, 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."
The 2010 Ford Expedition lineup comes standard with "a six-speed automatic transmission with manual-shift capability," according to ConsumerGuide. The transmission is a joy for most reviewers. Cars.com adds that the automatic is a plus, and "it never made a harsh shift" during their test period. ConsumerGuide also claims "the alert six-speed automatic transmission is always in the right gear." Motor Trend is once again disappointed, saying "sure, there are six speeds, but without a true manual mode, the tranny hunts with the same fervor as Dick Cheney."
With any SUV the size of the 2010 Ford Expedition, fuel economy is always going to be an issue. Cars.com points out that Ford claims the new six-speed transmission "improves performance and gas mileage" over the old model's four-speed automatic, but the EPA still rates the 2010 Ford Expedition at 12 mpg city and 18 mpg highway. On the heavier, stretched version of the 2010 Ford Expedition, ConsumerGuide says that their "4WD Expedition EL averaged 13.4 mpg."
The 2010 Ford Expedition is large, but that doesn't mean it can't handle decently. Kelley Blue Book reaffirms this, stating that "the driving impression feels connected to the road, helped in no small part by steering with a good degree of precision." ConsumerGuide reviewers did not expect to find that the 2010 Ford Expedition lineup boasts "impressive agility for large SUVs" and that the "nicely weighted steering has a natural feel." The same can be said for the SUV’s impressive ride, and Cars.com reviewers state that they are "a bit surprised by the Expedition's exceptional ride quality," noting "body roll has been reined in fairly well." A common problem among all reviewers is the brake pedal feel, as Cars.com discovers that the Ford Expedition's "brake pedal has the same spongy feel that plagues the smaller Explorer Sport Trac." Motor Trend this time offers some praise, claiming the brakes are "strong and a match for the cumbersome curb weight."
2010 Ford Expedition
Comfort & Quality
Owners of the 2010 Ford Expedition won’t be wanting in the storage space department, as the big SUV offers ample space for nine adults and their gear.
Experts at TheCarConnection.com note that because of its large dimensions, the 2010 Ford Expedition offers ample interior space. Build quality and materials aren’t quite up to scratch against rival models, but the fact that you can easily fit nine adults inside more than makes up for this.
ConsumerGuide reports that the driver and front passenger gets "generous room on supportive seats." The 2010 Ford Expedition "can seat up to nine occupants across three rows of seats" when equipped with the optional front bench seat, says Cars.com, and it does so with plenty of comfort. Surprisingly, the third-row seats receive some of the highest praise in reviews read by TheCarConnection.com, as ConsumerGuide claims "third-row accommodations are among the best of any SUV, with adult-sized headroom and legroom on a chair-height bench." Car and Driver adds "third-row seating space is generous, easily besting the GM offerings."
Cargo space in the rear and other interior storage also benefit from the overall size of the 2010 Ford Expedition, especially in the long-wheelbase EL models. ConsumerGuide praises the "available power-folding third row," which they say "saves awkward stretching," and they further note that "a large glovebox, roomy center console, and large door pockets provide abundant small-item storage." Cars.com says "the Expedition EL offers 131 cubic feet" of total cargo volume with all the rear seats folded, and the standard Ford Expedition's "maximum cargo capacity is 108.2 cubic feet." If this is still not enough storage space, Edmunds points out "opting for the second-row captain's chairs drops seating capacity to seven but earns a storage console between the seats."
Ford’s big SUV lineup boasts improved materials and build quality, but it still doesn’t match the quality of its rivals. If interior quality is a priority, the King Ranch edition will satisfy all but the most discerning of buyers. Kelley Blue Book appreciates the "softer cushions and upgraded materials" on the 2010 Ford Expedition, and Motor Trend reports that "every editor was impressed by the luxurious 'Chaparral' leather" and "the ultraquiet ambiance" of the King Ranch model. As for the regular models, ConsumerGuide is disappointed to find "a plethora of hard-plastic panels" that "cheapens Expedition's interior ambiance," and Edmunds points out "quite a few small, cheap feeling buttons that are hard to tell apart at a glance."
Edmunds finds that "despite some noticeable noise from the tires, the Expedition's cabin remains quiet enough to carry on a conversation." ConsumerGuide says the Ford Expedition is "impressively hushed," and "road noise over most surfaces is minimal."
2010 Ford Expedition
The 2010 Ford Expedition ranks near the head of the class in safety.
Experts at TheCarConnection.com like the 2010 Ford Expedition for safety, as the big SUV comes with standard safety features and solid crash-test ratings.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has not tested the 2010 Ford Expedition. However, the Ford Expedition has been crash-tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the government's crash-test agency, and the results are impressive. After subjecting the 2010 Ford Expedition lineup to its complete range of tests, NHTSA awarded it a full five stars in every impact category, including driver and passenger protection during both front and side impacts. The only blemish is the 2010 Expedition's crash-test scorecard in the rollover rating, where NHTSA awarded only four of a possible five stars. However, the 2010 Ford Expedition remains the class leader in the safety tests.
Cars.com notes that "side-impact airbags for the front seats and side curtain airbags for all three rows of seats are standard." Edmunds reports "all major safety equipment is standard on the 2010 Ford Expedition, including antilock disc brakes with brake assist and a rollover-sensing stability control system." Kelley Blue Book elaborates by saying that "the Advancer stability controls system with Roll Stability Control modulates braking and engine power to help maintain driver control in marginal conditions, particularly those involving slippery surfaces." Kelley Blue Book also points out that for 2010, “the Ford Expedition gains standard Trailer Sway Control and the programmable MyKey system.”
With large SUVs like the 2010 Ford Expedition, driver visibility is almost always an issue. On the Expedition, "visibility is hampered by thick roof pillars and large headrests, particularly over the left shoulder," according to ConsumerGuide. ConsumerGuide recommends the optional backup camera, which is "helpful when backing up," and so does the TheCarConnection.com.
2010 Ford Expedition
The 2010 Ford Expedition is packed with more than enough tech goodies to satisfy most families.
The 2010 Ford Expedition comes well equipped as standard, but there are also plenty of options to impress.
The standard equipment on the 2010 Ford Expedition is impressive, even in XLT trim. Edmunds reports that the "well-equipped XLT" offers "automatic headlights, running boards, a Class III trailer hitch, air-conditioning (with rear controls)," and "a six-speaker CD stereo with auxiliary input jack," along with "cruise control and full power accessories." For 2010, a few new additions have joined the list of standard features, including Ford’s programmable MyKey system.
Upgrading to the Eddie Bauer edition of the Ford Expedition 2010, ConsumerGuide finds that "dual-zone automatic climate controls, leather upholstery, 10-way power driver seat, six-way power passenger seat," and "Audiophile AM/FM radio w/in-dash six -disc CD/MP3 changer" are all fitted as standard.
For the more luxurious Ford Expedition Limited trim, J.D. Power says to expect a "rear parking sensor" and "wood and leather-trimmed steering wheel" to go along with the "perforated leather seats" that come standard. Finally, the 2010 Ford Expedition King Ranch incorporates all of the Limited trim's standard features and adds "upgraded leather upholstery, [and] unique interior and exterior trim," according to ConsumerGuide. Edmunds also notes that "exclusive to the Eddie Bauer, Limited and King Ranch are a navigation system, power liftgate and a rearview backup camera." For 2010, everything from the Eddie Bauer edition up gets the Sync phone/media interface as standard.
In lesser trims, many of the Limited's features can be added as stand-alone options. Across the line, options include a "DVD entertainment system," "iPod integration," and "satellite radio," according to ConsumerGuide. Kelley Blue Book notes that a "340-watt audio system" and "PowerFold third-row seat that folds flat with the touch of a button" are also offered on the 2010 Ford Expedition. Other available features include power adjustable pedals, a perimeter alarm, and a voice-activated navigation system.