The same 3.5-liter EcoBoost twin-turbocharged V6 engine that powers the F-150 is coming to the Ford Expedition for 2015. It will be a true test of the engine’s versatility.
So far as we can tell, the 2015 Ford Expedition will still be based on Ford’s full-size truck bones — it will continue being built on the same assembly line as the Super Duty pickup trucks, no less. That means this would be a heavier vehicle than the Ford F-150 half-ton pickup truck in which this engine is perhaps best known. A cargo bed doesn’t weigh as much as a passenger compartment as large as the Expedition’s.
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 is also used in altered form in the Ford Explorer, the Ford Flex, the Ford Taurus SHO, the Ford Police Interceptor, and several others. Expect the version used in the Expedition to be the hottest of the bunch, given the Expedition’s position as the biggest utility vehicle in Ford’s lineup.
A press release from Ford said the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 will be the only engine offered in the titanic SUV, which is available in two wheelbases — the longest being 131 inches between the axles. The release said the new EcoBoost engine “dramatically changes the driving characteristics of Expedition.
“Compared with the 5.4-liter V8, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost gives drivers not just better fuel economy, but more power and torque on demand at very low engine speeds,” the release continued.
Ford Truck Group Marketing Manager Doug Scott said, “Expedition becoming the latest Ford utility vehicle to wear the EcoBoost badge will be exciting for customers. Increased torque and horsepower, combined with new levels of efficiency and an advancedsuspension not only will make Expedition more fun to drive, but also easier to own. This is another ‘and’ solution from Ford.”
Ford said it will pair the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 in the 2015 Ford Excursion with a six-speed SelectShift automatic transmission. If my last experience in a big, trucky V6-powered beast is anything to go by, a lot will depend on how Ford tunes that transmission. Lean too much toward fuel economy-biased tuning, and you’ll have a “meh”-tastic throttle response. The turbos of the EcoBoost engine will help, but the best results will come with a careful balance of powertrain elements from the engine to the transmission to the final drive chunk.