Home » The World Hated The Ford Excursion. Now It’s Becoming A Collectable Friendly-Giant

The World Hated The Ford Excursion. Now It’s Becoming A Collectable Friendly-Giant

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If the 1980s marked the rise of the minivan, the 1990s marked the rise of the SUV. Truck-based, beefy, and thoroughly divorced in capabilities and demeanor from modern crossovers, SUVs were marketed as go-anywhere, do-anything transportation for the entire family. As with any emerging segment, there’s always one automaker that pushes the boundaries of what’s possible. Before the Hummer H2 was even a twinkle in GM’s eye, another SUV had launched with gargantuan proportions. It could tow up to 11,000 pounds, had an enormous cabin, was protested against in multiple countries, and continues to be worth impressive money on the second-hand market, defying expectations of depreciation. We’re talking about a real-life Canyonero. Here’s why the Ford Excursion is still so highly desired.

Bigger, Badder, Bolder

2000 Ford Excursion

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

The Ford Excursion is a figurehead for the truck-based SUV age, but the blue oval wasn’t the first to offer a three-quarter-ton SUV. Not even close. Chevrolet had already been making three-quarter-ton Suburbans for decades before Ford introduced the Excursion in 1999, and they were fairly successful. However, Ford dialed M for Marketing when it unveiled the Excursion as a separate production line from their Suburban-rivaling Expedition, suddenly thrusting truly massive SUVs into the spotlight. At the time, it made perfect sense for the Excursion to be a separate product line from the Expedition because Ford split off its heavy-duty pickup trucks under the Super Duty sub-brand for 1999. This new truck received radically different styling from the light-duty F-150 pickup truck to go with increased capability, and it was a no-brainer to use Super Duty components to save costs on the Excursion.

Ford Excursion Interior

So how do you turn a Super Duty into an SUV? You start with a brand new frame. Yes, some architectural components of the Super Duty fit on the Excursion, which is why the two vehicles share track widths, but the Excursion gets its own unique ladder frame. Next, you take that frame and sling it under an SUV-style cab featuring a wicked set of Dutch doors. Around the back of the Excursion, the rear window lifted up and the two halves of the tailgate swung out for the best of both worlds. It was an idea shamelessly swiped from the Chevrolet Astro minivan, but it had great benefits to Excursion buyers — a half-sized liftgate was easy to open with a massive trailer hitched up. Through those nifty cargo doors, you’d find tons of room for both stuff and people. The Excursion could seat up to nine in complete comfort, with 39 inches of third-row legroom. That’s more legroom than in the backseat of a new Toyota Camry in the third row of the Excursion.

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Commodious room and nifty cargo doors are great, but Ford had bigger fish to fry, specifically not being an absolute menace in collisions. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that heavy duty pickup truck bumpers are higher than the bumpers on most sedans, and this height mismatch could have deadly consequences. Ford figured the best way to avoid these issues was to extend crash elements downwards, with a special trailer hitch out back and something called the BlockerBeam up front. Sitting several inches below the Excursion’s enormous frame horns, the BlockerBeam was a deformable crash element meant to fix bumper disparity. It was a novel solution, and an effective one at that. Left Lane News reported that in 2003, several automakers pledged to align SUV and truck crash beams with those of passenger cars by 2009. The Excursion was ahead by a decade.

[Editor’s Note: The Jeep Wrangler JK also included such a low-hanging beam, though it was called a “Compatibility Beam.” I think the JL’s front one is actually a bolt-on, where as the JK’s was integral. -DT]. 

Ford Excursion 1

With crash safety, bodywork, and interior room taken care of, Ford turned its attention to sorting the way the Excursion went down the road. Unsurprisingly, heavy duty pickup trucks historically aren’t known for ride quality. When someone complains of a truck-like ride, they aren’t talking about butter-smooth Ram 1500s, they’re talking about old work trucks. On the face of things, the Excursion was almost as ancient as trucks came. Two-wheel-drive models sported twin I-beam front suspension that first appeared in 1965. The 4×4 model? That thing came with a solid front axle, a bit like a Jeep Wrangler or a horse carriage. Still, the science of these suspension systems was largely worked out by 1999, so Ford set to work making the Excursion comfier than its open-backed sibling. We’re talking new springs, dampers, bushings, and anti-roll bars. In short, the works. The crazy part? It all worked. Period reviews were overall positive. Let’s take a look at what Car And Driver had to say in 1999 about the Excursion’s ride and handling:

As impressive as it is in shouldering aside mass quantities of air, what’s even more impressive is the Excursion’s deportment at all speeds, great and small. The steering, although limited in feel, is surprisingly quick and accurate, lending an eager feel to turn-in, and a relatively high level of roll stiffness keeps cornering attitudes gratifyingly flat. There’s a trade-off in ride quality–the Excursion is distinctly firmer than the current Suburbans–but initial compliance takes the hard edge off sharp humps, and in any case we prefer the stronger sense of control that goes with the Ford setup.

See? It’s not a weapon to surpass Metal Gear when the roads get curvy, but it’s not a complete shed either. Not bad for 226.7 inches of SUV. Oh, and that was just the start for the Excursion. For 2001, horsepower out of the diesel motor got a slight boost, fog lights became standard on Limited models, mirrors gained those nifty indicators you seemingly only saw in the aughts, and a VHS player became a late-availability option.

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For 2002, the trailer hitch receiver mounting bolts were beefed up to increase maximum towing capacity, power-adjustable pedals came online, buyers who wanted to keep their kids occupied could spec a wicked rear-seat entertainment system with a DVD player, and two new trims became available. The XLT Premium trim added alloy wheels, power front captain’s chairs, automatic headlights, rear seat audio controls, illuminated running boards, powered vent windows, a trip computer, and a stripe to the base model. The Limited Premium trim took the previous top-dog model and gave it a leather-wrapped steering wheel with climate and audio controls, heated front memory seats, Homelink, and power-adjustable pedals. Not bad, right?

Ford Excursion Dvd Player

The 2003 model year brought a new diesel engine as a mid-year option, and marked the introduction of the Eddie Bauer trim to the Excursion lineup which effectively replaced the non-premium Limited trim with a flourish of champagne paint. 2003 also brought minor quality-of-life improvements, like an entry grab handle for the driver and a reversible cargo mat on Limited models. For 2004, trim levels got re-jigged again, with the XLT Premium simply becoming the XLT, and the XLT becoming the XLS. That may sound confusing, but it actually made things a whole lot simpler in showrooms.

The final 2005 model year brought larger cosmetic changes, giving the Excursion Ford’s then-new tri-bar corporate grille. Flanked by new headlamps, it brought the Excursion’s styling into the mid-aughts, although some prefer the purity of earlier models. The base XLS trim also gained 16-inch aluminum wheels, a nice way of jazzing up the entry-level model’s appearance.

Getting Oily

Ford Excursion 2

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Over its seven model year lifespan, the Ford Excursion was offered with four different engines, all of which are varying degrees of good. At the bottom of the heap sat the six-liter Powerstroke diesel V8 that was absolutely terrible. Fundamentally, it’s a Navistar VT365, a flawed engine that’s expensive to put right. Bulletproof Diesel built a solid name fixing issues with these 6.0-liter diesel engines, and its list of common documented problems is impressive. The oil coolers fail, the EGR coolers get plugged up with carbon, the 48-volt fuel injection control module wears out over time, head studs pull out of the block, and the factory water pump’s plastic impeller cracks. Granted, these aren’t insurmountable issues. In Bulletproof Diesel’s words, “Sure enough, there was a way to make these engines reliable and durable without sacrificing power.” However, it can be quite costly to fix the 6.0’s factory flaws.

Next up the chain is the gasoline-powered 5.4-liter two-valve Modular V8, which is the definition of an engine. Alright, so maybe the spark plugs didn’t always like their homes and maybe 255 horsepower and 350 lb.-ft. of torque just weren’t enough for a vehicle this big, but the 5.4 would live life in the right lane for pretty much as long as you like. There’s nothing here that’s outstanding, which is why the 5.4 isn’t particularly desirable. Speaking of gasoline-powered engines, the 6.8-liter Triton V10 was a marked step up in performance from the 5.4-liter mod motor. Sure, early examples could still eject spark plugs and fuel economy wasn’t brilliant, but 310 horsepower and 425 lb.-ft. of torque isn’t bad any way you slice it.

The indisputable holy grail of Excursion engines is the 7.3-liter Powerstroke diesel V8, a Navistar T444E that’s tough as nails. It’s not nearly as costly to keep a 7.3-liter Powerstroke on the road compared to a 6.0, and fuel economy is markedly better than on gasoline-powered models. Now, since the Excursion isn’t a light-duty vehicle, we don’t have EPA stickers to go by. However, Fuelly is an app that lets drivers track their fuel consumption, so it’s a large bank of data on real-world vehicle mileage. Based on data submitted by Fuelly users, the 7.3-liter Powerstroke Excursion averages 13.76 mpg. That’s not great, but the 6.8-liter gasoline-powered V10 is averaging 9.67 mpg, while the 5.4-liter V8 is averaging 10.55 mpg. Who wouldn’t kill for about a 30 percent improvement in fuel economy?

Oh So Controversial

Ford Excursion 3

Despite being an absolute beast for towing huge things with the family, not everyone liked the Ford Excursion. Like the Hummer H2 and Eminem, Ford’s biggest SUV became something to demonstrate against. In 2004, the Orlando Sentinel wrote:

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A group of environmental activists has initiated “Jumpstart Ford,” a series of protests at Ford dealers in the United States and Canada to force what it calls “the EPA’s worst-ranked automaker to stop driving America’s oil addiction,” according to the Chicago Tribune.

The group said it will use “creative interventions ranging from street theater to one-on-one meetings with dealers” to deliver its message. And the message is that “Ford’s addiction to oil is a crime against humanity” and that Ford is “responsible for global warming” not to mention “dangers to public health, national security, economic stability and human rights.”

Yeah, the 2000s wasn’t the most rational decade in history. It turns out, oil-related concerns about national security were largely hyperbolic, high-margin vehicles help automakers achieve economic stability, giant SUVs aren’t even close to reaching the pantheon of high crimes against the environment, and human rights? It’s a noble cause, but the human rights effects of SUVs are low down the list of priorities.”

Ford Excursion 4

Needless to say, the protests didn’t amount to a whole lot, even in the short term. The Chicago Tribune reported that Jumpstart Ford tried claiming victory when dealership group AutoNation co-signed a plug-in hybrid initiative in 2006. However, the initiative didn’t have anything to do with the protests.

Rather, the protests were Jumpstart’s way to pressure the auto chain to refuse to buy any vehicles from Ford unless it stops building big SUVs, pickups or any other machine Jumpstart feels consumes too much petroleum. It is Jumpstart Ford, after all.

To that demand, AutoNation told Jumpstart to go jump or something to that effect.

You can’t argue with crazy. These days, while Ford builds a mix of battery electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids, traditional series-parallel hybrids, and good ol’ fuel-burners, it’s selling fewer cars than ever. Just about the only thing it sells in America that isn’t an SUV, crossover, truck, or van is the Mustang. America’s favorite vehicle is still the Ford F-Series pickup truck, and the general sedan market is smaller than anyone would’ve imagined in the mid-aughts. However, the Excursion was discontinued at the end of 2005, replacing it with a long-wheelbase Expedition that held greater mass appeal. Oh, the power of the almighty dollar.

Time Heals All Wounds

Ford Excursion 5

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Looking back from where we are now, all the backlash and hysteria over three-quarter-ton SUVs seems ridiculous. The Jeep Wagoneer L measures identically to the Excursion from stem to stern, is 3.6 inches wider and eight-tenths of an inch taller than an Excursion, and elicits little more derision than the occasional eye-roll. The current Chevrolet Suburban is almost Excursion big, yet it isn’t viewed as completely preposterous either. Even crazier? It’s not like these new vehicles are objectively more capable than the Excursion. Despite more power and bigger brakes, the Jeep Wagoneer L falls 1,000 pounds short of matching the 7.3-liter 4×4 Excursion’s maximum towing capacity of 11,000 pounds, and the Chevrolet Suburban doesn’t come close. Oh, and the GMT800 three-quarter-ton Suburban eclipsed even the Excursion with a maximum towing capacity of 12,000 pounds.

These days, nice Ford Excursions trade for impressive money, depending on engine. Gasoline-powered examples are still semi-affordable, such as this two-owner V10-powered Excursion selling for $16,016 on Cars & Bids back in 2021. Models with the questionable six-liter Powerstroke engine aren’t at the top of the value heap, but nice ones are still expensive. This one-owner Excursion with 74,000 miles sold for $27,400 on Bring A Trailer. As for nice examples with the 7.3-liter Powerstroke V8, this one-owner example with 64,000 miles sold on Bring A Trailer in August for $46,000. There’s still huge demand for these Excursions, partly because they never got a successor and partly because they’re still great at towing. Of course, it also helps that Ford sold enough Excursions for them to not be excessively rare, but few enough that good ones are getting thin on the ground. Sales data claims 195,405 were sold in America between 1999 and 2005, fewer than the number of Explorers Ford sold in 2022 alone.

The Future Is Big

2003 Ford Excursion

Could three-quarter-ton SUVs be poised for a comeback? Possibly. With states like California pushing for all-EV deadlines on new cars and light trucks, one potential solution for drivers whose needs just aren’t compatible with EVs is a segment of vehicles too heavy to be light-duty. We already have plenty of heavy duty pickup trucks gallivanting about, what difference does it make if some of them don’t have beds? Of course, some people would buy three-quarter-ton SUVs for the culture war, but others would often tow big trailers with them, a current sore spot for EVs.

Megarexx Svn

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Of course, you don’t have to wait for Ford to build another Excursion. Wilmington, N.C.-based MegaRexx will sell you something called the SVN, a three-row SUV based on heavy duty bones. Bring them a brand new Ford Super Duty and for as little as $40,000, they’ll convert it into an SUV with entirely aluminum bodywork and add a third row of seats. There is a fairly visible additional roll bar for third-row roof stiffness and seatbelt mounting, and the coachwork is a matter of taste, but this is one option for a seriously big SUV. If that doesn’t appeal to you, might I suggest a restomod of sorts? There’s a whole market out there for worked-over Broncos and Land Cruisers, and the Excursion will undoubtedly fall into the same camp of classic SUV someday. Now, I’m not expecting Jonathan Ward to go to town making an ICON Excursion, but I wouldn’t be surprised if someone starts taking in rusty old examples of these rigs and giving them new leases on life.

With much of the vitriol of the aughts faded, the Ford Excursion can now be seen for what it is — a damn fine machine for a specific type of work. People who love them these days often have owned more than one. It’s a big, friendly giant that’s not as ginormous as it used to be, an unintended side effect of a bigger world. Literally and figuratively, the Ford Excursion is the next big thing in collectable SUVs. If you need to tow long distances with an entire crew onboard, buy one while prices are still reasonable.

(Photo credits: Ford, MegaRexx Trucks)

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SYKO Simmons
SYKO Simmons
9 months ago

I love my Ford excursion, it’s one of the best riding and capable vehicles I’ve ever owned. Sometimes I do drive it as a daily driver all by myself, but it does tow my customers cars, picks up parts, and travels with a few people with ease. I’ll happily keep filling it full of dino juice for years to come and sell it at a huge profit. Also note….I have both 4×4 and a 2wd… Great trucks !

C Donovan
C Donovan
9 months ago

A 7.3 monstrously lifted Excursion towing a SandRail… outside a Trader Joes in SLO, CA… Sublime

Matthew Hogan
Matthew Hogan
9 months ago

you are killing me smalls. These things were collector items over 15 years ago. I bought one, put nearly 300K on the 90k it had on it, and sold it for a profit. No one has ever made anything since that touches what these could do.

05Mil Machine
05Mil Machine
9 months ago

My 2005 V10 XLT 4×4 was my favorite hauler. It did everything I asked of it every time. Even with 44 gallon fillups it was a joy to own. I did always keep a different smaller clunker around, but my Excursion was always there to haul them home when they stranded me. It hauled scout groups places, family outings hauling toys, and helped me move twice when the military sent me places. I sold it a few years ago for more than I could turn down and still miss it.

ES
ES
9 months ago

“Ford’s addiction to oil is a crime against humanity” and that Ford is “responsible for global warming” not to mention “dangers to public health, national security, economic stability and human rights.” – hyperbolic, hysteric, over-the-top, sure. But wrong? not sure.

  • atmospheric pollution and pedestrian fatalities are ongoing and increasing dangers to public health
  • how much of our international policy this century is reflective of our perceived historical need to secure the Gulf to the west?
  • economic stability, have you read the groans in these comment sections vis-a-vis the outstripping of wages by new car purchases and fuel costs?
  • human rights, i got nothing, unless we want to discuss the leaving behind of the working class (see point 3), or resource exploitation of the first world being a zero sum contest against the third world.

“The Jeep Wagoneer L measures identically to the Excursion from stem to stern, is 3.6 inches wider and eight-tenths of an inch taller than an Excursion, and elicits little more derision than the occasional eye-roll. ” – exhaustion.

488Magnum
488Magnum
9 months ago

I get the appeal. Just bought a 1990 Suburban to restore and replace my 2018 Ram as the main family hauler. Complicated electronics will kill that truck. Crazy thing is its 10″ shorter than my current crew cab short box pickup and has more room in it.

VanGuy
VanGuy
9 months ago

I’m so glad for this article. I’ve always been fascinated by the Excursion as a business and marketing case study.

Jonathan Green
Jonathan Green
9 months ago

I remember that there were articles at the time suggesting that it be called the “Ford Valdez”….

FloorMatt
FloorMatt
9 months ago

I just had the opportunity to meet a couple of these in northern New Mexico. They (one 7.3L, and one V10) were used to haul around passengers and crew, while towing hot air balloon rigs on dual-axle trailers. They had to be able to 4×4 up arroyos to recover hot air balloons, and haul 8 adults safely and in comfort. Certainly not the only vehicle that could do this job, but probably one of the best. Nice trucks.

Acid Tonic
Acid Tonic
9 months ago

No mention of the big block Avalanch?

AceRimmer
AceRimmer
9 months ago

Hated them then, hate them now. Oversized, wasteful bro-machines.

ADDvanced
ADDvanced
9 months ago
Reply to  AceRimmer

Anything that has a 7.3 powerstroke in it, is a great vehicle tho. Otherwise I’d agree.

Jeremiah McKenna
Jeremiah McKenna
9 months ago

Once the 4 door fullsized trucks became commonplace, the 2500s took the place of the 3/4 ton Suburban. You know, since GM sells the most trucks anyway. But I wouldn’t be surprised if GM were to make a 3/4 ton Suburban/Tahoe, Yukon in a lower and mid trim level, and sold every one of them before the middle of December.

Jeremiah McKenna
Jeremiah McKenna
9 months ago

I worked at a Toyota dealership, and the owner also owned three Ford dealerships. He could not keep the Excursion on the lots, new or used. Those things would fly off as soon as they landed. Many were pre-sold anyway. Any time one was traded in at the Toyota store, we always knew it would be a hot item.

There are three that live in my neighborhood. I have seen one a few years back that the owner bought a 2018 (I believe) F-350 am that was severely rear-ended and did a complete front clip swap. Man did it look like something that would sell like crazy, yet again.

Studdley
Studdley
9 months ago

Coming to a cycling club near you!

RidesBicyclesButLovesCars
RidesBicyclesButLovesCars
9 months ago

My one experience driving an Excursion was driving one across the Detroit Metro for work to pickup something large. I got stuck returning to the office in rush hour traffic. Fortunately, people recognized the bulk of the vehicle and cleared the adjacent lane when I turned on the blinker!

Scott
Scott
9 months ago

Thanks for another comprehensive and interesting article Thomas. Of course, I recall all the furor around the Excursion back then. I think some of that hubbub can be attributed to the rapid growth (both in size and popularity) of the SUV market at the time. Yes, there were some Suburbans around before that, but after the crazy success of the Explorer, some folks thought there might be just as many Expeditions and Excursions eventually, though that didn’t quite come to pass.

The lack of current/mainstream noise surrounding the size of the Wagoneer/L and similar vehicles is due, I think, simply to exposure: by now, everyone’s long since used to seeing these gigantic blocky behemoths from time to time, so an enormous, chrome-laden Chrysler that somehow costs $100K barely raises an eyebrow, let alone a protest movement.

I bought my first SUV a few years ago, just before the pandemic. I hadn’t even been looking to buy a car… just browsing the local Craigslist ads with my morning coffee as so many of us probably do. Ten minutes away was a single-owner 5cyl/FWD Volvo XC90 with 130Kmiles on it (2004, so first gen) asking $3,100. I barely googled for 30 seconds to see if the price was fair (it was) and if there were any horrific/known flaws (there weren’t) so I drove over there via my bank. After a brief test drive and look under the hood and at the floor pan (everything was intact, clean and dry) I bought it on the spot and drove it home. Didn’t even negotiate… it was just too nice.

Despite never having had anything that large before, I’ve somehow managed to fill it up several times: with firewood, equipment and tools, furniture, as many as five dogs at once, etc… etc… etc… It’s just big and comfortable and safe-feeling, and despite being almost 20 years old, there’s barely a rattle to be heard. My primary complaint about it is (of course) around-town MPG, which hovers around 16 no matter what. Highway can occasionally see as high as 30, but I mostly just drive local streets (and up hills) so 16 is what I average on most tankfuls. Oh, that 20-year-old Volvo leather is too thin too.

Of course, despite the XC90 being the biggest thing Volvo made at the time (I hear there’s an electric minivan coming… maybe called EM90?) to my eye, my XC90 seems barely mid-sized compared to today’s offerings… really, the current Toyota Highlander looks about as big as my old Volvo. At least, to me.

That Whistlin’ Diesel youtube guy recently did a video about the 6.0 liter Ford diesel you mentioned as being the least desirable among Excursion offerings. I’m not a huge fan of his stuff, but there did seem to be a comedy of errors related to the way the 6.0 was designed.

Thanks again Thomas. 🙂

Last edited 9 months ago by Scott
Clark B
Clark B
9 months ago
Reply to  Scott

I’ve always had a soft spot for those Volvos. I think it’s aged very well, all things considered. And I agree, it seems positively normal-sized these days. Especially if you live in a place where one sees an enormous lifted full-size truck just about any time you hit the road. Which I do. I think I saw about three on my way to the grocery today (about a five minute drive).

Scott
Scott
9 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

Yah, it doesn’t really strike me as looking two decades old… the ‘shoulders’ or ‘haunches’ that Volvo used throughout its lineup at the time still add visual interest (though it narrows the greenhouse a bit) and of course, there are those delightfully odd-shaped taillights. 🙂 The screenless interior is more obviously dated of course, but it’s high end for 90s/00s design and generally nicely put together, with real wood and green alphanumeric LEDs. As mentioned, the leather isn’t spectacular when its 20 years old, but maybe the original owner always parked this one outside or something. Eventually, I’ll get sheepskin seat covers for it.

I think the first generation XC90 came with a total of four different engines during it’s run: low and high-pressure turbos 5s, a 6, and even a V8. Mine is the most modest of the bunch (the low-pressure 5) but it provides ample power IMO, and city MPG is already low enough that given a choice I’d still take my current FWD over AWD. In Europe of course, diesels were offered, which I’d prefer, having driven a VW TDI for over 20 mostly-happy years.

I dream about someday retrofitting it with a modest supplemental electric drive system, just to get the car moving from a stop up to about 20 MPH. Maybe salvaged from an old Leaf? That alone would improve the city MPG noticeably I think. It’s the accelerate-from-a-stop and going uphill when the realtime MPG readout spends time in the single digits.

Last edited 9 months ago by Scott
Mike B
Mike B
9 months ago
Reply to  Scott

The low pressure 2.5 is definitely the one to get, it’s the most reliable out of the bunch. Just remember to do the timing belt! Mine has 233k and has been great, only engine issue was a cam phaser that was about a $400 repair. The car still ran, just not great.

Scott
Scott
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike B

Thanks for the reminder Mike… I think the prior owner did the belt (I’ll check the receipts he gave me) but if not, I’ll add it to my list. 🙂

Ariel E Jones
Ariel E Jones
9 months ago

I have a friend who bought one of these in about 2015, with about 120kmi and the 6.0 diesel for just over $20k. I thought he was out of his mind. Since then he has probably dropped $30k+ into it. Bulletproofing the engine, lift tires, wheels, tires, fixing creeping rust, etc., etc., etc. This asshole commutes it by himself, 30 miles each way to work and probably has 1/4 million miles by now. He’s out of his mind. And no, he NEVER TOWS ANYTHING.

Mike F.
Mike F.
9 months ago
Reply to  Ariel E Jones

This is what people like me figure at least half of the owners of these behemoths do with them, and it’s why I’m disposed to hate the things. I have to constantly remind myself that there are people who really do tow a lot of stuff or routinely use them to haul a lot of stuff and therefore have an honest use for them.

Don Mynack
Don Mynack
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike F.

Judge much?

Mike F.
Mike F.
9 months ago
Reply to  Don Mynack

Yeah, like most of us, unfortunately.

SYKO Simmons
SYKO Simmons
9 months ago
Reply to  Ariel E Jones

You don’t sound like that great of a Freind being so judgemental.

Tony Ozrelic
Tony Ozrelic
9 months ago

Q. What are the largest manmade objects you can see from the Space Station?

A. The Great Wall of China and the Ford Excursion.

-Jay Leno

Dead Elvis, Inc.
Dead Elvis, Inc.
9 months ago
Reply to  Tony Ozrelic

Leno’s chin should be part of that list.

(“Manmade” includes men & women in that instance. Or more specifically here, Angelo & Catherine Leno.)

Clark B
Clark B
9 months ago

At least the man has a sense of humor about it. I recently saw he has voiced himself on South Park, not a common thing on that show!

Sean O'Brien
Sean O'Brien
9 months ago

Model bloat is definitely a thing. I love parking my XJ Cherokee, a mid-size SUV when it came out in a lot full of compact crossovers and not being able to find it.

Still, the comparison above does leave out fuel economy. Those new vehicles aren’t great by any means, with sub-20mpg economy, but they’re still a good bit better than these old engines.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
9 months ago

Well thank you for the knowledge that the new Jeep Wagoneer is over 80″ wide, I had no idea.

That makes me hate it so much more. There’s a reason that until the last couple years, there was never ever a single passenger vehicle sold over 80 inches wide that wasn’t a dually or Raptor: there’s literally no reason.

My 80 inch wide pickup comfortably seats three across. Unless you have four seats across, there is no excuse. I’m looking at you, Hummer EV and apparently now Wagoneer.

Uninformed Fucknugget
Uninformed Fucknugget
9 months ago

I owned a loaded up 2001 with the V10. One of the best vehicles I’ve ever had and the only one I wish I hadn’t sold. It always averaged 10.5 mpg no matter what I did with it. Towed anything I hooked up to it with ease and super comfortable to drive for hours.

Dead Elvis, Inc.
Dead Elvis, Inc.
9 months ago

10.5 mpg no matter what

Fairly typical of that mill, no? At least if it’s the same one found in so many Ford chassis cab setups. I’ve seen that in empty box trucks, and in heavily laden 26′ Penkse rentals towing cars on trailers.

IRegertNothing, Esq.
IRegertNothing, Esq.
9 months ago

The E-350 box truck with the V10 that I rented got around 9mpg after I had a small house packed into it. Holy shit, that beast loved gas. It hauled like a train though, so for one day of hard work I could accept the hefty fuel bill.

Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
9 months ago

9 mpg but it hauled more than three times as much as a vehicle that gets 27mpg. It’s actually one of the more efficient vehicles you’ve ever driven.

Clark B
Clark B
9 months ago

I’ve driven a few Uhauls with that engine over the years. Fully loaded or empty, same fuel economy, and pulled just as strong. Strangely fell in love with it after a couple hours behind the wheel.

DadBod
DadBod
9 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

Those F450 UHauls are so fun to drive, it’s more yacht than car.

OrigamiSensei
OrigamiSensei
9 months ago

When I went shopping for my full-size adventure/utility/towing/high passenger count conveyance I really looked for an Excursion or a 3/4 ton Suburban or 4WD converted E-350 but everyone wanted more money than I was willing to pay. I settled for a regular old 1/2 ton Suburban but in truth that has been more than enough to do the job and I’ve never been sorry. I still like the Excursion, though.

TheHairyNug
TheHairyNug
9 months ago
Reply to  OrigamiSensei

The 5.3 and auto combination that went into the Suburban for a while is an absolute dog, but it does fine. I’d rather have the 2500, but at least the 5.3 will last for a while if you change that stupid O-ring in the oil pickup tube

Mike B
Mike B
9 months ago
Reply to  OrigamiSensei

I researched building one of these, and advice I got from other owners was that the half ton GMT800 was actually preferable for off-road use, because the half ton transmission had a much lower first gear than the 3/4 ton transmission. I’d still love to have an 8.1L 2500 for the hell of it though.

TheHairyNug
TheHairyNug
9 months ago
Reply to  Mike B

the 1/2 ton transmission is a notorious failure point. You can feel it destroying itself basically every time it shifts. I’m surprised to hear that some consider it preferable

Mike B
Mike B
9 months ago
Reply to  TheHairyNug

I’ve been told it depends on how you’ve treated and maintained it. I have a coworker who bought a Sierra 1500 new in ’01, which has the same transmission. He finally upgraded to a new truck a few years back, his ’01 was slightly over 300K on the original trans by that point. It was actually a really reliable truck for him. A water pump here, a wheel bearing there, but no big failures that he couldn’t fix himself. I think the biggest pain he had was when the spare tire winch froze up and his son got stuck with the truck with a flat. Common problem with rust belt vehicles, I prob have the same issue with my 4Runner.

I’ve also been told a lot of times the lines leak and the tranny runs low on fluid, and that can eventually kill them if it’s not addressed.

Is Travis
Is Travis
9 months ago

The Triton V10 is a pile of shit, from all I have heard, but that was all when shopping motorhomes based on vans.

Andreas8088
Andreas8088
9 months ago
Reply to  Is Travis

I dunno, I owned a Chinook Concourse with the v10 for about 6 years and never had a single problem with it. Plenty of power for that RV, and regardless of if I was towing or not, heavy on the throttle or not…. going 55 or 75mph…. it got 10 or 11 MPG. So, you hated it when you were just driving, but were impressed when towing a huge heavy trailer. 🙂

Ariel E Jones
Ariel E Jones
9 months ago
Reply to  Andreas8088

That’s how my ’18 Silverado 2500 6.0 is. The gas mileage is always shitty. Just not really much shittier when I’m towing a lot of weight.

Last edited 9 months ago by Ariel E Jones
Rust Buckets
Rust Buckets
9 months ago
Reply to  Is Travis

It’s no worse than the triton v8, since it’s 120% of a v8. People hate on them but they routinely last hundreds of thousands of miles if you change the plugs occasionally and keep oil in the thing. Drive one the other day with 280k on it and putting like a kitten. Know somebody who had like 320k on theirs before it succumbed to spark plug ejection.

As far as I can tell, they literally aren’t bad engines.

SYKO Simmons
SYKO Simmons
9 months ago
Reply to  Is Travis

So….you haven’t actually owned anything with it..then … My V10 is wonderful, what you got to do is leave your purse at home…because they have to be driven high in the revs and they love it. Consequently….the exhaust note is beautiful at that time and unrivaled! My V10 excursion gets more use than my 7.3 F250….literally does everything better.

Clayton
Clayton
9 months ago

I have a 2000 Excursion with the 7.3l. It has worked extremely well for us in the multiple-use role of lotsa-people-hauler AND towing a 10k dump trailer and hauling equipment. Another unmentioned benefit, at least in my state of residence (PA) is that the state charges it as normal passenger vehicle registration (~$40-something) instead of the $202/yr of a comparable 3/4 ton truck.

My biggest complaint is that the body is basically rusting away around it. Also, it’s definitely loud AF. It needs new injectors, but I’m debating fixing the body work first before dumping money into the powertrain (I’m sure the transmission will be next, haha). But it’s a beast. My Fuelly avg is actually a shade over 14mpg.

VanGuy
VanGuy
9 months ago
Reply to  Clayton

I try not to succumb to my baser instincts of “loud noise cool”, but the sound of the 7.3 PowerStroke is special to me.

SYKO Simmons
SYKO Simmons
9 months ago
Reply to  Clayton

I got a parts excursion down here in Georgia….rust free…perfect rockers

Clark B
Clark B
9 months ago

When I was in middle school, around 2006 or so, a friend’s mom had one. A diesel, but I can’t remember which. They had three kids and absolutely nothing to tow or haul, so I think Mom just wanted the biggest thing she could buy. I don’t remember much about it other than “loud” “big” and “filthy.” Last I heard, it died several years later and they let the repo men come for it. Based on when it died, they must have been making payments on it for nearly a decade.

DadBod
DadBod
9 months ago
Reply to  Clark B

I want to hear more about this family and their terrible decisions

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