Ad Radar

2003 Ford Excursion

Get A Dealer Quote

Compare Dealer Clearance Prices and SAVE

  • Review

2003 Ford Excursion Review

A good choice for buyers who really need a huge SUV.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 2003 Ford Excursion is a massive sport utility vehicle (SUV) for buyers whose idea of utility involves towing a small building or hauling around a basketball team. It's a special type of vehicle given its huge size, is difficult to maneuver in parking areas, and has horrible fuel economy. It is something that one’s driving skills must adjust to. In short, it's something that buyers should consider if they really, really need such a humongous vehicle that justifies lousy economy and several driving inconveniences. It has few rivals, namely the GMC Yukon and Chevy Suburban and even they aren’t as large. This is about as big as it gets, so decide accordingly.

The Range

Body Styles: SUV
Engines: 5.4-liter V-8, 6.8-liter V-10, 6.0-liter V-8, 7.3-liter V-8
Transmissions: four-speed automatic
Models: Excursion XLT Value, Excursion XLT Premium, Excursion Eddie Bauer, Excursion Limited

What's New

The 2003 Ford Excursion gets a new Eddie Bauer trim level. Limited models get new aluminum wheels, a six-disc in-dash CD changer, cherrywood interior trim and a reversible cargo mat. There is a new 6.0-liter, turbodiesel engine connected to an all new five-speed TorqShift automatic transmission. There is also a new off-road package for those buyers curious to know what it’s like to drive a small school bus on the trail. All trim models get revised front suspensions to improve ride and handling quality.


The 2003 Ford Excursion massive SUV comes equipped with a gas or diesel engine and four trims for each engine type: XLT, XLT Premium, Eddie Bauer, and Limited. All models can be either two- or four-wheel drive. XLT models are as well-equipped as one expects from a flagship SUV, while XLT Premium versions add automatic headlights, power rear quarter windows, illuminated running boards, and aluminum wheels. The Eddie Bauer trim includes fog lights and turn signal side view mirrors. The Limited trim adds body-color trim. Since driving it is like driving a commercial vehicle, the optional reverse sensing system is highly recommended.


The 2003 Ford Excursion XLT trim starts off with plenty of the basic gear and some nice extras. The XLT Premium adds rear audio controls, a trip computer, and front captain's chairs. The Eddie Bauer models include Arizona Beige trim, automatic climate control, and power adjustable pedals. The Limited throws in a premium audio system, heated front seats, a reversible cargo mat, a memory feature for seats, and pedals and a HomeLink universal transmitter. A family-helpful option for the XLT Premium, Eddie Bauer, and Limited trims is a DVD-based rear seat entertainment system. Stand-alone options include an in-dash six-disc CD changer for all trim levels except for Limited trim and second row captain's chairs that are available on Eddie Bauer and Limited trims.

Performance & Handling

The 2003 Ford Excursion can be had as a two-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive. Standard on all models is a 5.4-liter V-8 producing 255 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. Optional engines include a 6.8-liter V-10 that produces 310 horsepower and 425 lb-ft of torque or a 7.3-liter, Power Stroke turbodiesel V-8 that develops 250 horsepower and a massive 525 lb-ft of torque. All engines mate to a four-speed automatic transmission. A more powerful and efficient 6.0-liter turbodiesel producing 325 horsepower and 550 lb-ft of torque that gives up to 10 percent better fuel economy and 20 percent lower emissions is the final engine option. It hooks up to a new five-speed automatic transmission that features higher first- and second-gear ratios to help launch with heavier cargo. It can tow 11,000 pounds when properly equipped and handles well for such a large vehicle. It is a nightmare in parking lots and garages. The ride isn’t bad and with all of the features and refinement it is better than similarly-sized vehicles.


The 2003 Ford Excursion comes standard with four-wheel disc anti-lock brakes and dual front airbags. Safety equipment optional for all models includes power adjustable foot pedals and a reverse sensing system. It includes a Blockbeam at the front of the frame to help dissipate crash energy during a collision with a smaller vehicle so as to not completely destroy said smaller vehicle. Neither the IIHS not the NHTSA has performed crash tests.

EPA Fuel Economy

Ford Excursion gas models: 8/9 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Passenger space
  • Cargo capacity
  • Towing ability
  • Available diesel engine
  • Optional entertainment system

You Won't Like

  • Price
  • Lousy fuel economy
  • Drives like a truck
  • Unwieldy size
  • Rear visibility

Sum Up

A good choice for buyers who really need a huge SUV.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Chevrolet Suburban
  • GMC Yukon

Similarly Priced Vehicles