The Ford Excursion represents the largest SUV sold in the U.S. It measures six inches taller and 7.4 inches longer than the Chevrolet Suburban and it seats up to nine people. It uses rear drive and offers an optional all-wheel-drive feature that you must manually disengage when you switch from offroad to pavement.
Since the Excursion is a long SUV Ford makes a rear obstacle-sensing system available for all models, which alerts you of objects behind the Excursion. This makes parking this vehicle easier.
Body Styles: SUV
Engines: 5.4-liter V-8, 6.8-liter V-10, 6.0-liter turbo-diesel V-8
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic
Models: Ford Excursion XLS, Ford Excursion XLT, Ford Excursion Eddie Bauer, Ford Excursion Limited
2004 marks the final production year for the Excursion. Ford gives this big SUV a new, optional 6.0-liter, turbo-diesel V-8 to provide more power. This new engine has more torque, cleaner emissions, and better fuel economy than the gasoline engine. Ford also adds wireless headphone connectivity for the rear-seat entertainment system and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror as optional features. The XLT loses its body-side molding and illuminated running boards, and all of the trim levels get reorganized for clarity.
The 2004 Ford Excursion XLS includes power heated mirrors, digital keypad power doors, power windows, 16-inch steel wheels, intermittent windshield and rear wipers, privacy glass, a rear defogger, step running boards, a roof rack, and a manual flip-up liftgate window. The XLT features 16-inch alloy wheels and power-opening rear quarter windows. The Limited adds heated power mirrors as well.
The exterior of the Excursion looks large and imposing. It sports a front end that recalls big rigs, with its prominent body-colored grille and bold lines. It comes in six paint colors. Lifting the rear liftgate and opening the rear doors can be challenging, but loading the cargo area seems relatively easy.
Interior standard features for the 2004 Ford Excursion XLS include manually folding second- and third-row bench seats, cloth upholstery, split-bench front seats with manually adjustable lumbar support, folding rear seatbacks, and a leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel. It also comes with power steering; 12V power outlets in the front, rear, and cargo areas; and dual-zone air conditioning. The XLT adds six-way power driver and passenger captain’s chairs with manually adjustable lumbar support and height adjustment. The Eddie Bauer features leather upholstery, adjustable pedals, rear parking sensors, tri-zone climate control, and rear volume controls for the CD-controller and stereo system. The Limited adds heated driver and passenger seats, a universal remote transmitter for the garage, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio and cruise controls.
This SUV has a cockpit with a good layout, but the controls for the stereo and climate control system seem placed a bit too far from the driver. Even though the height of the Excursion gives you a commanding view of the road, thick roof pillars, wide headrests, and the dark tinting on the windows hinder visibility. The interior looks stark and plain, but the décor becomes more personable as you venture further up the trim levels.
Performance & Handling
Powering this SUV is a standard 5.4-liter, single overhead cam (SOHC) V-8 that makes 255 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. Also, it pairs with standard a four-speed automatic transmission with rear drive. You can also get the optional 6.0-liter, overhead valve (OHV), turbo-diesel V-8 that produces 235 horsepower and 560 lb-ft of torque. The 2004 Ford Excursion sits atop a solid live axle suspension in the front and rear. When equipped with the V-10 engine, it can tow up to 11,000 pounds.
The V-10 engine displays good acceleration and provides adequate power for highway passing and merging. The ride feels smooth on pristine pavement, but the bumpier the road becomes, the bumpier the ride gets. Steering seems vague and maneuvering this big SUV can become a chore. Stopping distance remains long despite strong brakes. The cabin stays quiet and sufficiently free of wind and road noise. The engine produces a minimum amount of noise at highway speeds.
The 2004 Ford Excursion features four-wheel anti-lock brakes, front airbags, and a remote anti-theft alarm system. It also has ventilated front disc and solid rear drum brakes, an engine immobilizer, and electronic brake force distribution.
EPA Fuel Economy
Ford Excursion XLS: 9/11 mpg city/highway
Ford Excursion XLT: 9/11 mpg city/highway
Ford Excursion Eddie Bauer: 9/11 mpg city/highway
Ford Excursion Limited: 9/11 mpg city/highway
- Impressive towing capacity
- Optional diesel engine
- Comfortable seats
- Lots of passenger room
- Lots of cargo room
You Won't Like
- Large size makes it unwieldy to maneuver
- Truck-like driving
- Poor ride quality
- Dismal fuel economy
- Poor rear visibility
A large SUV with poor fuel economy and excellent towing capability.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Chevrolet Suburban
- Toyota Sequoia
- Volvo XC90
- Buick Rainier