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Ford has a lineup of highly capable SUVs, which includes the midsize Explorer and the full-size Expedition. Find out the differences between them in this 2023 Ford Explorer vs. 2023 Expedition comparison.

2023 Ford Explorer vs. 2023 Expedition: What are the differences?

Front angle view of Iconic Silver 2023 Ford Explorer midsize SUV
Iconic Silver 2023 Ford Explorer | Ford

In this 2023 Ford Explorer vs. 2023 Expedition SUV comparison, we evaluated several areas. This includes performance, gas mileage, towing, off-road capabilities, safety, passenger and cargo space, warranty coverage, reliability, and price.

Explorer vs. Expedition: Performance

Front angle view of Agate Black Metallic 2023 Ford Expedition full-size SUV
Agate Black Metallic 2023 Ford Expedition | Ford

For performance, the engine options for the 2023 Ford Explorer include a 2.3-liter EcoBoost I-4 (300 horsepower), a 3.3-liter V-6 hybrid (318 horsepower), and a 3.0-liter EcoBoost V-6 (400 horsepower).

In comparison, the 2023 Ford Expedition offers three variants of a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter six-cylinder engine, with outputs of 380, 400, and 440 horsepower.

While the Expedition has more powerful engine options, the Explorer is more maneuverable. This is due to its smaller size, lower weight, and tighter turning circle. 

Explorer vs. Expedition: Gas mileage

The Explorer is more efficient than the Expedition. The fully gas-powered Explorer has an estimated fuel economy of up to 24 combined mpg, while the Explorer Hybrid has a gas mileage of up to 27 combined mpg. In comparison, Expedition gets an estimated gas mileage of up 19 combined mpg.

Explorer vs. Expedition: Towing

The Expedition can tow considerably more than the Explorer. It has a maximum towing capacity of 9,300 pounds, compared to 5,600 pounds for the Explorer.

Explorer vs Expedition: Off-road capabilities

Both SUVs offer a traction-enhancing four-wheel drive system and off-road-focused models with the Timberline trims. However, with its higher ground clearance (up to 10.6 vs. 8.7 inches), the Expedition has the edge for off-road use. 

Explorer vs. Expedition: Safety

The Explorer is safer than the Expedition. For the previous model year, the Explorer earned an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ award, which is the highest possible IIHS rating. However, the Expedition didn’t receive any kind of safety award from IIHS.

Explorer vs. Expedition: Passenger and cargo space

The 2023 Expedition is bigger than the 2023 Explorer, resulting in more passenger space. It can seat up to eight people and has a total passenger volume of 172.0 cu-ft, compared to seven people and 152.7 cu-ft for the Explorer.

Also, the Expedition provides more storage space. It has a maximum cargo capacity of 104.6 cu-ft for the standard model and 121.4 cu-ft for the Expedition Max, compared to 87.8 cu-ft for the Explorer.

Explorer vs. Expedition: Warranty coverage and reliability

For warranty coverage, both SUVs have a 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty and a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty. However, the Explorer is more reliable than the Expedition. It earned a J.D. Power reliability rating of 83/100, compared to 75/100 for the Expedition.

Explorer vs. Expedition: Price

Which SUV costs more: the 2023 Explorer or the 2023 Expedition? The starting price of the 2023 Explorer ranges from $36,760 MSRP for the Base trim up to $54,130 MSRP for the King Ranch trim. In comparison, the starting price of the 2023 Expedition ranges from $52,905 MSRP for the XL trim up to $79,620 MSRP for the Platinum trim.

2023 Ford Explorer vs. 2023 Ford Expedition: Which SUV is better?

In this 2023 Ford Explorer vs. 2023 Ford Expedition comparison, each SUV has various advantages. For the 2023 Explorer, advantages include maneuverability, gas mileage, safety, reliability, and a lower price. Conversely, advantages for the 2023 Expedition include more powerful engines, towing, off-road capabilities, and passenger and cargo space.


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