When you have a lot of extra passengers and cargo, there’s generally no complaints about more space in an SUV. Ford is most famous for its best-selling F-150, but it also makes good SUVs. According to CARFAX, both the Ford Expedition and its Expedition Max sibling are the best full-size SUVs on the market.
The Ford Expedition is already very roomy, but the Ford Expedition Max has a longer wheelbase and a larger cargo hold. However, it’s also more expensive than the regular Expedition by over $4,000. Is the Ford Expedition Max worth the extra cash?
Similarities between the two Ford SUVs
Both the Ford Expedition and the Expedition Max have the same engine options. The base models have a 3.5-liter turbo V6 that makes 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. Inside the pricey Platinum trims, is a motor that makes 400 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque.
It’s paired with a ten-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive, with all-wheel drive as optional equipment. Critics had no complaints about the Expedition’s power output or its smooth-operating transmission. However, it definitely drives like a large SUV, difficult to turn and fit into tight spaces. Gas mileage is predictably low, an estimated 17 mpg in town and 23 mpg on the highway.
The Ford Expedition was given a fresh redesign for 2018, which was also the debut year of the Max version. However, CARFAX wasn’t impressed with the overall appearance of the Expedition’s interior.
There’s plenty of hard plastics throughout and it doesn’t feel as modern as its competitors. Still, both Expeditions come with the excellent SYNC 3 infotainment system and several newly-standard driver’s aids.
Where the Expedition Max can’t beat the regular Expedition
While the Expedition Max can undoubtedly haul more, the regular Expedition has the highest towing capacity. It can tow 9,200 pounds with front-wheel drive, while the Expedition Max can tow 9,000 pounds. The longer wheelbase of the Expedition Max also makes the already cumbersome Expedition an even bigger hassle to park.
The Expedition also offers plenty of interior space for big families. It has 104 cubic feet of cargo space with both back rows folded and 21 cubic feet with all the seats upright. A power-folding third row is standard for both the Expedition and the Expedition Max.
What makes the Ford Expedition Max different
The Ford Expedition Max is a foot longer than the regular Expedition. It can seat up to eight riders, and even taller passengers will be comfortable in the third row for extended trips. Both Expeditions have standard cloth seats, with unique options like quilted leather in the higher trims.
The Expedition Max is the clear winner of the two when it comes to cargo capacity. It has over 121 cubic feet of space with the passenger rows folded down and 36 cubic feet with all seats in use. Folding down the third row will free up almost 80 cubic feet of space, plenty of room for several large suitcases.
Is the Ford Expedition Max a good buy?
The Ford Expedition Max costs $55,835 for the base trim and the Platinum model costs $76,965 with no extras. By comparison, the base Ford Expedition only costs $52,810 and the highest trim costs around $74,000. That’s a considerable price hike, but CARFAX believes it’s worth the extra money for the added space.
However, it should also be noted that there are cheaper SUVs with just as much cargo space. The Chevy Suburban has the same dimensions as the Expedition Max and it’s less money. However, its third row isn’t nearly as accommodating as the one inside either the Ford Expedition or Ford Expedition Max.