Is it actually possible for a vehicle manufacturer to create a vehicle that might be perfect? This was our question when we first began looking at the 2022 Ford Expedition. Last year’s model added a few enhancements with the end goal of benefiting more drivers, even those on a budget. This year, much of the core experience has remained the same, but for the 2022 and 2021 models, one of these is not like the other. What has changed? From the outside, they look alike, step inside the interior, and you’ll immediately start noticing differences. You can also expect better performance all around with the new model.
However, aside from that, the most notable differences that stem from this new shiny Expedition and last year’s model are with a new trim level and a new special edition. On the surface, that may not strike you as a monumental upgrade; however, we assure you that these two new variations of the Expedition will breathe new life into this full-size SUV. What has received the boot are three trims that don’t make an appearance from last year, these being the XLT Max, the Limited Max, and lastly, the Platinum Max. In its stead is the Timberline trim, and the Stealth Performance Edition takes its spot as the only special edition for the Expedition, which in itself is an exciting prospect.
Introducing the Timberline
Although the Timberline trim isn’t supposed to be one for all types of drivers, it’s for a very specific crowd, the off-roaders. Are you somebody who enjoys off-roading, and it was the lack of ability that prevented you from springing for the Expedition originally? Maybe you’re an off-roader who is looking for a new vehicle to bring on the trail, and recent word of the Timberline model brought you here.
Whatever the case, the Timberline trim is Ford’s answer to cater to off-roaders, a market that was entirely missing from the Expedition’s crowd originally. That’s all well and good, but it doesn’t mean anything if the vehicle isn’t up to the task. Luckily for you and Ford, the Timberline is a dream come true, offering even more torque than the bespoke Jeep Rubicon 392.
What is it that makes the Timberline a fantastic off-roading machine? There are several new features that differentiate it from the traditional Expedition model, the first of which is adjusting the suspension to allow for proper ground clearance. As off-roaders know, without proper ground clearance, there’d be no reason to take a vehicle out on the trail for both the safety of the driver and the potential cosmetic and functional damage that can occur to the bottom of your vehicle. The Timberline has best-in-class ground clearance, which measures up at 10.6-inches, which is phenomenal, to say the least.
Some may say that this doesn’t mean everything, but this deep into the 21st century, drivers want more capability out of their vehicles, and Ford has delivered. In addition to Timberline’s excellent off-roading capability, Ford has made several more additions, this time focusing on off-roading tech. For an activity such as off-roading, it’s best to take advantage of the latest advancements made to off-roading tech, and with the 2022 Expedition Timberline, Ford has added features such as Trail Control and Trail Turn Assist.
Trail Control is quite useful, and the easiest way to explain this is to think of cruise control, but at a much slower speed and used while navigating tough terrains. When you enable Trail Control, the idea is for your vehicle to deploy extra stability by syncing the wheels with the same traveling speed. This will then give the driver more attention to focus on steering, accelerating, and braking. Trail Turn Assist is a feature that’s making its way over from the new Bronco. By adjusting where the braking power is going, moving from the front to the rear, allows the Expedition to take sharper turns in areas where it’s normally tough to do so when off-roading. These, among other new additions, give the Expedition Timberline a real chance of garnering a massive following.
Exciting New Features
One thing that we need to mention is the new engine that has made its way to the Expedition this year. This engine is what you’ll get with the aforementioned Timberline trim, and it’s what gives the Expedition its superb performance. The High-Output EcoBoostTurbo 3.5L V6 engine comes paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and this produces 440 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque, the latter of which is what helps the Timberline trim retain constant off-roading excellence. Towing is a possibility thanks to this engine, and when combined with the appropriate packages, the Expedition can tow up to 9,200 lbs. This means that if you purchase the Timberline trim, you can do some towing on the side when you’re not out on the trail.
Another slew of features that we want to discuss is located on the inside of the Expedition. Firstly, the infotainment center has received perhaps the largest upgrade, this time bringing forth a 12-inch screen standard. This is already more generous than many competing models, and it’s especially impressive against the 8-inch screen that sat inside of the Expedition’s interior last year. However, this isn’t all, and the 12-inch screen can be upgraded to a massive 15.5-inch screen, rivaling even some of the most luxurious automobiles on the market today.
This infotainment center is equipped with SYNC 4, which promises various upgrades over SYNC 3, most notably real-time weather forecasts along with current traffic conditions streamed directly to the system, among others. SYNC 4 also brings numerous upgrades to the overall usability of the software, allowing for a more seamless experience that lags less, and can offer more versatility in the form of the apps that it can run. What we find the most impressive is the ability to give divers turn-by-turn navigation, even in times where there’s no available internet. This is revolutionary in every sense of the term.
If you’re the type of driver who either wants or needs the ultimate audio experience, then the Expedition will surprise you. Available in certain trim levels and standard in the Stealth Performance Edition, Bang & Olufsen has fitted 22 speakers into the cabin of the Expedition. Against most automobiles out there, this far eclipses what you’ll normally find on the market, and of course, it comes with a subwoofer too for that epic bass.
Not a Journey, But an Expedition
I think what Ford has been trying to do with the 2022 Expedition is to find a new footing without fully reinventing the wheel. Subtle changes that have occurred over the last few years are finally beginning to make a larger difference in general. With the introduction of the Timberline, more drivers can experience the Expedition thanks to Ford’s attention to detail when creating the quintessential off-roading full-size SUV. This is rather big news; as unimportant as it may seem to some, bringing off-roading capabilities to an SUV that sorely lacked it will cause a wave of competition in the months to come. Jeep will take notice, as will Chevy and other manufacturers out there with the same common goal. One thing that we can guarantee is that the Ford community wouldn’t have it any other way.