2019 Ford Expedition Max

2019 Ford Expedition Max Review: Off-Road Family Adventure

by Roger Biermann

The Ford Expedition Max is the extended-wheelbase version of the standard three-row full-size SUV, for when a full-size simply doesn't offer enough space. The 2019 model represents the second year of the fourth-generation Expedition, which has seen the model grow from strength to strength against a crop of aging rivals. Under the hood of every Expedition Max is a rip-roaring 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that deals out outputs of 375 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque, boosted for 400 hp for the top-tier Platinum model and sent via a ten-speed automatic transmission to either the standard rear-wheel-drive or optional all-wheel-drive system. With that powertrain, expansive seating for eight, good towing capability, and extended-wheelbase benefits, the Expedition Max makes for a consummate adventure vehicle for the whole family. Ford has made compelling strides in the Expedition Max's overall capability and versatility over the years, making it one of, if not the best, full-size SUVs in the segment - but, it's expensive, and the cheaper Chevrolet Suburban has been a long-time rival of the Expedition Max along with the GMC Yukon XL, both of which, though cheaper, haven't quite caught up in terms of refinement.

Read in this review:

2019 Ford Expedition Max Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2018 Expedition Max?

New for the 2019 model year is a Stealth Edition Package which enhances any Expedition Max model with a black five-bar grille and other black exterior accents, all-LED exterior lighting, unique red upholstery stitching, and logo-engraved floor mats. There is also a Special Edition Package available for the Limited model, which sees the Limited equipped with 22-inch polished aluminum wheels, all-LED exterior lighting, enhanced active park assist, a 360-degree camera, and with the contents of the Heavy-Duty Trailer Tow Package. Dual-zone climate control is also upgraded to three-zone automatic temperature control as standard.

Pros and Cons

  • Potent V6 engine
  • Commodious cabin
  • Ample cargo room
  • Leading tow capacity
  • Comfortable seats
  • Boat-like handling
  • Soft brake pedal doesn't inspire confidence
  • Noisy at highway speeds

2019 Ford Expedition Max Trims

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
XLT
3.5-liter Twin-Turbo V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$54,815
Limited
3.5-liter Twin-Turbo V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$65,705
Platinum
3.5-liter Twin-Turbo V6 Gas
10-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$76,060

Expedition Max Exterior

The Expedition Max is the extended wheelbase version of the Ford Expedition and looks visually similar to the Chevrolet Suburban. Standard exterior lighting on the XLT includes halogen projector-beam headlights, fog lamps with taillights upgraded to LED on the mid-range Limited trim. The top-end Platinum gets all-LED exterior lighting. The exterior accents, including the grille, roof-rack side-rails, door-handles, and running boards differ in color on each model, featured predominantly in black on the XLT, bright-stainless on the Limited, and Satin aluminum on the Platinum. The XLT rides on 18-inch aluminum wheels, the Limited on 20-inch aluminum wheels, and the Platinum on 22-inch aluminum wheels.

2019 Ford Expedition Max Front Angle View Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Rear Angle View Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Front View Ford
See All 2019 Ford Expedition Max Exterior Photos

Dimensions

As the name suggests, the Expedition Max is the extended-wheelbase version of the standard Expedition, boasting a 131.6-inch wheelbase and 221.9-inch length, in comparison to the 122.5 inches and 210 inches of the regular variant. With a height of 76.4 inches, the 4x2 Expedition Max is 0.2 inches shorter than the standard model as well the 4x4 model, although both ride with a ground clearance of 9.8 inches (9.7 for the 4WD configured versions) and share a width of 83.6 inches. With the Expedition Max, curb weights range from 5,534 lbs in the RWD model to 5,794 lbs for the AWD - approximately 160 to 170 pounds heavier than the corresponding standard-wheelbase models.

The Expedition Max also has an approach angle of 23.7 degrees, a departure angle of 21.3, and a breakover angle of 20.1 in 4WD configuration.

  • Wheelbase 131.6 in
  • Height 76.4 in
  • Max Width 83.6 in
  • Front Width 67.6 in
  • Rear Width 67.2 in

2019 Ford Expedition Max Exterior Colors

  • Ruby Red Metallic Tinted Clearcoat
  • White Platinum Metallic Tri-Coat
  • Silver Spruce Metallic
  • Stone Gray Metallic
  • Blue Metallic
  • Magnetic Metallic
  • Agate Black Metallic
  • Ingot Silver Metallic
  • Oxford White

Expedition Max Performance

2019 Ford Expedition Max Front View Driving Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Rear View Driving Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Side View Ford

Engine and Transmission

The large and hefty Expedition Max is equipped with a robust 3.5-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine coupled to a refined ten-speed automatic transmission that performs so well together that the full-size SUV doesn't feel nearly as cumbersome as it actually is. In fact, the Expedition Max even feels eager off-the-line; the 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque outputs are strapping and power delivery always instantaneous, making for easy, smooth, and consistent pull-offs and highway maneuvers. It takes only 5.7 seconds for the Expedition Max to accelerate from 0-60 mph, and its top speed is electronically limited to 150 mph. The V6 is boosted for the Platinum model, upping outputs to 400 hp and 480 lb-ft, offering even greater low-to-mid range punch. With a powerful motor under the hood, the Expedition Max can also pull a maximum trailer weight of 6,600 lbs, which is increased to 9,000 lbs when fitted with the Heavy-Duty Trailer Towing package.

  • Engine
    3.5-liter Twin-Turbo V6 Gas
  • Transmission
    10-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    4X4, RWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

The Expedition Max's large proportions and hefty weight become tangibly obvious when it comes down to handling dynamics. Its steering responses are gradual and there's absolutely no feedback communicated through the wheel. It tracks straight, but the on-center feel is just good enough to keep you plodding along. Furthermore, the brake pedal is overly soft and the pedal-travel a tad too long - abrupt braking, although consistent and stable, initially masquerades as worrying, although you can soon get used to the slightly ambiguous feel. These factors, along with the significant levels of body roll that the Expedition Max incurs around spun-out corners and sharp bends, make the SUV a tough and arduous one to maneuver in town and through twisty roads. Where the Expedition Max does shine, however, is in its off-road capability, with optional four-wheel-drive, standard low-range gearing, lockable rear differential, and 9.7-9.8 inches of ground clearance, the Expedition Max is certainly capable of taking on the rougher terrains. It has a significantly long chassis though, which will require some careful articulation over rocks and trenches.

Expedition Max Gas Mileage

The Expedition Max gives a decent performance in terms of gas mileage, considering its large engine, dimensions, and hefty weight. The RWD-equipped models are estimated to return 17/23/19 mpg city/highway/combined; the AWD-equipped models are only slightly less fuel-efficient with expected EPA returns of 16/21/18 mpg on those same cycles. As the extended wheelbase variants of the Expedition lineup, the Max models are afforded a larger gas tank than the standard models: in place of a 23.6-gallon gas tank on the standard, the Max models are equipped with a 27.8-gallon tank. Filled to the brim, the RWD Expedition Max offers a range of 528 miles with mixed driving conditions before requiring a refuel, but unlocking the full potential of the engine requires premium unleaded gasoline, unlike some V8 rivals that accept regular.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    28.3 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 17/23 mpg
* 2019 Ford Expedition Max MAX XLT 4x2

Expedition Max Interior

2019 Ford Expedition Max Dashboard Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Dashboard 1 Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Central Console Ford
See All 2019 Ford Expedition Max Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

The Expedition Max is equipped with seating for up to eight occupants; the second-row bench can be swapped out for captain's chairs, which will bring max occupancy down to seven. There is ample room throughout the commodious cabin, even in the third-row seats, which are, as with all the other seats, easily accessible. The extended wheelbase doesn't really add much to the seating positions in terms of head-, leg- or shoulder room, instead sending the extra length straight to the cargo bay. Still, most passengers will be comfortable, unless you try to fit an NBA player or two into the very back row. The seats themselves are comfortable, spacious, and supportive, and the front seats feature suitable levels of adjustability. The driver is positioned with good all-round visibility and with a commanding view of the road ahead.

  • Seating capacity
    8-seater
  • Front Leg Room 43.9 in
  • Front Head Room 42.0 in
  • Rear Leg Room 42.6 in
  • Rear Head Room 40.0 in

Expedition Max Trunk and Cargo Space

Even with the Expedition Max's three-row seating, there is a cavernous trunk space of 36 cubic feet behind the rear seats - 15.1 cubes more than the regular wheelbase variant. That's more than enough room for everything a mid-size family could need on a week-long getaway. The third-row seats fold down completely flat in a 60/40 split, expanding cargo room to 79.6 cu-ft. Folding down the 40/20/40 split-folding second-row seats further expands cargo room to 121.5 cu.ft - almost 17 cubic feet more than the standard length variant.

On the inside there are thick and very usable door pockets capable of holding bottles; there is a slim storage slot below the center console, which comprises dual cupholders and a small sealed storage compartment, as well as housing the center armrest beneath which a cavernous storage cubby is placed. Two more cupholders are located behind this console together with another small storage cubby. Seatback map pockets on both front seats, and a cupholder and storage tray on either side of the third-row bench complete small-item storage features.

2019 Ford Expedition Max Maximum Cargo Space Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Cargo Area Ford
2019 Ford Expedition Max Rear View Ford

Expedition Max Infotainment and Features

Features

Standard in every Expedition Max is push-button start, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, and a universal garage door opener. The XLT starts the lineup off with a manual tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a four-inch driver information cluster display, an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat, and tri-zone automatic climate control. The Limited trim adds second-row heated seats, power-deployable running boards, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with unique stitching, and upgraded floor mats. The Platinum trim gets multi-contour first-row seats, enhanced active noise control, leather-trimmed door accents, and real wood center console accents. Other standard features across the range include intelligent access with remote start, driver-seat memory settings, auto-dimming rearview mirror, and first-row bucket seats. In the way of advanced driver-assist features, there's a rearview backup camera with backup assist grid lines, a reverse sensing system, and cruise control at the base level; the Limited gets a forward sensing and blind spot information system, while the Premium comes standard with an enhanced active park assist system, adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go, active lane-keep assist, pre-collision assist, and a 360-degree camera. 4x4 models come standard with a terrain management system, hill start assist, and hill descent control.

Infotainment

An eight-inch infotainment touchscreen is featured across the Expedition Max lineup; unfortunately, the XLT comes installed with Ford's base-level SYNC infotainment system. SYNC 3 with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay in only standard on Limited and Platinum trims. Enhanced voice recognition and SiriusXM radio connectivity is standard fare. While the XLT is outfitted with an AM/FM and MP3-compatible nine-speaker stereo, the Limited and Platinum are upgraded with HD radio capability and a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen setup. Every model is fitted with two smart-charging USB ports up front in the media hub, along with a 12-volt power outlet; there are another two smart-charging USB ports in the second-row, and another two in the third row of the Limited and Platinum.

Expedition Max Problems and Reliability

The 2019 Expedition Max has been subject to two recalls, the one pertaining to a seat back with an improperly assembled recliner mechanism that may result in the structure being weakened, and thus not providing adequate restraint in the case of an accident. The other to potential loose rear toe link fasteners which could cause the toe link to potentially disconnect and increase the chances of an accident. J.D. Power accorded the Expedition Max with a rating of 83 out of 100, which is good for this segment, and Ford covers the Expedition Max with a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    5 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles

Expedition Max Safety

The NHTSA availed the 2019 model year Expedition Max with a five-star overall safety rating which is excellent for the class; only the rollover tests scored three out of five. The IIHS, however, is yet to evaluate the current generation Expedition. Standard safety and driver-assist features in every Expedition Max include a rearview camera, a rear park assist system, cruise control, and My-Key controls. The Limited and Platinum come equipped with a forward sensing system and a blind-spot information system with cross-traffic alert and trailer tow monitoring. An enhanced active park assist system, adaptive cruise control with stop/go, lane-keep assist, and pre-collision assist are all standard with the Platinum.

Verdict: 🏁Is 2019 Ford Expedition Max a good SUV?

The Ford Expedition Max is a comfortable, capable, and versatile full-size SUV and a consummate vehicle for taking the entire family out on extended road-trips - and even a few mild off-road adventures. Its interior is commodious and outfitted with all passengers in mind; there are numerous storage solutions and smart-charging USB ports located throughout the cabin for comfortable and convenient traveling for all. The infotainment system is compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and at the mid-spec level has a premium Bang and Olufsen 12-speaker sound system to cover your vacation soundtrack. In terms of safety, the Expedition Max was rated relatively well by the pertinent authorities; in the way of standard safety and driver-assist features, however, only the mid- and top-spec models really deliver. As for practicality and versatility, it doesn't get better than the Expedition Max with its expansive trunk area, power-folding second and third-row seats, and class-leading max tow capacity. The 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine and ten-speed automatic gearbox are a highly compatible configuration and move the hefty Expedition Max around with more than enough gusto. It's just a difficult beast to handle in tight spaces or at speed but is otherwise a highly competitive and certainly impressive all-rounder.

🚘What's the Price of the 2019 Ford Expedition Max?

The Max versions of the Expedition cost $2,785 more than the corresponding standard versions - at the base of the lineup is the XLT Max, which is offered with an MSRP of $54,815; the Limited takes up the mid-spec position with an MSRP of $65,705, and the Platinum Max tops the lineup off at $76,060. Those are excluding Ford's acquisition fee of $645 and a destination charge of $1,395, as well as any tax, registration, and licensing fees. Optioning any of the Expedition Max's with the available 4x4 setup will cost just upwards of $3,000, depending on the model.

See All 2019 Ford Expedition Max Trims and Specs

🚗What Ford Expedition Max Model Should I Buy?

There is quite a considerable price hike between each of the model options in the Expedition Max lineup, therefore we'd recommend opting for the mid-spec Limited model. Despite lacking the extra power of the Platinum trim, the Limited performs more than suitably and still offers competitive levels of all-round capability with the base V6 engine. The Limited is also still impressively well-outfitted with most of the lineup's top-tier comfort, convenience, and driver-assist features. We suggest ticking the box for the optional Special Edition Package for the wheel and lighting upgrades, installation of the Heavy-Duty Trailer Tow Package, and the Enhanced Active Park Assist and the 360-degree camera. We also suggest including the Driver Assistance Package for added advanced driver-assist features.

Check out other Ford Expedition Styles

2019 Ford Expedition Max Comparisons

Chevrolet Suburban Chevrolet
GMC Yukon XL GMC
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Ford Expedition Max375 hp17/23 mpg$53,025
Chevrolet Suburban 355 hp15/22 mpg$51,700
GMC Yukon XL 355 hpTBC$53,400

2019 Ford Expedition Max vs Chevrolet Suburban

The Chevrolet Suburban is the Expedition Max's number one comparative rival; it's also a three-row full-size SUV offering with seating for up to eight passengers, boasting an expansive trunk, and good towing and AWD capabilities. It's about $4,100 cheaper than the Expedition Max, however, and is equipped with a V8 engine that, while robust, is paired with a dimwitted six-speed automatic gearbox. Together, this combination doesn't perform as well as the powertrain in the Expedition Max does. It's also less fuel-efficient than the Expedition Max and avails the Suburban with a max tow capability 700 lbs less than that of the Expedition Max. In terms of infotainment and technology, the Suburban takes the point, with full device integration and a premium audio layout featured as of the base level. The Expedition Max is still the safer vehicle as per NHTSA ratings. There's a lot of value to be found in the Suburban as the cheaper model but the Expedition Max is the more capable and better all-rounder of the two.

See Chevrolet Suburban Review

2019 Ford Expedition Max vs GMC Yukon XL

The GMC Yukon XL isn't as much of a refined vehicle as the Expedition Max is; still, it is around $2,400 cheaper, but doesn't measure up to the Expedition Max in pretty much any regard. The Yukon XL offers 3.3 cu.-ft. more room behind the rear seats, but with a wheelbase 1.6 inches shorter than that of the Expedition Max, the Yukon XL isn't as commodious on the inside, especially within the third row of seating. Furthermore, the Yukon XL is only capable of towing 8,300 lbs maximum, which is 800 lbs less than that of the Expedition Max. The Yukon XL's powertrain is decently potent, but at the cost of fuel-efficiency which the Expedition Max's powertrain retains along with its robust punch. The Expedition Max is the more capable SUV of the two, and is the safer, more practical, and more premium vehicle that is well worth the premium price.

See GMC Yukon XL Review

Ford Expedition Max Popular Comparisons

2019 Ford Expedition Max Video Reviews

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