Back in the 1990s, the Chevrolet Blazer and the Ford Bronco were replaced by the Chevrolet Tahoe and the Ford Expedition, respectively. While the Expedition was comparable to the Tahoe, Ford didn’t really have anything in its stable that would go up against the Chevrolet Suburban. Eventually, since people kept buying them, Ford decided to get into the game and released the Excursion in 2000. Obviously, as is the American way, it had to be bigger than the competition, and so it was. In fact, the 2000-2005 Ford Excursion is larger than even the current Suburban!
Indeed, at 226.7 inches, the Excursion is nearly 3 inches longer than the 2018 Suburban. With the rear seats up, the old Excursion has 48 cu ft. of cargo space, versus only 39.3 cu ft. in the Chevy. Even more impressive, though, is what happens when you put the seats down! With both rear rows down, the Suburban has a pretty impressive 121.7 cu ft. of space — for reference, that’s double what you get in a Mazda CX-5! However, it may as well be a Mazda MX-5 Miata, because the Excursion beats it by a full 25 cu ft. That’s what you’d find for space in the back of a Honda HR-V. I used to have an apartment that was smaller than this thing.
While a Powerstroke diesel was available, the one I drove instead has a 6.8-liter Triton V10 that makes 310 horsepower and 425 lb-ft of torque with a 4-speed automatic. It is rather portly, though, as it weighs in at 7,230 pounds. Thankfully, even though its fuel economy is terrible, the 44 gallon fuel tank means you still have a reasonable range.
This particular truck is owned by a friend named Jason Scheinbart. Now, unless you’re a team member of the New England Patriots, that’s likely not a name you’ll recognize. He is, however, their biggest fan — and if you thought that title belonged to you, put that name into Google and see what your competition is doing. I’m pretty sure there are Patriots players that are less enthusiastic about the team than Jason is. Anyway, he bought this one new and has used it to chase the Patriots bus and haul countless boats, cars and motorcycles all over the country.
Maybe the best thing about the truck is on the inside — and specifically, on the odometer. The truck has been maintained well enough that it would be impossible to tell how far it’s traveled from exterior pictures. Even the inside is nice enough that it’s not obvious. But when you glance at the odometer …
Yes, that is accurate. This is a one-owner, gas-V10-powered Ford Excursion that could have driven to the moon, hooked up to the lunar rover and towed it home.
The 500,000-mile roll over happened back in September — and the owner, being the shy guy he clearly is, made a very minor fuss about it. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate. You see, he’s no stranger to the Ford family, and the Patriots just happened to be playing in Detroit, Michigan. So he parked the truck, likely the first time in its life, when it had just enough remaining miles to make the trip from Vermont to Michigan. Until game time, he was renting cars and not going anywhere so his plan could come to fruition. When he finally arrived, Mr. Ford himself, who has met Jason before and even signed the sun visor in this truck, was out of town. In his place, the lead powertrain engineer for the new Expedition and the Lincoln Navigator and a lead PR guy got into the car and recorded the milestone as it happened in front of the Ford museum.
Jason agreed to meet up with me after the event so we could get a closer look at his truck and I could take my first excursion in an Excursion! So, what’s it like to drive a car that has basically driven around Earth’s equator more than 20 times?
Actually, it’s not what I was expecting. It’s big, sure. Well, if I’m honest, it’s massive. But, when you were just driving along it didn’t feel as big as it is. The only times I remembered that it’s longer than the field the Patriots typically play on were a) when I looked behind me and b) when I needed air traffic control to aid in parallel parking. Otherwise, it drives like the heavy-duty Ford F-250 it’s based on. Road noise is pretty well subdued, and there were surprisingly few unwanted noises other than my terrible taste in music. While body roll is surprisingly well controlled, there’s basically no feeling in the steering, so, don’t expect to carve the canyons. Obviously that would be missing the point of the truck anyway. The engine pulls strong, even still, and the transmission shifts smoothly — and neither show any signs of stopping any time soon.
Here is how it compares in size to the official Vermont state car: the Subaru Outback. Notice also that, even if the front bumper was at the front line of this parking space, the rear of the car would still be occupying the next spot.
If you’re curious about what it costs to drive a vehicle like this such a long distance, here’s some math.
If you followed the 3,750-mile maintenance schedule religiously — which, based on the 12-page Carfax, would be the case here — this Excursion would’ve had 134 oil changes, totaling 806 quarts of oil. Even more fun, though, is the fuel math. According to Jason, this Excursion averages 13 miles per gallon in combined driving, and it’d probably be fair to use an average fuel price of $3.00/gal for the last 15 years. With the 44-gallon tank, that makes for an average range of 572 miles. In order to reach 506,000, that means that this car has consumed 884 tanks of fuel. It’s also consumed 38,923 gallons of fuel. And the most staggering number is that, at $3 per gallon, that means Jason has spent $116,769 on fuel. So, you can either buy the fuel (let alone the tires, brakes, oil, body work, other maintenance costs) needed to drive a Ford Excursion for half a million miles, or buy a Mercedes E63 S AMG. Your choice.
And there you have it. This truck is proof that the V10 Ford Excursion is capable of being driven beyond the engine’s expectations. All it takes is a pretty significant investment, dedication and free time.