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2022 Ford Expedition Platinum Review: To the Max…Almost

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum | Photo: D.Heyman
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Dan Heyman
We drive the Blue Oval brand’s closest relative to the Lincoln luxury branch of the family
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Front of
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Front of | Photo: D.Heyman

•    Auto123 reviews the 2022 Ford Expedition Platinum.

•    This is the Blue Oval brand’s closest relative to the Lincoln luxury branch of the family.

See also: 2022 Ford Expedition Timberline Review: Big SUV for Big Adventures

The Ford Expedition Platinum is a bit of a curiosity in that it shares a great many bits with its upmarket Navigator cousin (both vehicles also share a platform with the F-150 pickup), right down to the heart of the matter, a 3.5L EcoBoost twin-turbo engine as your only choice.

In fact, this Expedition costs only about 10 grand less than the Navigator. That means you’re looking at spending close to 100 grand for a Ford truck, which could be a tough pill to swallow if the Platinum trim doesn’t deliver the goods.

On the looks front, we’re off to a pretty good start. Even in the relatively tame Star White Metallic tri-coat seen here, it looks handsome. Certain aspects stand out: the chrome honeycomb-style grille, 22-inch wheels, chrome mirror caps and LED headlights with c clamp-style DRLs. It’s attractive and less in-your-face than the Navigator, that’s for sure.

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2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Interior
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Interior | Photo: D.Heyman

The interior, however, harbours something very in-your-face: the 15.5-inch infotainment is huge and really can’t be missed.

Display size aside, the latest version of Ford’s SYNC infotainment is a goody. The buttons are all big and easy to read, the menus are easy to navigate and even if you’re using wireless Apple CarPlay (there’s also a wireless charge pad at the base of the centre stack), the bottom third of the display remains home to your climate controls and a few other hotkeys, so you’re never more than a button press away.

SYNC is smooth, it looks good and it’s fast, and that is important in this price range. The backup camera is also great; there are actually two separate camera displays when you activate reverse and each one can be adjusted to show different views. They’ve put that big display to good use.

Otherwise, this interior is full of the stuff you’d expect from a vehicle called Platinum. You get real leather covering many interior surfaces including the seats, door inserts and parts of the dash, and it’s well-matched with contrast colour stitching. The ash-look wood inserts in my tester are a good fit and if that central display isn’t enough, there’s also a digital gauge cluster that’s host to all sorts of information ranging from your trip computer to surface information likes angle of attack and your tow settings.

You can also enter different tow profiles if you’re towing more than one trailer size, and that will modify your trailer blind-spot system, among other things.

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Seat
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Seat | Photo: D.Heyman

There’s also a ton of space in the first and second rows that should easily accommodate most adults. There’s that third row as well, which can be accessed two ways in my tester. You can make your way between the two captain’s chairs, or if you’re small enough, you can squeeze between the door frame and seatback as the second row both tilts and slides.

That means you could have a forward-facing child’s seat installed in the second row, and still have access to the third. Which, by the way, has seating for three as well as cupholders and storge bins and USB ports on either side, and the seats are power-folding. This is a third row that’s meant to be used regularly.

For all that, there is a longer MAX version of the Expedition. It adds 302 mm to the overall length, but that doesn’t translate to more space in the second and third rows, just more cargo space (972 litres behind the third row bests my tester’s 546). Fold all the seats, and you’re treated to almost 3,000 litres of space in the standard truck; you get 1,800 litres with the third row folded.

Back to the second row: there’s no central storage bin, but second row occupants get both a USB-C and USB-C port, a 120V outlet, their own climate controls and the ability to control the audio volume, not to mention a pair of seats that come both heated and cooled.

The front seats, meanwhile, are adjustable 10 ways (big difference between the Expedition and Navigator here, with the Lincoln’s seats being adjustable up to 30 ways). They also come heated and cooled and feature a massage function in Platinum version.

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum  - Three quarter back
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Three quarter back | Photo: D.Heyman

The powertrain
The 3.5L EcoBoost is one of the most popular engines at Ford - it also powers the F-150 pickup and they sell millions of those, most of them with the 3.5. In the Expedition, it’s good for 400 hp and 470 lb-ft of twin-turbocharged torque.

All that power is sent to the four wheels via a 10-speed automatic transmission with manual mode, though the way you switch gears – by pressing a “+” or “-” button mounted below the drive select wheel – is awkward. As if the feature was provided because Ford felt it had to do it. A pair of paddle shifters would make more sense.

I do like the drive select wheel. It helps reduce clutter in the cabin, makes it so you can pass a bag to the passenger (or the passenger seat) without snagging a strap on something and it’s more intuitive than the button-press system found in the Navigator.

On the road
The Expedition pulls away smoothly, emitting a slight growl from the single (although fairly large) tailpipe. This SUV is no lightweight, but the 3.5 does a good job of disguising it (and helps it tow up to 4,173 kg if you select the heavy-duty tow package, included in my tester). The Expedition never really feels stressed even when climbing a mountain road at highway speed.

The highway is where I had the chance to sample one of my favourite new Ford party tricks, and that’s the Blue Cruise semi-autonomous feature.

Available only on the Platinum, Blue Cruise acts a lot like GM’s Super Cruise in that when you’re on one of the many roads Fords has in its database (all two-lane highways with no level crossings), you can make use of the feature. Simply make sure your lane centering assist function is on, activate cruise and a notification will pop up on the gauge cluster letting you know Blue Cruise is active.

At that point, you can take your hands off the wheel and your feet off the pedals and the truck will not tell you to put them back on. It can’t change lanes like Super Cruise can or leave the highway, but it will watch your eyes and head to make sure you’re focused on the road ahead – so don’t go reading the funny papers at the wheel, now.

I found it worked almost flawlessly, though to my surprise there were a few turns where the system told me to put my hands back on the wheel. But of course, in the interest of safety, many parameters are being measured, so there you have it.

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Wheel
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Wheel | Photo: D.Heyman

The chassis does its best to equal the smooth performance of the engine but this being a body-on-frame truck, there’s only so much can be done to meter out all the vibrations that come with that. For the most part, Ford has done well here with the application of self-levelling air suspension as well as something called Continuously Controlled Damping, or (CCD).

Basically, CCD scans the road ahead of you looking for imperfections and adjusting the dampers to reduce the jarring effects of, say, a pothole. Not only does this make the ride more comfortable, it also helps avoid damage to tires and wheels.

The self-levelling suspension is interesting here because it does have a lot of work to do with this big truck. Does a pretty good job of it, although the understeer I felt due to body roll on some faster sweepers did come a little unexpectedly at times.

Off the road
Let’s not forget, this is a proper four-wheeler with a tonne of off-road chops. You can see it as you move through the drive modes, of which there are seven: Normal, Sport (which seems a bit of a lark), Tow/Haul (which doesn’t), Eco, Grass/Gravel/Snow, Sand and Mud/Rut.

The tow package also offers a 3.73 limited slip rear axle and two-speed transfer case, so you know that, price tag aside, this is a vehicle that can handle itself off the beaten track. In the limited time I spent on forestry roads in Gravel mode during my test, it proved so capable and confident that I quickly felt it was maybe laughing at me. I suspect this Expedition can take a heck of a lot more abuse than this.

Specifications sheet of 2022 Ford Expedition Platinum 

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Back's seat
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Back's seat | Photo: D.Heyman

The final word
The 2023 Ford Expedition may not be quite as supple as the Navigator, or as blingy, but the more I drove it, the more I realized that the Expedition Platinum benefits from brand equity. While most know Lincoln is Ford’s luxury division – that’s been the case since the early ‘20s, after all – that doesn’t necessarily man people equate Ford to Lincoln. A lot of motorists are loyal to The Blue Oval badge and that’s what they want. So why not throw in some niceties while you’re at it? That’s where the Platinum fits in, and fits well.

We like

Interior tech, especially Blue Cruise
Interior space
We like less

Not exactly fuel frugal
The Lincoln Navigator exists
The competition
Chevrolet Tahoe
GMC Yukon
Hyundai Palisade
Kia Telluride
Nissan Armada
Toyota Sequoia
Volkswagen Atlas

2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Back
2022 Ford Expedition Platinum - Back | Photo: D.Heyman

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2022 Ford Expedition Platinum pictures
Dan Heyman
Dan Heyman
Automotive expert
  • Over 12 years' experience as an automotive journalist
  • More than 70 test drives in the past year
  • Participation in over 150 new vehicle launches in the presence of the brand's technical specialists