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Old 01-20-2008, 05:11 PM   #1
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2008 Expedition- axle ratio and load leveling suspension

Im looking at a 2008 Expedition to replace my 1998 model. I'm towing a 6000 lb 25' Ocean Breeze FB with a weight distributing/sway control hitch. My current Expo has the load leveling suspension and a 3.73 rear end. The new Expo Im looking at has the tow package but has the 3.31 rear end and does not have the load leveling suspension. On paper, it appears to have a 9,200 lb towing capacity. How important is the load leveling suspension feature- will it squat too much in the rear without it? Can the weight distributing hitch compensate for this?
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:30 PM   #2
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A 3.31 rear end won't do it with Ford's doggy 5.4L V8. I traded my Expo due to the lack of power with load on hills. If you can get better gearing though you would have a chance.
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:49 PM   #3
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You can check out most of my post on a 08 f150 with a 5.4/ 3.73 rear end. I would say the 3.33 is a problem, do you have the 6 speed? That would help indeed? Currently have just under 10k miles of towing since october and no problems. The new generation 5.4 with e85 is a great combination. Many more issues however with the airstream. I wish Ford built the trailer!! As the miles roll up it is one thing after another.
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:54 PM   #4
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Isn't the auto load just airbags? If so you can add them.

The rear axle is too low, but the ring and pinion can also be changed.
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Old 01-20-2008, 06:00 PM   #5
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Your getting an air ride system with small air bags similar to those used on semis I believe. If set up properly it would be a very soft ride for the A/S and always level despite changing loads. Down the road problems will come with moisture/air compressors etc, but a great system if the same as GMs used on everything from envoys to yukons. I loved it on last tow vehicle.
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Old 01-20-2008, 06:07 PM   #6
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Pass or you will regret the 3.31 rear end ratio on the first small hill you encounter.
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Old 01-21-2008, 03:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by safari 28
You can check out most of my post on a 08 f150 with a 5.4/ 3.73 rear end. I would say the 3.33 is a problem, do you have the 6 speed? That would help indeed? Currently have just under 10k miles of towing since october and no problems. The new generation 5.4 with e85 is a great combination. Many more issues however with the airstream. I wish Ford built the trailer!! As the miles roll up it is one thing after another.
This is the 6 speed with overdrive lock out- new for 2008 I believe. They dont offer the standard length Expedition with any other rear end, and the capacity of 9200 is based on the heavy duty tow package with the 3.31
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Old 01-21-2008, 04:01 PM   #8
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It could be that Ford has made some changes in transmission gearing to offset the lower numerical rear end gear ratio. I would check on the gearing for each gear, i.e. 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th. Are 5th and 6th gear both OD gearing or is it just 6th? Since you mention lock out, is it just 6th gear locked out? Compare this to a Ford auto trans from previous years.
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Old 01-21-2008, 04:09 PM   #9
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I've gone to Ford's website to look at specs. The standard tow package only allows max trailer weight of 6,000 lbs. while the optional heavy duty trailer package shows the Expedition outfitted with 3.73 rear end ratio and towing a max trailer weight of 9,000 for the 4X4 and 9,200 for the 4X2. Based on that info and the weight of your trailer, I would still look for a 3.73 rear end Expedition unless they have made a typo and this really is a 3.73 rear end.
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:42 PM   #10
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Thanks Craig for the suggestions. I actually called Ford today, I was hoping they might have a technical person available to discuss just such an issue. They were no help. They referred me to the service department of the local dealer, the same dealer that couldn't help me figure this out in the first place. The 2008 towing guide states that the 3.73 rear end is not available for the Expo, and still gives the tow rating at 9,200 lbs with the "heavy duty towing package"- so I guess the new transmission must help compensate for the taller gears. Lord only knows how I can find out what the actual drive ratios are.
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Old 01-21-2008, 09:53 PM   #11
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Hi All,, please post when you have all the info. own 5.4 heavy duty tow package 2004 Expedition,,, is doggy on the mountains with my 25,,, thinking of trading in,, but want definite towing improvement or will not do the new deal,,, is it worth it???? thanks,, donna
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Old 01-21-2008, 10:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHollenbeck
Thanks Craig for the suggestions. I actually called Ford today, I was hoping they might have a technical person available to discuss just such an issue. They were no help. They referred me to the service department of the local dealer, the same dealer that couldn't help me figure this out in the first place. The 2008 towing guide states that the 3.73 rear end is not available for the Expo, and still gives the tow rating at 9,200 lbs with the "heavy duty towing package"- so I guess the new transmission must help compensate for the taller gears. Lord only knows how I can find out what the actual drive ratios are.
Keep your eyes open for 4X4 and RV magazines for road tests of this vehicle. Also, go to PickupTruck.com: Pickup Truck News, Reviews, Community and Help Finding a New or Used Pickup and go to the Ford forum. That forum usually has someone who knows the real scoop.

I would not make a decision until you have the real facts of what they really have. There have been times the dealer really didn't know so I looked for other sources. Have you looked at any other Ford dealerships to to see if they have the same vehicle and if they all had the same ratio?
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Old 01-22-2008, 03:31 PM   #13
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It appears that there is a typo in Ford's towing guide supplement and that a 3.73 rear end is offered in the standard Expedition (a $75 option). It also appears that this is independent of the HD towing package, so someone could get the tow package without the correct rear end for maximum towing ability. Anyway, at least it won't be me. Jot
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Old 01-22-2008, 03:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JHollenbeck
It appears that there is a typo in Ford's towing guide supplement and that a 3.73 rear end is offered in the standard Expedition (a $75 option). It also appears that this is independent of the HD towing package, so someone could get the tow package without the correct rear end for maximum towing ability. Anyway, at least it won't be me. Jot
Based on what can find I concur that the 3.73 axle is an option not included in the HD towing package. Their specs relating to the 9,200 lb towing capacity only state "properly equipped". I'll guarantee you that the 9,200 lb capcity is most likely tied to that 3.73 axle plus the HD towing package.

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