Ford has introduced the Expedition's four-wheel-drive and new Terrain Management System designed for Middle East owners with an eye on the great outdoors and adventure.

Ford Expedition’s all-new Terrain Management System™ is easy-to-use and to lets customers select from seven special drive modes that help Expedition automatically adapt to different road conditions. It comes with many options like Normal for around town driving, Sport for more spirited trips, Tow/Haul for improved towing and hauling performance, Eco for enhanced fuel economy, Grass/Gravel/Snow for loose terrain, Mud/Rut for uneven surfaces, and Sand mode for driving in soft, deep sandy conditions found throughout the Middle East.

Ford Expedition introduces new Terrain Management System with Sand Mode

For the true go-anywhere capability, Ford Expedition comes with a two-speed transfer case and electronic limited slip differential. It also uses a combination of sensors and an on-board gyroscope to work out what the vehicle is doing, and what can be done to assist the driver.

The system uses a gyroscope to analyze to understand what’s going on with the vehicle; how much it is sliding and rolling. Considering that data and based on calibrations made during in-market testing in the UAE and other centres around the globe, the TMS then sends torque to the appropriate wheels, allowing them to spin even though the vehicle is moving at very low speeds.

Todd Hoevener, Expedition chief programme engineer, said;
The off-road modes are designed to help drivers navigate conditions they may not be familiar with – like sand. Getting stuck is probably the worst thing that can happen to you as a driver when you’re in the desert with your family and friends in the car. Sand mode just makes it enjoyable to drive with vehicle electronics as a safety net there to help.

The electronic limited slip diff enables it to react more quickly when you’re seeing slip on one side versus the other which helps when there is rain or ice, but a locking diff out here in the sand is very important to get that low-speed traction to pull you out of the hole.

Ziyad Dallalah, Ford Middle East’s chief resident engineer, explained;
When you switch between the different modes, what you are looking at is traction, how the engine and transmission adapts, and how the chassis dynamics come together.

In Sand Mode, it’s about staying in lower gears and disabling as much traction control as possible. The TMS automatically limits the amount of assistance they offer and also manages both engine speed and transmission shifts – holding lower gears longer so that you can use high rpm and high wheel speed.

This is what you need for low speed sand driving if you do get in the deep and need to crawl out. The cleverness of the software and electronics, paired with all the mechanical advantages of the low-speed transfer case and the electronic locking rear diff really do make the Expedition a very capable large SUV for off-road adventures.

That usually centres on keeping the vehicle pointing in the right direction by monitoring traction at all four wheels and applying torque, the brakes, traction control – or a mix of each – where needed.