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BlowNdoh 11-05-2014 10:13 AM

Hello Ecomodder! '03 Ford Excursion 6.0
My brother introduced me to this forum and love it. I am more of a max horsepower forum reader but I like anything automotive.

My first mod I did was install a electric fan on the Sport Trac. More mpg, better warm up, a/c works 100% better. I did spats out of splash guard material but they have broken off. We took too much material off to make them fit.

The Excursion is our cross country SUV. Everyone says it is a 7K lb brick and can't get any mpg so don't get it. My first mod was install a free flowing muffler. I didn't want straight pipe or a 5" exhaust. The stock exhaust its fine for my needs. My brother convinced me to put a belly pan on the Excursion. We used aluminum frame work and HDPE sheets. The interior is quieter as a result. I will post pics of anyone is interested.

The Excursion is not programmed/tuned. Nothing fancy, grill block and belly pan. The grill block is helpful at keeping the coolant temp at ~200 and intake around 130. I run 75 on the interstate and have gotten a high of 23.7mpg. Just did two 6K mile trips in Sept and Oct and mileage went from 19 with a 22mph+ head wind in SD to 23.x average. The overhead mileage meter reads 25.x mpg for reference.

Thank you Ecomodder for the information you provided. Look forward to doing more reading.


Daox 11-05-2014 10:25 AM

Welcome to the site Ryan!

That is a beast of a vehicle. Its good to see your mods have done you good.

There was another guy modding an excursion not horribly long ago. He also had some pretty good luck with bumping his mileage up. I'd do some searching to find what he did. It certainly seems like aeromods will be your friend at those speeds.

JRMichler 11-05-2014 01:02 PM


Originally Posted by BlowNdoh (Post 453562)
I will post pics of anyone is interested.

This is ECOMODDER.COM. Yes, we are interested. Does your belly pan collect enough dirt to weigh it down? How does it handle heavy rain? Have you ever driven in snow country? If so, how does the belly pan handle slush?

Tell us more!

elhigh 11-05-2014 02:01 PM

An Excursion breaking into the 20s is damned good. Seriously, seriously good. If you have the mission profile to legitimize a vehicle that size, I won't gainsay it. It's very nice to know you can pare some of the cost of ownership off with just a few commonsense mods.

ohisofly 11-05-2014 06:21 PM

That's pretty impressive, I've only ever been able to get 12 mpg out of an excursion

BlowNdoh 11-05-2014 07:59 PM

6 Attachment(s)
Here is the framework we built. It is aluminum and we did not drill any holes into the metal. We only drilled into the plastic fender well for the side pieces. For the side pieces we used the running board bolts. Some of the materials we used are 1/4" threaded rod, nylon nuts, washers and body bolts.

BlowNdoh 11-05-2014 08:43 PM

3 Attachment(s)
I can't find the picture of the final belly pan. I will put the Excursion on ramps to take a picture to show everyone. The area around the converter is exposed right now but would like to put a louvered panel over it.

The Excursion has been driven through some rather deep water with no ill effect. The only dirt and mud I have driven through was in Wyoming/Yellowstone. The belly pan is dirty but no collection of mud occurred. Unfortunately we did not see any snow when we traveled out west. We tried to make sure the plastic did not catch air and minimize openings for road debris.

For our first trip out west in September was to Colorado, then South Dakota and back here to Georgia. The Overhead reported 25.0mpg but had calculating is 2mpg less. I know the overhead is off but it is a good gauge that the belly pan is working. Normal mpg for the Excursion used to be 20-21 but at no more than 65mph. For the grill block we used carpet protection plastic. It is clear sticky plastic that doesn't leave a residue behind. It also allowed me to use my off-road lights that are mounted behind the grill. Since it was just plastic sheeting, we just cut out sections to regulate coolant temps. I made a plastic grill block when I returned from this trip. I have a full block and another that has cutouts for the offroad lights.

This recent trip was to South Dakota again and then to Jackson Wyoming and back to Georgia. I had a low of 19mpg on this trip due to a very crappy head wind (~22mph) in South Dakota. This is also my highest mileage trip also at 23.7 mpg. We drove from Jackson Wyoming to Lincoln Nebraska on one tank. The tank wasn't empty but the fuel was lasting longer than I was.

I love the Excursion. It is diesel with higher maintenance costs but I do my own work. The V10 Excursions only get 11mpg where I can get 20+ in the diesel. I know a few on the Ford Powerstroke sites will not believe the mileage increase but a belly pan and grill block have to add something.

I added some pics of the overhead and the Speedometer. The 25.7mpg reading and the Speedometer pics were in Wyoming or Nebraska. The overhead MPG meter is off and my MPG are hand calculated.

WE3ZS 11-05-2014 09:30 PM

Very nice work on the belly pan and that is some pretty good mileage for an EX! Looking forward to seeing pics of the completed full pan.
That 6.0 has sooo much torque on tap there is still a lot of potential for you to get out of it. Going up to a taller tire will effectively reduce you final drive ratio (numerically lower ratio) and if you aren't towing anything even swapping out the rear gears (or the axle housing itself) from the factory 3.73 gears to a 3.55 would increase your MPGs, doing both would be even better! And that PSD shouldn't have any problem at all pulling the load at the lower RPMs. Then there are tuning options if you want to go down that road, most 6.0 issues that are blamed on tuners are typically from tunes to bump up the power. I don't think you would be inviting trouble working with a good shop to write a max MPG tune for your rig and I think some decent gains could be made. Does your usage allow for any amount of suspension lowering? If so a couple of inches drop would help, is your belly pan even with your bumper's lower factory air dam? Maybe lowering the air dam would help a little but unsure how that will play with the full belly pan.
I tow an 11k lbs travel trailer with an '05 EX V-10 so I am very familiar with how hard it can be to squeeze MPGs out of these wagons. My EX has a 4" lift from a modded X/B spring swap, 35"s, 4.88 gears, Banks headers and custom tunes from 5Star, What little solo running I do with it nets about 12.5 MPG and my towing average has been 8.5 to 9 MPG with a best yet of 9.26 MPG this past Summer in New England, prior to the mods I was seeing 6.5 to 7 MPGs towing.
You are doing great so far keep up the good work!

BlowNdoh 11-06-2014 10:22 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Here are some night shots of the belly pan I took tonight. I also included a couple pics of the removable grill block. It isn't the prettiest with the well nuts but it has worked out fine. I have a full block one and the one that has the cutouts for my Hella 4000 compacts. I would like to make a clear block so the Hella's can shine through it.

WE3ZS, Thanks! I would love the ability to lower the Excursion with air bags. I remember the Lincoln Mark VIII's air suspension lowering at speed. The belly pan is even with air dam. I would like a more solid air dam to close the front off some more.

I did get 3.55's installed because the dealership re-installed the stock 3.73's incorrectly when they fixed the pinion leak. I got the 3.55's off of a forum for CHEAP. I sounded like I had super swamper's in the rear for tires when the rear took a crap. The 3.55's dropped rpm's by 200. For tuning, I have looked into for an ecotune. They are the "go to" for the 6.0. It costs $150 and everyone claims a 1-2mpg increase.

WE3ZS, my friend has a stock '05 F150 5.4l that gets 13-14mpg. Your lifted EX is getting pretty much his mileage in a way bigger vehicle. I am going to go make fun of him now.

Sven7 11-07-2014 10:28 AM

That's awesome mileage for that big of a vehicle. Do you have any shots of the whole vehicle in the daytime?

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