The full-size SUV segment is as hot as ever these days, with automakers throwing down to capture the hearts, minds, and wallets of a utility-crazed buying public. Chevrolet is in the game with several new products, including the all-new 2021 Chevy Tahoe. Now, MotorTrend is comparing the new Tahoe in its off-road-flavored Z71 trim against the 2020 Ford Expedition XLT.
As the MotorTrend reviewer points out, there are some clear differences worth pointing out from the very start. To begin, the Ford XLT is not as off-road focused as the Chevy Tahoe in terms of equipment. The XLT is also less expensive, with as-tested prices set at $76,175 for the Tahoe, and $64,520 for the Expedition.
Outside, the reviewers conclude that the Expedition looks somewhat dated even though it’s just a few years old. This is especially true compared to the all-new 2021 Chevy Tahoe, which, although polarizing look, meets the approval of the reviewers, especially with the Z71 package.
Inside, the 2021 Chevy Tahoe “is a mixed bag.” Although the Chevy’s infotainment screen is bigger and better than the Ford’s, the Chevy’s controls get dinged compared to the high-quality switchgear in the Ford. The reviewers also say that the Ford feels more premium inside overall.
Access to the third row was easier in the Chevy. The reviewers also liked the Tahoe’s second-row entertainment screens, but question if a few iPads might be better, especially for the price.
Under the hood, the Ford Expedition gets a twin-turbo 3.5L V6 with 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque, mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission developed jointly by Ford and GM. The 2021 Chevy Tahoe in this comparison is equipped with the naturally aspirated 5.3L V8 L84, which has 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque, and it also mated to the same jointly developed 10-speed.
“One would think that with the decisive power advantage, the Ford would feel much quicker than the Chevrolet, or at least a little quicker,” writes MotorTrend. “Crazy thing? It doesn’t.”
Although the Ford’s ‘six impresses, propelling the Expedition to 60 mph in just 6.2 seconds compared to the 7.4 seconds in the 2021 Chevy Tahoe, the two feel more or less equal in terms of grunt when driven normally.
Finally, The 2021 Chevy Tahoe and its new independent rear suspension, plus the optional magnetic dampers and air springs, bless the Chevy with “the most sophisticated suspension system of any body-on-frame vehicle in the world, full stop.”
All, when it’s all said and done, the Ford Expedition is good, but the Chevy Tahoe is better, giving that X-factor that the Ford doesn’t have, and taking the win in the comparison.