Stage 3 Motorsports 2012 Expedition 5.4L Project TruckIt seems silly, doesn't it? What exactly can you do with a big, heavy SUV that's more at home hauling three rows worth of kids around your local mall than being anywhere near dirt? Well, we here at Stage 3 went and found out, and were pleasantly surprised. Deep down, our 2012 Expedition wanted to be a truck, and with 4WD and a 5.4L Triton V8, it had the guts and powertrain to be a perfectly decent trail and camping vehicle. We got to work stripping away the stock blandness and adding awesome mods. Check out all the details in the build sections below!
We kicked off our Expedition build with a couple useful exterior accessories to give our truck a more rugged off road look and add some protection. A new blacked-out Paramount grille and bull bar helped create a more aggressive style while the WeatherTech Vent Shades and bug deflector prevented chips and dings in the paint and kept the weather out of the cab. MORE INFO ON OUR ACCESSORY INSTALLS
Obviously a family SUV like our Expedition will never be a power crazed race truck, but the old 5.4L V8 under the hood could still use a little love. We tossed on a new K&N cold air intake as well as a Magnaflow exhaust to help the truck breathe better and give it a more fitting V8 rumble. MORE INFO ON OUR ENGINE & EXHAUST UPGRADES
Taking this Expedition off road and using it to haul gear means that there will be no shortage of dirt and grime that gets tracked inside. To help keep the cab in tip top shape we threw in some of Husky Liners WeatherBeater front and rear floor mats as well as their cargo liner for the trunk. MORE INFO ON OUR INTERIOR UPGRADES
While it may be hard to tell at a glance, this Expedition build actually has a hefty amount of lighting upgrades on board. We updated the look and functionality of the headlights, taillights, fog lights and more using LED bulbs from our friends over at Diode Dynamics. The end result is a more modern light setup that is subtle, but still powerful. MORE INFO ON OUR LIGHTING UPGRADES
The most important changes to get this Expedition ready for the trails were by far the suspension, wheels and tires. Having 4 wheel drive is extremely helpful off road, but running skinny highway tires and low clearance was still going to be a major issue so we bolted on ReadyLift's 3" leveling kit and a new set of Fuel Anza wheels wrapped in Nitto Ridge Grappler tires to take this SUV to the next level. MORE INFO ON OUR LEVELING KITS & TIRES
With all of the upgrades and changes made to our Expedition build we obviously had to go put it to use. The truck feels right at home on dusty desert trails and old forest roads while still managing to be quiet and comfortable. It's been a great rig to have around for carrying delicate camera equipment and extra recovery gear when we go out on our off road escapades. PHOTOS & VIDEOS OF OUR EXPEDITION