The Ford Expedition can accommodate up to eight adults in three rows, with seats that fold flat when not required. Courtesy Kevin Hackett
The Ford Expedition can accommodate up to eight adults in three rows, with seats that fold flat when not required. Courtesy Kevin Hackett

Road test: 2015 Ford Expedition

Have you noticed how almost all the large SUVs available in this country are given really rugged, adventurous names that attempt to conjure up mental images of the great outdoors and the free spirit associated with the United States? Think about it: Yukon, Tahoe, Touareg, Range Rover, Trailblazer, Traverse, Explorer, Terrain, Cherokee, Navigator and Pathfinder – they all have an intrinsic link to huge spaces, epic vistas and a sense of escapism. Even Dodge’s Durango is named after a state in north-west Mexico, bringing with it a sense of danger and excitement – at least when you know what it means.

So Ford’s (really) big SUV was bound to have a fitting moniker: Expedition, in many ways, couldn’t be more appropriate. It’s an expedition, for instance, to walk around this vehicle’s external perimeter. It’s an expedition to leave the front seats and enter the rear quarters – the sheer enormity of this car is difficult to take in at first, so much so that it can be rather intimidating to someone like me, who drives a small car on a daily basis. This is a Ford for a generation for whom size really does matter.

In the silver paintwork of my test car, the Expedition looks quite fresh and modern, despite its now ageing design – in stark contrast to some other examples I’ve seen with two-tone colour schemes that make it look like a throwback from the 1970s. The aggressive front end is better resolved than its rivals – which I’d venture to say include the Chevrolet Tahoe, GMC Yukon, Nissan Armada and the lesser-spotted Toyota Sequoia – but its rear still looks like nobody at Ford’s design studios has actually been bothered to sketch anything new since 1984. But hey, it’s ­biiiiiiig, and that’s all that matters to some buyers, right?

Inside, it’s pleasant enough, with acres of black leather ­upholstery and, displeasingly, lots of nasty, scratchy plastic trim where in rivals you’d nowadays find plush, soft touch surfaces. It’s here, more than anywhere, where Ford’s big truck needs to up its game, especially now GM’s offerings have, at last, righted past wrongs when it comes to interior appointments. The seats, too, feel firm and unsupportive (especially when it comes to rows two and three), but there’s plenty to offer fellow occupants in terms of electronic gadgetry and connectivity, even if Ford’s on-board systems can’t hold a candle to GM’s MyLink infotainment set-up.

Unlike the current crop from its Detroit rivals, the Expedition’s power-train has actually shrunk in size without detriment to the way this behemoth moves. The old V8 lump has lost a couple of cylinders and gained forced induction in the name of efficiency, but this engine is remarkably refined and packs plenty of grunt, with a silky smooth power delivery right across the rev range and almost imperceptible noise levels.

Coupled with the Expedition’s comparatively advanced four-wheel independent suspension, refinement levels are astonishingly high. It rides like a big Lexus, wafting along as if it’s a magic carpet completely detached from anything so nasty as a road surface. Yet that suspension is still able to tackle quick cornering and heavy braking without those on board reaching for the sick bags.

The six-pot mill is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission that mercifully doesn’t have its shifter mounted next to the steering wheel, and with this amount of torque on tap, six cogs are more than enough. The steering is all-electric and becomes slightly heavier in Sport mode, but it’s never an effort in the traditional sense, and despite its colossal proportions, the Expedition is always easy to drive.

It’s those colossal proportions that give the Expedition and cars of its ilk their USP. They’re huge enough to swallow your entire family, all your possessions and detritus. They’re huge enough to throw parties in, and I can ­imagine, after a few years of ownership, when you’re cleaning out your Expedition, you might find that bike (the one you thought had been stolen) under one of the seats. Yes, the whole point of vehicles such as this is to act as transporters of people and stuff, and the Expedition does so admirably.

With accommodation for up to eight adults and seats that fold entirely flat when not required, this Ford makes a strong case for itself as a load-lugger extraordinaire, but it’s more than that. It’s actually a well resolved ’ute that, if you can deal with its sheer bulk, is easy to live with and pleasant to drive on short commutes or much longer, err, expeditions.

It’s never going to set the world alight, but in this region, cars such as the Expedition are extremely popular for obvious reasons. This thing is basically one step down from a Winnebago and, if you’re blessed with a large family you can stand being inside a car with, there are few to touch it. Sure, the Lincoln Navigator is more luxurious, but it doesn’t possess the Ford’s bullish charms, and especially when compared to the outmoded ­offerings from Japan, the Expedition still manages to be a worthwhile contender.

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The years Ramadan fell in May






Director: Nitesh Tiwari

Stars: Varun Dhawan, Janhvi Kapoor

Rating: 1/5

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
Nick Diaz v Vicente Luque
Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through and

The specs: 2019 GMC Yukon Denali

Price, base: Dh306,500
Engine: 6.2-litre V8
Transmission: 10-speed automatic
Power: 420hp @ 5,600rpm
Torque: 621Nm @ 4,100rpm​​​​​​​
​​​​​​​Fuel economy, combined: 12.9L / 100km


Director: Greta Gerwig
Stars: Margot Robbie, Ryan Gosling, Will Ferrell, America Ferrera
Rating: 4/5

UAE currency: the story behind the money in your pockets
Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

The Beach Bum

Director: Harmony Korine

Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Isla Fisher, Snoop Dogg

Two stars

The specs

Engine: 3.5-litre V6

Power: 272hp at 6,400rpm

Torque: 331Nm from 5,000rpm

Transmission: 8-speed auto

Fuel consumption: 9.7L/100km

On sale: now

Price: Dh149,000


Zakat definitions

Zakat: an Arabic word meaning ‘to cleanse’ or ‘purification’.

Nisab: the minimum amount that a Muslim must have before being obliged to pay zakat. Traditionally, the nisab threshold was 87.48 grams of gold, or 612.36 grams of silver. The monetary value of the nisab therefore varies by current prices and currencies.

Zakat Al Mal: the ‘cleansing’ of wealth, as one of the five pillars of Islam; a spiritual duty for all Muslims meeting the ‘nisab’ wealth criteria in a lunar year, to pay 2.5 per cent of their wealth in alms to the deserving and needy.

Zakat Al Fitr: a donation to charity given during Ramadan, before Eid Al Fitr, in the form of food. Every adult Muslim who possesses food in excess of the needs of themselves and their family must pay two qadahs (an old measure just over 2 kilograms) of flour, wheat, barley or rice from each person in a household, as a minimum.

US federal gun reform since Sandy Hook

- April 17, 2013: A bipartisan-drafted bill to expand background checks and ban assault weapons fails in the Senate.

- July 2015: Bill to require background checks for all gun sales is introduced in House of Representatives. It is not brought to a vote.

- June 12, 2016: Orlando shooting. Barack Obama calls on Congress to renew law prohibiting sale of assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines.

- October 1, 2017: Las Vegas shooting. US lawmakers call for banning bump-fire stocks, and some renew call for assault weapons ban.

- February 14, 2018: Seventeen pupils are killed and 17 are wounded during a mass shooting in Parkland, Florida.

- December 18, 2018: Donald Trump announces a ban on bump-fire stocks.

- August 2019: US House passes law expanding background checks. It is not brought to a vote in the Senate.

- April 11, 2022: Joe Biden announces measures to crack down on hard-to-trace 'ghost guns'.

- May 24, 2022: Nineteen children and two teachers are killed at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

- June 25, 2022: Joe Biden signs into law the first federal gun-control bill in decades.

2020 Oscars winners: in numbers
  • Parasite – 4
  • 1917– 3
  • Ford v Ferrari – 2
  • Joker – 2
  • Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood – 2
  • American Factory – 1
  • Bombshell – 1
  • Hair Love – 1
  • Jojo Rabbit – 1
  • Judy – 1
  • Little Women – 1
  • Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You're a Girl) – 1
  • Marriage Story – 1
  • Rocketman – 1
  • The Neighbors' Window – 1
  • Toy Story 4 – 1

Director: Lee Isaac Chung

Starring: Glenn Powell, Daisy Edgar-Jones, Anthony Ramos

Rating: 2.5/5

The specs

Engine: 4.0-litre, six-cylinder

Transmission: six-speed manual

Power: 395bhp

Torque: 420Nm

Price: from Dh321,200

On sale: now

The biog

Title: General Practitioner with a speciality in cardiology

Previous jobs: Worked in well-known hospitals Jaslok and Breach Candy in Mumbai, India

Education: Medical degree from the Government Medical College in Nagpur

How it all began: opened his first clinic in Ajman in 1993

Family: a 90-year-old mother, wife and two daughters

Remembers a time when medicines from India were purchased per kilo

All We Imagine as Light

Director: Payal Kapadia

Starring: Kani Kusruti, Divya Prabha, Chhaya Kadam

Rating: 4/5

How to increase your savings
  • Have a plan for your savings.
  • Decide on your emergency fund target and once that's achieved, assign your savings to another financial goal such as saving for a house or investing for retirement.
  • Decide on a financial goal that is important to you and put your savings to work for you.
  • It's important to have a purpose for your savings as it helps to keep you motivated to continue while also reducing the temptation to spend your savings. 

- Carol Glynn, founder of Conscious Finance Coaching



Tips for job-seekers
  • Do not submit your application through the Easy Apply button on LinkedIn. Employers receive between 600 and 800 replies for each job advert on the platform. If you are the right fit for a job, connect to a relevant person in the company on LinkedIn and send them a direct message.
  • Make sure you are an exact fit for the job advertised. If you are an HR manager with five years’ experience in retail and the job requires a similar candidate with five years’ experience in consumer, you should apply. But if you have no experience in HR, do not apply for the job.

David Mackenzie, founder of recruitment agency Mackenzie Jones Middle East


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