Expedition - gear shifter

I currently own the 2003 Expedition which I purchased in October 2002. I will likely replace it within the next year or two. The 2003 model has the gear shifter on the steering wheel where it should be. While researching the new models I've noticed the shifter is now taking up space where a cup holder should be. Although there are still two cup holders next to it on the right hand side I find it not only inconveniet but it also places the shifter in the firing line of many drink spills to come. Since the automatic shifter is a necessity and not a convenience it should be put back on the steering wheel as in previous models allowing the center console area to be used for convenience features such as cup holders and tray space. I hope Ford will make these changes for the 2014 model. Otherwise, I will likely look at other makes/models.
Eric O 09/09/2012
Sharon, I too had a 2003 that I purchased in July of 2002 and recently sold it (190,000 painless miles) and purchased a new 2012 Expedition. At first I was leery of the new shifter but I have to admit that it is growing on me the more I use it. I would say this though, the second row crew needs a different spot for "their" cup holders so that the center counsel can be increased in size.
DJ G 08/04/2012
YES!! I think this is a great idea!. I always loved one thing on GMC's Chevys and that was the gear shift on the steering column how it goes right into place with out having to go through all the gears. Other than that ford has the best vehicles i just hate how even on trucks they are putting the gear shift on the floor! Just take a look at a GMC's truck gear shift and make one exactly like that!