Ford Motor Co. said it will bring its EcoBoost engine technology to mid-level vehicles as a way of boosting fuel efficiency in a wider variety of its products.
Speaking at Consumer Reports' "Future of the Car" event here in East Haddam, CT Ford engineers said the new technology will eventually trickle down to the Ford Flex crossover, Ford Taurus and Ford F-150 truck. The technology is also scheduled to hit the streets in the spring of 2009 in the Lincoln MKS luxury car.
The EcoBoost family of 4- and 6-cylinder engines is said to deliver 20-percent better fuel efficiency and 15-percent fewer CO2 emissions by combining direct injection technology with turbocharging to produce better performance in a smaller block.
"In Ford's application, the idea isn't to give consumers a bunch of performance from the turbocharger, but to give parity in performance and give superior fuel economy," said Brett Hinds, advanced engine design manager for Ford.
Demonstrating the Lincoln MKS at Consumer Reports' Auto Test Facility, Hinds said EcoBoost could save about $400 per year for a consumer who drives 15,000 miles per year and pays $3.75/gal. Doing so, he said, it would take several years for a car owner to recoup the extra cost of the engine, but the payback would occur faster than if the consumer had purchased a hybrid vehicle instead.
"We're offering an environmental choice and an improvement in fuel economy, and we're not compromising the vehicle's performance," Hinds said.
Hinds said by adding EcoBoost to a 3.5-liter engine, Ford produced a six-cylinder engine that peaks at 340 ft-lb of torque and 340 HP.
"With that much power, we can replace V8 engines in many applications," Hinds said.