Ford currently has five turbocharged engines that wear the EcoBoost nameplate, and a brand executive has confirmed that more turbocharged units are on the way.
“We’re not going to stop with five,” Joe Bakaj, VP of powertrain engineering told WardsAuto. “We’re going to continue to work on new EcoBoost engines.”
Take rates for Ecoboost engines are high, with 90 percent of Escape buyers and 50 percent of Fusion buyers picking a turbo motor over a naturally aspirated unit while by the end of 2013, 90 percent of Ford’s North American lineup will offer an EcoBoost engine option. Production of these turbo motors has been increased by 60 percent this year and for the first time Ford expects to build more EcoBoost motors than diesels, hitting a production milestone already by producing its two-millionth EcoBoost engine.
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More models are expected to adopt EcoBoost engines, with Bakaj going as far to say that all Ford vehicles may eventually be offered with a standard EcoBoost engine, and no naturally aspirated option. The Mustang and F-150, two very popular Ford products, will be all-new next year and both of them are expected to debut a new EcoBoost engine.
Also in the works at Ford are a nine-speed front-wheel-drive and 10-speed rear-wheel-drive transmission, allowing the company to further downsize its smallest engine option thanks to the torque offered by the short first-gear ratio.
Even though the company claims that EcoBoost offers a more attractive value proposition than diesel, Ford hasn’t written off oil burners just yet. “There’s still a challenge on the payback period in the U.S. because of the price of diesel, which is about 10 percent higher than gas,” Bakaj said. “But if the market takes off on passenger-car diesels, with our global product strategy, we’ve already engineered the diesels to work with our key global top hats.”
EcoBoost hasn’t been without its faults however, as Ford is currently facing a lawsuit from owners that claim they experienced shudder, shake and then a quick loss of power under acceleration in EcoBoost-powered vehicles. The fuel economy claims of EcoBoost engines have also been called into question by many outlets including claims by Consumer Reports that turbocharged engines tend to not live up to EPA fuel economy estimates.
[Source: Ward's Auto]
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