Ford Focus EcoBoost 1.0L Review

Ford Delivers Hybrid-Like Fuel Economy With Tiny 3-Cylinder Focus

Ford Focus EcoBoost 1.0L Review

With the proliferation of its EcoBoost technology and an ongoing battle to be a leader in the fuel economy segment one can’t help but wonder how small of an engine Ford will be willing to offer in its North American lineup.


1. Ford EcoBoost 1.0L 3-cylinder was recently named International Engine of the Year

2. Fuel Economy is rated at as high as 49 mpg.

3. Set to arrive on our shores, we’re likely to see the EcoBoost 1.0L in the Focus and Fiesta.

At present, the answer seems to be a 1.0-liter three-cylinder, incorporating direct injection and turbocharging. Developed by Ford’s U.K. technical center in Dunton, Essex, this engine was conceived primarily for powering Ford’s smaller volume vehicles in Europe, namely the Fiesta, Focus and its B-Max and C-Max derivatives.

This week in Dearborn, Ford reaffirmed plans that the EcoBoost 1.0 is definitely coming to North America, though declined to say exactly when (sometime next year was the best we could get), or which cars in its lineup will offer it.

Nevertheless, AutoGuide was given a chance to sample the motor in a Euro-spec Focus at the Dearborn Proving Grounds.



In Europe, the Ecoboost 1.0 is currently offered in two versions: one that develops 98 horsepower and the other, 123 horsepower. Availability is currently restricted to the Focus, though Ford says it will be offered in the B-Max and C-Max later this year.

Features of this engine, which is about the size of an A4 sheet of paper, include a low inertia turbocharger, designed to spin at low rpm for better throttle response, while an exhaust manifold cast into the cylinder head has been designed to lower exhaust temperatures and therefore optimize air/fuel ratios across a wider rpm spread.

2013 Ford Focus EcoBoost 10 engine

In addition, in order to maximize efficiency and fuel economy the engine uses a cast-iron instead of aluminum block. The idea is to promote faster warm up, reducing the need for more fuel when cold, thus boosting gas mileage and lowering emissions.

In Europe, the 98-horsepower engine is rated at 4.8-liters per 100 km (49 mpg US), while the 123 hp version is said to deliver 5.0 liters per 100 km (47 mpg US). We should point out, however, that those numbers are based on the less strict European test cycle and should drop by as much as 20 percent once US EPA testing is done. CO2 emissions output is rated at 109 grams per kilometer and 114 g/km respectively.

2013 Ford Focus EcoBoost 10 work

Because three-cylinder engines are inherently unbalanced and in the past, often incredibly coarse under load (just ask anybody who’s ever driven a Geo Metro), Ford has decided to tackle this issue by installing an unbalanced flywheel, in an effort to improve smoothness without the need to install power robbing balance shafts.

The question is, does it work?  Well, during our fairly brief stint driving the car on the track, two things readily became apparent. Firstly, for such a small engine the EcoBoost 1.0 delivers a healthy wallop of torque at low rpm.

Secondly, it feels and sounds very much like a small diesel engine, even though it runs on gasoline. In our six-speed manual test Focus we had no problem accelerating out of corners and traversing hills and dips on the test route. Usually, in a car of this size with a gas engine this small, the thing would have trouble getting out of its own way, yet the EcoBoost 1.0 was responsive, peppy even.

Although not as smooth as its larger 1.6 and 2.0-liter four-cylinder counterparts, it’s far removed from the likes of that nasty old Suzuki unit found in the Geo Metro and is without doubt, an overachiever of an engine. And, like other EcoBoost motors, it’s designed to run on regular grade fuel. 


2013 Ford Focus EcoBoost side

At this point it’s difficult to say, though we’ll interpret small cars to mean likely the Focus and possibly the Fiesta too. If and when that does happen, Ford will likely list it as an option on the Focus rather than the standard engine, in keeping with practice on other models such as the Taurus and F-150. That way, consumers will have a chance to warm to it, since after all, the idea of a three-cylinder engine in a regular passenger car is still alien to most Americans.

As to any changes we can expect from the European version, engineers we talked in Dearborn this week said they would be minimal, restricted to minor spark calibrations and ECU settings. 



Expecting to be underwhelmed, the Ford’s new 1.0L EcoBoost engine surprises with power and is a reassuring sign that the return of the 3-cylinder engine won’t spell a new era of outrageously underpowered cars. Perfectly suitable in terms of power for the Focus, it’s certain to be an even better match in the Fiesta. There’s still more to be done in the area of refinement, while perhaps the biggest potential drawback will be Ford’s strategy of pricing its EcoBoost offerings above the conventional gasoline ones, meaning those interested in this ultra efficient gasoline engine have to settle for its diesel-like characteristics.

« Back
SWEEPSTAKES – OFFICIAL RULES, TERMS AND CONDITIONS’s Monthly Overlay Newsletter Signup – By subscribing to our email newsletter, Entrants are eligible to win one (1) Gift Card (value of $100.00 USD). One (1) winner will be chosen every month at random and contacted by VerticalScope Inc.’s staff. * is not a sponsor of this promotion. Except as required by law, Gift Cards ("GCs") cannot be transferred for value or redeemed for cash. GCs may be used only for purchases of eligible goods at or certain of its affiliated websites. For complete terms and conditions, see GCs are issued by ACI Gift Cards, Inc., a Washington corporation. All Amazon ®, ™ & © are IP of, Inc. or its affiliates. No expiration date or service fees.


2. PRIZE: One (1) Winner will be randomly selected every month to each receive: one (1) $100.00 Gift Card (the “Prize Supplier”). Total approximate retail value of all prizes is approximately $100.00 USD. Prizes are not transferable and no cash or prize substitution is allowed. Prize package is awarded "as is" with no warranty or guarantee, either express or implied.

3. ELIGIBILITY: From the time of entry through the final date of prize fulfillment, each contest entrant and selected entrant must be a permanent lawful citizen and resident residing in the 50 United States or the District of Columbia or in Canada, and be twenty one (21) years of age or older. VOID IN PUERTO RICO, THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS, IN ALL FOREIGN COUNTRIES OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES, AND ALL OTHER U.S. TERRITORIES OR CANADA AND POSSESSIONS AND WHERE PROHIBITED OR RESTRICTED BY LAW. Employees, officers, directors, agents and representatives, of the Sponsor and the Prize Supplier and each of their respective parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies, promotion partners and any entity involved in the development, production, implementation, administration or fulfillment of this Sweepstakes, and the immediate family members (e.g., spouse, mother, father, sister, brother, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, grandparent, in-law, daughter and son, regardless of where they live) and persons living in the same household (whether or not related) of such individuals are not eligible to participate or win. Only one selected entrant per household. All decisions of the Sponsor with respect to this sweepstakes are final. The Sponsor shall have the right at any time to require proof of identity and failure to provide such proof may result in disqualification from the Sweepstakes.

4. ENTER BY INTERNET: You may enter this sweepstakes via the Internet by logging onto and subscribing to our email newsletter via the pop-up overlay.

5. SELECTION OF WINNER: One (1) Entrant will be selected by random selection who have subscribed to our email newsletter. The winner may be announced publicly on and will be contacted by VerticalScope Inc.’s staff. The winner will be required to provide a mailing address (that is not a P.O. box) to receive the prize which will be shipped free of charge.

6. ODDS OF WINNING: Odds of winning a prize are determined by the total number of eligible entries received.

7. RESTRICTIONS: The prize package consists of one (1) Gift Card with an approximate value of $100.00 USD. If prize cannot be awarded due to circumstances beyond the control of the Sponsor or Prize Supplier, no substitute prize will be awarded due to the unique nature of the prize. Sponsor and Prize Supplier shall not be liable to the winner or any person claiming through winner for failure to supply the prize or any part thereof, by reason of any acts of God, any action(s), regulation(s), order(s) or request(s) by any governmental or quasi-governmental entity (whether or not the action(s), regulations(s), order(s) or request(s) prove(s) to be invalid), equipment failure, utility failure, internet failure, terrorist acts, threatened terrorist acts, air raid, blackout, act of public enemy, earthquake, war (declared or undeclared), fire, flood, epidemic, explosion, unusually severe weather, hurricane, embargo, labor dispute or strike (whether legal or illegal) labor or material shortage, transportation interruption of any kind, work slow-down, civil disturbance, insurrection, riot, or any other cause beyond Sponsor's or Prize Supplier's control (collectively, "Force Majeure Event"). Sponsor shall not be responsible for any cancellations, delays, diversions or substitutions or any act or omissions whatsoever by the performers/events, other transportation companies or any other persons providing any of these services and accommodations to passengers including any results thereof such as changes in services or accommodations necessitated by same.

8. CONDITIONS: By entering the Sweepstakes, entrants agree to be bound by the Official Rules, Terms and Conditions and that Sponsor has the irrevocable right to use in perpetuity entrants' names, user names, likenesses, photographs, voices, home mailing address, biographical and prize information, and entry materials, without notice to entrants and without compensation or obligation, in any and all media now or hereafter known throughout the world, in any manner whatsoever, to advertise and promote Sponsor, its products and services, the Sweepstakes, and for any other purpose except where prohibited by law. Entrant waives the right to assert as a cost of winning a prize any and all costs of verification and redemption or travel to redeem said prize and any liability which might arise from redeeming or seeking to redeem said prize. Sponsor is not responsible for fraudulent calls or emails made to entrants not by the Sponsor. If the Sweepstakes is not capable of running as planned by reason of damage by computer viruses, worms or bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical limitations or failures, any Force Majeure Event or any other cause which, in the sole opinion of Sponsor, could corrupt, compromise, undermine or otherwise affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, viability or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes, Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole and absolute discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend all or any part of the Sweepstakes, and to select a winner from among all eligible entries received by Sponsor up until the time of such cancellation, termination, modification or suspension, as applicable. Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any individual that (i) tampers or attempts to tamper with the entry process or the operations of this Sweepstakes in any manner, (ii) violates the Official Rules, Terms and Conditions or (iii) acts in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT BY AN ENTRANT OR ANY OTHER INDIVIDUAL TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THIS SWEEPSTAKES IS A VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS. SHOULD SUCH AN ATTEMPT BE MADE, SPONSOR RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SEEK CIVIL AND/OR CRIMINAL PROSECUTION AND/OR DAMAGES FROM ANY SUCH PERSON TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW. Any expenses and receipt and use of the prize and federal, state and local taxes and fees applicable in connection with the prize awarded are the sole responsibility of the winner. An IRS Form 1099 will be issued in the name of the winner for the actual value of the prize received. This Sweepstakes is subject to all federal, state and local laws of the United States. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Sponsor, Prize Supplier, and their respective officers, directors, parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries and advertising and promotion agencies, employees, representatives and agents are not responsible for and shall not be liable for (i) any injuries, losses or damages of any kind caused by a prize resulting from acceptance, possession or usage of the prize, or (ii) printing, distribution or production errors. Sponsor or its affiliates may rescind any promotion found to contain such errors without liability at its or their sole discretion.

9. SPONSOR: The Sponsor of this contest is VerticalScope Inc. (the owner and operator of, 111 Peter Street, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario, M5V 2H1.

Subscribe to our email newsletter and automatically be entered to win.
*Restrictions apply. See offer for details

Get Breaking Automotive News, Reviews and Video in your Facebook Feed!

Already Liked