EcoBoost in a Mustang?


sho engine small_wm.jpgFord hasn't been particularly forthcoming with the public about what engine options will be present for the 2011 Mustang.  Rumors based on comments from a variety of Ford management members, including Bill Ford Jr., would lead us to believe that at some point in the near future the Mustang will be powered by a 3.7L V6 and a new 5.0L V8.  The base model will likely offer the Duratec 3.7L V6, similar to what is used in the Mazda CX-9 and the Mustang GT will feature be the long awaited return of the 5.0 V8, code named the Coyote.  Should these turn out to be the only engine options, we are looking at somewhere in the area of 273hp in the base model and around 400 in the GT - both quite a step up from the current engine options.  But what happened to the EcoBoost rumors?  Around the internet people are saying that the EcoBoost may not be finding its way into the Mustang now, but with the way Ford has touted this new engine, why is it not finding a home in their storied pony car?

Many people standing at a street corner may not know what an SVO Mustang is, but within the Mustang community the turbocharged 4-cylinder Mustangs of the 1980s are well recognized for their performance.  The EcoBoost engine could very well make a modern SVO or Turbo GT, and the 365 horsepower would nestle it nicely between the base and the GT.  Of course, it's easy to say "the base model Mustang should have 365hp instead of 210", but with the likely Coyote V8 pushing the GT up to and hopefully over the 400 horsepower mark, there is room to fit a 365 horsepower option in, without stepping on the GTs toes too much.  Not to mention, the 365 horsepower EcoBoost drivetrain found in the 2010 Taurus SHO features all wheel drive, and still gets an EPA estimated 17/25 mpg - where as the 210 hp 2010 Mustang V6 gets 18/26.

2010 mustang v6_wm(1).jpgI've heard nothing but good things about the new EcoBoost engine, so to get an idea of just how great the new EcoBoost is, I headed down to Dorian Ford yesterday and Lisa Zerilli set me up with few hours in a 2010 Ford Taurus SHO, as well as a few hours in a 2010 Mustang base model.  This gave me an idea of what the current 4.0L V6 drivetrain feels like, compared to the drivetrain that could replace it in 2011.  All I can say about the EcoBoost drivetrain is "wow".  I expected it to be strong, as 365hp and 350lb-ft of torque is big power in any cars, but it's a Taurus, right?  I was blown away by how powerful and smooth this car is, from the seamless shifts of the paddle shifters to the silent interior...the SHO is worth the hype.

sho small_wm.jpgThe way that I see it, the only thing preventing the perfect marriage of the EcoBoost V6 and the Mustang from happening is the cost of the EcoBoost engine.  The 2010 Mustang base model is priced at an affordable $22,190 as tested, but the Taurus SHO rings in quite a bit higher, with a sticker price of $45,250.  Granted, the SHO is more than just a powerful engine, but the technology behind the EcoBoost engine has to come with a price, and no one would buy an "lower level" EcoBoost Mustang with a bigger price tag than the Mustang GT.  However, if Ford can put the EcoBoost in the Mustang, without pricing it higher than the GT, we could very easily see a base model, twin turbo Mustang that would send the V6 Camaros packing.

Click here for the full article, and a gallery of pictures from the test drives, and stay tuned to the Detroit Autos Examiner for next week's reviews of the 2010 Taurus SHO and the 2010 Mustang V6 by clicking here!



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