Is Ford Working on a New EcoBoost for the Mustang?
by Patrick Rall
We don't get much Mustang news from the folks at PickupTrucks.com but according to an insider source of theirs, Ford is currently working on a pair of new EcoBoost V6 engines that may find their way under the hood of the Ford F Series and the Ford Mustang. These new engines are expected to measure 3.0 and either 2.6 or 2.7L, and while little is known about the new EcoBoost engines currently wearing the code name "Nano", rumors suggest that the EcoBoost 3.0 could make between 300 and 315 horsepower.
If these rumors prove to be true, the Nano EcoBoost V6 destined for the Mustang would most likely replace the Duratec 37 currently serving as the engine level engine for the 2011 Mustang. This engine offers best in class fuel economy of 31 miles per gallon while also packing 305 horsepower - making it one of the most efficient and powerful entry level Mustangs of all time.
The problem (if you want to call it a problem) is that the new CAFE standards introduced last week by President Obama require automakers to get at least 39 miles per gallon across their lineup of cars. To be clear, that means that each vehicle doesn't need to hit 39mpg, but instead, all of the cars offered by a given brand will have to average out to 39mpg.
The good news is that Ford's bestselling vehicles are also their most efficient, with models like the fuel friendly Ford Fusion leading the way. Also, Ford has made incredible strides in the area of fuel economy without compromising performance with the newest engine lineup - with the 3.7L V6 and the 5.0L V8 comprising the most fuel efficient Mustang lineup of all time.
However, while the 2011 Mustang offering 31mpg in the V6 and 26mpg from the V8 will likely be "picked up" by the more fuel efficient models - if Ford can find a way to make similar power to the current engines, or add power, it is something that they will pursue.
Enter the EcoBoost.
Ford has shown with the new Ford Taurus SHO and the Ford F150 EcoBoost that a small engine with direct injection and turbocharging technology can offer just as much reliable power while improving on the fuel economy categories, with the 3.5L EcoBoost engine in those two models offering 365 horsepower and torque ranging as high as 420lb-ft in the F150. If the new EcoBoost 3.0 is expected to make between 300-315hp it should effectively replace the Duratec 37 that currently stands as the entry level engine. And thanks to the use of forced induction and direct injection, this new engine should also be able to achieve better than the 31mpg offered by the current 3.7L V6.
Also, the Nano EcoBoost engines are rumored to use Ford's new dual stage turbocharging system that uses a pair of turbos - one large and one small - to help low end power without turbo lag while also offering tons of top end power. A small turbocharger will spool quickly to low end torque without the cost of turbo lag and the second, larger turbo will kick in at high RPMs to bolster the top end grunt.
We should know more about the upcoming engines as we get into auto show season starting later this year!
So, what do you think? Is Ford moving in the right direction here? Or is bigger always better? Voice your opinion here!