German carmaker Daimler has consulted US auto group Ford Motor Co. during the development of its three-cylinder turbocharged gasoline engine. Daimler is building the new three-cylinder engine with Renault to be fitted in its new Smart ForTwo and in the French carmaker’s next Twingo minicar.
Ford is using its three-cylinder turbocharged 1.0-liter EcoBoost gasoline direct-injection engine to power its Focus and C-Max compacts as well as the Fiesta and B-Max subcompacts.
The engine has earned several accolades for its performance and low emissions. Roland Kemmler, engine development director at Mercedes-Benz, told Automotive News Europe that Ford’s EcoBoost powerplant is “a very interesting and impressive engine." He said that they had some discussions with Ford engineers about the EcoBoost. According to Kemmler, Ford shared its expertise on the engine in exchange for information about Mercedes' Euro6 stratified lean-burn gasoline engines.
Mercedes presently offers a four-cylinder engine in the updated E-class sedan. Engine information sharing is the latest collaboration between Daimler, Renault and Ford. Earlier this year, the German, French and American carmakers announced that they would collaborate on fuel cell development, targeting to sell volume hydrogen-powered vehicles by 2017. Daimler and Renault-Nissan entered into a partnership in 2010 to jointly develop and share engines and platforms.
In 2011, Daimler chief executive Dieter Zetsche remarked that the foundation of the partnership would be "small cars and small engines." Renault and Daimler will also collaborate to develop electric version of their minicars, with the French carmaker providing the electric motor and Daimler the battery. Renault is unveiling a concept version of the Twingo -- the TwinFun -- this week as a run-up to the Monaco Grand Prix race on Sunday.