Ford’s F-150 EcoBoost engine teardown to take place at 2011 Detroit Auto Show

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 29, 2010

Ford Motor Company's powertrain engineers will disassemble and examine the F-150 EcoBoost engine that has gone a distance equivalent of 160,000 miles and 10 years of rugged use. The engine will be torn down for long-term durability in front of an audience at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Jan. 15, 2011 at 11 a.m.

Such engine saw its first action on the dyno in July 2010. V6 engines programs manager Jim Mazuchowski said that customers will personally witness how the engine parts fared during tests that are "far more extreme than even the harshest-use customer could dish out."

Engineers subjected the engine to temperature and load extremes simulating nearly 10 years of use, a regimen tougher than any consumer could ever subject a truck to. Most engines, at this point, would be ready to be retired or rebuilt, but the EcoBoost testing engine was just beginning.

The EcoBoost engine was fitted on a regular production 2011 F-150 at the Kansas City Assembly Plant. It was then driven on the road and experienced some of the most severe use Ford engineers could come up with.

A significant part of the performance shown by the EcoBoost is due to the twin turbochargers that combine with the direct fuel injection to give a multitude of low-end torque. Its engine can deliver 365 horsepower available at 5,000 rpm. Around 90% of its engine peak with the 420 lb.-ft. maximum torque, one of the best in its class, is available at rpm’s from 1,700 to 5,000.

V6 engines program manager Mazuchowski shared that the best analogy for truck customers is that while the engine in the EcoBoost is gas-powered, it has similar characteristics and capability experienced from the diesel engines.

He added that the direct injection and the twin turbochargers provide a flat, broad torque curve making towing with a diesel easy and hard acceleration fun. The engine in the EcoBoost truck is able to save fuel due to the twin independent variable camshaft timing, or the Ti-VCT.

The Ti-VCT enables independent but precise variable control of timing for its intake valves and exhaust valves. In addition to helping save fuel, the Ti-VCT can also lower emissions especially in cases when the throttle has been partially opened.

Since it is possible to independently adjust the timing of the intake valve and the exhaust valve, this results in being able to maximize the fuel economy even when part-throttle. It also allows for optimized power when in full-throttle.

Capping off the advantages is the enhanced driveability and the improved responsiveness across its torque curve. Independent adjustment of intake and exhaust valve timing allows maximum fuel economy at part-throttle, while delivering optimized power in full-throttle situations.

An added benefit is improved driveability and responsiveness across the torque curve. The final stage of the teardown of the EcoBoost truck engine is known as the "Torture Test." This will involve a multipart series of documentaries shown on the web that started with the random selection of a 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine.

It was then made to endure what can only be said as equal to 150,000 miles or around 10 years of use on the dynamometer. This particular method allowed the replication of the duty cycle of even the harshest customer.

EcoBoost is an important part of the company’s plan to develop technologically advanced powertrains that have smaller displacement but high output and that are able to provide the needed performance as well as fuel economy.

Unlike the larger and less-efficient engines, the EcoBoost engines allow improved fuel economy of up to 20% and lower CO2 emissions by as much as 15%.

Aside from the turbocharging and the direct injection, the engineers at Ford also improved the technological capabilities of the EcoBoost by putting in a variable valve timing and providing a more precise control on all aspects of the engine. According to Ford, it has a minimum of 125 patents related to the EcoBoost technology.

Press Release

Ford Offers Unprecedented Look at Teardown of F-150 EcoBoost Engine to Public at 2011 NAIAS

Ford powertrain engineers will tear down an engine that has gone a distance equal to six times around the earth and three quarters of the way to the moon. Or put another way: the engine has the equivalent of 160,000 miles and 10-years of rugged use.

Now, Ford engineers want to see how the engine's parts and components held up. They will examine it for long-term durability in front of the public at North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Jan. 15, 2011 at 11:00 a.m.

"Customers will be able to see for themselves how the components fared during a regime of tests that, when taken together, are far more extreme than even the harshest-use customer could dish out," said Jim Mazuchowski, V6 engines programs manager. "This EcoBoost truck engine received no special treatment, and now we're going to see how it did."

The F-150 EcoBoost engine saw its first action on the dyno in July. Engineers punished it in temperature and load extremes simulating nearly 10 years of use – a regimen tougher than any consumer could ever subject a truck to. At this point, most engines would be ready to be rebuilt or retired, but the EcoBoost testing engine was just beginning.

The engine was dropped into a regular production 2011 F-150 at Kansas City Assembly Plant Then it hit the road and saw some of the most severe use Ford engineers have ever dreamed up.

It hauled 55 tons of lumber
It ran at full throttle for 24 straight hours towing 11,300 lbs
Beat competitors' larger engines in an uphill towing competition
It completed the world's toughest desert endurance race, the SCORE Tecate Baja 1000 in Mexico

Go to http://www.ford.com/trucks/f150/experiencef150 to see firsthand how the EcoBoost truck engine performs.

After its run in the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost truck engine was removed from the F-150 race truck and shipped to Dearborn. Go to http://www.ford.com/trucks/f150/experiencef150 to see the EcoBoost engine removed.

Lat month, the engine returned to the Dearborn dynamometer lab – where it started its "torture test" to have power levels and output checked at a speed range from 1,500 to 5,000 rpm. The results:

Produced best-in-class 420 lb.-ft. of torque at 2,500 rpm on regular fuel
Produced 365 horsepower at 5,000 rpm on regular fuel
Power and torque met with the same level of boost as the new advertised power engine
Cylinder compression (a measure of how efficiently the engine makes power) and leakdown (measures pressure lost due to worn piston rings or defects in the valvetrain) both were still in specification
No oil or fluid leaks

Twin turbochargers and direct fuel injection

Key to EcoBoost's performance is the wealth of low-end torque produced by the combination of twin turbochargers and direct fuel injection. Up to 90 percent of the EcoBoost truck engine's peak, best-in-class torque of 420 lb.-ft. is available from 1,700 rpm to 5,000 rpm – all on regular fuel. The engine produces 365 horsepower at 5,000 rpm.

"Truck customers should think of the EcoBoost truck engine as a gas-powered engine with diesel-type capability and characteristics," said Mazuchowski, V6 engines program manager. "The twin turbochargers and direct injection give it the broad, flat torque curve that makes towing with a diesel so effortless – and hard acceleration so much fun."

The EcoBoost truck engine also features twin independent variable camshaft timing, or Ti-VCT, to help save fuel. Ti-VCT provides extremely precise variable – yet independent – control of timing for intake and exhaust valves. Ti-VCT also reduces emissions, especially in situations when the throttle is partially open.

Independent adjustment of intake and exhaust valve timing allows maximum fuel economy at part-throttle, while delivering optimized power in full-throttle situations. An added benefit is improved driveability and responsiveness across the torque curve.

Final phase of EcoBoost "torture test"

The teardown is the final phase of the new 3.5-liter EcoBoost truck engine's "Torture Test," a multipart series of web-based documentaries that began when this randomly selected EcoBoost engine endured the equivalent of 150,000 miles or 10 years' use on the dynamometer, replicating the duty cycle of the harshest-use customer.

EcoBoost is fundamental to Ford's strategy to provide technologically advanced, high-output, smaller-displacement powertrains that deliver uncompromised performance and fuel economy. EcoBoost engines deliver fuel economy gains of up to 20 percent and reduction of CO2 emissions of up to 15 percent, compared with larger, less-efficient engines.

In addition to turbocharging with direct injection, Ford engineers have enhanced EcoBoost's technology capabilities by adding variable valve timing and precisely controlling all aspects of the engine. Ford has at least 125 patents on its EcoBoost technology.

Ford truck leadership continues

Ford F-Series is the best-selling and most-awarded pickup truck (for 34 years straight) and best-selling vehicle (for 29 years straight) in America. Here are some of the recent awards for Ford F-Series trucks:

2011 F-150

PickupTrucks.com and USA Today: 2010 V-6 Shootout: Best Overall V-6 Work Truck
Consumer Digest Best Buy
The SEMA Award™ for Hottest Truck

2011 Super Duty

Farmer Industry News Best Pickup
Popular Mechanics Auto Excellence Award: Best Workhorse
Ward's Best Engine: 6.7-liter Power Stroke® diesel
PickupTrucks.com Best Engine: 6.2-liter gas
ALG Residual Value
Kelley Blue Book Residual Value
Truck Line of Texas

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