2017 Ford F-150: better fuel economy, new 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine and 10-speed transmission

Article by Christian A., on October 11, 2016

Pickup trucks are usually known for their gas-guzzling nature, especially when they are powered by high-output engines. The new Ford F-150 changes this game for the 2017 model year, with both its rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive models posting impressive gains not only in terms of max power output and peak torque, but also in the area of fuel efficiency (city, highway and combined).

The core of this improvement on the new 2017 Ford F-150 is none other than the terrific combination of a more powerful yet more efficient new 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine (second generation) and the first volume-production 10-speed automatic transmission that allows for further enhancements in performance (especially acceleration) and efficiency, as well as towing and hauling control. Thanks to this combo, the new Ford F-150 is able to provide better low-end and peak performance, making it suitable for towing heavy trailers as well as hauling heavy payloads.

Ford expects that its EcoBoost-equipped F-150 trucks will account for over a million units running on the road over the next year. This means that over 110 million gallons of gas could be saved by F-150 owners over the next year, while still out-hauling its truck rivals.

The gains in fuel economy in the 2017 Ford F-150 are evident in all three EPA estimates. For instance, the 2017 Ford F-150 4x2 returns fuel economy estimates of 18 mpg city/ 25 mpg highway/ 21 mpg – which are each 1 mpg better than figures of the 2016 Ford F-150 4x2 (17 mpg city/ 24 mpg highway/ 20 mpg). On the other hand, the EPA fuel economy estimates for the 2017 Ford F-150 4x4 are 17 mpg city/ 23 mpg highway/ 20 mpg combined. This means that compared to the 2016 Ford F-150 4x4 (16 mpg city/ 22 mpg highway/ 18 mpg combined), the 2017 iteration returns 1 mpg better economy on the city and highway driving, and 2 mpg better combined fuel economy.

Amazingly, the high-performance version of the F-150 – the 2017 Ford F-150 Raptor – is now powered by a high-yield version of the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine that delivers 450 hp (335.6 kW) of output and 510 lb-ft (691.5 Nm) of torque and return fuel economy ratings of 15 mpg city/ 18 mpg highway/ 16 mpg combined. These numbers are significantly better than the naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 engine that provides 411 hp (306.5 kW) of output and 434 lb-ft (588.4 Nm) of torque while returning fuel economy ratings of 12 mpg city/ 16 mpg highway/ 13 mpg combined.

10-speed transmission

Meanwhile, the new 10-speed automatic transmission for both the 4x2 and 4x4 versions of the new 2017 F-150 is designed to optimize engine power and torque ranges, boasting of closer ratios between gears as well as patented hydraulic controls. This new transmission features smarter shift logic for a more confident towing and hauling capabilities.

Its new adaptive shift-scheduling algorithms checks over a dozen powertrain and driver control signals – in real time – to ensure the right gear is selected at the right time. This new transmission also features a distinct high-speed one-way clutch for non-sequential shifting.

The more dependable shifting performance of this new gearbox is also attributable to its lighter weight, as it is made from advanced materials and alloys instead of cast-iron components.

Since the torque converter/turbine clutch has been integrated into the system, it also helps save over two pounds of weight while making the transmission more compact.

New 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine

Now in its second-generation, the new 3.5-liter EcoBoost leverages the best qualities of its predecessor – which accounted for around 60 percent of F-150 sales – while improving its power, efficiency and reliability.

As a result, the new 3.5-liter EcoBoost provides 375 hp of max output (plus 10 hp) and segment-best 470 lb.-ft. of peak torque (plus 50 lb.-ft.) than the first-generation V6 engine. Interestingly, although this 3.5-liter EcoBoost is smaller than the V8 engines that powers the F-150’s rivals in the pickup truck segment, it is still more powerful than all of them.

The improved design of the new 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine features a new twin-port and direct-injection fuel strategy and redesigned twin turbocharger with electronic waste-gate.

This powerful V6 engine also boasts of a redesigned valvetrain and variable-displacement oil pump as well as lighter yet stronger crank and valvetrain components. Currently, the Ford F-150 is the only truck in its segment that offers a twin-turbocharged gasoline engine.

Press Release

MORE MILES PER GALLON: FORD F-150 FUEL ECONOMY IMPROVES WITH ALL-NEW ECOBOOST ENGINE AND 10-SPEED TRANSMISSION

Thanks to its all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost® engine paired exclusively with the first volume-production 10-speed automatic transmission available from any automaker, 2017 Ford F-150 sees improvement in all three EPA fuel economy label estimates – city, highway and combined ratings – by 1 mpg over 2016 F-150; 4x4 model improves by 2 mpg combined

Second-generation 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 produces 375 horsepower and segment-best 470 lb.-ft. of torque – a gain of 10 horsepower and 50 lb.-ft. over first-generation engine

Advanced 10-speed automatic transmission enables improvements in performance and efficiency, as well as increased towing and hauling control

Ford has sold more than 1 million EcoBoost F-150 trucks in the United States since 2011

DEARBORN, Mich., Oct. 4, 2016 – Ford, America’s truck leader, continues its relentless pace of innovation and performance, helping customers get better mileage out of each gallon of gas in the 2017 Ford F-150. Thanks to the all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost® V6 engine mated to the first volume-production 10-speed automatic transmission, EPA-estimated city, highway and combined fuel economy increase 1 mpg, with the combined rating for 2017 F-150 4x4 up 2 mpg.

Model
City
Highway
Combined
2017 Ford F-150 4x2
18 mpg
25 mpg
21 mpg
2016 Ford F-150 4x2
17 mpg
24 mpg
20 mpg

2017 Ford F-150 4x4
17 mpg
23 mpg
20 mpg
2016 Ford F-150 4x4
16 mpg
22 mpg
18 mpg

In addition, F-150 customers benefit from improved acceleration, performance and refinement delivered by the 3.5-liter EcoBoost and state-of-the-art 10-speed automatic transmission. This new powertrain combination provides better low-end and peak performance, which is ideal for hauling heavy payloads and towing heavy trailers.

All-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6

This second-generation 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine delivers 50 lb.-ft. more peak torque compared with the first-generation 3.5-liter EcoBoost, for a segment-best 470 lb.-ft. – beating all diesel- and gasoline-powered competitors including V8 engines with nearly twice the displacement. Horsepower jumps 10 over the previous version, for a total of 375 horsepower.

The all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost leverages the best attributes of the first-generation design – power, reliability and efficiency – improving in almost every aspect. This includes a new twin-port and direct-injection fuel strategy, lighter and stronger crank and valvetrain components, redesigned twin turbocharger with electronic wastegate, and redesigned valvetrain and variable-displacement oil pump.

The all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost builds on the success of the 2.7-liter EcoBoost and first-generation 3.5-liter EcoBoost – which account for approximately 60 percent of F-150 sales. F-150 remains the only truck in its segment to offer a twin-turbocharged gasoline engine. With 1 million-plus Ford EcoBoost-equipped trucks on the road, F-150 owners will save more than 110 million gallons of gas over the next year while out-hauling the competition.

First volume-production 10-speed automatic

The all-new 10-speed automatic transmission available for 2017 F-150 4x2 and 4x4 models optimizes engine power and torque ranges, with closer ratios between gears and patented hydraulic controls.

Smarter shift logic helps customers tow with improved confidence using tow/haul mode. All-new adaptive shift-scheduling algorithms monitor more than a dozen powertrain and driver control signals in real time – ensuring the right gear at the right time for an engaging driving experience, including in sport mode. In addition, a unique high-speed one-way clutch allows for non-sequential shifting.

Weight savings play a key role in improved shifting performance. The 10-speed gearbox – the first from Ford not to employ cast-iron components – uses advanced materials and alloys. An integrated torque converter/turbine clutch helps shave more than two pounds, while reducing the packaging footprint.

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