Year on year, new emissions limit legislation is introduced to force the automotive industry into producing engines that have reduced output of these harmful gases. Ford’s response has been a ground-breaking step in the right direction for the industry.
With all the furore of late about Ford’s EcoBoost technology, you might be curious to know how it got to be the three-time winner of the Engine of the Year Award. So, let’s take a look at how Ford’s engine tech actually shapes up.
What is EcoBoost?
In a nutshell: a turbocharged, direct injection petrol engine.
Ford launched the first incarnation of its EcoBoost technology back in 2012. It was developed by a team of UK engineers, and remains 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder, and delivers unrivalled fuel efficiency for an engine of its size.
The words ‘eco’ and ‘boost’ may not seem to go together, but the power of the engine really is remarkable, and the manufacturer even sees EcoBoost as viable alternative to hybrid and diesel. Let’s take a look at the specifics.
‘Eco’ Direct Injection
The direct fuel injection method used by most newer engines is far more efficient for processing fuel as it’s more precise. In the smaller EcoBoost, this method allows a ‘lean burn’ mode, meaning a minimum of fuel is used when the engine doesn’t require much power, such as cruising along at speed. Ford assures us ‘bigger isn’t always better’, and their ‘engine downsizing’ means an even more efficient machine as it can use up every last bit of fuel.
‘Boost’ Turbo Technology
With a smaller engine, the ‘boost’ part of the name is a little difficult to comprehend. What Ford does to combat the engine downsizing is to use turbochargers in the EcoBoost range. Combining the direct injection method with the turbochargers increases power stroke strength, making the 1.0-litre engine just as effective as a 1.6-litre engine, with vastly improved efficiency due to the smaller size.
In addition to this improvement in efficiency, turbochargers mean greater spread of torque, and consequently fewer gear changes. Ford says this on the matter:
‘Variable cam timing helps generate high torque even at low revs, and maintains peak power. Or more simply: you get immediate, responsive power whenever you need to accelerate – such as overtaking a long, slow lorry.’
Where Can We Get EcoBoost Engines?
EcoBoost engines are fitted into popular Ford models, like the Focus, the Mondeo, Fiesta, B-Max, C-Max, Tourneo Connect, as well as performance vehicles like the Fiesta ST and Focus ST. You can find these models and more at places like Car4Leasing.
This exciting development marries two technologies giving us the best of both worlds, so it’s not hard to see why the EcoBoost has won its awards.