• Dec 18th 2008 at 12:09AM
  • 46
Well, that was short lived. Ford just finished bringing its more powerful and efficient four- and six-cylinder engines to market in the Escape CUV, but the Dearborn CUV is going to have to kiss its crossover efficiency crown goodbye when the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox drops. Redone for '10, the new Equinox will offer direct-injection engines that deliver greater power and fuel economy improvements of their own, enough to push Ford's new powerplants out of the top spot.

This evening GM has unveiled a 2.4-liter direct injection EcoTec four-cylinder that will kick out 180 horsepower while returning a projected EPA highway rating of 30 mpg (Ford's 2.5L I-4 produces 170 hp and returns a maximum of 28 mpg highway). It's a marvelous way to send the old 3.4 liter V6 into the sunset, but if you absolutely must have a V6, there's also a DI 3.0-liter version of GM's excellent "high feature" V6 delivering an impressive 255 horsepower (Again, Ford's heavily revised 3.0L V6 produces 240 hp).

Both engines have been developed with an eye (or ear) toward reducing the typically increased noise of DI engines. There are rubber isolators to keep the fuel rail racket down and attention to noise attenuation was an important aspect of the program. Variable valve timing also allows both engines to be more efficient over a broader rpm range. Backing both powerplants is a six-speed automatic transmission. Now all the General has to do is hang on 'till these cars hit showrooms and pray for higher fuel prices to further drive demand.

[Source: GM]



  • New technologies and vehicle enhancements will enable GM's 2009 domestic car and light truck lineups to save 700 million gallons of fuel over vehicle life as compared to the 2008 GM fleet
  • Chevy Equinox four-cylinder model to offer class-leading highway fuel economy

PONTIAC, Mich. – Owners of the 2010 Chevrolet Equinox crossover will hit the streets next summer in a vehicle equipped with a highly efficient, all-new engine that will help save both fuel and money.

The 2010 Equinox will be offered with a choice of two new direct injected (DI) engines that use less fuel yet make more power – a 2.4L four-cylinder and a 3.0L V-6. The 2.4L engine delivers an estimated 30 mpg in highway driving (EPA certification pending), placing the Equinox at the top of its segment in highway mileage. Consumers who drive the 2.4L-equipped Equinox 15,000 miles per year will save 134 gallons of fuel or about $270 to $400 annually (assuming gas prices of $2 or $3 per gallon as compared to 2009MY Equinox).

The Equinox will join a growing roster of direct injected vehicles from GM, including the all-new 2010 Cadillac SRX crossover and 2010 Buick LaCrosse sedan, which, along with the Equinox, debut in January at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. In fact, for the 2010 model year, GM will offer more DI models in North America than any other manufacturer.

"We first introduced direct injection in North America in the 2007 Saturn Sky Red Line and the Pontiac Solstice GXP," said Tom Stephens, executive vice president, GM Global Powertrain and Global Quality. "We've been rolling out the technology across our portfolio as quickly as we can so that our customers will have additional fuel savings options. Direct injection is a state-of-the art engineering solution because it enables improved fuel economy and lower emissions without sacrificing power."

In the 2009 model year, GM offers six engines in 18 models globally with direct injection. By 2010, GM will have eight direct injected engines in 38 vehicle models, covering 10 percent of its global volume. In North America alone, GM will offer 18 models with direct injection.

GM's fuel-saving lineup
GM's direct injection push is part of a larger effort to implement multiple fuel-saving technologies across its 2009 portfolio. The all-new 2009 Chevy Traverse crossover, for example, enjoys best-in-class highway fuel economy (24 mpg for FWD models) of any eight-passenger SUV, thanks in part to its 3.6L direct injected V-6 engine with variable valve timing. In 2009, GM expects to sell 500,000 vehicles with gasoline direct injection.
Here are additional fuel-saving facts about GM vehicles:
  • Twenty models in GM's 2009 lineup deliver EPA-rated highway fuel economy of 30 mpg or more – more than any other automaker. GM's non-hybrid models rank first in highway fuel economy in both the midsize sedan and subcompact segments. (Chevrolet Malibu, Saturn Aura with 33 highway mpg; and Chevrolet Colbalt XFE and Pontiac G5 XFE at 37 highway mpg.)
  • GM's 2009 domestic car and light truck lineups will use 700 million fewer gallons of fuel than the 2008 lineup, during the life of the vehicles, saving $1.4 to $2.1 billion in fuel costs, assuming gas prices of $2 to $3 per gallon. It's estimated that GM's 2010 lineup will add another 1.1 billion gallons of fuel savings and $2.2 to $3.3 billion, relative to the 2008 lineup.

GM's advanced engine technologies are already saving fuel today in vehicles on the road or expected to be sold in 2009. They include:
  • More than 3.7 million vehicles with variable valve timing (VVT)
  • 700,000 vehicles with direct injection
  • 600,000 vehicles with Active Fuel Management cylinder deactivation technology, which automatically lets the engine run on half of its cylinders when full power is not needed
  • 200,000 vehicles with turbocharged gas engines
  • 42,000 vehicles with both direct injection and turbocharging
  • More than 2 million vehicles with fuel-saving six-speed transmissions

2.4L DI details
The new 2.4L DI engine delivers an estimated 180 horsepower (134 kW) @ 6700 rpm and 172 lb.-ft. of torque (232 Nm) @4900 rpm. It uses technology based on GM's other four-cylinder direct injection applications, but with unique features designed for its specific application. This includes an 11.4:1 compression ratio that helps build power, slightly dished pistons that increase combustion efficiency and injectors with an application-specific flow rate.

GM benchmarked the best fuel system and noise attenuation products to provide customers with quiet operation.

3.0L DI details
The new 3.0L DI engine is a variant of GM's family of high-feature DOHC V-6 engines that also includes GM's 3.6L DI engine in the Cadillac CTS – an engine named to Ward's AutoWorld's 2009 "Ten Best Engines" list for North America, for the second consecutive year.

The 3.0L is rated at an estimated 255 horsepower (187 kW) and 214 lb.-ft. of torque (290 Nm), for an impressive power-to-displacement ratio of 85 hp per liter. (Output will vary by model.) The 3.0L DI features an isolated fuel injector system that reduces the direct injection high-pressure fuel system pulses for quieter operation. Rubber isolators are used with the fuel rail to eliminate metal-to-metal contact that would otherwise transmit noise and vibration from the high-pressure fuel system.

Along with direct injection technology, both the 3.0L DI and 2.4L DI engines use variable valve timing to optimize power and fuel efficiency across the rpm band, as well as reduce emissions.

How DI works
In a conventionally port fuel injected engine, air and fuel are mixed before they enter the combustion chamber. With GM's DI engines, fuel is sprayed directly into the cylinder where it is mixed with air. As the piston approaches top-dead center, the mixture is ignited by the spark plug; and when the fuel vaporizes in the cylinder, the air and fuel mixture is cooled. This enables the use of a higher compression ratio in the combustion chamber, which improves the engine's power and efficiency.

On cold starts, direct injection can be controlled to create a richer air/fuel mixture around the spark plug, making it easier to ignite in a cold engine. This results in a smoother operation of the engine and lower emissions during the cold start and warm-up, when most harmful tailpipe emissions are typically created. GM's direct injected engines reduce cold-start vehicle emissions by 25 percent.

Because the fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber, direct injection uses higher fuel pressure than conventional fuel injected engines. This is enabled by a special high pressure pump driven by one of the engine's camshafts.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      David Larson
      • 3 Years Ago
      IMHO, GM should also start moving toward adopting the camless technology that Delphi has been working on for years with Sturman Industries, or the Valeo systems. The benefits of electro-magnetic/hydraulic valve train without camshafts or timing chains are many. With all valves open, starters spin the engine easier, faster, cylinders can be deactivated, compression and expansion ratios can be effectively altered. Perhaps GM is willing to let Fiat try first, since the early models are likely to be troublesome and problematic.
      • 6 Years Ago
      If these engines are going to be manufactured in China, like some versions in the current Equinox being sold, no thanks...
      • 6 Years Ago
      And perhaps, speaking of the 3.0DI still, that that engine will be the basis for the new turbo (possibly twin-turbo) new V-6 in Saab's 2010 9-5, at least the Aero model.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The specifications between the GM and Ford engines are pretty close overall. A 5% increase in power is nothing really that special.

      All cars nowadays are overpowered for 99% of daily driving needs anyways. It's more bragging rights than anything.
      • 6 Years Ago
      That 2.4 seems blah. It's down 20hp on the Acura 2.4
        • 6 Years Ago
        That engine requires premium, this does it on regular gas. It wouldn't surprise me if this is cheaper too.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Oh no doubt it will be cheaper coming from GM.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Looks like Ford's 3.0L V6 makes a little bit more torque than this new DI 3.0L, odd considering than the GM engine likely has a much higher compression ratio. Shows us that Ford did some wonders on parasitic losses for that engine. How about GM buy Ford's IP for the VVT system they use on that new 3.0L, they'd probably see 270HP on the new DI 3.0L.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I have has experience with both Fords and GMs in my family growing up, so I have no bias. I will say that I think GM engines and transmissions are tougher (don't bother with a comeback for the word "tougher" as I'm only explaining my feeling and not being technical).
      There was alway a jerky feeling to Ford transmissions (84 Econoline Van 4.0, 87 Cougar w/ 3.8, 01 Taurus w/ 3.8) yes I'm talking about cars from yesteryear but it's nothing I ever felt in a GM product (save the jokes about me never feeling it in a GM product cause they probably were dead anyway).
      GM makes superior engines compared to Ford, but I still think Ford has an edge overall in mass appeal to all ages. If I had no choice and I has to drive a Malibu or a Fusion, I'd pick the Fusion cause it just looks more youthful. I don't want to be mistaken for and old guy, even though I think the Malibu is a much better car.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I still like ford engines better for no apparent reason. :)
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't know if the 3.0 Duratech has changed recently, but I remember them starting to sound really nasty with not too many miles on them (like, 50k).
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is great news. Hopefully Cadillac will get the 3.0 L V6 DI in the CTS to replace the heavier (yet equally powerful) 3.6.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Pardon me if wrong, but I believe the reworked Ford 3.0L Duratec Six is NOT direct injected llike this GM motor. Also it is rated at 250HP on Ethamol85. Put DI on the Ford Motor and you're lookling at 270+HP.
      Having said that, the Ford 3.0L is a completely different Motor from the 3.5L and it appears the GM's are the same design, having originated from the 3.6L.
        • 6 Years Ago
        The Cobra and overstated horsepower fiasco is how many years old? Using that as your line of reasoning doesn't build a case against the D30 and the stated horsepower claims. If anything a lot of manufacturers, especially since SAE's new protocols have been put into place, are understating horsepower these days.

        Until some sort of instrumented scientific tests are put into place to discredit Ford's claims I really think it would be in your best interest to not spout off about how incapble the D30 powerplant is.
        • 6 Years Ago
        What do I care what the E85 performance figures are? E85 costs more and produces worse fuel economy.

        It will be interesting to see what happens when Ford puts DI on the Duratec. It could potentially get well out of the shadow cast by GM's DI V6s.
        • 6 Years Ago
        The proof will be in the pudding.
        Hopefully these will be the engines for the '10 Malibu.
        So a drag race. Malibu 2.4 & 6t40 vs. Fusion 2.5 & 6f35
        Malibu 3.0 & 6t45 vs Fusion 3.0 6f35.

        What 'advances' on the Ford 3.0? dual knock sensors or camshaft torque phasing assist? There still isn't variable exhaust valve timing.
        Most everyone else is going to electric camshaft phasing, though there isn't a consensus on electric intake or exhaust?
        Electric power steering, sure that is an extra 5hp
        Ford's 3.0 is nicely oversquare 89x79.5, it is no VQ30 though 93x73.3

        If Ford's 3.0 really made 240hp on regular, there would not have a need/reason to put the 3.5 in the Fusion.
        The 'sport' model could have just used the shorter automatic transmission axle ratio from the 2.5 (3.59 vs 3.06) and use the Haldex drivetrain.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @ Mike W: I'm not really sure why you are questioning the performanance and power output of an engine that is already in use? The non-flex fuel version of the D30 is pushing 240 hp/223 lb/ft of torque in the Escape/Tribute/Mariner.

        Why is Ford utilizing the D30 and D35 in the Fusion at the same time? Well eventually the D30 will be phased out with an Ecoboost 2.0 (or some variant phased in), and the D35 will become Ford's bread and butter engine.

        As far as what the hp output will be when fueling the D30 with E85, according to MT that hp output will be pegged at 250hp.

        • 6 Years Ago
        I don't believe Ford when they say 223ft-lbs of regular fuel.
        That is 100% volumetric efficiency.
        That is higher than the 3.7 (MKS on premium)
        with only a 10.3:1 compression ratio, Ford is supposedly making more torque than BMW's N52 (which has a higher compression ratio)

        Ford denied that the Mustang Cobra made less than 320hp
      • 6 Years Ago
      I wonder if the 3.0DI won't be the entry engine for the USDM versions of the upcoming sub-CTS 3-Series fighter from Cadillac.

      Would put out nearly as much power but less torque than the regular 3.6L found in the base CTS but would undoubtably weigh a bit less too, plus the rest of the car would weigh less.
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