We hope to have our very first driving impressions of Ford's new EcoBoost powertrain technology for you later today, but in the meantime, the Blue Oval has just announced that the first vehicle to rely on EcoBoost motivation, the 2010 MKS, now has a price tag: $47,760 (*excluding destination and delivery charges).
In the case of the MKS, the 3.5-liter direct-injection twin-turbo V6 generates 355 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque – the latter delivered in billiard table-smooth fashion from 1,500 rpm to 5,250 rpm. Paired with a six-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission and all-wheel drive, the force-fed MKS promises lots of gumption to go along with the MKS' already impressive interior tech offerings.
Ford says that the EcoBoost MKS will arrive carrying 19-inch alloys, rain-sensing wipers, adaptive HID headlamps with automatic high-beams, an ambient lighting array, and a power rear sunshade. For those looking for more visual differentiation, however, you'll have to wait a bit for the "late availability" MKS Appearance Package (pricing TBD) which includes visual go-faster bits including 20-inch alloys, a different grille, revised aero pieces, and different badging. Inside, the frosting amounts to package-specific seating (sienna with charcoal black seams, black stitching and logo'd headrests), a leather-wrapped wheel, and dual-color backlit sill plates. We'll relay the complete pricing information and options list as it becomes available, but for now, check out the high-res galleries below and the official press release after the jump.
Live Photos copyright ©2009 Drew Phillips / Weblogs, Inc.
ECOBOOST DEBUT: FUEL-EFFICIENT NEW V-6 ENGINE GIVES FLAGSHIP LINCOLN MKS THE POWER OF A V-8
* The 3.5-liter EcoBoost™ V-6 engine, the first V-6 direct-injection twin-turbocharged engine produced in North America, makes its debut in the 2010 Lincoln MKS
* With the fuel economy of a V-6, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine delivers an impressive 355 horsepower and 350 ft.-lb. of torque across a broad rpm range – from 1,500 rpm to 5,250 rpm – giving the Lincoln MKS the power of a normally aspirated 4.6-liter V-8
* The new 3.5-liter engine is the first in a wave of EcoBoost engines coming as part of Ford's strategy to bring affordable fuel efficiency improvements to millions. By 2013, more than 90 percent of Ford's North American nameplates will be available with EcoBoost technology
ROMEO, Mich., May 14, 2009 – Style, technology and power. With the addition of the all-new EcoBoost™ engine, the new 2010 Lincoln MKS delivers the luxury and comfort standards unique to Lincoln with a powertrain that produces a compelling combination of V-8 power and V-6 fuel economy.
The new Lincoln MKS is the first Ford Motor Company vehicle to introduce a premium twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engine for the 2010 model year. By 2013, more than 90 percent of Ford's North American nameplates will be available with EcoBoost technology.
"We are committed to delivering fuel economy leadership in every new vehicle," said Derrick Kuzak, Ford's group vice president of Global Product Development. "We do this with affordable technology that can be applied to the widest number of vehicles. EcoBoost is an important component of that goal.
"The beauty of EcoBoost is that it enables us to downsize for fuel efficiency, yet boost for power. We're able to decrease the size of the available engine – such as installing a V-6 versus a V-8 – yet boost the power using turbocharging to deliver similar power and torque of that larger engine."
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 of the all-wheel-drive 2010 Lincoln MKS produces 355 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 350 ft.-lb. of torque from 1,500 to 5,250 rpm and can be run on regular fuel. The Lincoln MKS with EcoBoost will deliver at least 17 mpg city and at least 24 mpg highway.
"We're delighted with how well the Lincoln MKS has been received. Customers have really responded to the vehicle's balanced combination of luxury, comfort and performance," said Pete Reyes, chief nameplate engineer. "Adding the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 is another great enhancement to our luxury sedan. We now can deliver V-8 power without sacrificing fuel economy."
Standard on Lincoln MKS with EcoBoost are 19-inch premium painted aluminum wheels, steering-wheel paddle shifters, six-speed SelectShift Automatic™ transmission, all-wheel drive, Intelligent Access with Push Button Start, ambient lighting, adaptive HID headlamps with Auto Highbeam, rain-sensing wipers and rear-window power sunshade.
An MKS EcoBoost Appearance Package will have late availability, offering customers a more-aggressive and sporty look that further differentiates the Lincoln MKS from other competitors. The MKS EcoBoost Appearance Package seamlessly combines the power and fuel economy from this new engine technology with the high luxury standards pioneered by Lincoln.
Highlights of the MKS EcoBoost Appearance Package include:
* Luxury seats in Sienna with Charcoal Black Tuxedo Seam
* Black stitching and Lincoln Star logos embroidered on the headrest
* Illuminated MKS sill plates – the "MK" is in white and the "S" is in red
* Leather-wrapped steering wheel
* Upgraded black floor mats with embroidered Lincoln Star
* Unique exterior appointments, including EcoBoost badging, distinctive grille, front lip spoiler, rear fascia lower, side rockers and door cladding, decklid lip spoiler with chrome insert and modified MKS decklid badge ("S" in red)
* 20-inch chrome wheels
The EcoBoost program is part of Ford's ongoing and wide-ranging initiative to deliver innovative fuel-efficient powertrain systems with horsepower and torque performance found in larger-displacement engines.
"Our EcoBoost engines offer more power and better fuel economy," said Brett Hinds, EcoBoost design manager. "It's all part of Ford's strategy to bring adaptable powertrain technology to all kinds of vehicles and all kinds of lifestyles. This technology is affordable and applicable to all gasoline engines."
The turbochargers recover energy from the exhaust that otherwise would be wasted and put it back in the engine to gain efficiency. Simply, the turbocharging system puts more air into the engine for more power. A compressor increases or "boosts" the pressure of the air entering the engine. An air-to-air intercooler is used to cool the compressed intake air before it enters the combustion chamber. This allows the air to be even more densely packed for optimal performance, contributing to more-efficient fuel burn and fuel efficiency.
The twin parallel turbochargers, which are water-cooled and operate simultaneously, combine with a direct-injection fuel system to instantly produce power when the driver pushes down on the accelerator pedal.
The high-pressure fuel pump operates at 2,150 psi – more than 35 times the norm seen in a conventional V-6 engine. The high-pressure pump is a cam-driven mechanical pump with a single piston and an electronic valve that controls how much fuel is routed into the fuel rails to the injectors.
As demands on the twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engine are increased, the control system responds to maintain optimal combustion, timing and injection duration.
On each stroke, six individual jets spray fuel directly into the combustion chamber, mixing with the incoming air. "By bringing the fuel injector right into the combustion chamber, there's no delay from the time you inject the fuel to when it's used by the engine," Hinds said. The fuel injectors are located on the side of the combustion chamber. When the fuel is injected into the cylinder, it evaporates and cools the air that's been inducted into the cylinder.
"Another benefit of our direct-injection method is that it cools the air right where you're going to burn it," Hinds said. "This action both improves the breathing of the engine and minimizes knocking."
The direct injection of fuel into the cylinder also helps provide a well-mixed air-fuel charge, increasing engine efficiency. Direct injection provides several benefits in terms of fuel burn and lower emissions.
"Because the fuel is directly introduced into the combustion chamber, you don't get fuel wetting the combustion wall like with port fuel injection, you don't saturate the ports and you don't get droplets that might recombine and add to saturation," Hinds said. "By injecting fuel directly into the combustion chamber and under high pressure, the fuel can be directed to exactly where we want it to be for a given combustion cycle."
The spray pattern for the fuel was optimized after extensive computer modeling work, with the angle of how the fuel is sprayed key to the process. "The better combustion process is a big advantage of direct injection," Hinds said. "In a port fuel system, at key off it's possible to have fuel on the walls of the intake port, which migrates to the top of the valve and puddles. So when you key on, you get that emissions spike. Direct injection is much cleaner from that standpoint."
Turbo lag virtually eliminated
The simultaneous turbocharger operation paired with the direct-injection system help to virtually eliminate turbo lag, one of the main reasons turbocharger technology was not previously more widely used. The dual-turbocharger setup has several advantages over previous turbocharging systems, including:
* The dual turbochargers are smaller and spool up quicker, allowing the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engine to reach peak torque faster. The turbochargers can spin in excess of 170,000 rpm. By comparison, the redline for the engine is approximately 6,200 rpm
* The turbochargers are packaged adjacent to the cylinder block and have improved mounting providing NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) improvements
"The two turbochargers both operate identically over the speed range of the engine – one gets its energy from the left bank and the other gets its energy from the right bank, with both feeding together into the engine," Hinds said. "Both spin immediately and produce boost, even at low engine speeds."
The turbochargers are designed for a life cycle of 150,000 miles or 10 years.
"Our testing is far, far more harsh than could be achieved in the real world," Hinds. "In an extreme situation, a customer might be able to hit peak power for about 10 seconds – probably not even that much. We test at peak power for hundreds of hours to ensure we can reach our durability and reliability goals."
The turbocharger impellers are only about the size of an orange, but help provide a big performance advantage to customers. Hinds describes the torque response in terms of linear acceleration – power whenever you need it.
"You get peak torque across a very wide engine speed range," he said. "It's available when you pull away from a stoplight or pass someone on a secondary road at a comparatively low speed. You don't need to wind up the engine to get performance out of it. It's there all the time."
Turbocharger "whoosh" is mitigated by electronically controlled anti-surge valves, which proactively relieve the boost in the intake, which can range up to 12 psi. Careful software calibrations manage the pressures in the intake manifold.
"We control the boost to make sure that customers don't recognize when the boost is building," Hinds said. "As the turbochargers spool up, the electronic control system takes over. Our active wastegate control along with the throttle controls the boost and torque levels very precisely and the customer perceives a continuous delivery of torque."
Extensive durability tests on the twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engine ensure it will excel in all conditions. Start-up tests, with a wide variety of fuels, were made in conditions ranging from minus 40 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Altitude testing up to 12,000 feet in Colorado also was performed.
"The direct-injection fuel system allows us some real opportunities in terms of optimizing cold start for both emissions and robustness," Hinds said. "We have multiple injections for each combustion event, and we can essentially tune where those injections should take place to deliver the strongest start possible with the lowest emissions."
New, dedicated transmission and SelectShift complement EcoBoost
Mated to the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 engine is the 6-speed 6F-55 SelectShift Automatic™ transmission, which is dedicated to the twin-turbocharger engine. The 6F-55 transmission was developed to specifically respond to the increased torque demands of the EcoBoost V-6 engine. Upgrades were made to the transmission's friction material in response to the higher shift energies, and a new torque converter has been optimized for performance and fuel economy.
The 2010 Lincoln MKS driveline combines the high-capacity 6F-55 SelectShift Automatic transmission with a sophisticated torque-sensing All-Wheel Drive System. These components work in harmony to deliver ample traction when putting EcoBoost power on the road. The six-speed transmission offers a wide array of gears to enable spirited acceleration, yet comfortable high-speed cruising.
"We've upgraded the gear sets to handle the increased torque," said Joe Baum, powertrain team leader. "We've also adjusted the final drive ratio and matched the gear ratios to provide the optimum performance and fuel economy.
"Our final drive ratio is 2.77. With a lower final drive ratio, the engine spins slower at highway speeds, which helps save fuel. And with all the torque, the Lincoln MKS still delivers good low-speed launch performance."
SelectShift provides conventional automatic operation or a manual shift mode that gives the driver complete control over gear selection. For performance-minded drivers, paddle controls allow "match-rev" downshifts and will hold manually selected gears for precise control. Intuitively operated, a squeeze on either paddle will deliver an economical upshift under acceleration, while a gentle push forward brings a smooth downshift, synchronizing the engine and transmission speeds for responsive and positive engagement.
The All-Wheel Drive System engages automatically and unobtrusively. The unit contains an advanced array of internal electromechanical clutches to efficiently distribute torque to the wheels with optimum traction. Standard all-wheel drive allows the new Lincoln MKS to efficiently deliver its high performance to the pavement under a wide variety of conditions.
Power to the drive wheels, not the steering wheel, means better mileage
Unique to the Lincoln MKS with EcoBoost package is Electric Power Steering (EPS), which offers several customer benefits and enables several technologies.
First, because unlike the common hydraulic-powered systems that continuously draw power from the engine, EPS draws power from an independent electric motor only as needed. Customers will see about a half-mile per gallon improvement with vehicles equipped with EPS systems compared with those with conventional hydraulic steering systems. EPS also improves steering feel at low speeds and provides confident, precise steering on the highway.
Two technologies enabled by EPS are Active Park Assist and Pull Drift Compensation, further enhancing the unique combination of power and technology found in the Lincoln MKS with EcoBoost.
One harmonious system
Careful powertrain system management ensures the engine, turbochargers and transmission work together harmoniously. The Lincoln MKS team also was careful to give customers an exhaust note from the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 that was pleasing but not overpowering.
"With its elegant styling, wide suite of convenience technology and incomparable ride, the Lincoln MKS is an outstanding luxury sedan," Reyes said. "We're pleased and proud to add the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 to an already-great car."
Pricing for the 2010 Lincoln MKS with EcoBoost starts at $47,760, excluding destination and delivery.
About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 205,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit www.ford.com.