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After Ford VP Barb Samardzich officially announced that the 2.0-liter four cylinder EcoBoost engine that's coming next year, a correspondent for the Examiner.com postulated that this engine was in fact nothing more than a re-badged version of the 2.3-liter engine from the MazdaSpeed3. Certainly there are similarities in the specs: both have four cylinders, direct fuel injection, turbocharging, etc., and there has been plenty of collaboration between the two companies. The Mazda CX-9 even uses a version of Ford's 3.7-liter V6.

We checked with Ford and, while they have not released many details of the engine, they did provide some explanation. The EcoBoost, like other recent DuraTec-badged Ford fours, shares a block design with Mazda's similar displacement units. In fact, the EcoBoost block is the same as the Mazda L3T used in the MazdaSpeed3. However, the entire top end of the engine has been redesigned. Like the V6 EcoBoost, the four uses a new direct injection system that is presumably less expensive and allows Ford to use these engines much more widely.

The Mazda engine also requires premium fuel. All of the EcoBoost engines are designed to run on regular, although they will get a bit more power with extra octane. The EcoBoost also gets independent variable timing for each of the intake and exhaust cams.

The upshot: the two engines are built on the same foundations, but they are not the same engine.

[Sources: Ford, Examiner.com]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      The comment about getting extra power from higher octane gas is not factual. Higher octane gas is used for anti-detonation ('engine knocking'). In a high compression engine, the fuel will explode, or detonate as it gets compressed. That is how diesels work. Since gas has too much energy to use in this way, so it is compressed to before it explodes and burned (though quickly) with a spark to ignite it. Higher octane gas has additives to prevent it from detonating at higher pressures. Unless the geometry of the engine allows for greater compression, higher octane gas does absolutely nothing for you. It is a marketing ploy. There is actually less energy available (BTU's) in the higher octane gas. Some old cars like the Fury had 13:1 compression and needed gas with very high anti-detonation characteristics to run without knocking themselves to pieces. But if an engine will run on 'regular' gas, it will get better mileage and power with it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Many engines will develop more power on HiTest because the slower burning flame front allow the use of more advance on the timing. Modern turbo engines use detonation senors to retard the timing in order to save the engine so some turbos can run 89 octane if they have a detonation safety circuit. Many car makers specify 91 octane for turbo cars, especial those without inter-coolers.

        The saying among engineers is power is made by a well-designed hi-flowing head.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Anyway, these are out-dated, costly, inneficient and polluting scrap for exxon against the buyer of the car itself. These engines are not smooth running anymore because they run lean to satisfied arbritary e.p.a ruling. Don't buy that, a well maintain 1995 dodge neon offer the same driving experience. Regular car manufacturers have decided to postpone any green technology forever by lying to anyone till death. Their money is already made via exxon and friends, secured in switzerland and quatar. They are zombies.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Wow, lots of ICE ignorance on display here. Especially stupid to rant with such anger and fervor over something you completely do not understand.

      This engine will NOT be a dinosaur. It is probably going to be the most efficient engine Ford has ever built. They are going all out on internal friction reduction for this engine as well. Combined with the best technologies for enabling down-sizing (turbo-charging and direct injection) this engine will probably be able to pull down 40 mpg in a small car. That is a great step forward compared to what we are seeing now, and should not be criticized. This engine combined with hybridization could power midsize cars and SUVs more than adequately. I have heard power output targets of close to 300 HP for this thing.

      GMCnally, Yes, higher octane fuel can certainly enable more power output. Resistance to detonation allows for earlier injection and ignition. If you don't understand how that translates into more power, go read some books. In fact, most luxury cars have had this relationship for decades now. Put regular gas into a BMW and it will automatically retard the spark timing and cut your power output based upon the knock sensor output. Simple.

      Ray, you are lumping all engine terminology into one retarded argument. Triton was just a marketing name for a Ford V8 engine. But VTEC describes an advanced engine control strategy of intake and exhaust cam/valve timing adjustment based upon rpm and load that enables a small engine to have two distinct operating modes, for both efficient cruising and powerful acceleration. It is NOT a gimmick.

      The Geo metro got excellent mileage because it had 65 HP and weighed 1800 lbs. Do you drive one? Have you ever? No? Then be quiet. The comparison is ridiculous.

      I agree with the more general notion that engineers at OEMs have focused too heavily on power output. The family sedan does NOT need to accelerate to 60mph in 6 seconds. What it needs is a few more mpg. I think the paradigm has shifted now though.
      • 6 Years Ago
      do either of you know anything about engines?

      Let me explain, you can make the same engine block do a lot of different things. The original Chevy small block V8, for instance, came in sizes as low as 265 ci (4.3 liters for those of you who have forgotten what a cubic inch is) and as large as 400 ci (6.6 litres)

      Porsche 911s use a variety of engines, built off of two common engine designs. Thier 3.6 liter 6 however, is the most common. The normal version puts out 321 horsepower, the turbo 473, and the twin turbo on the GT2 a massive 523.

      And since you all hate V8s and anything fast, let me talk about someone you guys probably like- FTV, the guys who made the fuel vapor car, their first prototype getting 92 mpg without a hybrid system, and their new hybrid one getting some insane amount in the 100's, used a 1.5 liter honda engine to start with, and just modified the fuel delivery system and added a turbocharger.

      now, these were very different engines, but used the same engine block. You can get VERY different end results using the same basic engine as your starting point. And end results are what matters.

      Also, the whole point of "ecoboost" is the direct injection and turbocharging system. The figured a 2.0 litre was the best size for it. The fact is that the top part of the engine, which is not shared with Mazda, is the part that controls this, is designed by ford, and is new.

      Mazda has a good 2 litre, and the bore and stroke have been worked out. The rest of it ford is designing, and that's the part that actually effects engine performance. Seeing as how this is already designed, ford has made the wise decision of not wasting time or money building a bottom block that would end up being nearely identical to the mazda to begin with. Which means the price can be cheaper.

      Saying they should die just proves you are an idiot. Learn how ICEs work before you bash them.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Go DIE !!!!

      You dinasour
      • 5 Years Ago
      I luv all you haters out there... Automakers are businesses and for twenty years now they have been able to charge premium for old tech with leather seats and overweight technobabble! When gas went to ~4.50/gal, the Focus (~$15,000) finally outsold the Explorer (~$30,000). Now imagine yourself an automaker, both cars cost the same to design, nearly the same to manufacture. Do you "focus" on the small efficient cars because they are better for the environment, or the mall crawler because it is better for your bottom line? I'm not bashing ONLY Ford here, Toyota was so desparate for a peice of the overpriced truck market here they bastardized their Tundra with a 380BHp V8 that actually is the worst mileage in the market segment.

      We as consumers are the problem here. Want a well built/designed efficient American car, stop buying SUV's with 27 cupholders. The manufacturers WILL build what they can sell.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Vortex, Triton, ecobost, v-tec and all the others are just marketing gimmicks to let the ICE people think they are getting something new. The Geo metro got 50 miles to the gallon in the 90's. Now we are suppose to be impressed by Ford and others because they came out with new technology again and it gets 35 mpg. Syke. Just marketing, they can't do something really new. Uncharted waters make them afraid and they would have the oil companies as enemies instead of allies when suing the government and lobbying. What a team but when people get really smart they won't be able to sell there exploding machine anymore.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @Ray

        If you're going to comment on something, at least learn a bit about what the hell you're talking about. You clearly know about as much about an ICE as a monkey. The reason mileage hasn't increased is because power has been what people based buying decisions on for a long time. That seems misleading but really it just means people bought cars with more space and higher safety ratings which were both reached by the low-tech means of making bigger, heavier cars. And how can you compare any car sold now to a Geo Metro. Dogs leave steaming piles more well-designed than Geos.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not really a fair comparison to modern cars. Here's a crash test video of the Metro.
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05EuKixv3OE
        • 6 Years Ago
        The engines today really are more fuel-efficient per HP delivered. Of course, most of that efficiency increase has been used up by putting them into larger, heavier, less aerodynamic vehicles that require more HP to accelerate and cruise at the same speed as their predecessors. And then we've increased the size of the engines even more, eating up the efficiency gains so that even a family haulster (Camry, Accord, etc.) can get to 60mph in 7 seconds.

        Things are going to change fast though, I think... In the midst of the worst recession since the great depression, oil prices are still running at a historically very high level. A little economic recovery action and $147/bbl is going to be just a fond memory...