With early returns showing that truck buyers are really into boosted V6 engines, it appears that Ford hit the ball out of the park when it comes to the F-150 packing an EcoBoost V6. Truck buyers seem to like the fact that the V6 is as powerful as most V8 engines, and the improved fuel economy is the real deal maker.

The EcoBoost V6 boasts 22 miles-per-gallon on the highway, and 16 mpg in the city. Ford's 5.0-liter V6, which is down on torque versus the turbo six, can only muster 21 mpg highway and 15 mpg city. That's all well and good, but what happens in real-life driving conditions?

Consumer Reports put rubber to the road to find out, and the consumer advocacy institution found that the fuel economy numbers were about the same for both engines, though one certainly has a bit more punch than the other.

CR pitted a pair of otherwise identical 2011 F-150 XLT 4x4 Supercrew models against each other in towing and non-towing tests. The non-towing test returned identical fuel economy numbers of 15 mpg, but the EcoBoost Model was a bit faster at passing speeds of 45 mph to 65 mph. CR then put 7,500 pounds on the hitch of each truck, and again both models returned an identical 10 mpg. The EcoBoost was quite a bit more sprightly with a load in tow, taking 1.6 fewer seconds to hit 60 mph, and 1.2 fewer seconds to travel from 45 mph to 65 mph.

So what does this little test tell us? CR says that the 5.0-liter engine is likely a simpler engine than the EcoBoost mill, and it costs $750 less. But if towing is in your future, we're thinking the EcoBoost engine is still the way to go. Plus, we can say that our experience behind the wheel of both engines was rather pleasant. Hit the jump to watch the video review from Consumer Reports.



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  • 71 Comments
      Hazdaz
      • 3 Years Ago
      So what's the problem here? You get a more powerful engine but it gets the same mileage while towing and folks are going to complain? The beauty of a turbocharged engine is that when you AREN'T using all its power, it will be more efficient. But when you need the power, it will give you more horses than its displacement would normally allow. This isn't really a hard concept to understand... boost = lots of power no boost = less thirsty
      Mike
      • 3 Years Ago
      Consumer Reports can be retarded. Ford always said the power of a V8 (6.2 liter similar ratings as far as power and acceleration) with V6 efficiency. Now i know the Ecoboost is way more efficient than the 6.2. Thats the comparison they should have done because you get a V6 with premium V8 POWER.
      Dennis Liong
      • 3 Years Ago
      So if they backed off on the EB such that the acceleration matched the 5.0 V8, that would mean it would get better mileage than the V8....Logical Inference? I understand why confusion continues to reign. Go faster on the same amount of gas or go equally as fast using less fuel but pay $750 upfront. Either way, its an impressive V6
      Diggz
      • 3 Years Ago
      well with all the editors "errors" aside.. i think this is STILL a WIN for FORD!!
      moshe
      • 3 Years Ago
      i think you mean 5.0 v8?
      MichaelM
      • 3 Years Ago
      I towed a 3000-4000 lb trailer in hilly Kentucky & Tennesse with 5150 4x4 ecoboost super crew. I got 13 mpg all the time. When I took the trailer off in Chattanooga and drove a 60/40 hwy/city mix, I got 17. Plenty of power with the tralier and a LOT of power w/o it.
        Luke
        • 3 Years Ago
        @MichaelM
        I recently pulled over 19MPG on a trip through the mountains, lots of steep grades up. My last '150 with a 5.4 would do about 16-17 on that run.
      MechE
      • 3 Years Ago
      I would be rather torn with which engine to go with. It looks like the verdict is finally out that the eco-boost engine is not more efficient just as many suspected. But its not worse, and it also doesnt cost that much more, and you get something for your money with more power. Considering people easily spend $750 to get a few extra ponies out of an engine it doesnt seem like a bad deal. Hmmmmm....very tough choice. Perhaps you could negotiate a V8 down more than an Eco-boost, in which case $1500 savings might be a better reason to live with a V8, but thats just speculation.
        cashsixeight
        • 3 Years Ago
        @MechE
        It would be more efficient if driven conservatively. If it isn't boosting, it'll be like having a normal V6, and the V8 will have more rotational mass/energy losses due to bigger components and more of them. A 300hp turbo 3 cylinder and a 300hp v8 should drink about the exact same amount of fuel at WOT. But the 300hp v8 will still suck gas while tooling around at low rpms, and the turbo 3 cylinder will get better mpg.
      loka
      • 3 Years Ago
      5L V6? isn't it 5L V8? compared to ecoboost v6?
      Felspawn
      • 3 Years Ago
      "The EcoBoost V6 boasts 22 miles-per-gallon on the highway, and 16 mpg in the city. Ford's 5.0-liter V6, which is down on torque versus the turbo six, can only muster 21 mpg highway and 15 mpg city. That's all well and good, but what happens in real-life driving conditions?" I think you mean Ford's 5.0 Liter V8 there..
      M Hugo Rodriguez
      • 3 Years Ago
      Wonder if those were vehicles that CR bought or if they're press cars. The MPG they report seems low. My EB F150's average fuel economy from day one is 16.7 mpg. My daily commute is 12 miles each way in SE Michigan traffic. When I towed my '85 GTi race car and heavy trailer, I got 13 mpg.
      MONTEGOD7SS
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is a no-brainer. With boosted engines a simple tune that isn't focused on emissions can net more power and better fuel economy. Let the tuning companies get good with the Ecoboost and these number will be even more in its favor.
      loka
      • 3 Years Ago
      isn't it 5.0L V8, and not V6? vs ecoboost V6?
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