Ford has announced that buyers of the van that will eventually replace the aged Econoline in America will be able to order Ford's twin-turbo 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine that puts power to the Transit's rear wheels. Ford hasn't released any specifics on power output or fuel economy just yet, but the same engine is good for a heavenly 365 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque when bolted to the F-150 where it accounts for 40 percent of sales.
Even in that heavier chassis, the EcoBoost V6 returns 18 mpg combined compared to 23 mpg combined for the smaller Transit Connect Van with its 136-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Ford also hasn't said what we can expect in terms of tow rating or gross vehicle weight, though those are certain to keep pace with the current E-Series van as a result of the staggering amount of torque available from the turbocharged, direct-injection Ecoboost V6.
• The all-new full-size rear-wheel-drive Transit van that starts production in North America in 2013 will be available with Ford's 3.5-liter EcoBoost® V6 engine, delivering an unbeatable combination of fuel economy and power
• EcoBoost engines are fundamental to the Ford strategy of providing technologically advanced, high-output, smaller-displacement powertrains that deliver exceptional fuel economy and uncompromised performance
• The next-generation Transit will live up to E-Series Built Ford Tough reputation plus achieve at least 25 percent better fuel economy, due in part to smart weight reductions of at least 300 pounds compared to similar E-Series vans
INDIANAPOLIS, March 5, 2012 – When Ford's all-new Transit commercial van debuts in North America in 2013, it will come equipped with the company's award-winning, fuel-efficient 3.5-liter EcoBoost® V6 engine to better meet the needs of commercial truck customers.
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine in the new rear-wheel-drive Transit will complement the van's expected class-leading driving dynamics and technology, making it the perfect replacement for Ford's venerable E-Series wagon and van in North America.
"The new Ford Transit commercial van will deliver all the capability and capacity that customers get with today's E-Series, but with the bonus of improved fuel economy and potentially lower operating costs thanks to its available EcoBoost engine," said Tim Stoehr, Ford Commercial Truck Marketing manager. "This engine has revolutionized the half-ton pickup segment for F-150 and we're expecting it will have the same effect on commercial vans."
The new Transit will go beyond living up to the Ford E-Series' exceptional work reputation. The vehicle will achieve at least 25 percent better fuel economy compared to similar E-Series vans, due in part to smart weight savings that will trim at least 300 pounds from Transit compared to a similar E-Series van. That means customers could potentially save thousands of dollars in operating costs from fuel savings.
EcoBoost engines are fundamental to the Ford strategy of providing technologically advanced, high-output, smaller-displacement powertrains that deliver exceptional fuel economy and uncompromised performance for millions of drivers around the world. By 2013, Ford plans to produce up to 1.5 million EcoBoost engines globally in a wide variety of vehicles from small cars to trucks.
EcoBoost engines feature:
• A high-pressure direct-injection fuel system fed by a common rail that delivers a precise amount of gasoline in the exact spot for fast and complete burn
• Turbocharging to create a denser mix of air and fuel in each cylinder
• Special pistons with optimized bowls in the center to improve combustion efficiency. These pistons are also oil-cooled, which reduces in-cylinder temperatures
• Reduced CO2 emissions and excellent fuel economy compared to V8 engines with similar power ratings
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 available in the Ford F-150 had a successful year in 2011, exceeding 100,000 sales in less than one year on the market. EcoBoost-equipped F-150s now account for more than 40 percent of F-150 retail sales.
Gasoline direct injection
A key contributor to EcoBoost fuel efficiency is direct injection of gasoline. This system precisely delivers a fine mist of fuel directly into each cylinder for optimal performance, economy and emissions. Unlike port-fuel-injection (PFI) engines that spray fuel in the intake system before it enters the combustion chamber, the direct-injection system puts the fuel exactly where it needs to be in the cylinder for optimal combustion.
A high-pressure injector is positioned to the side of each cylinder, aiming the fuel directly into the cylinder adjacent to a high-intensity spark plug and alongside the intake and exhaust valves. Fuel is sprayed into the cylinders at pressures of up to 2,150 pounds per square inch, which is about 35 times more intense than PFI injection.
Cargo and people hauler
The current-generation Transit van is the best-selling van in Europe. Ford has sold more than 6 million Transits across five continents since its original launch in 1965. The Transit is currently offered to global customers in a variety of cargo, passenger and chassis cab configurations with a choice of efficient diesel engines. In 2010, the 6-millionth Transit rolled off the production line in Turkey. Conceived as Ford's first pan-European product in the mid-1960s, the next generation Transit will become a global asset with the availability of the full-size rear-wheel versions in the US.
To get ready for production in the U.S. by 2013, Ford is investing $1.1 billion in its Kansas City Assembly Plant, where the Transit will be built alongside the F-150.