180 HP 1.6-Liter Ecoboost Inline Four Announced, Officially

Illustration for article titled 180 HP 1.6-Liter Ecoboost Inline Four Announced, Officially

The 1.6-liter variant of Ford's Ecoboost engine line was one of the worst kept secrets in engine development. Well, not as bad as the Scorpion or Coyote, but still, it's a 180 HP, 170 lb-ft turbocharged bigger displacement four-cylinder replacement.


The so-far littlest turbo engine that could will be heading to European stables in the also announced C-Max and Grand C-Max, doing duty as the replacement for larger four-cylinder engines. At a projected 180 HP and 170 lb-ft of torque from 1500 RPM, the new motor will be elbowing into 2.0 liter territory with a supposedly 20% improvement in fuel economy. Like other Ecoboost engines, it does this with a combination of direct-injection, a turbo, coil-on-plug ignition, independent variable cam timing for both intake and exhaust. No, it probably won't be bright blue when it heads to production.

Ford expands global Ecoboost line; high-volume four-cylinder engines to be offered in ALL REGIONS

Dearborn, Mich., Sept. 15, 2009 – Ford's high-performance, fuel-saving four-cylinder EcoBoost engine family is making its global debut early in 2010, marking a major milestone in the company's strategy to deliver greater fuel economy for millions.

The all-new EcoBoost 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter I-4 engines combine turbocharging and direct-injection technology to deliver fuel consumption and CO2 emissions reduced by up to 20 percent versus conventional, larger-displacement gasoline engines with similar power output. At the same time, EcoBoost engines will deliver the off-the-line power and performance characteristics familiar to diesel enthusiasts.

The fun-to-drive nature of EcoBoost engines is leading Ford to introduce these fuel-saving powertrains in large volumes virtually across its lineup. For example, by 2013 more than 90 percent of Ford's North American lineup will be available with EcoBoost technology, and nearly 80 percent of Ford's global nameplates will have an available EcoBoost option.

"Ford engineers looked at every available engine configuration, comparing power, price, economy and emissions, determining the best way to power Ford vehicles in the future," said Derrick Kuzak, group vice president, Ford Global Product Development.

"EcoBoost technology gives us everything: a combination of the performance buyers expect and fuel economy improvements they demand that, until now, only has been achievable with the latest-generation turbo-diesel powertrains," he added.

Going forward, Ford will shift its powertrain allocations. Under the new system:
A 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 would replace naturally aspirated V-8 engines
A 2.0-liter EcoBoost I-4 would replace naturally aspirated V-6 engines
A 1.6-liter EcoBoost I-4 would replace naturally aspirated large I-4 engines

"With this next phase of our plan, we will expand our EcoBoost engine offerings, adding higher-volume, fuel-efficient four-cylinder engines to the premium V-6 engine we currently offer in North America," said Kuzak.

For European markets, the first available I-4 EcoBoost engines will be 1.6-liter units that launch on the all-new Ford C-MAX in late 2010. The 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine will arrive on larger European Ford products and will be launched in North America in 2010. Australia will see the Ford Falcon arrive with an available 2.0-liter EcoBoost I-4 in 2011.

By 2013, global EcoBoost volume throughout the Ford, Lincoln and Mercury vehicle family is expected to be 1.3 million units, with up to 750,000 sales coming from North America alone.

Why EcoBoost?
EcoBoost engines combine direct gasoline injection with turbocharging to lower emissions, improve performance and reduce fuel use. Technological advancements provide driving fun with high power ratings from lower-capacity engines and torque performance similar to that found on turbocharged diesels.

"EcoBoost is an integrated part of Ford's global mid- and long-term sustainability strategy," said Kuzak. "Combined with advanced multi-speed transmissions, electric power steering, weight reductions and aerodynamic improvements, EcoBoost will help Ford address the world's global warming and energy challenges without sacrificing the joy of driving."

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Why the hell wouldn't it be blue? It looks great.

Any word on cylinder deactivation? With direct injection it's easy to do.

Remember when you'd crack open the hood so you could gaze lovingly at the brilliantly sculpted engine, the blazing red valve covers with the flowing sculpted script on them? A gigantic air filter housing pulling through two big snorkels because the engine just pulled that hard?

Lift the lid on a new car and you're lucky if you can see any part of the engine at all. How about we take some pride, again? It's a brilliant engine, put it out there where I can see it. I want to see it.

180hp is pretty good output. Make the new Ranger an actual compact pickup, with plenty of space in the bed for actual cargo, a practical environment in the cab for people who are trying to get things done for a living, and a few creature comforts. Put the Ecoboost four cylinder in there so a working man doesn't break his back trying to keep his work truck fueled up. Give him some eye candy under the hood. We're a gearhead nation. We love what we love - cars, pragmatism and underdogs.