Car reviews - Ford - Mondeo - EcoBoost range
7 Jun 2011
FORD’S long-awaited EcoBoost engine family will appear first in the up-spec hatchback Mondeo Zetec and Titanium models from July 1.
Priced from $37,740, the 2.0-litre GTDI (gasoline turbo direct injection) four-cylinder petrol powerplant adds a $1500 premium over the existing 2.3-litre Duratec petrol unit it replaces in these two models, but brings significant performance, economy and carbon emissions benefits.
The Mazda-derived Duratec is still available, but only in the fleet-focussed base-model $30,990 LX hatch and $32,840 LX wagon, while the recently upgraded 120kW/340Nm 2.0-litre turbo-diesel known as Duratorq is available as a $4000 option on the LX hatch and wagon.
No EcoBoost wagon will be available, at least initially, meaning the Zetec and Titanium wagons are currently diesel-only affairs.
There are several different EcoBoost grades on offer in the Mondeo elsewhere, but our first taste in a Ford-made vehicle is a 2.0-litre twin-cam multivalve unit that produces 149kW of power at 6000rpm and 300Nm of torque from 1750-4500rpm – with 90 per cent available between 1400 and 5500rpm.
This engine has 26 per cent more power and 44 per cent more torque than the old 118kW/208Nm 2.3L Duratec, but falls short of the 177kW/320Nm unit used by Volvo and also offered in the Mondeo in Europe.
Aiding the Mondeo’s newfound oomph is a latest-generation high-pressure (125-bar) direct fuel injection system, low-inertia Borg Warner K03 turbocharger that spins to over 200,000rpm, and twin independent variable camshaft timing labelled Ti-VCT.
Drive is channelled to the front wheels via a Getrag dual-clutch six-speed gearbox Ford calls Powershift, helping to improve the average combined fuel consumption figure by 16 per cent to 8.0 litres per 100km – well down on the 2.3L’s 9.5L/100km – while emissions fall by 17 per cent to 187 grams per kilometre.
The latest-generation Powershift is calibrated to take advantage of the available power curve for optimum efficiency, according to Ford.
Next up for EcoBoost in Australia is the facelifted Falcon due to appear later this year. A higher-output 176kW version of the turbo four-pot will power Ford's homegrown large-car - with a dual-clutch transmission - from early 2012, when the drivetrain makes it global debut with rear-wheel drive. The same engine should also power the all-new Focus XR/ST in 2012.
Built at Ford’s Valencia engine plant in Spain, the company expects to make approximately 1.5 million EcoBoost engines globally by 2013, when it will be available in 80 per cent of the brand’s nameplates worldwide. Half are bound for the US.
Ford said it holds more than 125 EcoBoost patents and patent applications – mainly related to the proprietary powertrain management strategy it employs to reduce turbo lag and optimise engine and transmission output.
“Our new family of Ford EcoBoost petrol engines, which are being rolled out around the globe, represent a key element of Ford Motor Company’s global ‘Blueprint for Sustainability’,” said Ford Australia president Bob Graziano.
“We believe that these engines will provide customers with a genuinely attractive alternative to diesel or hybrid power units, delivering highly competitive fuel economy and cost-of-ownership, along with the responsive performance and wide rev range that have made petrol engines the favoured choice for so many drivers.”
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