DEARBORN – Ford Motor Company’s new 1.0-liter EcoBoost® engine – which launched to acclaim this year in the Focus in Europe – today was named 2012 “International Engine of the Year” based on votes cast by 76 journalists from 35 countries around the world.
The small, high-tech three-cylinder engine also hauled in two other awards – “Best New Engine” and “Best Engine Under 1.0-Liter.” The awards were presented by Engine Technology International magazine.
This marks the first time Ford has won International Engine of the Year in the 13-year history of the awards. Moreover, the 1.0-liter EcoBoost garnered the highest score in the history of the awards.
“We set the bar incredibly high when we set out to design this engine,” said Joe Bakaj, Ford vice president, Global Powertrain. “We wanted to deliver eye-popping fuel economy, surprising performance, quietness and refinement – and all from a very small three-cylinder engine.
“The team responded to this seemingly impossible challenge with some really exciting innovation,” Bakaj added. “The result is a game changer for gas engines globally.”
Said Dean Slavnich, chairman of the International Engine of the Year awards and editor of Engine Technology International: “This is a fitting victory for a truly remarkable engine.”
The engine – small enough to fit on a European sheet of A4 paper – was designed at Ford’s technical centers in Dunton, U.K., and Merkenich, Germany. The engine is built in Ford’s plants in Craiova, Romania, and Cologne, Germany.
The 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine uses a low-inertia turbocharger to deliver power quickly when the throttle is opened from low rpm. The turbocharger’s impeller delivers high power at speeds of up to 248,000 rpm.
Further 1.0-liter EcoBoost innovations include:
•An exhaust manifold, cast into the cylinder head, lowers the temperature of exhaust gases to enable the optimum fuel-to-air ratio across a wider rev band
•A unique cast iron block warms the engine more quickly than a conventional aluminum block to cut the amount of “warm-up” energy required by 50 percent, and cut fuel consumption
•Two main engine drive belts are immersed in oil to deliver a quieter, more efficient engine
•Offsetting the engine configuration by deliberately “unbalancing” the flywheel and pulley instead of adding energy-draining balancer shafts
The 1.0-liter EcoBoost debuted this year on the Focus in Europe and will be offered next in C-MAX and B-MAX in Europe later this year. The 1.0-liter EcoBoost will be made available in Ford models in the U.S. and Asia Pacific and Africa next year.
The new Focus 100-PS (98-horsepower) 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine delivers best-in-class fuel efficiency of 4.8 liter/100 km (58.9 mpg)* and CO2 emissions of 109 g/km. The 125-PS (123-horsepower) model returns 5.0 liter/100 km (56.5 mpg) with CO2 emissions of 114 g/km.
In its first full month of sales across Europe, more than 4,700 customers ordered a Focus 1.0-liter EcoBoost, accounting for nearly a quarter of all Focus cars ordered in Ford’s 19 traditional European markets.
Ford of Europe plans to triple annual production of vehicles equipped with efficient EcoBoost gas engines to approximately 480,000 by 2015, from 141,000 in 2011. The company projects that more than 300,000 of those vehicles will be equipped with the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine.
In determining International Engine of the Year, judges consider driveability, performance, economy, refinement and the successful application of advanced engine technology. The popularity of the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine with judges saw it receive 28 percent more points than its closest rival and the highest points total of any engine in the history of the competition.
“For a three-cylinder to power a vehicle like the Ford Focus with such ease proves the future is very, very bright for the internal combustion engine,” said Slavnich of Engine Technology International. “Power, response and very good real-world fuel consumption figures are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this engine and what it offers drivers today. Well done, Ford!”
Other judges also praised the 1.0-liter EcoBoost.
“If downsizing is the way ahead, there is currently no better example than this,” said U.K.-based journalist John Simister. “Same power as the naturally aspirated 1.6-liter engine it replaces, and much punchier to drive.”
“With good torque at the very low end, this high-tech three-cylinder turbo gives the driving performance of a small turbo-diesel, but without noise and vibrations,” said Christophe Congrega of French-based L’Automobile Magazine.