Ford Develops Fuel-Efficient New Engine, 6-Speeds, Hybrids

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DEARBORN, Mich. Nov. 9, 2005 ““ Building on its promise to make innovation the compass that sets the company’s future direction, Ford today unveiled a new engine, new 6-speed automatic transaxle and more hybrid plans that bring fuel economy and performance to the next generation of vehicles.

“As Bill Ford has promised, Ford plans to be first in delivering innovative products to our customers ““ products that are stylish in design, safer for families, first in technology with new fuels and better efficiency, and first in offering new services to consumers,” says Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president, Product Development. “That commitment includes innovation in the powertrain lineup that we’ll be offering beginning next year.”

New 3.5-Liter V-6

Ford next year will introduce two new breakthrough crossover utility vehicles (CUVs) ““ the Ford Edge and Lincoln Aviator ““ equipped with an all-new 3.5-liter V-6 engine and new 6-speed transaxle. The new V-6 engine will be a powertrain cornerstone for Ford Motor Company, eventually powering one in every five Ford Motor Company vehicles on the road by the end of the decade.

The new 3.5-liter V-6 was designed to deliver the best combination of fuel economy, refinement and performance for the customer and be compact enough to fit into a variety of vehicles. The height and width of the engine is the same as the smaller displacement Duratec 30 V-6.

The engine produces 250 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque in its CUV applications. It uses a dual-overhead cam valvetrain for peak power capability and smooth operation at high RPM. It incorporates intake variable cam timing to optimize fuel economy by adjusting valve timing for a smooth idle, optimal part-load driving and an impressively broad torque curve with good power.

In anticipation of future needs, the new V-6 has been designed to accommodate advanced technologies, including gasoline direct injection and turbo charging.

The engine will be built in the fall of 2006 at Ford’s Lima (Ohio) Engine Plant.

6F 6-Speed Transaxle

Ford also underscored its leadership in fuel-saving transmissions with the reveal of a new 6-speed for the new Ford Edge and Lincoln Aviator. Ford is an industry leader in 6-speed transmissions with 24 nameplates already offered with the highly efficient technology.

Six-speed automatic transaxles improve performance and fuel economy. It is estimated that, for every 500,000 6-speeds ““ rather than traditional 4-speeds ““ fitted to vehicles, 12 million gallons of fuel can be saved annually (based on 25 mpg combined fuel economy for 15,000 miles).

The enhanced performance and fuel economy of the new 6F comes from a wide span of 6.04 between the transaxle’s lowest and highest gear ratio. The high ratio span helps deliver improved fuel economy of up to 7 percent and improved sustained acceleration compared with a typical 4-speed automatic.

The new 6F will be fitted to the 3.5-liter V-6 in the Ford Edge and Lincoln Aviator. The combination delivers optimal fuel economy and powerful performance combined with smooth, refined and quiet shifts.

The new Ford 6F will be built at Ford’s Van Dyke (Mich.) Transmission Plant.

More News on Hybrids

Ford also took another step toward delivering on its commitment of putting 250,000 hybrid vehicles a year on the road by 2010 with the announcement that engineering work already is under way on a third-generation hybrid transaxle ““ one developed using Ford’s in-house hybrid expertise.

Engineered in Dearborn, the new hybrid transaxle will be capable of handling both 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder engines for future vehicles.

In addition, Ford announced that the Ford Escape Hybrid would debut this week as the first hybrid taxi carrying passengers throughout the five boroughs of New York City. Ford, the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission and the Coalition for Smart Transportation will mark the milestone on Thursday.

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