Four Possible Uses for EcoBeast

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Ford Raptor Jumps at Silver Lake Sand Dunes

Ford recently submitted an application for the name “EcoBeast” to the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Since then, we’ve been wondering what it could possibly mean?

The obvious thought is that it is for the new engine that will debut in the 2016 Raptor at the North American International Auto Show. But what else could it possibly mean?

Let’s take a look at some plausible, and some ridiculous, possibilities for the EcoBeast.

1. 2016 Ford Raptor, Powered By EcoBeast

15F150SVTRaptor640

Let’s take a look at the biggest rumored possibility first. The EcoBeast could be the engine powering the new Raptor. We know for a fact that the 6.2L V8 powering the old Raptor is dead.

A modified 5.0L V8 with a turbo could be a possibility, especially since we’ve seen how much power Hennessy can get out of the 2015 Velociraptor.

2. 5.2L V8 Voodoo Becomes EcoBeast

http://youtu.be/3vKZnvr0Es0

The new Shelby GT350 has a new engine, and it’s a flat-plane crank 5.2L V8. During the development process, it was codenamed “Voodoo.” But we haven’t heard whether that will carry over to the production version the way the current 5.0L Mustang has the “Coyote” V8.

From a marketing perspective, it’d be a lot easier to say “I’ve got the EcoBeast,” rather than “I’ve got the flat-plane crank V8.” It’ll be a beast of an engine, regardless.

3. 2016 Ford EcoBeast

Ford EcoSport

In other parts of the world, Ford sells a vehicle called the EcoSport. It’s a mini-SUV and not really that interesting to many Americans. But it does set a precedent for naming a vehicle with the prefix Eco.

Could the EcoBeast be a complete vehicle? It certainly is possible. Maybe the new Raptor won’t be called Raptor at all?

4. Nothing At All

US Patent and Trademark Office

I know this is the bummer option, but companies frequently apply for patents and trademarks for things that they never do anything with. This is often done defensively, either to protect future product plans that may never come to fruition, or they might be doing it to secure a domain name or other property.

EcoBeast.com is registered to a company other than Ford, and has been registered since 2012. A trademark for the name by Ford could make it easier to secure that domain name for themselves.

There’s often little automotive news during the end of December, since most automakers are gearing up for the Detroit Auto Show in January, so a news story like this can definitely grow some legs.

I like the idea of EcoBeast, and look forward to seeing what they actually do with it. However, I’m not holding my breath, because I’ve seen technology companies apply for patents and trademarks all the time, and nothing ever becomes of it. Just follow any Apple blog and you’ll see what I’m on about.

What do you think EcoBeast is? Is it a new motor, an entirely new vehicle, nothing at all, or something else? Sound off in the forums to let us know!

photo via [US Patent and Trademark Office Google+]

Chad Kirchner is a regular contributor to Corvette Forum and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other auto sites.

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