Ford F150: EcoBoost Pros and Cons

If you are in the market for a Ford F-150, you can't help but wonder about the EcoBoost engine. Here is everything you need to know about this fairly new fuel-efficient option.

By Pizzaman711 - September 16, 2014

This article applies to the Ford F-150 (2004-2014).

Premiering in 2011, the 3.5L EcoBoost is a motor that showcases Ford’s new technology and a big game changer for pickup trucks. The name is a combination of the terms ‘Eco-Friendly’ and ‘Turbo-Boosted’ and is backed up by an estimated 20% increase in MPG and a twin turbo system. While this motor is a V6, it’ll definitely impress the average driver due to its peppiness and quiet ride. I’ll be covering some of the key things you’ll be looking at when trying to decide which motor is right for you by comparing pricing, recalls, MPG, and performance.


  • Small price difference when purchasing used
  • Better mileage for general driving
  • Better towing performance at 11,300 pounds due to the lower torque curve
  • More horsepower and torque than the 5.0L and slightly less than the 6.2L but in a much smaller package
  • Twin Turbo sound
  • Quiet due to it being a V6


  • Premium price when purchasing new
  • Worse towing mileage
  • MPG difference isn’t as big as Ford claimed in real world conditions
  • Forums say there is a hesitation under hard acceleration when coming from a stop
  • It’ll never sound like a V8, and for those who love that sound it can be a deal breaker


Currently, on a 2014 model F-150, the EcoBoost will cost you $2,395 more than the 3.7L V6 and $1,395 more than the 5.0L V8. The pricing is a steep step up, especially with the 5.0L offering similar qualities for a lower cost. However if you’re buying used, you may find in most cases that the price difference is negligible after a little haggling.


There are no current recalls out, however there is a TSB (Technical Service Bulletin) for 2011-2013 EcoBoost motors experiencing power loss under acceleration. I wouldn’t worry too much about this due to it being a pretty rare occurrence in most EcoBoost motors and a trip to the dealer will get it fixed for free.


One of the main things any new vehicle buyer cares about is what kind of gas mileage does it get. Ford estimated it to be a 20% increase over the 5.0L V8, however real world conditions show a smaller increase. Ford’s estimate would have put it at about 2-3 MPG better, but forum reviews show this number to be closer to .5-2 MPG for the average driver when not towing. While towing, the numbers change. The EcoBoost offers better towing performance than the 5.0L, but its gas mileage is usually worse by 1-2 MPG.

The biggest thing to consider here is if MPG is your main reason for getting the EcoBoost. Depending upon how much you drive, it may take a long time for the saved gas to cancel out the premium price of the motor. So if you don’t drive much or you only plan to keep the truck a couple years, it may not be worth it to pay the premium.


The EcoBoost boasts a nice 365HP and 420 LB-FT of torque. This means not only does it have the top end to hit those high speeds, but it also has the low end to pick up and go -- quickly!

The towing performance is unmatched in the Ford F-150 motor lineup, offering the most low end torque at a lower RPM range than any of the other motors. This means you don’t need to run the truck wide open for it to pull well, because torque curve peaks around 2500 RPMs instead of the normal 4000-5000 RPMs like most other motors.

Motor Life

I personally think it’s still too early to tell how long this motor will last. It’s relatively new technology to us and even to Ford, and while they do as much testing as possible before release, deadlines have to be met and some faults may slip through production cracks. However, so far I haven’t seen any negatives on the life of these motors. So while the motor is only a few years old, it looks to have a promising future in the Ford half-ton truck lineup.

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