Improving Fuel Economy
We use a variety of approaches to improve the fuel economy of our gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles, guided by our Sustainable Technologies and Alternative Fuels Plan. Improving fuel economy goes hand-in-hand with our work on electrification.
Advances in Engine and Transmission Technologies
Thanks to turbocharging and direct fuel injection, our range of EcoBoost® engines are the standard bearers of our efforts to deliver significant fuel-efficiency gains and reduced CO2 emissions in gasoline-powered vehicles. This award-winning fuel-saving technology has been used in 8 million engines worldwide.
We are investigating and developing new technologies to improve performance, fuel economy and emissions for multiple powertrain options, such as advanced boosting, reduced friction, and advanced fuel injection and ignition. We also continue to assess the role of low-carbon renewable fuels on CO2 reduction and how they may influence future designs.
Additionally, as electrification/hybridization expands to a broader spectrum of segments and markets, we are further developing engines optimized for the various hybrid powertrain configurations and customer requirements.
Reflecting some of the progress we’ve made in gasoline engine production, the 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder gasoline direct injection engine with Auto Start-Stop in the 2018 Transit Connect Cargo Van is E85-compatible and connected to an 8-speed automatic transmission.
Advanced Transmissions and Drivelines
Along with our new EcoBoost® engines, the 10-speed automatic transmission used in our new Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator improves powertrain efficiency and vehicle performance/drivability. Ideal for hauling heavy payloads and towing trailers, we first incorporated it into the 2017 F-150 4x2 and 4x4 models.
We continue to develop our front- and rear-wheel-drive transmissions to increase efficiency and improve vehicle performance while enabling quick, smooth shifts. We are also developing driveline technologies to reduce parasitic losses while enhancing function and drivability, including low-friction all-wheel-drive systems.
Diesel engines continue to be a popular option in specific markets and segments, due to their excellent drivability, CO2 emissions and fuel consumption characteristics, especially under heavy load operation. Modern diesel engines can achieve 20-30 percent better fuel economy than comparable gasoline engines. They also emit 10-20 percent less CO2 on a well-to-wheels (WTW) basis.
In North America, for example, we’re offering two new advanced diesel engines: the 1.5-liter EcoBlue® engine in our 2019 Transit Connect and the 3.0-liter Power Stroke - the first diesel engine for an F-150. Both of these demonstrate the fuel efficiency and power performance that progressive diesel engines can provide.
As our plans develop further, we are maintaining a special focus on sustainable fuels, and already our advanced diesel engines are compatible with biodiesel.