Ford Australia Invests A$230M in Fuel-Efficient Engines; First Global RWD Application of New 2.0L EcoBoost, LPG and Diesel
|The Ford Falcon (XT model shown) will be the first global RWD application of the new 2.0L EcoBoost engine. Click to enlarge.|
Ford Australia is investing A$230 million (US$188 million) to improve the fuel efficiency and environmental impact of its Australian-made models, including the first global rear-wheel drive application of Ford’s turbocharged, gasoline direct-injection 2.0L 4-cylinder EcoBoost engine (earlier post) in a rear-wheel drive vehicle, the Ford Falcon, starting in 2011. (Ford Australia has produced Falcons since 1960, originally based on the North American Falcon, a compact car Ford produced from 1960-1970.)
Ford Australia is taking two other steps in addition to the EcoBoost deployment to offer consumers more choices for vehicles with better fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions. First, in 2010, Ford will introduce an advanced liquid-injection LPG system for the Ford Falcon, making the Falcon more attractive to private, taxi and fleet markets.
By injecting liquid LPG directly into each intake track, the system delivers better fuel economy, reduced CO2 and improved performance through a more precise metering of fuel to the engine. Initial analysis indicates liquid injection LPG technology can reduce CO2 levels 12% or more compared to current LPG technology.
Second, the Ford Territory, the only Australian-made SUV, will receive a clean diesel version of Ford’s 2.7-liter turbocharged V6 engine. Clean diesel variants will reduce CO2 by up to 25% from six-cylinder gasoline engines.
Slated for a range of global vehicles—from small cars to large trucks—EcoBoost uses turbocharged gasoline direct-injection technology to deliver improved fuel efficiency, emissions and driving performance versus larger displacement engines.
The investment is supported by assistance from the Australian Government’s Green Car Innovation Fund and the Victorian State Government. It is in addition to Ford’s previous investment to engineer the company’s locally manufactured I6 engine for compliance with Euro IV emission standards.
Ford Australia also announced that as a result of changing global economic conditions, the company has ended plans to manufacture the Ford Focus in Australia. After assessing the global requirements and costs of producing the next Focus in Australia, Ford determined that the changing economic conditions meant it could not make a business case for profitably manufacturing the car at its operations outside of Melbourne.
Ford’s new strategy allows the company to economically source small cars for the Australian market from overseas locations, while investing in leading-edge technologies to serve its core Falcon and Territory customers.