Ford Invests $500 Million for 2015 F150 EcoBoost Production
Ford announced shortly after the introduction of the new 2.7L EcoBoost for the 2015 F150 that this new twin turbo V6 would be built at the Lima Engine facility rather than the Cleveland Engine facility where the uber popular 3.5L EcoBoost V6 has been produced since it was introduced in 2009. You would think that these similarly designed twin turbocharged V6 engines would be built at the same location, but considering the massive popularity of the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 in the current F150, the Taurus SHO, the Explorer Sport, the current police vehicles and much more – Ford opted to call on a slightly less busy facility to build the newest EcoBoost offering.
The Lima Engine facility currently builds the 3.5L and 3.7L Duratec V6 engines, but to build these new turbocharged engines the Lima plant will need a great deal of touchups – possibly including a whole new production line in the facility. Ford expects that the new 2.7L EcoBoost will be the most efficient engine in the half ton truck segment and should they be right, there will likely be big demand for this new mill. With that in mind, Ford will invest $500 million in the Lima Engine facility along with creating 300 new jobs specifically to build the new 2.7L V6. This represents an increase in labor force of 33% as the team grows from 900 to 1,200 workers building the new EcoBoost V6 and the older naturally aspirated 3.5 and 3.7 V6 engines.
The current naturally aspirated 3.7L V6 and the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 have combined through the first three months of 2014 to outsell the V8 engines offered in the 2014 Ford F150. Should the new 2.7L EcoBoost V6 prove to be the most efficient engine offering in the half ton truck segment, we can expect to see Forf’s V6 truck sales continue to climb and that will lead to bigger profits, justifying the hefty investments required at the Lima plant to build this new engine.
The toughest competitor for the new 2.7L EcoBoost V6 is the Ram brand’s new 3.0L EcoDiesel. The EcoDiesel is by far the most efficient engine in the half ton truck segment, beating out the 3.6L Pentastar V6 (also from Ram) which previously held the title of the half ton truck segment’s most fuel friendly vehicle. The big advantage of the EcoDiesel is that it is incredibly fuel efficient, but it will still do the work of a naturally aspirated V8. Ford has said that the new 2.7L EcoBoost should offer similar capabilities to some current entry level V8 engines while also being the most efficient and if that is true – the new EcoBoost should be able to unseat the EcoDiesel as the king of the MPG hill.
The dirty race truck shown above is a 2014 Ford F150 that was equipped with the new 2.7L EcoBoost and sent out to compete in the Baja 1000 offroad race – which it completed – showing the longevity of this new engine even in the most grueling conditions. It certainly seems like an engine destined to succeed.