Ford Motor Company execs have been saying for quite some time now that the mighty Mustang would eventually have an EcoBoost option so when the 2015 Mustang was introduced with the new 2.3L EcoBoost 4-cylinder, no one was really surprised. It had been speculated whether Ford would opt for another twin turbo EcoBoost V6 or if they would go with a turbocharger 4-cylinder like the Turbo 4s of the Mustang Fox Body era so when it became official that the 2015 models would have an EcoBoost 4, it put a great deal of discussion to rest. What did come as a surprise was that the new EcoBoost power was very similar to the base V6 – and the V6 would also be offered for the start of the next generation. However, I think that there is still a very real chance that an EcoBoost V6 could arrive in the Mustang engine bay in the next few years.
The Demise of the V6 Mustang
The new 2.3L EcoBoost engine in the 2015 Ford Mustang packs very similar horsepower, gobs more torque and better fuel economy than the TiVCT 3.7L V6 that has been powering the Ford Mustang for years now. Take into consideration the advantages of the EcoBoost 4-cylinder mill along with the relatively small upcharge to go from the base V6 to the EcoBoost 4 and it is hard to come up with a good case to buy the base V6 – or for Ford to continue offering it. Because of this, many people expect that the current V6 will leave the lineup soon and the new EcoBoost 4-cylinder will become the base model engine in the non-GT Ford Mustang.
The “problem” with the 2.3L EcoBoost 4-cylinder serving as the base engine and the 5.0L V8 being the Ford Mustang’s “normal” V8 is that there is going to be a very hefty gap in performance. It is expected that the new EcoBoost Mustang will pack somewhere in the area of 315 horsepower and 300lb-ft of torque while the 2015 Mustang GT will use the familiar 5.0L V8 to produce better than 420 horsepower and more than 400lb-ft of torque. That is a pretty massive gap and with this big power gap will likely come a pricing gap. It is into that gap where I could see Ford inserting a future EcoBoost V6 that will offer a little more power than the EcoBoost 4 and a little better fuel economy than the 5.0L V8.
The Introduction of a Twin Turbo V6
Right now, Ford has one very good, very powerful and very reliable EcoBoost V6 in their arsenal and that is the 3.5L twin turbo V6 that powers the Ford Taurus SHO, the Ford F150, the Ford Flex and a collection of Lincoln models. This mill produces 365 horsepower and 360lb-ft of torque in its most powerful form so if Ford went with that very engine in the future Ford Mustang, it would fit right between the 4-cylinder EcoBoost and the 5.0L V8 with roughly 50 more horsepower than the base engine and 60 or so horsepower less than the V8. Also, based on the price increase of the EcoBoost V6 over the 4-cylinder options, this twin turbo V6 could likely be priced to sit between the base 4-banger and the 5.0L V8.
Ford Motor Company could also use the new 2.7L EcoBoost V6 that will power the 2015 Ford F150. Power figures for that motor haven’t been announced thus far, but Ford has stated that it would offer similar power to competitors’ midlevel V8 engines. That would put the power output in the range of 325 horsepower and 340lb-ft of torque so, based on the official figures of the EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine could overlap a bit with the base 4. Fortunately, Ford could tweak the new 2.7L EcoBoost – or come up with some new variant that is smaller than the 3.5L EcoBoost V6 yet a little more powerful than the new 2.7L V6. Ultimately, a smaller option than the 3.5L EcoBoost could allow Ford to get even better fuel economy while still packing enough power to sit right in the middle of the 4-cylinder EcoBoost and the 5.0L V8.