With 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque, the only twin-turbo V-6 half-ton pickup is now the most powerful one in the segment. Powered by Ford’s second-generation 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, the 2017 F-150 is upping the power game. Despite having the same displacement, this 3.5-liter is essentially an all-new engine from today’s version.
The 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 is the engine that made the EcoBoost nameplate a mainstay in the automotive industry. It launched in 2009 in the 2010 Lincoln MKS and quickly propagated throughout the Ford and Lincoln lineup, including the Ford F-150 truck. Since then the company has launched several other EcoBoost engines, including the 2.7-liter “Nano” V-6. In short, the technology and engineering behind the EcoBoost V-6 has evolved since the original and Ford is incorporating what it’s learned since in the second-generation version.
Generally speaking, this is an entirely different engine. Starting with a new, strengthened block design, new pistons, new cylinder heads and revised crankshafts. Ford actually states only the displacement is the same and that’s primarily so they don’t have to retool the assembly plant that builds it.
Additionally, the turbochargers are all-new with electronically controlled waste-gates that can be shut at any speed. The new waste-gates are a first-even for a Ford engine.
Within that block resides another new feature: dual fuel systems. Ford has consistently touted direct fuel injection as a staple of the EcoBoost strategy, but they’re deviating from that with this engine. The new 3.5-liter features both traditional port injection and direct injection. Ford says having both isn’t adding noteworthy mass, but gives the engine the flexibility to utilize port injection when the increased power associated with direct injection is not needed.
All 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6’s will utilize start-stop technology that shuts of the engine at complete stops to boost efficiency. When paired with Ford’s new 10-speed automatic transmission, the new 3.5-liter should see improved EPA fuel economy ratings, but Ford has not released fuel economy information at this time.
The second-generation 3.5-liter is also bringing a new high-output version of the engine. The HO version, launching in the 2017 Raptor, features unique turbochargers, pistons and exhaust manifold to handle increased power output.