Ford will introduce another version of its high-mileage EcoBoost engine line-up, at 1.0-liter expected to be not just the smallest but the most fuel-efficient offering in its U.S. powertrain family.
Separately, the maker plans to match its competitors in the escalating “gear war,” with a new 8-speed automatic transmission now under development. Ford also plans to stop purchasing its hybrid drive system from outside supplier Aisin, bringing in-house the production of the advanced technology used in such models as the Ford Escape Hybrid and Lincoln MKZ Hybrid.
“We’re doing everything we can to improve fuel economy,” Derrick Kuzak, Ford’s global product development czar, told TheDetroitBureau.com prior to a Thursday news conference.
The new moves are “a significant development” for a company that had long been faulted for lagging behind on powertrain development, noted John McElroy, an industry analyst and host of the TV and webcast AutoLine: Detroit.