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Ford Adding 1.0-liter EcoBoost, 8-Speed Automatics

Maker also moving hybrid driveline production in-house as sales rise.

by on Jun.02, 2011

Though Ford isn't revealing details, sources suggest the 1.0-liter I3 engine may first show up on the Fiesta.

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.

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“We’re doing everything we can to improve fuel economy,” Derrick Kuzak, Ford’s global product development czar, told 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.


Ford Investing $850mil, Creating 1,200 Jobs.

Expanding production of 6-speed gearboxes.

by on Oct.26, 2010

Ford plans to put 6-speed gearboxes in most products, says President Mark Fields.

Ford Motor Co. plans to spend $850 million over the next two years to make six-speed transmissions standard across its product line while adding 1,200 jobs at transmission and axle plants in Michigan during the same timeframe.

Mark Fields, Ford president of the Americas, said the big investment reflects the company’s commitment to competitively grow its engineering and manufacturing employee base, upgrade its facilities in the state and further improve its vehicle fuel economy.

“Fuel economy and technology are consumers’ biggest priorities — and we have made them Ford’s as well,” said Fields, adding Ford’s Dearborn Truck plant and Livonia Transmission plant also will be upgraded under the investment plan.

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(Ford reports best third quarter since 1990. Click Here for that report.)

The investment will create up to 1,200 new full-time positions in manufacturing and engineering operations in Michigan by 2013, Fields said.