The Volkswagen diesel emissions cheating scandal has some automakers reconsidering their dedication to diesel engines, but not Ford. While not a traditional powerhouse in the American market, Ford has built a solid reputation over in Europe on its diesel motors. This week the Blue Oval has introduced the first of a new line of oil-burners that plays off of the popular EcoBoost moniker that graces its turbocharged gas engines.
The first of what we suspect will be many EcoBlue diesel engines is a 2.0-liter four-banger that will first grace the Ford Transit and Transit Connect vans. Available in variants producing between 99 horsepower and 237 horsepower, Ford is promising less noise, better efficiency and and the same Ford reliability it has built a business on.
An aerodynamically advanced turbo turbine wheel is made from Inconel, an alloy used in extreme temperature environments such as rocket engines. It is also reduced in diameter by almost 10 percent, while the aerospace aluminium compressor wheel is reduced in diameter by 15 percent. The reductions decrease inertia and enable faster boost performance with wheel speeds up to 240,000 rpm, contributing to improved low-end torque.
The new engine also radiates half as much sound energy at idle as the 2.2-liter TDCi diesel engine. A noise-optimised a cylinder-head, block, stiffening ladder-frame and oil pan are specifically developed to be desensitised to activity inside the engine, and non-flat mating surfaces are carefully designed to offer tight seals that trap noise within the engine.
A moulded acoustic cover that provides foam encapsulation of the cylinder head, and a front cover made from sound deadened steel, further help reduce that cliche diesel rattle. So while some automakers might be backing away from diesel thanks to Volkswagen, Ford is charging full-speed ahead with a new line of diesel engines that don’t rely on cheating the system to impress buyers.