Ford’s new EcoBoost F-150 Gets Endurance and Durability-Tested

The news is quickly making it through the automotive industry (and the posts here on Road Reality) that Ford is expanding its line-up of EcoBoost-equipped vehicles, including the 2011 F-150 full-size pickup truck.  Ford’s EcoBoost engines combine turbochargers and direct injection to create more power while keeping the all-mighty MPGs in check.  Now, they’ve released a set of endurance and durability tests for the 2011 F-150, powered by a 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6.  Read on for more details and the requisite pictures.

Test 1: Baja 1000

Each year, a bunch of teams prepare off-road vehicles for the Baja 1000 race, which runs through the desert on the west coast of the US and parts of Mexico.  This year, Ford will be fielding a team driving an EcoBoost-equipped F-150 for the 30-plus hour race, which features temperatures from freezing to well above 100 degrees Fahrenheit.  The terrain will also test the truck, with lots of dust and other particles needing to be filtered out of the high-tech engine.

Test 2: Hauling

A lumber company in Oregon will be employing a new EcoBoost-ed F-150 as a “log skidder,” which will test its ability to haul heavy loads up steep hills.  The logs are expected to weigh thousands of pounds, a good test for the engine, which features 420 foot-pounds of torque, for those of you keeping track.

Test 3: NASCAR

After hauling, the same truck will be hauling two Sprint Cup Ford Fusion cars around the track at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida, for 24 hours straight.  It’ll be run wide open, at speeds expected to be in excess of 90 mph, stopping only to fuel up and change tires.  The fuel, by the way, will be regular 87-octane.

Finale: Tear-down

After all the racing, towing and track-running, the engine will be torn down to show how its internal parts have held up to some of the most hazardous vehicle environments and activities.

After all is said and done, I expect nothing but perfect results for the EcoBoost V6, since it’s already logged hundreds of thousands of miles in Ford’s internal testing, and probably millions of miles in customer cars, since the engine is available in the Ford Edge, Flex and Taurus, as well as the Lincoln MKS and MKT.  It’s making its way across Ford’s lineup, much in the same vein as Nissan with their “VQ” series 3.5-liter V6 engine, which is available in all their full-size cars, crossovers, SUVs, not to mention some of the Infiniti luxury vehicles.

Stay tuned for the results, since Ford has also said they’re going to produce a series of web-based documentaries, so hopefully I can feature those here on Road Reality.  Click below to see the full press release from Ford.  After the press release, check out the high-resolution picture gallery of Ford-sourced images featuring their race-prepped Baja F-150.

Show Press Release

by John Suit

Source: Ford

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