Ford is committed to efficient gas engines with its EcoBoost line of motors, but the motors are going to need some help to meet fuel economy mandates. Ford is preparing to roll out stop-start engine shutoff systems on most of its newer models, saying the technology can save drivers as much as $1,000 over five years.
The first American model to offer stop-start was the 2013 Ford Fusion with the 1.6 liter EcoBoost engine, as a $295 option that hasn’t proven particularly popular with buyers thus far. That’s because stop-start doesn’t really boost fuel economy ratings per se, as current testing standards don’t reflect the fuel savings of shutting off the motor at idle.
The system works by cutting off fuel when the car comes to a stop, but keeps the engine spinning at normal idle speed via an electric motor. When the driver lifts their foot off the brake pedal, fuel is introduced to the already-spinning motor, so the driver can accelerate normally without having to totally restart the car. By not wasting fuel when the car isn’t moving, you can save a lot of fuel, especially on bigger engines.
For Ford, the most likely next candidate is the F-150 pickup, which has competitors like the Ram 1500 beating it to the punch with start-stop tech. Adding stop-start is relatively easy and cheap, but Ford has not been big in pushing or marketing the feature. With an aggressive roll-out though, expect to hear a whole lot more about stop-start from Ford in the next year.
Source: Automotive News