May 1, 2003
100 millionth Ford V8 engine produced in Windsor, Ontario
Windsor, Ontario – Ford’s 100-millionth V8 engine – a Triton 5.4-litre V-8 – rolled off Essex Engine Plant’s (EEP) line this week. The milestone engine will power a new 2004 F-Series pickup.
Nearly one quarter – or 22.4 million – of all the V-8 engines ever produced by the Ford Motor Company were made in Windsor.
“Our Windsor operations continue to make a strong contribution to the success of the Ford Motor Company. Today, Windsor is the source of about half of Ford V-8s, as well as many V-6 and V-10 engines – all of which power some of the most popular Ford and Lincoln vehicles,” said Alain Batty, president & CEO, Ford of Canada.
Ford of Canada’s Windsor operations began as a base to produce uniquely Canadian Model C cars in 1904. In time, Windsor evolved from car production into Ford engine production. Since 1932, Ford of Canada has produced 22.4 million V-8 engines – most of them built at the Windsor Engine Plant.
The production of the 100-millionth V-8 at EEP also ushers in Ford’s newest source of V-8 engines. (The 22-year-old EEP has, until recently, produced only V-6 engines). In collaboration with Windsor Engine Plant, EEP has become the exclusive source of 5.4-litre, 3-valve Triton V-8 engines for the 2004 F-Series pickup. The two-plant partnership began to take shape in 2000 when both Essex Engine and Windsor Engine plants broke ground on massive, $770 million (Cdn), ($485 million U.S.) capacity expansions. By late 2002, Essex Engine Plant received a 22,500 m2 (250,000 sq. ft.ft2) building that housed a new production line for the final assembly of the new engines, as well as a new crankshaft machining area. Across town, Windsor Engine Plant increased in size by some 25 percent, having received a 48,000m2 (530,000 sq ft ft2) expansion to produce three-valve cylinder heads that are shipped to EEP for final assembly of the 5.4-litre, 3-valve Triton V-8.
During the past seven decades, Ford of Canada’s Windsor operations have produced a variety of V-8 engines. The “Flathead” debuted in 1932 as the first mass-produced V-8, and its derivatives continued until the 1960s. By 1969, Windsor was producing the 400 cubic inch V-8 truck engine, followed by a short-lived 255 cubic-inch version, and finally the fabled 5.0-litre made from 1983 to 1990. Also in 1969, the 351W (“W” for Windsor) V-8 made its debut. With 5.8 litres of displacement, 351W production continued for 30 years until it was retired in 1999.
Today, the Triton is the mainstay of Windsor V-8 production. A modular engine, the Triton V-8s feature 4.6- or 5.4-litre displacements in two-, three- and four-valve cylinder head configurations. The four-valve version is available on Lincoln Navigator and is the basis for the new Ford GT supercar’s 500 horsepower engine.