Cleveland, Ontario – Ford has begun pre-production of its new fuel-efficient EcoBoost engine at its Cleveland Engine Plant in Ohio, which has been idle since 2007. The plant will be the first manufacturing site to produce the new engine.

The plant will initially build 3.5-litre V6 engines that will be optional on the 2010 Lincoln MKS, Ford Flex and Lincoln MKT, and standard on the 2010 Taurus SHO. The engines combine direct injection technology and turbocharging to achieve up to 20 per cent better fuel economy and 15 per cent lower CO2 emissions when compared with larger-displacement engines, while producing 355 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque.

“The launch of EcoBoost is the big milestone in Ford’s commitment to deliver affordable fuel-efficient cars and trucks to millions of customers,” said Barb Samardzich, vice-president of global powertrain engineering. “The EcoBoost V6 is going to achieve the fuel economy that our customers demand, while delivering even more of the performance that they want.”

Ford has invested US$55 million in the plant, which will use about 250 employees taken from the existing three plants at the site.

The company said that by 2013, more than 90 per cent of its North American lineup will be available with EcoBoost technology.

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