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GM bests Ford's EcoBoost V6 fuel efficiency without complex, expensive turbochargers

Ford has spent a great deal of time and money developing and marketing its EcoBoost family. The company makes a wide variety of EcoBoost engines (which is basically a fancy name for turbocharging plus direct injection) ranging from a 1.0-liter three-cylinder to a 3.5-liter V6.
 
Ford's efforts have paid off, as sales of the naturally aspirated V6- and EcoBoost V6-equipped F-150s have outpaced those of the V8 models. And all along the way, Ford has thumbed its nose at the Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra, stating how its EcoBoost V6 gets V8 performance and V6 fuel economy.
 
GM, however, is hitting back today with the announcement that its new 5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8 engines manages to produce 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque. While the horsepower number compares favorably with the EcoBoost V6 in the F-150, it's down quite a bit in torque. GM says that in 4x2 trim, the EcoTec3 will be good for 23 mpg highway; checking off the 4x4 option box will result in 22 mpg on the highway.


2014 Chevrolet Silverado
 
Both of these numbers are 1 mpg better than the EcoBoost F-150. In fact, it matches the fuel economy of Ford’s naturally aspirated, 3.7-liter V6.
 
“Silverado’s available 5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8 gives customers the best of both worlds,” bragged Jeff Luke, executive chief engineer for the Silverado. “Customers get the proven power and dependability of a V-8 truck engine, with better fuel economy than a leading competitor’s smaller turbocharged V-6.”


5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8 engine
 
GM's decision to go the "tried and true" route may pay off in the end. Recent reports have suggested that while many manufacturers seem to ace the EPA's tests with turbocharged gasoline engines, most consumers aren't able to match the sticker numbers in the real world.

The Ford Atlas Concept previews the nexxt generation F-150
 
GM’s fun in the mpg sun, however, likely won’t last long. Ford is reportedly looking to trim up to 700 pounds from the next generation F-150, which will go a long way towards improving fuel efficiency. Ford showcased the use of active aero technology on its Atlas truck concept (which no doubt is a precursor to the next generation F-150), which boost highway fuel efficiency by 2 mpg.

Sources: General Motors [1], [2]



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RE: Ram 1500 still wins...
By Philippine Mango on 4/2/2013 8:37:14 AM , Rating: 2
You want a 1/2 that tows as much as a 3/4 or 1 ton but isn't those things? I don't think that makes any sense as that's really what defines those vehicles... In essence, there has been so much power inflation that these 1/2 ton vehicles are effectively 1 ton vehicles of two decades ago... Why can't we have 1/2 vehicles of two decades ago, today, but with the improvements of today? i.e if it took a 5 liter engine to make 150hp for that 20-30 year old 1/2, why not sell a truck with a 2 liter engine today that still makes the same or slightly more power? not everyone needs a hulking truck.


RE: Ram 1500 still wins...
By Spuke on 4/2/2013 10:29:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
not everyone needs a hulking truck
Exactly why I'd prefer a 1/2 ton to my present 3/4 ton. Save the 3/4 tons (and larger) for the heavy duty loads. Most of us can get by easily on todays 1/2 tons for truck duty. We ARE talking about truck duties right? And if YOU want an even lighter duty truck, those are already available.

I'll give you some examples of my previous/present requirements:
1. Tow horse trailer
2. Haul eight bails of hay
3. Pull a lightweight 5th wheel

Since I don't have the 5th wheel anymore, a 1/2 ton with a long bed will meet these requirements easily. And if they had the present F150 in 2009, I would've bought that instead of my 3/4 ton.


RE: Ram 1500 still wins...
By spamreader1 on 4/2/2013 11:59:33 AM , Rating: 2
That's not necessarily true. The ability to tow includes the ability to stop and handle things like tongue weight. The max tow weight is a combination of things. For campers, light weight 5th wheels, and "bumper pull" which aren't typically pulled by bumper instead it's a class III receiver hitch, generally work fine as long as you have weight distribution hitches and electric trailer brakes. Without them the 1/2 ton can't do it, where a true 3/4 or 1 ton could (depending on the size of the trailer of course) as it has heavier axles, springs, shocks, etc.


RE: Ram 1500 still wins...
By robertgu on 4/2/2013 6:35:43 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed, there are alot more components which 3/4 and 1 ton trucks have over 1/2 ton trucks than engine power. Sure 1/2 ton trucks of today have engine power today which were usually the realm of its bigger stable mates, but the ability to safely tow the weights reserved for ¾ and 1 ton is not easily replicated even when mitigated with things like weight-distribution hitches and trailer brakes.

Typical ¾ ton trucks can tow 10,000 to 16,000 lbs. The ½ ton trucks might have the engine power to tow that but definitely does not have the weight, axle, brakes, etc to safely handle that weight.


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