Ford 1.0 EcoBoost with Cylinder Deactivation Technology is a Possibility

Since production started in April 2012, the Ford 1.0 three-cylinder EcoBoost engine won Engine of the Year awards and the appreciation of millions of people. Even force-fed three-banger got the thumbs up even in the United States of America, with applications including every FoMoCo car from the Fiesta to the 2015 Ford Mondeo 1.0 EcoBoost.
Ford 1.0 EcoBoost 1 photo
Photo: Ford
Three years since that seminal moment, the Blue Oval is interested in giving the 1.0 EcoBoost cylinder deactivation technology, to cut green-house emissions and to improve fuel economy. The peeps from Detroit announced that the engineers are exploring an “innovative new approach” to enhance the award-winning throbbing three-cylinder mill.

At the 2015 International Vienna Engine Symposium, Andreas Schamel (director of powertrain, research and advanced engineering) presented the research. Fuel efficiency improvements of up to six percent have been achieved after engineers tested different cylinder deactivation technologies on a working prototype.

Those are on-road tests Andreas is talking about, a fact that’s speaking volumes about Ford’s intention to bring cylinder deactivation tech to the 1.0 EcoBoost. To enable cylinder deactivation, engineers “developed a new dual mass flywheel which also minimized noise, vibration and harshness levels.” There’s no video to back that up, but hey, Fiat’s TwinAir two-banger doesn’t sound bad either.

“Even for an aggressively downsized engine such as the 1.0 EcoBoost, a significant improvement in vehicle fuel economy could be found by exploiting cylinder deactivation. The highest priority in the development of new combustion engines for automotive applications is the ongoing reduction of fuel consumption.” said Schamel.

I’ve mentioned the Fiat 0.9-liter TwinAir turbocharged two-cylinder engine because Ford’s deactivation tech will cut off a single cylinder of the EcoBoost’s bank of three. Ford informs that engineers equipped a 2015 Ford Focus 1.0 EcoBoost with the hardware to monitor the deactivation of only one cylinder.

The Focus prototype was fitted with a newly developed system that combined a dual mass flywheel, a pendulum absorber, and a tuned clutch disc. FoMoCo tells that it is “particularly effective at low revs.” In theory, the 1-liter EcoBoost can run as a two-banger at a "wide range of engine loads and speeds." If it gets into mass production, we’re keeping our fingers crossed that six percent of fuel economy improvement will be mirrored by a road-going Ford Focus 1.0 EcoBoost with the cylinder deactivation bells and whistles.
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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