The 662-horsepower 5.8-liter V8 – the world’s most powerful production V8 engine – in the 2013 Shelby GT500 has also won a 10 Best Engines trophy.
Each fall, Ward’s editors evaluate the latest powertrains from the world’s automakers in rigorous testing to determine which engines deliver the best blend of performance, value, fuel efficiency and refinement.
Ford has won eight 10 Best Engines awards in the last five years – more than any other domestic automaker and tied with Germany’s BMW for most wins.
The 2.0-liter turbocharged, direct-injected engine, produced in Valencia, Spain, is Ford’s global workhorse EcoBoost engine, powering everything from the rear-wheel-drive Falcon sedan in Australia to vans in Europe and the high-performance Focus ST. Last year, the 2.0-liter won a 10 Best Engines award in the Ford Edge crossover.
“The EcoBoost Taurus and Focus ST really show just how versatile and capable the 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine is,” said Joe Bakaj, Ford vice president of Powertrain Engineering.
“The Focus ST is the first performance application for EcoBoost, and it really delivers the goods,” he added. “The 2.0-liter EcoBoost in the Taurus replaces a V6 and delivers great all-around performance, along with best-in-class 32 mpg on the highway.”
In the Focus ST, the 2.0-liter cranks out 252 horsepower and 270 lb.-ft. of torque. Magazine reviews have shown Focus 0-60 mph acceleration in the mid-six-second range. In Taurus, the 2.0-liter engine has a completely different demeanor. It is exceptionally smooth and quiet and provides outstanding performance and best-in-class large car fuel economy at 32 mpg highway.
“There are lots of 2.0-liter turbocharged engines out there now,” said Drew Winter, editor in chief of WardsAuto World magazine. “What impresses us most this year is EcoBoost’s versatility. It is very entertaining as a performance car engine in the Focus ST. But what really amazes us is that it also is a perfect match for the two-ton Taurus family sedan. Even loaded down with passengers, the engine delivers all the power needed and better fuel economy than a V6.”
The 5.8-liter V8 engine in the Shelby GT500 impressed Ward’s staff not just with its incredible 662 horsepower, but also its efficiency. The GT500 is not subject to a gas guzzler tax, and is rated at 15 mpg city and 24 mpg highway.
“Very few engines deliver the balance of power and fuel efficiency the 5.8-liter does,” said Jamal Hameedi, GT500 chief nameplate engineer. “The team spent countless hours dyno testing, tweaking and calibrating to make sure this engine would deliver the high-level power and performance Shelby customers expect. But they also took into account the reality of today’s volatile fuel prices. All SVT engineers are very proud of the GT500, its engine, and the responsible fuel efficiency it delivers.”
Added Winter: “The 5.8-liter V8 in the Shelby GT500 is the world’s most powerful production V8 engine, yet it is so efficient at squeezing power from every drop of gasoline that there is no gas guzzler tax. It actually delivers better fuel economy than many engines with a fraction of the horsepower. Plus it squeaks in under our $55,000 price cap. That’s pretty incredible.”
Since launch in summer 2009, Ford has sold more than 520,000 EcoBoost-equipped vehicles globally. Ford’s global family of EcoBoost engines consists of the award-winning 1.0-liter three-cylinder (coming to North America next year in the 2014 Fiesta); the 1.6-liter available in Escape and Fusion; the 2.0-liter available in Focus ST, Fusion, Taurus, Edge and Explorer; and the 3.5-liter V6 in the Taurus SHO, an engine also available in the F-150, Flex and Lincoln vehicles.
EcoBoost combines downsizing with turbocharging, direct fuel injection and variable valve timing. Ford holds more than 125 patents for its EcoBoost technologies. This year’s 10 Best Engines award is the third for an EcoBoost engine. Last year, the 2.0-liter in the Edge won, while the 3.5-liter in the Taurus SHO won in 2010.