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2010 Ford Flex With EcoBoost First Drive

Karen@EdmundsKaren@Edmunds Posts: 5,026
The biggest single improvement that the 2010 Ford Flex with EcoBoost brings to everyday American life is a telescoping steering wheel.

2010 Ford Flex With EcoBoost First Drive

Karen-Edmunds Community Manager

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Comments

  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    EcoBOOST = TWINFORCE = Ford marketing SHAM...!!

    The stellar success of the retrograde Mustang has somehow convinced Ford that the HP race can be restarted. At least that's what they thought right up until gas hit $4.00. But the die was set, cast.

    Ford had already committed the product line, across the board, to...

    TWINFORCE. :lemon:

    What to do, oh, what to do.

    Sell some GREEN tinted SNAKE OIL, that's what. :shades:

    Give the boy-racers and turboheads what they want and at the same time convince the "greenies" that there is something in it for them too. Make a sow's ear into a silk purse simply by calling it that.

    The EcoBoost engine with DFI could have a base/static/native compression ratio of 12:1 if it were not REQUIRED to be detuned/derated to accomodate BOOST once it arrives.

    In the meantime when you're just cruising along you are sacrificing FE, CONSTANTLY sacrificing FE, for the relatively rare times you need BOOST.

    Using the extended VVT-i technique in the new Prius and RX450h the EcoBoost engine's static CR could be in the range of 15-16:1 (50% FE improvement..??) hwy. Under moderate to heavy throttle the CR could transition to 12:1 (as does the new Prius/RXh) and at WOT the wastegate could be closed to bring on the POWER while transitioning the engine to 10:1 to make room for BOOST.

    FORD...Found On the ROAD, DEAD.......!!! :sick:

    Empty fuel tank.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    When forced to build to a price and still remain competitive, Ford did what it needed to do with the EcoBoost series. Prius technology isn't cheap.

    Since when are you expecting stellar economy from a 2.5 ton vehicle? Ford is building what Americans want. In this case, they get more power and much better acceleration than the Acadia sisters, while getting roughly the same econonomy. Shoot, the F.E. is essentially the same in the AWD Flex with 355hp as our Odyssey delivered. Oh yeah, the Odyssey couldn't tow like the flex, had no style, and a whopping 210hp on premium.

    The Flex Turbo is a luxury vehicle; its not trying to be a 6 passeneger Prius. It's got more power (power being a luxury) than competitors from Audi, VW, even the Mercedes R350, and a features list that's miles long, while offering economy as good as rivals competitors with much less power; Rivals who used to be MPG leaders (250hp Pilot anyone?). Things have changed for the better. Ford's got the ball rolling in the right direction, thankfully.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "..Ford did what it needed to do with the EcoBoost series..."

    NO, Ford did what it thought at the time it needed to do with the TWINFORCE series. Even Cadillac has now abandoned the V8 and Ford knew it had to follow suite. So "now" they had a gas guzzling "TwinForce" V6 engine with V8 POWER that with gas at $4.00 could only be sold to the few "boy-racers" and turboheads out there in the US populace.

    SFI 3.5L V6 engines are currently producing 250-290 HP. So I would think a 3.0L engine with DFI could do much the same.

    "...Prius technology isn't cheap..."

    Ford itself has helped to make it obvious that the gasoline engine, ICE, is not what "makes" a hybrid. Simply retooling the intake system of the Escape's I4 to detune it for use with the Atkinson cycle, 1800's technology, was clearly sufficient enough.

    No, other than DFI, Ford's TwinForce "technology" is simply a rehashing of "ancient" design techniques existing since the "stone" age. And, clearly, DFI capability can be put to BETTER use.

    While all of us might wish turbocharging were compatible with the new era of expensive (rare..??) fossil fuels that we are now entering it currently seems improbable. First, there is the catalyst that MUST be kept at highly elevated operational temperatures, and the additional fuel economy, and resulting loss of "waste" exhaust energy, of the Atkinson cycle concept simply cannot be ignored. The problem is that the use of the Atkinson cycle and the catalyst requirements pretty much negates the viability of turbocharging.

    So lets forget that old obsolete "turbocharging is free" and follow Mazda's Miller cycle lead.

    "..Since when are you expecting stellar economy from a 2.5 ton vehicle.."

    Stellar, in a relative sense, relative to the FE the public expected 5 years ago vs today. IMMHO the best thing our government could do is outlaw 0-60 mph advertising.

    My '01 F/awd RX300 gets ~22MPG hwy with a 3.0L V6 and has a more than satisfactory rate of acceleration. I have little doubt that with a 2.0L 4 cylinder using DFI and extended VVT-i to transition the engine from/through Otto/Atkinson/Miller cycle modes would also suffice.

    Ford itself has now proven the viability of DFI, and extended VVT-i (Otto to Atkinson mode transition) is now in current use in the Prius and RX450, likely to be soon adopted by Ford for the Escape/Mariner/Tribute hybrids.

    New technology = Variable speed positive displacement SuperCharging.

    But then break that down into sub-components.

    A. Variable speed via CVT drive SC technique used by Studebaker in the mid-fifties.

    B. Miller cycle used in the Mazda Millennia S.

    C. E/cvt drive currently in use Prius, HL, RX, Escape, etc.

    D. Variable frequency AC inverter drive, Toyota HSD A/C compressor drive.

    Did I miss something...??
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    We had an '85 Jeep Cherokee Limited, Chevy V6 of unknown HP, followed by a '92 Jeep Cherokee Limited, straight 6 of 190 HP. Both with RWD/4WD/4X4 drive modes and I would guess very close to your 2.5 ton weight.

    Lots of miles on both, winter and summer, throughout the NW, Wa, ID, Or, Mt, lived in a remote "wildness" area some of the time. Never, to my knowledge, used the low range 4X4 mode and never "suffered" from a lack of get up and go. The '92 was "retired" to a cattle and wheat ranch in north central MT, Missouri breaks area, and is still doing stellar duty, often in the back country in 4X4 low mode.

    ~200HP is clearly more than adequate for 98% of the driving public and for serious utility use even in such a vehicle as that. Think about how many Ford explorers have been sold over the years with HP in that very same HP range.

    Yes, the US buying public always wants "more" for their money and while "more" once applied to HP that is now changing to MORE fuel economy.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    2010 Ford Flex specifications:

    3.5L 262HP 6-speed AWD, 16/22 city/hwy $33,120.00

    3.5L 355HP 6-speed AWD, TWINFORCE :lemon: 16/22 city/hwy $40,120.00

    So for ~$7000.00 extra you get 93 more horses and absolutely NO extra environmental consciousness.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "...the Flex Turbo is a luxury vehicle..."

    Methinks not even Ford would make that claim...!!

    They probably wouldn't even dare put a Mercury marque on a "flex" let alone a lincoln one.

    "...(power being a luxury)..."

    Not "power" alone, NEVER...!!

    Or do you mean it's a luxury to be able to afford to fuel a GAS GUZZLER...??

    And think about this: Ford could have downsized the 3.5L to a 3.0L w/DFI and likely maintained the HP of the 3.5L but with much improved FE.

    EcoBoost my FOOT...!!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    First, substantially raise the federal tax on public roadway use fuels. Then advise ALL manufacturers that they must provide a custom engine firmware control REFLASH at the request of the owner/buyer.

    The reflash would be designed to LIMIT the 0-60MPH time to something reasonable considering the weight of the vehicle. The heavier the vehicle the longer it would take to accelerate from a stop to 60MPH, regardless of actual engine HP. Passing HP, say from 35MPH and up, and subsequent to a period of cruise, would NOT be throttled.

    Many modern FWD or F/awd vehicles are already doing this, limiting engine torque in the low gear ranges, as a safety matter.

    A rebate program would reward those who volunteerily had the reflash done by the dealer.

    Vehicles that already met the new 0-60MPH standard would automatically be eligble for the rebate program. My '93 Ford Ranger PU w/I4/stick for instance.
  • aohurstaohurst Posts: 8
    I don't know who you are, wwest, but the majority of Americans don't give a dam* about saving the environment...they want to pay less for filling the tank AND have as much torque and HP as possible...Ford did this with Ecoboost.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "....the majority of Americans..." "as much torque and HP as possible"

    Then why would the CLEAR majority of vehicles sold today be FWD or F/awd....???

    With FWD or F/awd the engine must be dethrottled the INSTANT there is even the slightest indication that TOO MUCH torque or HP is being applied. In point of fact many of these FWD with extraordinary torque/HP levels automatically detune/derate the engine in the lower gear ranges in order to increase their operational safety factor.

    No, it's only those with the "boy-racer" mentality that want as much torque/HP as possible.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,719
    WITHOUT government bailouts, to supply what the public wants. If they don't want Ecoboost, then they won't buy it and the technology won't proceed.

    The Flex is designed as a multipurpose vehicle, including towing capabilities, that require torque and HP. I think Ford is doing fine by providing more of both with a smaller engine. The proper comparison is with a larger engine that would provide similar performance.

    I can't believe some of these posts got by, they are so far off topic, and they don't really provide any discussion of EcoTech at all, just criticisms.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The point of embarrassment for Ford, IMMHO, is the fact that they didn't bother to adapt the standard V6 ("..smaller engine..") to DFI. But then to have done so would have put the lie to the entire EcoBoost (TwinForce) SHAM marketing program.

    It should be pretty clear that with the "standard" V6 adapted to DFI it's EPA FE ratings would exceed (20%..??) the DFI/Turbocharged TwinForce 355HP engine.

    Notice the S..H..O, is now the "sho(w)". No mention is made of "Super High Output" as was done with the original, not exactly PC these days. Stealth marketing of GAS GUZZLERS.
  • Sorry, I doubt at age 43 I am "boy racer."
    You are delusional.
    The FWD cars on the road today were bought because that's ALL the manufacturers were building...other than the G8, name a family-sized RWD sedan that's affordable for the average American?

    If they are built and priced right, Americans will buy them in mass.
  • KCRam@EdmundsKCRam@Edmunds Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,495
    .other than the G8, name a family-sized RWD sedan that's affordable for the average American?

    Mercury Grand Marquis, body on frame, can tow, seats 6 honest adults, starts at $29,500...

    kcram - Pickups/Wagons Host

    KCRam - Pickups/Wagons/Vans+Minivans Moderator

  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 549
    How about the Dodge Charger and Chrysler 300? In V6 trim they are affordable.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Manufacturers began building FWD vehicles because they were cheaper to manufacture...PERIOD.

    It's now taken the public ~35 years to begin to wake up to the very real dangers of FWD for wintertime, slippery roadbed, use. TRAC began to become widely available for FWD vehicles about 10 years ago now. VW has already reacted via the up-rev feature, and most hybrid FWD vehicles have the ability to disable simulated engine compression braking via ABS, and/or even if the suspicion of a slippery roadbed arises.

    The next effort by the industry will undoubtedly be a combination of up-revving the engine and a transaxle shift to quickly alleviate the effects of engine compression braking, if present, should ABS need to be activated.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,719
    "Manufacturers began building FWD vehicles because they were cheaper to manufacture...PERIOD. "

    Note that this is the last time I will respond to one of your posts, here or on other websites. Out of respect for other readers I will withold my personal opinion. I highly suggest to all readers not to feed the trolls.

    FWD has better traction in the winter because the weight of the engine is over the drive wheels. That was the driving force behind FWD adoption. One needs to know how to drive any vehicle in winter, but having those wheels grip is great when driven correctly.

    I remember during the winters back in Germany that my landlord would put 20 kilo sacks of deer feed in his trunk to provide traction to his RWD vehicle. At the time I had a Ford Fairmont, and I also got the "deer feed treatment". For my VW type III (with the engine in the back over the rear wheels), the bags went up front!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Just as ANY modern day owners manual will tell you, increased traction at the front vs the rear can too quickly lead to loss of directional control.
  • FWD has better traction in the winter because the weight of the engine is over the drive wheels. That was the driving force behind FWD adoption. One needs to know how to drive any vehicle in winter, but having those wheels grip is great when driven correctly.

    Not really, and definitely not while climbing hills. In most cars, acceleration unloads the front wheels and loads the rear ones. In a hill climbing situation, the effect is even more pronounced. I have a crown vic and a ford taurus, and when it comes to snow traction, I much prefer the vic. Yes, the rear end of the vic gets squirrely a bit, but unlike a FWD platform, I will still have traction to climb a hill. I can't begin to count the number of times I've lost traction going up a hill in a FWD car because all the weight is now sitting over the rear wheels.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    With a run-a-way engine in a RWD or R/awd vehicle the primary braking resource, the front brakes, can still be fully untilized. With FWD or F/awd the engine is directly opposing the primary, more "robust" braking system.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    I find myself pleased :D , inordinately so, that so little public attention is being given to Ford's EcoBoost (TWINFORCE) :sick: gas-guzzling technology. :P
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