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Fuel Economy Test: 2.7-liter EcoBoost vs. 5.0-liter V8 - 2015 Ford F-150 Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,059
edited May 2016 in Ford
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Fuel Economy Test: 2.7-liter EcoBoost vs. 5.0-liter V8 - 2015 Ford F-150 Long-Term Road Test

We compared the fuel economy of our 2015 Ford F-150 with the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 to a similar truck with a 5.0-liter V8 engine and found surprising results.

Read the full story here


Comments

  • geezermikegeezermike Posts: 22
    Excellent write up! Exactly the question I have been asking myself .... that and how the 2.7 EcoBoost compares to Ram EcoDiesel. It will be interesting to see how the F150's 10 speed next year changes these compares.
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    Thank God someone at Edmunds.com has finally seen the light. This is something I've been pointing out when I've compared my 2013 F-150 XLT SuperCrew with the 5.0 Coyote to the Edmunds' F-150. My truck has been consistently beating the all-aluminum, EcoBoosted vehicle in fuel economy. Granted, my truck is 2WD, but it has the 3.73 rear end.
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Posts: 1,021
    The just released issue of C&D has a bunch of NA vs Turbo comparisons, including an F-150, but compares the 3.5 vs the 5.0 and includes towing. They experienced similar results from a fuel economy perspective, but the 3.5 was materially faster when towing.
  • daryleasondaryleason TexasPosts: 501
    I get what Ford is offering. You have the base 3.5 Liter NA V6. It's the bread & butter of the rental fleets & the "I have to buy a truck, no matter what" buyer. Then you have the 2.7 Liter EcoBoost, which is supposed to offer the towing of the 5.0 Coyote with better fuel economy. Then you have the 5.0 Coyote for the "won't settle for less than a V8" buyer (at least according to the EcoBoost Forums). Last, you have the "top of the heap" 3.5 Liter EcoBoost engine for the "max towing & fuel economy." But the problem is, these arbitrary groupings were created mainly by Ford Marketing. The 3.5 NA base engine is a fuel hog for the entry-level engine. It's DEFINITELY not the way to go for towing or fuel economy. The 2.7 Liter EcoBoost is a great engine, except it really doesn't fulfill it's purpose, in my opinion, because it's not a drastic difference between the 5.0 and the 2.7 in fuel economy. In addition, you now have the turbo to have to worry about at some point, on top of the same things that will wear out, get replaced, or get serviced with the 5.0 Coyote. With the 3.5 Liter EcoBoost, it's probably a better option for fuel economy and towing, if you tow a majority of the time. Otherwise, I don't think the price premium over the V8 makes it worthwhile.

    Here's what it would take for me to pick either EcoBoost over the Coyote. I can live with both of their tow ratings. The fuel economy would have to jump drastically though. I'm averaging 18-19 MPG in my 2013 Steel Bodied F-150 SuperCrew. To make the EcoBoost worth it to me, the EcoBoost would have to average 24-25 MPG and offer about the same towing.
  • Frankly not impressed with the quality of the analysis here. I think everyone knows by now that the 2.7 is way underrated from Ford, probably for marketeing purposes. The gulf between 2.7 EB and 3.5 EB tow ratings is not grounded in reality and the gulf between 5.0 and 2.7 EB tow ratings is similarly not grounded in reality.

    Easily-obtained dynos, performed on both of these trucks by the same outfit, the same Dyno Dynamics dyno (which read very conservative compared to other chassis dynos), under controlled (similar) conditions, stock final drive ratios, show the 5.0 making a peak of 285 hp at 5,600 rpm, vs. the 2.7 making 265-270 at around 5,300.

    The 5.0 makes over 275 lb/ft of torque from 3,350 rpm to 5,600, peaking at 290-295 from 4,100 to 5,000. The 2.7 makes over 275 lb/ft of torque from 1,750 rpm to 5,000, peaking at around 330 lb/ft at about 3,100 rpm. It's over 320 lb/ft from 2,800 to 4,000.

    There is no way, shape or form in which the 5.0 with the 3.31 is as competent towing 9,000 lb as the 2.7 with 3.73 towing 8,100. Remember, the figures I gave above are with the 2.7 with the 3.55 rear end, not your 3.73s.

    The 2.7 with the 3.55 is a superior tow/haul vehicle to the 5.0/3.31...the 2.7 with 3.73s will leave the 5.0 for dead.

    Really, really a pity that you did not hook up your 6,500-lb trailer to both of these trucks, side by side, in addition to your mpg loop with nothing in the bed and nothing on the tow ball.

    Oh - and for all its 35%-40% higher tow ratings, compared to the 2.7, the 3.5 dynos are all but an exact overlay of those of the 2.7...maybe 2% higher torque and 5% higher hp. Really - you didn't think this 5.200-lb brick was running the quarter in [email protected] mph on 325 flywheel hp, did you?
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited May 2016
    Yes, I would have liked to add a trailer component. Some years ago I would not have taken such tow ratings at face value, but now we have a standardized J2807 tow rating test procedure. And here, at least, we have a Ford versus Ford contest. There's no reason to expect them to hold back on one and overstate the other. It's in their best interests to make sure the ratings for all engine and axle ratio combinations are as competitive as they can be.

    Moreover, such tow ratings are not based on an extrapolation of the results of a 10-second dyno pull on a chassis dynamometer. It's a marathon, not a drag race. Tow ratings are based on a real-world 10-minute+ pull with a trailer attached in high-ambient conditions up the Davis Dam grade near Laughlin, Nevada. SAE J2807 defines all of the conditions, including the frontal area of the box trailer to be pulled, the way it must be loaded, and it defines a minimum speed for the climb that the vehicle cannot fall below even if it is giving its all with the throttle pinned. You can bet that the truckmakers adjust the load to get as close to this minimum as possible in order to publish the highest figure.

    So, yeah, I have no trouble believing that over an extended pull up a very long grade with a box trailer, the 5.0-liter V8 may well be able to soldier on steadily while the furiously-spinning turbos of the EcoBoost 2.7 V6 get all cherry-red and heat-soaked and have to be reined in. A turbo mill can be screwed up to do anything for short bursts, but its a different story if you want to sustain that output indefinitely.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • sxty8stangsxty8stang Posts: 58

    Frankly not impressed with the quality of the analysis here. I think everyone knows by now that the 2.7 is way underrated from Ford, probably for marketeing purposes. The gulf between 2.7 EB and 3.5 EB tow ratings is not grounded in reality and the gulf between 5.0 and 2.7 EB tow ratings is similarly not grounded in reality.

    Easily-obtained dynos, performed on both of these trucks by the same outfit, the same Dyno Dynamics dyno (which read very conservative compared to other chassis dynos), under controlled (similar) conditions, stock final drive ratios, show the 5.0 making a peak of 285 hp at 5,600 rpm, vs. the 2.7 making 265-270 at around 5,300.

    The 5.0 makes over 275 lb/ft of torque from 3,350 rpm to 5,600, peaking at 290-295 from 4,100 to 5,000. The 2.7 makes over 275 lb/ft of torque from 1,750 rpm to 5,000, peaking at around 330 lb/ft at about 3,100 rpm. It's over 320 lb/ft from 2,800 to 4,000.

    There is no way, shape or form in which the 5.0 with the 3.31 is as competent towing 9,000 lb as the 2.7 with 3.73 towing 8,100. Remember, the figures I gave above are with the 2.7 with the 3.55 rear end, not your 3.73s.

    The 2.7 with the 3.55 is a superior tow/haul vehicle to the 5.0/3.31...the 2.7 with 3.73s will leave the 5.0 for dead.

    Really, really a pity that you did not hook up your 6,500-lb trailer to both of these trucks, side by side, in addition to your mpg loop with nothing in the bed and nothing on the tow ball.

    Oh - and for all its 35%-40% higher tow ratings, compared to the 2.7, the 3.5 dynos are all but an exact overlay of those of the 2.7...maybe 2% higher torque and 5% higher hp. Really - you didn't think this 5.200-lb brick was running the quarter in [email protected] mph on 325 flywheel hp, did you?

    Great points here. I have thought about this question too and what I would do if I bought an F-150, and I think I'd buy the V8 too for the sound, the simplicity and the minimal difference in performance except for extreme towing, and I wouldn't do that anyway.

    Not sure if it adds to the conversation at all, but on 2011-2014 Mustang GT's, the 3.31 vs. 3.73 gear thing seems to result in a 3-4 MPG difference, which is massive.
  • markinnaples_markinnaples_ Posts: 251
    What's the price difference between these two trucks, MSRP?
  • cameronrcameronr Posts: 37

    What's the price difference between these two trucks, MSRP?

    Edmunds F-150: $51,800

    Loaner F-150: $54,570
  • aspadeaspade Posts: 42
    I don't understand this focus on spread against the EPA numbers. Those are Ford and the EPA's problem, not yours. Focus on the results on their own. The 2.7 is faster by Edmunds' own testing (5.0 numbers here: http://www.edmunds.com/ford/f-150/2015/road-test-specs1.html) and as good or better on gas. How is that not a win?

    Nobody is going to be any kind of happy towing 9,000 lbs with a small displacement V8 and 3.31 gears no matter what the brochure says.
  • actualsizeactualsize Santa Ana, CaliforniaPosts: 451
    edited May 2016

    What's the price difference between these two trucks, MSRP?

    The base price for each of these 2015 Lariat crew cab 4x4 trucks was IDENTICAL when we had both window stickers together in one place. That was also the case when I originally configured the truck we bought. I could have had a V8 for the same money, but the 2.7-liter EcoBoost was the new and newsworthy engine, so we went that way.

    The borrowed V8 test truck had more options (502A versus 501A, bedliner, FX4, etc) so it did indeed have a higher as-tested price.

    I think the V8 base price has drifted up $800 relative to the 2.7-liter EcoBoost since then, possibly because their model mix included too many lower mpg-rated V8s relative to their CAFE target. Also, the CAFE target incrementally increases year over year, so I can easily imagine a 5.0-liter V8 price increase to tamp down its appeal and encourage more EcoBoost sales. I've seen this sort of thing done before.
    aspade said:

    I don't understand this focus on spread against the EPA numbers. Those are Ford and the EPA's problem, not yours. Focus on the results on their own.

    Well, shoppers use the window sticker to decide what to buy, so it's their problem, too. I think outright fuel economy and the difference from advertised performance are both relevant.

    Twitter: @Edmunds_Test

  • Yes, I would have liked to add a trailer component. Some years ago I would not have taken such tow ratings at face value, but now we have a standardized J2807 tow rating test procedure. And here, at least, we have a Ford versus Ford contest. There's no reason to expect them to hold back on one and overstate the other. It's in their best interests to make sure the ratings for all engine and axle ratio combinations are as competitive as they can be.

    Moreover, such tow ratings are not based on an extrapolation of the results of a 10-second dyno pull on a chassis dynamometer. It's a marathon, not a drag race. Tow ratings are based on a real-world 10-minute+ pull with a trailer attached in high-ambient conditions up the Davis Dam grade near Laughlin, Nevada. SAE J2807 defines all of the conditions, including the frontal area of the box trailer to be pulled, the way it must be loaded, and it defines a minimum speed for the climb that the vehicle cannot fall below even if it is giving its all with the throttle pinned. You can bet that the truckmakers adjust the load to get as close to this minimum as possible in order to publish the highest figure.

    So, yeah, I have no trouble believing that over an extended pull up a very long grade with a box trailer, the 5.0-liter V8 may well be able to soldier on steadily while the furiously-spinning turbos of the EcoBoost 2.7 V6 get all cherry-red and heat-soaked and have to be reigned in. A turbo mill can be screwed up to do anything for short bursts, but its a different story if you want to sustain that output indefinitely.

    The 2.7 has been proven to have excellent charge-cooling and coolant-cooling properties. No tests I've seen have found any instances of timing being pulled due to detonation or due to an overheated turbo.. The tests that Ford did on the Davis Dam Road with the 2.7, the Chevy 5.3 and the Dodge EcoDiesel showed the Ford recording the same time going up the hill during the hottest part of the day and after the sun went down. The naturally-aspirated Chevy 5.3 was pulling timing early when it was over 100 degrees out, not the Ford.

    The grille and under-bumper surface of a half-ton pickup has plenty of area for large radiators and intercoolers, and the short engine length provides room for very thick cross-sections of those components - the 2.7 has a half-quart more coolant capacity than the 5.0 liter, and .8 quart more than the 3.5 EB does. They did their homework.

    Davis Dam, due to the elevation, will show still more advantage that the forced-induction 2.7 brings as opposed to the atmospheric 5.0.

    Ford has a product mix they are trying to sell...they have plenty of sunk costs in certifying the Coyote for use in the F150. They'd like to make that back, and so far they're not selling anywhere near as many V8 F150s as they forecast. It's a great engine but it's not as good as the turbo V6s in that application.

    Also, check your style sheet on "reigned in." The expression is "reined in" (as in reins - that you use to control a horse - that's where it came from.).
  • aspade said:

    I don't understand this focus on spread against the EPA numbers. Those are Ford and the EPA's problem, not yours. Focus on the results on their own. The 2.7 is faster by Edmunds' own testing (5.0 numbers here: http://www.edmunds.com/ford/f-150/2015/road-test-specs1.html) and as good or better on gas. How is that not a win?

    Nobody is going to be any kind of happy towing 9,000 lbs with a small displacement V8 and 3.31 gears no matter what the brochure says.

    I have said this many times here...apparently there is gas, and there is EPA gas...and apparently EPA gas mileage is more important than gas mileage.
  • yellowbalyellowbal Posts: 234
    @longtimelurker That's just like your opinion. EPA mileage numbers are often self-reported by the manufacturers and used in advertising. If someone bought the 2.7L thinking that it'd get 18% better overall fuel economy over the 5.0L, isn't that deception?
  • tommister2tommister2 Mechanicsville, VAPosts: 330
    I just noticed that your truck has the front license plate in the center. I thought the ecoboost trucks had the front plate offset because there was an air intake in the center, maybe for the intercooler?
    2011 Toyota Camry, 2014 Jeep Wrangler, 2015 Subaru Forester, 2017 Honda Civic Coupe
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,791
    @tommister2,
    Nice observation, that's blocking the intercooler.
    My 2014 has the plate mounted to the right of the center opening.
    Now you've opened a new can of worms. :)
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • I just noticed that your truck has the front license plate in the center. I thought the ecoboost trucks had the front plate offset because there was an air intake in the center, maybe for the intercooler?

    That was the previous model that was not originally designed for turbos and the engineers had to work with what was already there. The new truck was engineered for turbocharging so it's no longer necessary to make room for the intercooler.
  • handbrakehandbrake Posts: 99
    So Ford spent many millions of dollars to design, test, refine, build, etc. the ecoboost and in the end, the V8 is the one that really impressed me with its MPG numbers. I'm sure Ford has spread the costs of developing the ecoboost engines across all truck prices, even if you don't buy the ecoboost. So if you buy an F150, part of that price is to pay for what I see as a failed experiment. As someone else said, the ecoboost would have had to get in the range of 25 mpg for it to be considered a worthwhile improvement.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,791
    @allthingshonda,
    I looked a bunch of pictures at a local dealer website, and all the Ecoboost trucks have a plate mount smack dab in the middle of the bumper.
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,870
    Not having to deal with stop/start is a plus for the V8. Not having to deal with two vey expensive turbos is another bonus. Having a mechanical parking brake i/o electronic is a third positive for V8.
  • s197gts197gt Posts: 486
    excellent test. i was very curious what the results would be. i think both engines have their pluses so i can definitely see arguments for both.

    if i were in the market i'd probably have to look at aftermarket engine tuning support, product availability, and real world transaction prices to make my choice.
  • handbrake said:

    So Ford spent many millions of dollars to design, test, refine, build, etc. the ecoboost and in the end, the V8 is the one that really impressed me with its MPG numbers. I'm sure Ford has spread the costs of developing the ecoboost engines across all truck prices, even if you don't buy the ecoboost. So if you buy an F150, part of that price is to pay for what I see as a failed experiment. As someone else said, the ecoboost would have had to get in the range of 25 mpg for it to be considered a worthwhile improvement.

    A failed experiment - five years ago, these engines accounted for 0% of all F150 sales - today it's 62%, roughly divided between the 2.7 and the 3.5 EB engines. Some failure - you people kill me.

    The stop-start on this vehicle is considered one of the best implementations on any vehicle regardless of price, and turbo failure isn't really a thing anymore, folks, if it ever was.

    So, a lengthy comparison, with the EB truck making more power and slightly better fuel economy, then a final "no-brainer" decision on the "strength" of a verbiage-based towing comparison (reading factory specs - no actual towing involved) to buy the V8 due to a suspect theoretical superiority the average owner might encounter in maybe 10% of all towing scenarios.

    Uh-huh.
  • legacygtlegacygt Posts: 599
    edited May 2016
    Thank you, thank you, thank you. This is this the analysis I've been waiting for (privately and in comments here) for years. Since you had the Explorer with the 2.0L Ecoboost. I was repeatedly asking you to track down a V6 Explorer with FWD and similar specs to do this same sort of test. I believed the V6 would have gotten better mileage and been a more satisfying drive.
    Now you've done this test and your conclusion is that you'd rather have the V8 and I think you're right. The F150 has two other engine options I'd be curious to know how they perform. I would bet that the NA V6 and the Ecoboost V6 both get better real world mileage than the two versions you tested here and it's possible that the Ecoboost V6 is the most satisfying driver of the bunch.
    I have nothing against turbocharging. I have nothing against Ford. But I am very skeptical of Ford's move to put undersized Ecoboost engines in larger vehicles. Some will say that the 2.7L Ecoboost in the F150 is not undersized as it moves the truck along just fine. This is true, but it requires the turbo to spool up all the time and then it consumes fuel like a larger engine. In order for a turbo to be fuel efficient, it needs to be able to operate without spooling up during certain conditions and that is only the case when the engine itself is big enough to move the vehicle without boost. This just isn't the case when you have a 2.7L engine in a large truck. The only real world gain is whatever weight savings you see between the 2.7L Ecoboost and the larger engine options. But this is negligible relative to the weight (and payload and towing capacity) of an F150. The engine weight difference may be huge in a Focus or a Fusion but not so much in an F150.
    So why do they push these small turbos in large cars? The answer is simple. CAFE. The EPAs fuel efficiency test cycle does not accurately predict real world efficiency of turbo engines. I don't know why. Maybe they allow really slow acceleration. Whatever it is, the test favors turbo engines and Ford is taking advantage in a way that hurts consumers. This is not deception like VW but it is similarly motivated.
  • misterfusionmisterfusion Posts: 471
    @longtimelurker - So Ford has shown that their engine with much smaller displacement and two fewer cylinders can get about the same mileage as a 5.0 V8. Pardon me if I fail to be impressed by that.

    I'm sure I would enjoy driving the 2.7 from a performance standpoint, but the Coyote is no slouch either. I can totally see why people may feel a bit let down by the Ecoboost's real-world economy figures.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,791
    Performance was excluded from this test, it was strictly a fuel mileage comparison between the best mileage setup for the 5.0 and the worst for the 2.7.
    Has anyone looked at the mileage Edmunds is getting with the Honda Pilot?
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • darthbimmerdarthbimmer Posts: 606
    Great analysis, Dan. Thanks for doing this. And thanks for holding back on publication until you could reasonably rule out oil overfill as a factor.

    To make the test truly fair, though, apples-to-apples, you needed to hit the second truck with a hammer. ;)
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,791
    edited May 2016
    If I can get this with my 'heavy' 2014 Supercab 3.5 with 3.55, why can't Edmunds do better?
    This was mostly downhill overall, but look at the average speed.
    My truck is rated @ 15/21.

    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • chainheartchainheart Posts: 1
    Supercab 2.7L 4x4 owner here. Either this 'test loop' is biased, these auto journalists have lead footed acceleration, or I have a ringer, because I average just over 20 MPG in my truck. I have 3.73 gears, which may actually help in the city driving to get into higher gears easier, or it hits a sweet spot in the RPMs on the highway at 65 MPH. Either way, I have no problem hitting EPA estimates and going over if I try (hypermiling). Here is my fuelly page with a few notes: http://www.fuelly.com/car/ford/f-150/2015/chainheartmachine/377595
  • V8 all day long - Even if the MPG's were slightly lower, always a proven V8 over a turbo - great linear V8 power, great sound, simplicity, ""Long Term"" reliability (no turbos) etc.....
  • ballsonchinballsonchin Posts: 10
    I love my 2.7. I pulled a 7000k trailer over 4000 miles and lots of hills. It kicks [non-permissible content removed]. I drove the 5.0 and yes it pulls harder at high RPM but I the 2.7 has way more low end. If your buying a truck for MPG then your making a mistake.
  • 500rwhp500rwhp Posts: 98
    I remain baffled. My 3.5L supercrew with the optional 6.5' bed and 3.73 gears averages 19.7MPG on the computer (probably more like 19MPG in real life) over 30,000 miles of varied driving. So maybe the real point is you are testing the wrong engines entirely....the 3.5EB is the top dog and delivers better power at no economy cost. Heck, I have towed 7,000 lbs and still gotten over 14MPG doing that.
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Posts: 1,021
    Why is there a link to this story on the front page of What's Hot under the title 'which is best to tow your boat?"

    This isn't a tow test.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Maybe because of this sentence?

    "Here's another thing to bear in mind as we go forward: our 2.7-liter V6 crew cab 4x4 with its optional "plus one" axles can tow 8,100 pounds while the 5.0 V8 4x4 and its mere standard axles can tow 9,000 pounds."
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    A reporter is looking to speak with shoppers who purchased a truck or SUV within the last six months. If you're willing to help, please contact [email protected] by no later than May 27, 2016.
  • carzzicarzzi Posts: 5
    Ford should consider a "light pressure" turbo on its 5.0 V8 engine, peaking between, say, 5—8 psi. Maybe not as thermally efficient in engine dyno testing; real world varied-load economy’d be better than an overboosted small engine. An LPT’d reduce downshifting on grades to maintain speed, esp. when laden/towing. The % time spent with turboes spooled would also reduce on avg. A low peak boost and dwell eliminates richer AF ratio cycles for combustion path cooling, as is done on small displacement turbo engines, which is a big factor in disappointing EB mpg. Low boost necessitates smaller intercooler sizing. Additionally, routing exhaust as into a heat exchanger for EGR, such as what Mazda’s new CX9 2.5T does, would also benefit economy. Season the recipe with already-quite-mature cylinder deactivation.
  • atlgaxtatlgaxt Posts: 501
    Nowadays people buy a truck with the expectation that you can get at least 300k miles out of one without a major rebuild. Even if you do not keep the truck the ten or fifteen years it would take to build up that mileage that expectation is what drives resale value. Does anyone really think a twin turbo V6 with twice the specific output of a typical V8 will routinely give 300k miles of service? And when something breaks I would think it would be a whole lot more expensive. Give me the V8.
  • bankerdannybankerdanny Posts: 1,021
    stever said:

    Maybe because of this sentence?

    "Here's another thing to bear in mind as we go forward: our 2.7-liter V6 crew cab 4x4 with its optional "plus one" axles can tow 8,100 pounds while the 5.0 V8 4x4 and its mere standard axles can tow 9,000 pounds."

    Quoting the tow ratings from the manual isn't a tow test any more than reading the ingredients on a menu is a taste test. This was a very useful test of fuel economy, but absolutely useless in terms of helping you decide which one is best for towing your boat or anything else.
  • mikeg50mikeg50 Posts: 1
    I believe that this test severely underestimates the impact of the rear axle ratios. I have an F150 XLT Supercrew 4wd with the 2.7 Turbo and the 3.55 rear. Since I picked the truck up on March 31st in about 4000 miles of mixed driving with about 10% towing a light duty trailer I have averaged 21.3MPG. On a recent trip from Connecticut to the NJ shore, about 500 miles total, I got 24.5 on the trip down and 25.6 on the trip home. I tend to driving pretty sensibly with limited rapid accelerations, using the cruise control where possible and trying to anticipate slow ups and congestion so as to maintain my speed when on the highway. I do notice that in the last 1500 or so miles the mileage has improved as the engine has become more broken in. All in all I am quite please with the engine/rear combo and do not see a compelling reason to the go up to the 5.0 V8 as this seems like it will handle pretty much all non-commercial or very heavy towing without much of an issue.
  • I'm a bit confused by all of this. I'm ready to buy a 2016 F150 LX Supercab, short bed. I was focusing on the 2.7 EB with the 3.31 axle.. I rarely every pull a trailer and if I do, it's not more than 20 miles round trip. I'm not a hotrodder speed demon. I drive conservatively. The comments about the 5.0 make sense to me. Proven engine, no turbos to worry about for repairs etc. But I want the best mpg possible. I haven't had a V8 in any of my F150s since a string of mid 1980 models with 302s and one 351. My current 4.2L V6 has been great.
    I just don't think I need a V8 but this article has made me doubt getting the 2.7 EB.
    I would appreciate your input.
    Cheers!
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,791
    You can always buy one with a non turbo V6.
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • I have a 2016 XLT Super Crew, 2.7. 3:55 Electronic locking axle. I am consistently getting 19.8 MPG, 90% city driving.
    The N/A 3.5 V6 is not available in the Lariat trim. The base motor is the 2.7 EB. The V8 is an $800 option, the 3.5 EB is $1515. The license plate bracket has been offset on all EB 150s since the engine debuted. The intercooler is mounted directly behind the lower opening. There are shutters that will open and close (at least on my '16) to adjust airflow as needed and help maximize fuel economy. With the license plate covering the opening as on the test truck, the intercooler was never operating at maximum efficiency.
    I also question if that engine would even run with 10 quarts of oil in it. It doesn't have that large a crankcase. With all the electronics monitoring all aspects of engine operation, there had to at least be some type of warning telling the driver that the oil was way over capacity.
    Anyway, driving around town, no load, no towing (which is 80% of our driving), I am very pleased with both the performance and fuel economy of the 2.7. All my friends that have the V8 aren't getting anywhere close to my figures. The max I tow is 4500lbs and this truck performs beautifully.
  • Don't trust your computer mileage. When I calculate gallons used to miles traveled against computer there is close to 2 MPG difference. Computer says 21 when actually it is 19.1.
  • I can see most of the points made by Edmunds and also many in this discussion; and it is especially a good point about the performance aspect versus the 5.0 Coyote engine. There are drivers out there who have become turbo, direct-injection enthusiasts mostly due to the refinement aspect that the character of these engine produce. There is something to be said, at least for some of us, about torque coming on down low. I became an enthusiast of this kind of performance via a diesel-powered car, and although I understand the limitations for efficiency with respect to using these components with spark-ignition, versus compression-ignition, one still gets much of the refinement aspect with spark-ignition, turbo-charged DI engines as is the case with diesels.

    By refinement, I mean in many situations, when an NA engine needs more RPM maintaining speed on an uphill grade or while accelerating, a turbo-charged, DI engine (diesel or gas fueled) does not. And some people, myself included, really prefer cruising and not feeling and/or hearing a screaming engine at every 2-3 percent uphill grade, and that "racing up a hill phenomenon" while using cruise control with NA engines. Others prefer high revs for performance, and those folks should get an NA engine unless they don't care about mpg, because a turbo DI, gas engine revved high often will result in horrible mpg. People should understand that from the outset, but it is not true, like many of the reviewers believe, that everyone drives that way all the time.

    It has been pointed out that the 2.7 probably, overall, outperforms the 5.0 V8 based on the dyno. But lets take this conversation another direction, which has been totally missed by Edmunds and every, single negative review of this 2.7-liter Ford Ecoboost choice by every professional reviewer. Every single review ends up reviewing a 4WD, SCab or SCrew and usually 3.55 rear axle and up and usually with XLT or Lariat trim. Moreover, as much as they like to say they're driving for fuel economy, I don't believe they are driving like many of us drive when we commute regularly. When I drive my truck, I can accelerate modestly and the tach won't go over about 1900, all the way up to cruising speed; even if I'm climbing a 3% grade while doing so. I'm getting great mpg, even when I've been hauling stuff around, though admittedly, it's been mostly light loads, furniture, etc.

    But if one understands this technology and how and when this engine could maximize fuel economy versus other choices, then it should be realized that the area in which this power train would shine the most regarding fuel economy, against the other engines in this truck, and also where it would come closest to the EPA test cycle, would be in the lightest utility, and in the lightest and smallest versions, with 2WD and 3.31 gears and with few appointments and with conservative drivers who need and want the power only occasionally, but also appreciate the added refinement of this engine versus the NA choices; especially the sub-300-torque V6. I know I'm not the average buyer of a pickup truck in America and that's why the lesser trucks don't get reviewed, but it is still a fact that this is the best place for this engine to do what Ford was trying to accomplish with it...The lesser the truck, the better for this setup. This is my situation and my truck. I've got a 2015 F150 Standard Cab, 2WD, short-bed, XL with 3.31 regular rear axle; no step bars or brush guards or any of that crap. Only a light-weight tonneau that I keep on there out of necessity. I'm averaging for the life of the truck, hand calculated, 24.3 mpg. On the highway at 65 mph, I cannot regularly achieve the 26 mpg rating, but I can usually come in around 25-25.5. I would guess that at 75, it would be more like 24.5. I measure highway miles only both directions, which should always be done when reporting real-world, highway mpg. In city driving, which I don't do a whole lot of exclusively, it appears that this truck, with me driving can easily achieve the 19 mpg rating.

    Now to expound on the trip meter error. It's huge! It's so bad that it should not be used for reporting. It also is not consistent. It is the "gallons used" data recorded in the truck that is flawed. I checked it a few times in the early days, hoping that I could get a consistent error and extrapolate from it and not have to calculate by hand. But I can't. Even though it is always significantly optimistic by under representing the true "gallons used" for a trip, that under representation can vary the mpg error between 1.4-1.9. And so it should never be used when reporting mpg. Instead it must be hand calculated, or otherwise, it has no basis in reality and we can't subtract a measure from it and be accurate; not even remotely.

    But at least with my truck and 17" Michelin LTXs, there is another significant error, but this one goes the other way, and this one is consistent. I have checked the miles driven for an entire tank several times against a couple of GPS and the result is always the same...The true miles driven is 1.7-1.8 percent more than indicated on the odometer and trip meter, and this error, subtracts from the true mpg. But what I do, in order to be conservative in my estimate, is before dividing the miles shown by the pump-indicated fuel used, I multiply the trip miles indicated times 1.015; meaning I'm adding 1.5% to the trip miles, and this makes my reporting more realistic.
  • I think I'm at least as good at measuring mpg as Edmunds staff: In my 2015 Std Cab, 2Wd, short bed, 2.7 EB, I reset trip one to zero and recently did a mostly highway trip; 220 miles round trip; 65 mph; some speed ups for passing, air temps. 38-50; at least 20 of the miles was stop-n-go city traffic around Nashville, TN with three stops; wind 5-10 from the northwest; after trip mpg indicated 27.4; trip meter error averages +1.5 mpg, so my real-world, though slower than average driver trip, netted at or about 25.8 mpg. It would have done better in hot temps but not much, as this truck/power train combo does good in cold weather compared to other vehicles I've owned. It also easily beats the city rated 19 that I've found never to be the case in any other full size I've driven since my 1989 with the 4.9 I6, which could come close to it's 15 city rating, and its 19 highway rating. I've found that my new truck struggles to meet the 26 highway rating, even at 65, but I'm averaging almost 24 overall, against a 22 combined rating, which means this truck, with the supposedly overrated 2.7 does the best against it's epa estimate of any truck I've owned or driven at work or leased, since a 1987 Toyota 4 cylinder, which was underrated.

    I hope than no one will try to convince me that any F150 configuration, in any reasonable driving scenario, can come close to 25.8 in a round trip measurement. I know better. I've driven late model 4.6s and 5.0s in a similar configurations, at the same approximate speed on pure highway trips and have never achieved above 21.5 for a round trip. This new Ecoboost can achieve at least 4 mpg better than V8 in at least one configuration when driving conservatively.
  • What I really enjoyed about this research project was all of the discussions it fostered. This proves that we can have differences of opinions, how we collect and collate data without being vulgar or rude to each other. Thank you to each participant for proving we can disagree in a wholesome and civil manner. I current dive a 1995 F-50 supercab I bought brand new, yes in 1995. Before the month is over I plan to have a new F-150 supercab in my driveway.
    Godspeed
  • gregsfc1gregsfc1 Posts: 29
    As we near the 2018 model year, drivers should take another look if they're going to buy new and see that Ford is getting ready to expand their lead on the competition, at least as it pertains drive trains, and it should be noted that Ford will offer the most variety of different engine characters and types by far; and that most available engines in this range will be available in most configurations, something one doesn't get from the competition, especially GM. For instance, the all-new-for-2017MY 3.5 Ecoboost mated to the new 10 speed can be had in a very bare bones, standard cab XL, requiring only the 8' bed as an add on from the most basic truck. This means that someone who wants a work truck for two with as little as possible features can still have the most capable engine, the most advanced engine, and probably decent mpg (with that 10 speed transmission) if he or she is conscientious about how he or she drives, for less than $31K MSRP. For 2018, there will be a new or near-new-designed base engine, going from a 3.5 NA V6 with 280something hp and 250something peak ft pounds torque that is port fuel injected (PFI), to a 3.3 liter NA V6 but in 2018, it will have direct injection (DI)combined with PFI with the same approximate peak performance numbers and the same 6 speed transmission, according to Ford. There will be a reworked 2.7 Ecoboost with dual fuel injection and most likely new turbos, most likely slightly higher EPA fuel economy estimates and most likely slightly higher peak performance numbers (especially the torque number). There will be a reworked 5.0 V8 with dual fuel injection with most likely slightly higher mpg estimates and most likely higher peak performance numbers; and then Ford will add a sixth engine (if you count the two outputs of the 3.5 Ecoboost separately) in a 3.0 V6 PowerStroke Diesel. The latter will almost surely be the new FE king of the 1/2-ton world and likely the compression ignition performance champ also; albiet there will be only two. One word of caution though. Although Ford has been very good so far at allowing consumers to choose from a whole list of engine choices in this range, no matter the trim or configuration, it will be very likely that this will not be the case for the upcoming diesel and that's a shame. A mid 200 hp, mid 400 peak toque diesel is the perfect power train for the standard cab, super cab, 2wd in the XL and XLT and even Lariat trims for the money-conscious consumer that has limited capability need. However, due to the economics of providing our market with a mid-performing diesel, Ford will likely go the way that GM went with the Colorado/Canyon and Ram has gone with their 1500 half-ton, and that is to try and up scale the cool little diesel to something more than it is. Diesels in this range would make great fuel misers in the smaller and lighter configured trucks, but it is likely that Ford will not allow this upcoming, great little diesel to be available in its most suitable configurations and trims; rather they'll allow it only in the $40K and up F150s, and so most likely, those who need or want a smaller less luxurious half-ton truck with some good mpg, will need to opt for the 2.7 liter Ecoboost mated to the ten speed, because the most fuel economical engine won't likely be available in the truck you want.
  • saratogastevesaratogasteve San Jose, CaPosts: 180
    My 2016 F150 2wd 2.7 eco boost turbo got pretty good mileage from the get go - close to 25 mpg highway in the first couple months of ownership. My check engine light went on at month 6 and I noticed my HWY mileage was down to 20 mpg. Turns out I have a bad knock sensor - Ford service rep said it was an unusual repair - they don't even stock the part and it will take 2-3 days to repair. Had to haggle hard to get a free loaner - these guys must get a bonus for talking customers out of a free loaner.
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