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Trevor Collett | May 10, 2016

Ford’s range of EcoBoost turbocharged petrol engines now has a diesel-powered partner, as the carmaker prepares to debut the new EcoBlue range.

EcoBlue is a four-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine aimed solely at Ford’s commercial range at this stage, bringing improved economy, lower emissions and more torque.

The Transit and Transit Custom vans are two of the first models to receive the new engine, available in overseas markets with a 2.0 litre capacity and with power outputs ranging from 73 to 176kW.

A 1.5 litre version is expected to follow for selected Ford passenger models at a later date, along with a 150kW version of the 2.0 litre unit.

Ford says torque is up by 20 percent over the outgoing 2.2 litre TDCi diesel, while fuel consumption is up to 10 percent lower in Transit models. Also lower is the noise output, with Ford saying the new engine is around four decibels quieter than its predecessor for more car-like levels of noise, vibration and harshness (NVH).

Ford Transit
Ford Transit

Importantly for commercial vehicle drivers, much of that torque increase is available from idle. The carmaker has recognised a growing trend for commercial drivers to ‘creep’ their vehicle in slow-moving traffic, using only the clutch to take advantage of the diesel’s low-down torque.

The EcoBlue is an all-new engine, incorporating such features as belt-in-oil operation, an off-set crankshaft and modular camshafts.

Like the EcoBoost, the EcoBlue also features smaller engine parts, including the compressor wheel and turbocharger, and the engine is 15kg lighter than the TDCi.

Ford will likely roll the EcoBlue engines out in Australian-delivered Transit models following the European debut, but timing is unknown at this stage.

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