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2017 F-150 to feature new 10-speed transmission, engine

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EngineFord is set to release the 10-speed transmission engine as early as this fall in its 2017 F-150’s. This new and improved engine will give the F-150 a similar amount of horsepower as with its current engine (roughly 365 horsepower), but with increased torque and fuel economy. This technological development illustrates the point we discussed in class, that cars are getting heavier and more powerful while still increasing their fuel efficiency. This new engine will also include new pistons, a new cylinder, new turbochargers and an electronically controlled wastegate. This engine will also now use two fuel injection systems, direct injection and port fuel injection. Doug Scott, Ford’s truck group marketing manager believes that this new engine will be able to “optimize efficiency, emissions control, cold start-ability and output, and performance of the engine” because of the two fuel systems.

Developing these engines transmissions [ed: the prof] was a joint project between GM and Ford and GM will roll out it’s first 10-speed transmission engine on the 2017 Camero ZL1. This shows how important developing new technologies to stay ahead of the competition is in the auto industry. Companies invest billions in researching how to make more powerful and efficient cars and because of the need to stay ahead of the competition. These constant improvements serve to increase the quality of all cars at an astonishing pace. Although there was nothing in this article about possible problems with the engine, I would be interested to know what the drawbacks of increasing the engines to 10-speed or if their are any problems.




  1. adamsm19

    Given the fact that engines are redesigned much less frequently than cars, did you find anything about Ford incorporating this new 10 speed transmission engine for other vehicles? Given that GM is planning a 10 speed transmission for the Camaro it would be interesting if Ford does the same for Mustang

    May 5, 2016
  2. barnettt18

    I think that this development shows that automakers are beginning to focus on motor specs and other important upgrades to fuel engines in spite of the increased attention to electric power and flashy cosmetics like Tesla has begun to popularize. I find this blog post reassuring because it confirms that some automakers are looking towards traditional means to satisfy their customers. I can’t wait to see how this new engine affects sales for the F-150.

    Thomas Barnett

    May 6, 2016
    • Not beginning, they’ve been doing so for years.

      Note that the core engine is the same, what they’ve done is improve the stuff around the engine – the turbochargers, the fuel injection system, the piston and piston liner (perhaps with a change in the cylinder bore by a few tens of microns). The turbo compresses the air that goes into the engine, the electric wastegate allows more precise control, and so on and so on. All incremental improvements, but they add up!

      May 7, 2016
  3. Barrett Snyder
    Barrett Snyder

    Here is the link to a GREAT article I found that not only explains the differences between Direct Injection and Port Fuel Injection, but how this helps make vehicles more efficient.


    Speaking on the 10 speed transmissions, both of my two personal trucks (my Ford Lighting, the race truck, and my 2010 F150) have roughly the same 4R100 transmission in them. These transmissions are both 4 speed transmissions with a reverse gear (as designated by the “4” and the “R” in its name respectively). 4th gear is an “over drive” meaning that the rear wheels will spin more than one revolution for every “one” full rotation of the engine. These transmissions have been around for quite awhile (my Lighting is a 1999 model truck meaning they have been around for coming up on 20 years) and have proven to be very sturdy and reliable (especially the variant that is in my Lightning which is the beefed up model used in Ford’s heavy truck line: the Super Duty). This good technology means Ford never really bothered to change them much for a long time because they worked, and it was cheaper to keep using the same transmission instead of developing a new one. However, with new regulations on fuel efficiency, an easy way to make a vehicle more fuel efficient is to let it run in its most efficient rpm (rotations per minute) range. Traditional 4 speed transmissions mean that at many vehicle speeds the motor will not be operating in its peak efficiency range. The use of a 10 speed transmission allows for a less steep change in the ratio a particular gear uses. As a result the gearing can be used to keep a motor running in its most efficient range at almost any speed, improving fuel efficiency.

    While this sounds like a needed improvement there are draw backs. The use of a 10 speed transmission means the way a vehicle drives is very different. In the performance auto world some refer to this feeling as driving a vehicle with a transmission that feels like a “slush box.” In other words the transmission glides from gear to gear very softly because the difference in gearing between neighboring gears is very small. For anyone whose driven performance vehicles before, the mark of something fast is a very stiff and definite gear change. My Lighting has an aftermarket shift kit in it that shifts so violently it will shake the entire truck and cause the rear tires to break traction temporarily all the way up through third gear (depending on how much you are spinning that could be 40 mph plus). That might sound scary but I can guarantee in the right hands it’s fun as hell. To wrap it all up, I personally don’t like the feel of an 8+ speed transmission. GM has announced that its ulrta-performance oriented 2017 ZL1 Camaro will boast a 10 speed automatic, a dramatic departure from a world where american performance cars really haven’t seen anything more than a 6 speed manual transmission. It’s interesting to speculate how this departure will be received by the performance market of consumers.

    May 6, 2016
    • I added the link.

      At one time it appeared CVT (continuously variable transmissions) were the only way to get these improvements. Those don’t create any noticeable shift, so are I’m sure even more hated by drag racers. The development of dual-clutch transmissions that allow a rough doubling of the number of gears has been central.

      Most drivers of course don’t want to feel a gear change, but if you’re used to being in a 4-speed automatic moving to a 10-speed does feel different, you don’t get the feel of the engine revving up in gear 3 (perhaps downshifting to accelerate while passing) and then the engine dropping way down in RPMs when you move to 4th gear. My guess is that most of you drive 6-speeds – a homework assignment: check!!

      May 7, 2016

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