Next year’s new Ford Edge and Lincoln Aviator (pictured below) crossover SUVs will be the first production applications for a new V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission that Ford recently unveiled.
The 3.5-litre DOHC, 24-valve V6 will eventually replace the Duratec 3.0-litre V6 in its various Ford, Mazda and Jaguar applications. The 6F (for front-wheel-drive) transmission is our first sighting of the six-speed that Ford and GM have been developing as a joint venture.
Expect about 250 horsepower and 240 lb-ft of peak torque from the all-aluminum engine – not huge output for a modern 3.5, but Ford claims there’s lots of low-end grunt, which is what counts in real-life driving. Great care was taken to ensure that the engine could easily be adapted to use direct injection and/or turbocharging, and for use in a hybrid powertrain. Existing features include a multi-phase intake manifold, and variable timing on the intake camshaft (iVCT).
Neither engine nor transmission is overflowing with gee-whiz technical novelty, but they were developed with a particular concern for low NVH, in addition to the usual demands for more performance, better economy and lower emissions.
The engine can meet PZEV (Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle) standards without any expensive add-on technology, says Ford. And the 6F tranny is worth about seven percent fuel saving in highway driving compared with a four-speed, yet its low first gear will give strong launch acceleration.