2014 Ford Transit Van: Fuel-Efficient Diesel Option Unveiled

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2014 Ford Transit van

2014 Ford Transit van

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The diesel engine for the 2014 Ford Transit van will be a five-cylinder PowerStroke model, the company announced today, extending the fuel efficiency benefits of clean-diesel powertrains into its upcoming commercial van.

The new 3.2-liter PowerStroke Diesel will be the only five-cylinder turbodiesel sold in the U.S.

It's already used in other products outside the U.S., including the Ranger small pickup truck that Ford does not intend to sell in the States.

Ford says the new engine will offer "smooth, responsive performance" and power as well as good fuel efficiency, reducing its operating costs for van owners and fleet operators.

The engine is not yet rated for its U.S. version, but in Europe, the five-cylinder diesel puts out 197 horsepower and 347 lb-ft of torque.

And 90 percent of the turbodiesel's peak torque is available across the broad range of engine speeds from 1,700 to 3,500 rpm, making it flexible to use under a wide range of load conditions.

Ford did not issue projections for the fuel efficiency ratings of the 2014 Transit fitted with the new diesel engine.

Like most modern diesels, it uses high-pressure direct fuel injection--up to 26,000 psi--and sophisticated aftertreatment systems to reduce emissions of particulate matter and other pollutants.

Far from the image of simple, unsophisticated diesel designs, Ford's five-cylinder uses double overhead cams and four valves per cylinder housed in an aluminum cylinder head.

The diameter of its turbocharger nozzle can vary based on power demand and turbo speed, letting it boost power more quickly than fixed-nozzle designs.

Ford says the engine's injection timing and calibration reduces the typical "diesel clatter," making its noise level more comparable to that of a gasoline engine from the outside.

Quick-start glow plugs let the engine start quickly and smoothly at temperatures down to 25 degrees F. Below that, presumably, there may be a short delay before ignition.

Ford 3.2-liter PowerStroke Diesel engine, as fitted to 2014 Ford Transit van

Ford 3.2-liter PowerStroke Diesel engine, as fitted to 2014 Ford Transit van

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The Transit van diesel will use urea injection to reduce emissions of nitrous oxides, and will be fitted with a tank for Diesel Exhaust Fluid that will have to be refilled periodically by the owner.

It will also use a diesel particulate filter integrated into its catalytic converter to trap particulates that would otherwise be emitted into the exhaust stream.

And Ford says it expects the new diesel engine, and hence the 2014 Transit van into which it's fitted, to be compatible with up to 20 percent biodiesel fuel sources (known as B20).

The five-cylinder PowerStroke Diesel won't be the only engine offered in the Transit van.

Ford has already announced that it will also be fitted with the 3.5-liter turbocharged EcoBoost gasoline engine.

That engine is now offered in a number of Ford's largest vehicle lines, including its F-150 full-size pickup truck, as a more fuel-efficient replacement for the V-8 that might previously have been specified.

All engines in the upcoming Transit van will be mated to Ford's six-speed automatic transmission.

The new Transit van will replace the ancient Ford E-Series van line with a global design that's already in production in numerous countries around the world.

For the U.S. market, it will be built in a Missouri plant now being refitted for that purpose.

The 3.2-liter five-cylinder diesel engine will be built in South Africa and shipped to the U.S. assembly plant.

The 2014 Ford Transit van will go on sale late in 2013.


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Comments (13)
  1. "Ford has already announced that it will also be fitted with the 3.5-liter turbocharged EcoBoost gasoline engine."

    What an absurdity; here is an advanced, modern clean diesel engine design, and some manager at Ford really, REALLY wants to shove the obsolete gasoline "EcoBoost" down everyone's throat (metaphorically speaking), even when it does not fit the situation at all. What a shame.

  2. Umm, let me get this straight.

    A reciprocating piston ICE that has turbocharging, direct injection, variable intake and exhaust valves and burns fossil fuel

    is obsolete when compared to

    a reciprocating piston ICE that has turbocharging, direct injection, variable intake and exhaust valves, lots of aftertreatment to meet emissions and burns fossil fuel.

    Got it.

  3. If you cannot tell the difference between an ultramodern, clean, quiet and powerful diesel ICE and an "EcoBoost" gasoline ICE design from past century, then you did not "get it".

  4. Rich's point was that both of them are still based on the century old "internal combustion" technology and their "efficiency" ceiling is "set" by physics and its emission level are also set by its intake fuel...

  5. I know what his point was, and mine is that all this electric vehicle bluster is far from reality.

    - there is no infrastrucutre for charging
    - energy comes from extremely polluting sources (coal, nuclear)
    - the styling is unattractive at best
    - some of the vehicles accelerate fast, and that is about all they do; most are slow.

    Sooner or later, we have to face the reality: electric vehicles are all talk, no performance and for most of the population, no practicality.

    Better to discuss realistic alternatives, like ultramodern, clean, quiet, powerful and economical diesel engines.

  6. Ummmm...Annatar, who is talking about electric vehicles? EcoBoost has nothing to do with electric vehicle or hybrid technology. The Ford EcoBoost is a twin turbocharged V6, there is nothing electric about it. And how is the new PowerStroke diesel any different from gasoline combustion engines? Diesel engines are almost as old as gasoline engines and even though they have been cleaned up considerably since their introduction, so have gasoline engines. Diesel has a problematic future ahead of it as it is getting harder and harder to keep their emissions clean every time the US or Europe ups their clean air standards. Sooner or later diesel technology is going to hit a wall where it will be too expensive or impossible to make emissions legal.

  7. I don't know about where you live, but where I am diesel is more expensive than gasoline so a gasoline engine that gets similar fuel economy to a diesel will cost less to operate. That's why Ford is doing it.

  8. Why only in a van?!? Stick that 3.2L 5 cylinder powerstroke in a Focus with all-wheel-drive. That's would absolutely rock!! 250HP with about 400ft./lbs. of torque.

  9. ...Or in the new Aston Martin-looking Mustang! That would be swell!

  10. Offer the 3.2 diesel in the F-150. Ford would then sell enough to justify building the engine here.

  11. Doh! I meant to plus 1 your post, xamdam and hit the thumbs down on accident. I agree with your post on the F-150.

  12. Well, the last Ford PowerStroke has such a bad reputation in quality that people couldn't even give it away. I would wait awhile to see if Ford got all its problem fixed or not...

  13. I'm having a Fiat Ducato for quite some time now and think it's much better than the Ford Transit which I test drove recently. I don't want to say it's not a good car. But I'm a big Fiat fan and I'm just satisfied with the car's safety, interior and the van's capacity. However, I'm afraid I don't have as much technical knowledge as you guys here on this thread...

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