The main benefits of Ford's Ecoboost line of engines may be fuel efficiency and performance, but their popularity is resulting in another positive outcome.
Ford has sold more than 530,000 Ecoboost vehicles since the line's introduction three and a half years ago, and the automaker is ready to invest in hundreds of extra jobs to keep up with demand.
According to The Detroit News, Ford will invest hundreds of millions of dollars in two Ohio plant to hire more workers.
While Ecoboost vehicles typically command a $1,000 premium over their more conventional counterparts, they've proven unexpectedly popular.
The turbocharged, direct-injected line of engines is fit into everything from the upcoming 1.0-liter Ford Fiesta, to the F-150 truck--and it's the latter, plus the Fusion midsize sedan, where sales are the highest.
Indeed, it's the F-150 where the turbocharged units are proving the most popular. In a market dominated by V-8 engines, U.S. truck customers have bought nearly 280,000 Ecoboost F-150s.
The company is selling more per month than it anticipated it would sell in a year--and if truck buyers will accept it, there's little surprise it's proving popular in regular hatchbacks and sedans. An smaller displacement Ecoboost F-150 is expected in the 2015 model year.
Ford's 2.0-liter Ecoboost, as found in the Fusion, is currently produced in Valencia, Spain.
To help create more American jobs, Ford wants to expand production to its Cleveland plant, which currently produces the F-150's 3.5-liter V-6. Expanding production will also help Ford better manage demand in the U.S. in Europe--with European Ecoboost sales expected to triple to 480,000 by 2015.
This demand shows a clear trend in the market, too.
Ultimately, turbocharged gasoline engines are less fuel-efficient than diesel or hybrid vehicles, and there are still question marks over their real-world economy.
For consumers though, they're a compelling mix of adequate efficiency and strong performance. And for the time being, they're also creating hundreds of new jobs.