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A gas-electric hybrid that permits a car to run at 47 mph on electricity alone and that offers an overall driving range of 700 miles on a single tank of gas? That’s what Ford says it has developed for its upcoming 2010 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan sedans. This new hybrid system combines a 2.5-liter Atkinson 4-cylinder engine with a newly designed traction battery system—provided by Sanyo—producing 275 volts and 186 watts of power, using 208 cells and weighing just 145 lb.—compared to 250 cells and 192 lb. for the system used in the Escape Hybrid.
Also for the 2010 models the base 2.3-liter I-4 is being replaced with a new Duratec 2.5-liter I-4 that offers acomplete new cylinder block and piston design and revised crankshafts and connecting rods to handle the higher displacement. A new cylinder head and intake manifold design, combined with redesigned cam lobe profiles, help to increase airflow, resulting in an output of 175 hp—a 15-hp jump from the outgoing 2.3-liter—and 172 lb.-ft. of torque—16 lb.-ft. better than the 2.3-liter. A fuel economy improvement of 10% is gained through the upgrading of the Fusion’s and Milan’s transmissions to a full-line of 6-speed manual and automatics, with larger gear ratio spans and reduced mechanical losses compared to the outgoing 5-speed transmission line-up; and the addition of deceleration fuel cut-off technology, which cuts off fuel delivery to the engine during aggressive deceleration maneuvers.
For the V6 offering in the vehicles, Ford has adopted the 3-liter V6 engine used in the Escape crossover, which features a new cylinder head and upper and lower intake designs, along with modified pistons and new late intake valve closing cam profiles, all of which contribute significantly to the engine’s 19 hp improvement versus the outgoing engine. The engine also receives the Escape’s cam torque actuated intake variable cam timing technology, which utilizes existing cam torque energy to phase the camshafts, rather than the traditional oil pressure actuated approach, allowing for a smaller displacement oil pump, resulting in minor fuel economy gains.—KMK