What is Ford EcoBoost?

June 20, 2024 by

Simply put, it’s what Ford calls its current crop of turbocharged petrol engines. It’s used the EcoBoost name since 2009, and it’s become a mainstay across most new Ford models, especially as diesel has steadily fallen out of favour.

Unless you are buying a hybrid or a fully electric Ford, the chances are your car will come with an EcoBoost engine.

What is an EcoBoost engine?

Ford EcoBoost is the branding the manufacturer applies to its range of turbocharged petrol models. This differs from diesel-powered EcoBlue cars and Duratec which is used for non-turbocharged petrol options.

Turbocharging is incredibly common on petrol cars today. A turbocharger compresses air going into the engine, allowing it to produce power more efficiently. It means that a small engine can deliver the performance of a larger, non-turbocharged engine, with impressive economy and low emissions.

Advantages and disadvantages of Ford Ecoboost

There are some pros and cons to running a car with an EcoBoost engine.

Advantages of Ford Ecoboost

Let’s start with the good points:

  • Turbocharged engines produce power more efficiently

Turbochargers work by compressing air, allowing engines to produce power more efficiently. This means you can get similar levels of performance to a larger, non-turbocharged engine without the additional size and weight.

  • Fuel economy and emissions are improved

Turbocharging an engine allows it to burn fuel more efficiently, too, reducing its consumption and lowering emissions.

Disadvantages of Ford Ecoboost

There are some known drawbacks to EcoBoost, though. As with many engines, EcoBoost units are not immune to faults. Some common issues include:

  • Fuel pressure issues

High-mileage Ford EcoBoost engines have been reported to suffer from low fuel pressure issues, reducing performance. This is usually fixed by replacing the fuel pump.

  • Valve damage

Again this only really applies to high-mileage Ford EcoBoost engines. This is as a result of direct fuel injection, with no natural cleaning of the intake valve stems leading up to a buildup of carbon.

  • Overheating

Early Ford EcoBoost engines had a common problem that would cause them to overheat. This is because they would use coolant pipes made of nylon that could fail at high temperatures.

A recall was issued in 2015 that saw the vast majority of these models have replacement pipes fitted to resolve the issue. It’s worth checking for any outstanding recalls if you’re considering buying a pre-2015 car, though.

Which Ford models have EcoBoost engines?

Most Ford models on sale today, or from the past decade or so, are available with EcoBoost engines. Here are the Ford cars that use EcoBoost tech.

1. Ford Fiesta

Taken too soon, you can no longer buy a new Ford Fiesta. Fans of fun superminis, dry your eyes, because it’s one of the most popular cars on the used market. The Ford Fiesta combines an enjoyable drive, reasonable practicality, keen prices, and low running costs.

Find Ford Fiesta deals

2. Ford Fiesta ST

The hot-hatch version of the Fiesta, the Ford Fiesta ST takes everything that’s good about Ford’s brilliant supermini and turns up the wick. It’s quicker, even more fun, but no less practical. Insurance for young drivers will be expensive, though.

Find Ford Fiesta ST deals

3. Ford EcoSport

Like most Fords, the EcoSport is fun to drive. It’s not the most practical small SUV, however. The boot is small, and the ride is too bumpy. It does look good, though, and the EcoBoost engines are lively and efficient.

Find Ford EcoSport deals

4. Ford Puma

If you want a small SUV from Ford, do yourself a favour – choose the Puma rather than the EcoSport. Not only is the Puma more fun to drive, it’s also more practical with loads of luggage space for a relatively small car.

Find Ford Puma deals

5. Ford Puma ST

The ST is the quick version of the Ford Puma. As you’d expect it’s a hoot to drive, but the sportier suspension makes the ST harsh riding around town. We’d stick with the standard car, but on the right road the Puma ST is great fun.

Find Ford Puma ST deals

6. Ford Focus

Some hatchbacks have bigger boots than the Ford Focus, such as the Skoda Octavia. But the lively handling will keep keen drivers happy, with brisk performance thanks to the capable EcoBoost petrol engines. It’s a shame that Ford doesn’t plan to directly replace today’s Focus when production ends.

Find Ford Focus deals

7. Ford Focus ST

Fast Fords have a reputation for delivering driving thrills without breaking the bank. The Focus ST is a great example, with clever adaptive suspension, sports seats, and a turn of pace to rival the VW Golf GTI.

Find Ford Focus ST deals

8. Ford Kuga

The Kuga is Ford’s family SUV. It’s roomy, good to drive, and well equipped. The latest model is available as a hybrid or plug-in hybrid, but the most affordable version is the EcoBoost petrol.

Find Ford Kuga deals

Ford EcoBoost FAQs

  • What does EcoBoost mean on Ford?
    EcoBoost is the name Ford gives to a family of turbocharged petrol engines. It’s Ford’s equivalent of Peugeot’s PureTech or the TSI engines in Volkswagen Group cars.
  • Are Ford EcoBoost engines reliable?
    More recent engines are a better bet than the early EcoBoost units. Although generally reliable, there have been problems with valve damage, overheating, and fuel pressure.
  • How long will an EcoBoost engine last?
    That’s a tough one. The life of any engine will vary hugely depending on how it is used and serviced. With on-time oil changes and regular servicing an EcoBoost engine should be good for well over 100,000 miles, but there are no guarantees.
  • Does Ford EcoBoost save fuel?
    An Ecoboost is a turbocharged petrol. The turbo forces more air into the cylinders, making it more efficient and economical. That’s the theory. In practice, EcoBoost engines tend to be sensitive to driving style. If you are gentle with the throttle and change gear early, then an EcoBoost engine can deliver excellent economy. On the other hand, if you rev the engine hard then fuel economy can be disappointing.