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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

Ford's 4-cylinder EcoBoost debuts in 2011 Edge

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Ford's 4-cylinder EcoBoost debuts in 2011 Edge

Rick Kranz

Automotive News -- February 15, 2010 - 12:01 am ET

Ford's turbocharged EcoBoost four-cylinder engine will debut in the re-engineered 2011 Ford Edge crossover.

The Edge is undergoing its first major changes since its 2006 debut. The new version was unveiled last week at the Chicago Auto Show.

While the styling is familiar -- call it an evolutionary tinkering -- all of the 2011 model's sheet metal except the roof and doors has been replaced. The interior has been redesigned, and the passenger compartment is quieter thanks to additional soundproofing, styling changes to reduce wind noise, and acoustic glass.

The powertain lineup has gone from one engine to three, with a re-engineered, 3.5-liter V-6 and the addition of a re-engineered 3.7-liter V-6. Ford says the engines have better fuel economy than their predecessors, plus increased horsepower and torque.

"The Edge is another example of our new approach to freshenings," said Derrick Kuzak, Ford Motor Co. group vice president of global product development. "For us, it is not a front-end clip and new wheels. It is a significant and unexpected level of content similar to what we did last year with the very successful Fusion freshening."

Ford sold 337,915 Edges from the time the crossover went on sale in 2006 through January. Last year Ford sold 88,548 Edges, a 20 percent drop from 2008.

Elaine Bannon, chief engineer for the Edge and its Lincoln MKX sibling, said the Edge is important for the Ford brand because 49 percent of the crossover's buyers are conquest sales. Kuzak and Bannon spoke at a press event this month in Dearborn, Mich.

Bannon said a survey of Edge owners found that the key selling points were styling, voice-activated technology, ride comfort and fuel efficiency -- the main areas Ford targeted for the 2011 model.

Ford's turbocharged, direct-injection, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine will be available toward the end of the year. The 2011 Edge with V-6 engines will be launched this summer.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/article/20100215/RETAIL03/302159957/1113#ixzz0fcFynv46

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