Ford Upgrades 3.2L Diesel for North America

The auto maker is increasing capacity at its Struandale engine plant in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, to meet growing demand for the engine.

Byron Pope, Associate Editor

January 11, 2013

2 Min Read
New rsquo14 Ford Transit fullsize van to be offered with 32L Power Stroke 5cyl turbodiesel
New ’14 Ford Transit fullsize van to be offered with 3.2L Power Stroke 5-cyl. turbodiesel.

The 3.2L Power Stroke diesel arriving on North American shores in the Transit fullsize van later this year will be new to the market but boasts an admirable track record overseas.

Codenamed “Puma,” the inline 5-cyl. common-rail turbodiesel first launched more than 10 years ago in a number of Ford’s European vehicles. Now in its third generation, the 3.2L diesel has been reengineered to meet strict U.S. emissions regulations.

The 3.2L diesel mill underwent modifications two years ago so it could be sold in markets beyond Europe. Upgrades at the time included a higher-pressure common-rail system, an improved injectors and a better exhaust-gas-recirculation pump.

This latest modification includes precise injection timing and calibration to ensure a smooth combustion process that reduces clatter and makes the diesel nearly as quiet as a gasoline engine, Ford says.

Each injector nozzle has eight spray holes and can deliver up to five injections per combustion cycle. A pilot injection controls noise levels and a main injection is used for power generation.

For North America, Ford added a bypass mechanism to the exhaust-gas-recirculation cooler and a modified throttle-body intake. A urea-based selective-catalytic reduction aftertreatment system was installed to control nitrogen-oxide emissions.

“The SCR system is a big addition for North America and allows us to control NOx emissions and receive some fuel-economy benefits,” Pete Lyon, manager-North America Commercial Vehicle Calibration, tells WardsAuto, noting the modifications added “some costs” to the engine.

Lyon says the SCR system is similar to that used by the 6.7L diesel V-8 in F-Series Super Duty pickups, and urea only has to be added during regular oil-change intervals.

Ford has yet to announce horsepower and torque figures for the North American 3.2L diesel, but in other applications, including the Ranger pickup sold in other markets, it produces 197 hp and 347 lb.-ft. (470 Nm) of torque. The new mill is expected to be able to run on B20 biodiesel.

The engine, sourced from Ford’s Struandale engine plant in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, is in great demand worldwide.

Ian Jenks, program manager for the 3.2L diesel, says there is up to a 4-month waiting period for Ranger pickups equipped with the mill.

To meet the additional demand expected from North America, Ford last month announced plans to increase capacity at Struandale by more than 31,000 engines per year. The auto maker does not disclose the plant’s current annual capacity, how much will be spent to boost output or whether any shifts will be added.

The 3.2L Power Stroke diesel will be exported to Ford’s Kansas City, MO, assembly plant, where Transit production is scheduled to begin later this year.

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About the Author(s)

Byron Pope

Associate Editor, WardsAuto

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