2.3 Ecoboost: Changes made for Ranger duty

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Rick Astley

Rick Astley

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It's a 2017 so it's going on 4 years. We have had zero issues.
There was a recall on the engine as some of them had a NON RS focus head gasket installed on them. That was a big goof but once Ford was aware of this, they notified all owners and we worked with our local dealer and got it swapped out. We had no issues with the incorrect part and it's been 3 years since the correct one was put on with no problems.
A buddy also has a 2017 RS. His head gasket replacement ended up being a nighmare scenario that a few folks had. His local dealership is really small and frankly Ford hasn't had any high-strung motors in their bread and butter cars for decades so techs can be sloppy overall, especially when they work on F150's, Escapes and Transits most of the time.

Long story short, it runs great now and is one hell of a motor.... No f-ing clue why this has just popped into my mind to ask him to borrow the car for a week or so to get a feel for the transmission and engine pairing..... Duhhhhhhh!
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wvmtneer

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Here is an excellent article created before the 5g Ranger launched which documents the primary changes made to the 2.3t engine for Ranger duty. If you recall, at the time the 2.3 was also found in Mustang and Focus RS (ignoring the more pedestrian applications for the block).

As we get towards Bronco release time, this is a great article to read and understand a bit more about the inner workings and engineering behind the 2.3 for Ranger. Also allowing us to track what modifications were made as they transition the motor to Bronco duty. Hopefully there are sufficient changes to warrant another article in this detail for Bronco.

Original story on Road & Track:
https://www.roadandtrack.com/car-shows/detroit-auto-show/a15840269/ford-focus-rs-ranger-engine/

The story was re-posted on Ranger5g, albeit with insufficient citing of sources.
https://www.ranger5g.com/forum/threads/2019-ranger-2-3l-ecoboost-engine-intro.1018/
Do you have any idea if/when the 2.3 will add port injection for a next generation engine?
 
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Rick Astley

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Do you have any idea if/when the 2.3 will add port injection for a next generation engine?
No clue. That change will require a substantial engine architecture change as it fundamentally changes the head and every component that carries fuel. The dual-injection 2.7 was designed for that from day 1.

Total off-the-cuff guess would be that we won't see that with the 2.3 until after electrification as a fleet-wide requirement crashes and burns for Ford. Or, becomes CAFE carbon solvent and they can offset their own carbon output enough to once again make performance vehicles. (which is saying a lot as electric cars are faster at anywhere near the $40k-50K price point so I doubt 2.3 will get much love beyond the current injection). Snap up those automatic transmissions while you can! errrr, manual.....

Ford already can't produce cars while staying within CAFE's artificial standards and have already bought enough vaporware CAFE credits off Tesla to force their own hand into going electric across the fleet.
 

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@Rick Astley
Unfortunately most Ford mechanics were not trained specifically for the RS and that caused serious issues for some people like your buddy. Glad it worked out for him in the end because it's a great car with an awesome drivetrain and some super fun drive modes.
2 words.
Drift Mode. :love:
We were lucky to have some good contacts and were directed to go to a specific dealership to have the warranty work done and it was not the one where the RS was purchased.
We were in and out in 3 days.
You may not give the keys back to your buddy. LOL
 

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The RS Engine comes from the factory with 350HP and 350TQ. IMHO, the tuners were trying to push it past its limits since Ford already tuned this engine with more Power than what the Ranger and Mustang get with the same displacement. On top of that, these tuners had problems compounded by the incorrect head gasket which definitely wasn't their fault.

We have only done Cosmetic changes because it's already awesome from the factory and this way we will not have any issues if an actual warranty issue occurs.
 

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"The EGR system was likely implemented to assist with emissions by pumping hot air into the intake to richen up the fuel mixture as needed."

Wrong. That's not what makes EGR work. Inert gas are the words they're looking for. Inserting inert gas into the combustion chamber reduces the temperature of the combustion event. This, in turn, reduces NOx and CO2 emissions but at the cost of increasing PM (particulate matter AKA soot, but that's not so much of a worry on gasoline cars).
The EGR also puts a ton of crap into the intake manifold which ends up on the valves. This is manageable if you have port injection like the 2.7 V6, but it’s still not ideal. For example, a late model port injected Camry I worked on had almost no buildup, while the latest generation with cooled EGR and port+direct injection was noticeably worse.

But I’ve never seen the effects of adding cooled EGR to a DI-only engine like the Ranger’s 2.3. It isn’t very confidence inspiring since every DI engine I’ve ever worked on that didn’t have an aftermarket oil catch can had significant intake valve buildup. This buildup comes mostly from oil mist that gets past the worthless factory oil separators in the PCV system. Anyone know how much of a problem this is on Rangers?

On a side note, the idea of putting EGR into a plastic intake manifold is nuts. If the EGR valve sticks and stays open under hard throttle or the cooler channels plug/leak, the hot exhaust can melt or burn through the manifold and start a fire. I sure hope Ford did their homework instead of cost reducing their way into trouble, because this is how BMW screwed up on its diesels: https://www.consumerreports.org/car-recalls-defects/bmw-recalls-diesel-cars-and-suvs-for-fire-risk/
 
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But I’ve never seen the effects of adding cooled EGR to a DI-only engine like the Ranger’s 2.3. It isn’t very confidence inspiring since every DI engine I’ve ever worked on that didn’t have an aftermarket oil catch can had significant intake valve buildup. This buildup comes mostly from oil mist that gets past the worthless factory oil separators in the PCV system. Anyone know how much of a problem this is on Rangers?
Appreciate your input and feedback as you're seeing a lot wider net of vehicles than most.

I have not seen a great deal of information on Ranger5G to indicate it's a catastrophic problem. There aren't a lot of high-mileage Rangers out there yet with this batch of engines. The world-rangers had a variety of engines from what I understand so i've kept my research to domestic issues, especially as you get into fuel dissimilarities and tuning by nation and regulation.

Many of the people on Ranger5g who intend to keep their truck long term went the aftermarket catch can route and i've not seen an overwhelming quantity of oil accumulated when the few folks post pics of the catch can draining. This will be readily available to Bronco folks about 8 minutes after the vehicle launch and should be considered a must-have item before fancy lighting or a fun vinyl package.
 

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Wow didn't realize the 2.3 has forged internal components. That is HUGE and should be able to handle huge amounts of aftermarket boost via CPU and support mods.
HUGE win for 2.3L folks! Didn’t realize this either.
 
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