The Specs – Performance and Reliability of the Ford 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost. The Ford 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines, in our opinion, are by far the best engines available in the Ford F-150. They are both excellent in terms of power, performance, towing, fuel economy, and dependability. With either engine, it’s difficult to go wrong. However, deciding which F-150 EcoBoost engine is best for you can be difficult. In this article, we compare the 2.7 EcoBoost vs 3.5 EcoBoost and examine specs, towing, performance, and other factors.
Basic 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost Specifications
The above specifications provide a good summary of the significant differences between the Ford 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines. The XL SuperCrew currently comes standard with a 2.7L twin-turbo EcoBoost engine. For an additional $1,400, you can upgrade to the larger, more powerful 3.5 EcoBoost. If you’re looking for a used F-150, the 3.5 EcoBoost is one of the more affordable options because it was introduced in 2011.
In any case, the Ford 3.5L twin-turbo engines have the highest maximum towing capacity for the F-150, at 13,200 lbs. Its 470 lb-ft torque is available at low RPMs, making it an excellent choice for towing. The 2.7 EcoBoost, on the other hand, provides excellent power, torque, and towing capacity. Given its smaller size, it simply does not deliver the same performance. However, the 2.7L EcoBoost outperforms the 3.5L EcoBoost in terms of fuel economy.
Again, this is a fairly accurate summary of the 2.7 vs. 3.5 EcoBoost. However, in this article, we’ll go over this information in greater detail for those who are still undecided between the twin-turbo F-150 engines.
*Engine cost is based on the 2021 F-150 XL SuperCrew. The exact price varies depending on trim, but the 3.5L is generally $1,400 more expensive than the 2.7 EB. Towing and payload capacity are based on models equipped to tow the maximum weight in 2021.
What Vehicles Make Use of the 2.7L EcoBoost Engine?
2.7L EcoBoost First Generation Applications:
- 2015-2017 Ford F150 (325 horsepower)
- Lincoln Continental 2017-2020 (335 horsepower)
- Lincoln Nautilus 2019+ (335 Horsepower)
- Ford Edge Sport 2015-2018 (315 Horsepower)
- Ford Edge ST (2019+) (335 Horsepower)
- 2011-2016 Ford F-150
- Ford Fusion Sport (2017-2019) (325 Horsepower)
Applications for the Second Generation 2.7L EcoBoost:
- Ford F-150 models from 2018 to present
- Ford Bronco (from 2021 to the present)
What Vehicles Make Use of the 3.5L EcoBoost Engine?
The following Ford and Lincoln models use first-generation 3.5L EcoBoost engines:
- From 2010 to 2019, Ford Flex
- MKS 2010-2016 Lincoln
- MKT 2010-2019 Lincoln
- Ford Taurus SHO 2010-2019
- Ford Explorer Sport & Platinum (2013-2019)
- 2011-2016 Ford F-150
- Ford Expedition 2015-2017
- Lincoln Navigator 2015-2017
The 2nd generation 3.5L twin-turbo V6 is available in the following models:
- Ford F-150 models from 2017 to present
- Ford Expedition from 2018 to the present
- Ford F-150 Raptor (2017 and later)
- From 2018 to the present, Lincoln Navigator
- Ford GT (2017-present)
2.7L and 3.5L EcoBoost Engines from the First and Second Generations
The 3.5L EcoBoost received one of the most significant changes to the Ford EcoBoost formula in 2017, followed by the 2.7L EcoBoost a year later. The second generation 3.5L EcoBoost engine debuted in the new Ford GT in 2017, bringing significant performance and reliability improvements to the engine. Port fuel injection, turbo updates, a new two-chain timing chain system with double sprockets, lighter hollow camshafts, an updated VCT phaser design to improve reliability, and other minor but significant changes have been added to the second generation 3.5L EcoBoost. The most significant change was the addition of port fuel injection, which worked in conjunction with the existing direct injection system.
In 2018, the 2.7L EcoBoost received nearly identical updates to the 3.5L EcoBoost from the previous year. In addition, most 2.7L twin-turbo V6-equipped Fords received a new and revised exhaust gas recirculation system, as well as a new 10-speed automatic transmission. In terms of reliability, port injection and timing chain improvements proved to improve bot engine reliability exponentially. The addition of port injection on second-generation EcoBoost models significantly improved the carbon buildup problem that plagued both the 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines. Redesigned timing chain mechanisms reduced the likelihood of timing chain rattle and associated cam phaser issues.
Finally, the second generation 2.7L and 3.5L EcoBoost engines are vastly improved over their predecessors. If you’re looking for a Ford with either of these EcoBoost engines, look for a 2017+ 3.5 EcoBoost or 2018+ 2.7 EcoBoost model. The increased dependability and performance are well worth it.
Ford 2.7L EcoBoost vs. 3.5L EcoBoost Performance
We’ll avoid getting too specific with 0-60 and quarter mile times. These figures can vary greatly depending on trim, 4WD vs RWD, and so on. Of course, all else being equal, the 3.5 EcoBoost will be the faster truck. Both use the same twin-turbo, direct injection V6 engine. The 3.5L engine simply has more displacement to provide more power and torque.
To summarize, if you want performance, the 3.5 EcoBoost is the clear choice. That’s not to say the 2.7L engine isn’t powerful. It still provides more than enough power and torque for the majority of users. The 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines are also very mod-friendly and can produce significantly more power with simple bolt-on upgrades.
Engine generation is a major consideration. The 3.5 EcoBoost and 2.7 EcoBoost have 2nd generation options that were released in 2017 and 2018, respectively. These engines have received some improvements that improve performance and tuning potential.
EcoBoost 3.5 is the winner.
Ford EcoBoost Customization
It’s not difficult to get an additional 100+ horsepower and torque from the F-150 EcoBoost engines. We wrote an article about some of the best 3.5 EcoBoost upgrades here. A few simple modifications boost the 3.5 EcoBoost to 450-550whp. That’s probably more power than the majority of people require in a truck. Additional modifications, however, can push the 3.5L twin-turbo engine north of 600whp.
Similar mods can increase the power of 2.7 EcoBoost engines. Check out the top 5 2.7 EcoBoost modifications. However, as a smaller engine, the gains aren’t quite as significant. The 2.7L engine can be tuned and run on E85 fuel to produce 400+whp and 450+wtq. With the other basic upgrades, the 2.7 EB F-150 can produce more power. Upgraded turbos can push it to 500-550whp or more. Very impressive figures for a small V6 engine.
EcoBoost 3.5 is the winner.
Towing: 2.7 EcoBoost vs. 3.5 EcoBoost
When equipped similarly, the 3.5 EcoBoost has approximately 4,000 lbs more towing capacity than the 2.7 EcoBoost. The 3.5L engine has the highest towing capacity of any F-150 engine. This is also true for payload capacity. However, most F-150 owners will find that the 2.7L engine provides adequate towing capacity.
When towing heavy loads, the 3.5 EcoBoost is usually the better option. It’s not just because it has a higher towing capacity than the F-150. When towing heavy loads, the smaller 2.7L EcoBoost has to rely much more on the turbos. The 3.5 EB’s larger displacement gives it a significant advantage. It will not require as much turbo.
Naturally, the engines are built to withstand the boost and stresses of towing. Twin turbo engines, such as the 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost, produce a lot of heat. Towing a large amount of weight on steep terrain can be taxing on the engine. That is where the 3.5L engine excels because it can rely on its displacement.
EcoBoost 3.5 is the winner.
Fuel Economy: F-150 2.7 vs. 3.5 Twin Turbo
Finally, the 2.7 EcoBoost outperforms the 3.5 EcoBoost in this category. It’s difficult to get into specifics because fuel economy is determined by a variety of factors. Is the F-150 4WD or RWD, how heavy is the truck, and so on? In any case, the 2.7 EcoBoost engine will get about 2-3 more MPG than the 3.5 engine in a similarly equipped F-150.
It’s pretty simple because the smaller displacement will have the advantage. This is particularly true given that both engines use very similar designs and technology. When all other factors are equal, the smaller Ford 2.7 EcoBoost is more fuel efficient.
When towing, however, the 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost are likely to offer very similar fuel economy. In some cases, the Ford 3.5L twin-turbo engine may even have a slight advantage. Again, this is due to its larger displacement not requiring as much high boost from the turbos.
The winner is the 2.7 EcoBoost.
Ford 2.7 EcoBoost vs. 3.5 EcoBoost Reliability
We’re very familiar with this subject, having spent a significant amount of time researching and writing about reliability for both the Ford 2.7 EcoBoost and 3.5 EcoBoost. In our opinion, Ford has done an excellent job with these engines. They both have similar problems, but they are few and far between. Some of it is simply due to the luck of the draw. The 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines, on the other hand, should be reliable with proper maintenance.
One thing is certain: Ford did an excellent job with the second-generation engines. Carbon buildup on the intake valves of direct injection engines is a problem. Ford addressed this with the addition of port injection on the second generation 3.5L and 2.7L engines. They also fixed timing chain issues on the 3.5 EcoBoost and oil pan issues on the 2.7 EcoBoost.
Tie for first place
Longevity of the EcoBoost Engine
The long-term dependability of the 2.7 EcoBoost vs 3.5 EcoBoost can be hotly debated. Is one engine going to last longer in general than the other? It’s nearly impossible to say right now. Although the 3.5L engine has been around for a decade, the 2.7 EB is only about 6 years old. As of now, there isn’t enough information to say which engine is superior.
In any case, the 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines should be able to go beyond 200,000 miles in most cases. Of course, exact longevity is determined by a variety of factors. The engine’s longevity is affected by how it is maintained, used, and driven. Again, we like both F-150 EcoBoost engines, and which is superior may simply be a matter of luck.
Tie for first place
F-150 2.7 vs. 3.5 EcoBoost Comparison
Because of their good balance of performance, towing, fuel economy, and reliability, Ford EcoBoost engines are among the best choices in the F-150. The engines differ in a number of ways, including engine block material. They do, however, have a lot in common. The 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines, in particular, are twin-turbo, DOHC, direct-injected V6 engines with Ti-VCT.
If maximum performance and towing capacity are desired, the 3.5 EcoBoost is an obvious choice. Despite this, the 2.7L engine provides excellent performance and towing, which is more than enough for most people. Its smaller displacement also results in better fuel economy, making it an excellent choice for a daily driver.
The reliability of the two engines isn’t a major consideration. The 2.7 and 3.5 EcoBoost engines are both reliable, and the 2nd generation engines are a significant improvement. Ford has done an excellent job with these F-150 EcoBoost engines all around. Which one is best for you is most likely determined by your needs and desires.