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Car and Driver: Ford to Make Auto Stop-Start Standard on All EcoBoost F-150 Pickups for 2017


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2017-Ford-F-150-Raptor-SuperCrew-PLACEMENT

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Before you go complaining to NHTSA that your new F-150 keeps stalling at intersections, check the dash for the little green “A” icon. Starting with the 2017 model year, all six-cylinder EcoBoost F-150 models will come equipped with auto stop-start.

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Formerly, only the 2.7-liter turbocharged V-6 came with stop-start, which requires a more robust (and expensive) absorbent-glass-mat battery that can better handle the constant cycling and the heavier draw from vehicle accessories with the engine off. When the 2017 models arrive later this year, the 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 also will get stop-start. That includes the beastly 10-speed Raptor. The normally aspirated 3.5-liter V-6 will not offer the system. Ford said it was still certifying EPA fuel-economy estimates for 2017 but was confident the technology would improve city mileage on the test cycle.

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While Ram has offered stop-start on 1500 V-6 pickups since the 2013 model year, the technology is still uncommon in the truck segment. Chevrolet and GMC have yet to include it on any of their light-duty V-6 pickups, and you won’t find stop-start on Nissan or Toyota trucks, either. No V-8 pickups offer the system.

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We usually dislike stop-start in non-hybrid vehicles—we found the F-150 2.7-liter EcoBoost’s to be overly aggressive in operation—and despite their obvious NVH issues, these systems also tend to shut off engines in precarious traffic situations where immediate power is needed (such as waiting to turn left at a four-way intersection). Ford, at least, automatically disables the F-150’s system when the driver selects four-wheel drive or is towing a load. We’ll have to wait and see if the 2017 truck behaves any better.

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