Ford says it is to add a 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine to meet global demand for four-cylinder EcoBoost engines.

Production of the four-cylinder 1.5-litre EcoBoost - the fifth member of the EcoBoost family - will commence at Ford's Craiova, Romania, facility later this month. Other manufacturing locations will be announced in the future, Ford says. The new engine will be first introduced in China in the new Ford Mondeo, making its public debut later this month at Auto Shanghai 2013, with applications following in the Fusion sedan in North America this year, and later the new Mondeo in Europe. 

Ford says it now has capacity to build 1.6m EcoBoost engines annually at plants in Europe, Asia and North America.

Ford claims that EcoBoost technologies enable improvements to fuel efficiency of 20% and emissions of up to 15%. The 1.5-litre engine benefits from EcoBoost turbocharging, direct fuel injection and variable valve timing. 

Ford also says that the newest EcoBoost engine will be a strategic entry for Ford in global markets that offer tax relief to consumers who purchase vehicles powered by engines of 1.5-litre capacity or less.

The new aluminium-block, twin-cam 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine will include some of the features introduced on the 1-litre EcoBoost such as an integrated exhaust manifold. The new engine is expected to provide similar horsepower and torque performance to Ford's current 1.6-litre EcoBoost, while delivering improved fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions.

"Ford EcoBoost technology has changed the way people look at gas engines and has enjoyed huge success with customers," said Joe Bakaj, vice president, powertrain engineering for Ford. "The new 1.5-litre unit further extends our EcoBoost promise of economical driving in terms of both fuel efficiency and in some markets tax savings."

Ford has sold more than 600,000 EcoBoost-equipped vehicles globally since the range was launched with the 3.5-litre V6 EcoBoost in 2009. Ford added the 2-litre EcoBoost in 2010, the 1.6-litre EcoBoost followed in 2011, and last year the 1-litre EcoBoost was launched.

Ford adds that by the end of this year, nearly 80% of the company's global nameplates will be available with fuel-saving EcoBoost technology.