Could the Ford F-150 pickup truck and next-gen Mustang sports car be getting a new V8 engine? If Unifor, the Canadian auto union's latest three-year collective agreement is any clue, the Blue Oval could be developing an exciting new powerplant.
This contract, which was approved by 81% of Unifor members, mentions several important investments. Ford's Oakville assembly plant just outside Toronto, Ontario is getting $1.4 billion ($1.8 billion Canadian). This outlay will be used to retool the factory to produce new electric vehicles. Yes, you read that correctly: Vehicles, plural, which will include a crossover.
The Windsor engine plant is getting some love, too, and this is where things get interesting. The automaker is spending around $112 million ($148 million Canadian) to spruce the place up. According to Unifor, this outlay includes a commitment to build new "6.X-liter" engines. Ford's Windsor plant is currently where the 7.3-liter, pushrod "Godzilla" V8 is produced, a slick new engine family that's used in the Super Duty pickup range and is capable of producing crazy power with minor modifications. In stock form, it cranks out an impressive if not insane 430 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque. A smaller version of this large-capacity V8, one reportedly displacing 6.8-liters, would be right at home in the Mustang. It'd be great in an F-150, too.
Aside from the upcoming Mach-E SUV, Ford's iconic pony car is offered with a range of powerplants, from a 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder on the low end, to a supercharged, 5.2-liter, 760-hp V8 in the range-topping GT500 model. Between these extremes, several versions of a slick-running 5.0-liter V8 is available. According to the Unifor deal, these engines and any derivatives will be sole-sourced from the company's Essex engine plant in Ontario. The addition of an old-school, 6.8-liter engine is both exciting and intriguing -- exciting because new engines are always fun to experience, and intriguing since this move seems a little out of step as the automotive industry pushes to an electrified future.
Naturally, Unifor did not immediately return Roadshow's request for comment, and neither did Ford. Automakers almost never talk about future product or rumors, and this is, unfortunately, no exception.