Ford’s 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine has taken off with more popularity than the Blue Oval could have imagined. These cars are popular with consumers and are even inspiring racers and enthusiasts nationwide, including our own StangTV project car.
A big question for EcoBoost enthusiasts and those on the outside has been about the engine’s durability. It’s easy enough to add more boost, but the block design of the 2.3 encounters many of the same issues as that of its 3.5-liter cousin. Under high boost, high RPM, the cylinder bores could shift. Another question with regard to durability is that of the internal components. While the 2.3 utilizes a forged crankshaft, the factory rods and pistons remain weaker cast parts.
For the hardcore enthusiasts and races looking to build a 2.3 EcoBoost in a rear wheel drive application, whether its for a Mustang or classic Ford Performance, the answer has just arrived in the form of Ford’s all new EcoBeast short block.
“It’s only that we have the production engines, the next step is to take it to the next level,” says Ford’s Mike Delahanty. The EcoBeast has the bore bridge saw-cut eliminate to strengthen the block’s deck area. Then there are cross-drilled cylinder cooling passages below the deck bridge. The cylinders are fully honed to OEM specifications, and the setup uses a Livernois Motorsports coolant jacket and deck reinforcement insert, similar to what Livernois developed for the 3.5 EcoBoost engine.
“This is for enthusiasts who want to make big power with a lot of boost,” says Delahanty. The work doesn’t stop there, with the EcoBeast also receiving Mahle forged pistons good for 9.5:1 compression ratio, Manley Forged rods with ARP2000 rod bolts, and ARP main beam studs in place of bolts for increased thread engagement and strength.
Ford hasn’t said how much horsepower the EcoBeast is good for, but we’d wager it’s going to be well over the 600-700 range. The 2.3-liter EcoBeast is part number M6009-23EB and will be available in the spring of 2016.