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January 2010 Drivelines - Off Road News

Robby Gordon
Drew Hardin
| Contributor
Posted January 1, 2010

Off Road News

The 6.7L Power Stroke diesel V-8 available in Ford's next-generation Super Duty is wholly different than the engine it replaces. For instance, notice how you can't see the exhaust manifolds?

They've been moved to the valley between the cylinder banks, which reduces exhaust system volume and allows quicker feeding of the turbocharger. Ford calls that turbo a single-sequential unitº because it has two compressor wheels driven off one turbine impeller. This design combines the quick spool-up of a small turbo with a big turbo's ability to stuff a lot of air into the engine. Even the engine block is all-new, made from compacted graphite iron, which Ford says is twice as strong as regular gray cast iron.

To meet emissions regulations (these are now "clean" diesels, remember), cooler exhaust gas recirculation and a very lean burn work to reduce oxides of nitrogen (NOx) during combustion. At the other end of the process, an aftertreatment system and a diesel particulate filter rid the exhaust of NOx and soot, respectively, before they leave the tailpipe. Adding to the engine's clean nature is its compatibility with up to B20 biodiesel fuel.

Among the data missing from Ford's info on the engine are power numbers. All the company is saying now is that the new Power Stroke "will deliver significant improvements in torque, horsepower, and fuel economy." Guess we'll have to wait for the '11 Super Duty to see what the new Stroke is capable of.

Yoder Clinches Second Rock Race Championship
Kevin Yoder had to settle for a Second Place finish in the final race of the Nor Cal Rock Racing series, but he left the Prairie City event with his second consecutive series championship. Yoder called the day's track layout "brutal," with high jumps, 30-foot berms, and a fast-70-mph fast-straightaway. "Quite a few of the racers never finished practice," he said of the conditions. Yoder himself had an on-track incident when another driver ran into him, causing his buggy to flip several times. No damage was done, and Yoder went on to wrap up his championship season.

This Just In
•Mark your calendars: The '10 Griffin King of the Hammers event in Johnson Valley is scheduled for February 12. Organizers say the race is becoming a week-long event, with plans for off-road-industry workshops, a vendor area, and more. Visit for more info.

•The National Off-Road Racing Association (NORRA) had to postpone its Mexican 1000 Rally in September after Hurricane Jimena damaged a major portion of the Baja peninsula. NORRA will instead provide assistance to the ongoing relief efforts in the area and will reschedule the Rally once the recovery is further along.

•Automotive News reports that Toyota will bring out a new version of the Tacoma for either the '11 or '12 model year. There are no changes planned for the Land Cruiser, but AN says the FJ Cruiser "might be a one-generation vehicle," as Toyota is "questioning the size of its lineup and the future of body-on-frame trucks." That doesn't sound good.

•Plans for Chrysler to build the next-generation Titan pickup for Nissan have been canceled. The two automakers had discussed building the '11 Titan on a Ram-based platform as part of a bigger technology-sharing program, but that program was killed late this summer. A joint statement offered by the two makers said, "It was in the best interests of both companies to end the projects." Now the Titan's fate is uncertain. Nissan could continue building it in its current form, or it could decide to leave the fullsize truck market. Titan sales have always lagged behind the rest of the segment.

•The Pathfinder could get a new lease on life if Automotive News is right about Nissan moving it to a Patrol-based platform for the '12 model year. "Expect a more robust Pathfinder, with slightly larger dimensions and more engine power," said AN. The change comes to reduce manufacturing costs and also to fill a void should Nissan decide to kill the Titan-based Armada after 2010.

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