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Old 07-22-2007, 05:57 PM   #1
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Best engine/axle for fuel economy

Good Day,

All things being equal, which choice in each of the following two pairs of choices will result in better fuel economy? Why do you make that choice? We don't plan on towing anything, if that will help your answer.

A 2WD RB E-150 4.6L with a 3.73 axle ratio, versus the 5.4L with a
3.55 axle ratio?

A 2WD EB E-250 4.6L with a 3.73 axle ratio, versus the 5.4L with a
3.73 axle ratio?

Also, I noticed SMB has the E-150 on their "Select Your Van" price sheet. The E-150, E-250 and extended body E-250 can all be purchased from Ford with the 4.6L engine. But the 4.6L engine is not listed on the SMB price sheet. Any ideas why? Do you think SMB would build a 2WD on a 4.6L engine? I've emailed SMB the 4.6L question but haven't heard back yet.

Thank you for answering my questions,
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Old 07-23-2007, 09:25 AM   #2
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First, let's rule out the E-150. So little weight capacity that you couldn't make a good camper out of it.

Second, if SMB doesn't offer the 4.6L it may be they have decided it doesn't have enough power for the weight of the van.

That only leaves the 5.4L engine. No real choice. Other than the very expensive diesel, which might take 150,000 miles to break even.

And I would suggest the E350, not the E250. The SMB conversion can be very heavy. Our van (w/4wd conversion - extra 400#) weighs 9700# with the driver and some supplies. When my wife and her clothes and food and stuff is aboard, we will be about 10,000#. The 250 doesn't have the capacity for a full SMB comversion.

For comparison purposes, I estimated the 5.4L at 14mpg, the 6.8L at 12mpg and the 6.0 diesel at 18mpg. Those are highway mileages only. They all suck fuel around town and off-road.

I have the diesel and am happy with the mileage (18+ hwy, 16.5 overall), but the cost of the diesel and the cost of maintainance would have me seriously considering the 5.4 if I were to do it again.

Mike
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Old 07-23-2007, 10:56 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ford_6L_E350
First, let's rule out the E-150. So little weight capacity that you couldn't make a good camper out of it.

Second, if SMB doesn't offer the 4.6L it may be they have decided it doesn't have enough power for the weight of the van.

That only leaves the 5.4L engine. No real choice. Other than the very expensive diesel, which might take 150,000 miles to break even.

And I would suggest the E350, not the E250. The SMB conversion can be very heavy. Our van (w/4wd conversion - extra 400#) weighs 9700# with the driver and some supplies. When my wife and her clothes and food and stuff is aboard, we will be about 10,000#. The 250 doesn't have the capacity for a full SMB comversion.

For comparison purposes, I estimated the 5.4L at 14mpg, the 6.8L at 12mpg and the 6.0 diesel at 18mpg. Those are highway mileages only. They all suck fuel around town and off-road.

I have the diesel and am happy with the mileage (18+ hwy, 16.5 overall), but the cost of the diesel and the cost of maintainance would have me seriously considering the 5.4 if I were to do it again.

Mike
Good god Mike, NEVER, NEVER include the wife in the weight estimates! Are you looking to be divorced, or worse?


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Old 07-23-2007, 01:11 PM   #4
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I guess it is a good thing she thinks these forums are a waste of time and refuses to get into them?

Mike
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Old 07-23-2007, 02:18 PM   #5
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Have you considered the Sprinter? Considering you're doing 2wd anyway, if you're REALLY looking for gas mileage my brother's SMB EB Sprinter gets 22-24 even with the wife along!
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Old 07-23-2007, 06:09 PM   #6
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For the 2007 model year, Ford did away with the older E150 frame and suspension, probably to simplify their production and save costs.

The 2007 E150 (8550lbs) has the same GVWR as the 2006 E250 (8600lbs). Within 50 lbs, they are virtually the same van. 2007 E250s (8900lbs) are the same as 2006 E250s with the formerly optional increased payload package.

Essentially Ford has eliminated and re-badged vans. E350s remained at 9600lbs for a regular length van. E350s have heavier frames and bigger tires and offer V10s and diesels (usually). Current E150s now have the same massive 4 wheel disc brakes as the E250s and E350s.

Given that SMB now carries the E150 on their van price sheet, there may be little reason to go beyond a 2007 E150 as there is plenty of payload in that van for a moderately loaded SMB RB with passengers and belongings. Given the slightly lower GVWR for the 2007 E150 over the 2006 E250, Ford probably softened the springs in the current E150. The current E150s with 8550lb GVWR ride very nicely, and may be just the trick for someone looking for an SMB that rides more like a car rather than a truck.

As far as use of the 4.6L engine, here is my question to SMB West, and here is Liz's response:

QUESTION: Ford offers the E-250 extended body with a 4.6L V8 gas engine with a 3.73 axle ratio. But the "select your van" price listing from your website only shows the 5.4L gas engine with a 3.73 axle ratio. Would Sportsmobile consider building a 2WD EB-50 on this smaller engine platform?

ANSWER: I spoke with our Ford rep. this morning and he does not recommend the 4.6L with the conversion you want. He said it is fine on a truck but when you start loading the van with batteries, water tanks, propane etc. this engine would be working too hard and most likely get less mileage than the 5.4. Liz.

Thanks everyone for your comments. . . .THIS Mike would never consider his wife's weight in his load capacity. It takes away from her laundry load capacity!
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