DETROIT - Ford Motor Co. is investing $192 million in its Romeo, Mich., engine plant to produce a new, three-valve cylinder head for the 4.6-liter V-8.
The automaker will install a cylinder-head machining line and modify its 4.6-liter engine assembly line in Romeo, which builds two-valve versions of the engine. The modified line will build two-valve and three-valve engines. The three-valve variants are designed to be more powerful and fuel efficient, Ford says.
The Romeo plant will have the capacity to build 200,000 of the 4.6-liter, three-valve engines annually. Production will start by the end of 2005.
Ford's Essex engine plant in Windsor, Ontario, also builds 4.6-liter, three-valve, V-8 engines, which use the same cylinder head that will be built in Romeo. This commonality means the plants will be able to share cylinder heads and other components.
The 2004 F-150 pickup will be the first North American Ford vehicle to have the three-valve engine, which will be built in Windsor. The engine eventually will be installed in other Ford, Lincoln and Mercury cars and SUVs.