It’s been rumored/leaked for a while now that Ford has been working on a new large-displacement, overhead-valve, pushrod engine under the code name “Godzilla.” Now, Ford has confirmed the new engine in the announcement of the 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty line of pickup trucks. “An all-new Ford-designed and Ford-built 7.3-liter V8 joins the standard 6.2-liter V8 in Super Duty’s gas engine stable,” the release says. The new 7.3-liter will be considered an upgrade from the base 6.2-liter gas engine, but won’t be the premium powerplant option, which is still the 6.7-liter PowerStroke diesel engine.
This beauty shot from Ford gives us some key information not included in the press release. Details such as the drive-by-wire throttle body, the coil-near-plug ignition system, and the subtle hints at the badass OEM valvetrain under the valve covers.
The release isn’t brimming with details on the “inbetween” powerplant, but the salient points are that the 7.3-liter gasoline engine will feature a cam-in-block design, which is a solid 180-degree change from the Blue Oval’s noted embrace of the overhead cam V8 engine architecture. The iron engine block will measure 445 cubic-inches and utilize four-bolt mains with cross-bolts. A forged-steel crankshaft will be the standard fare, along with piston-cooling oil jets to keep the internal temperatures down (and presumably keep efficiency up) under heavy loads.
The Godzilla engine will also feature variable valve timing, and port fuel injection – which bucks the widely believed pre-production rumors that it would be direct injected. An interesting feature that doesn’t seem to have drawn much attention is the variable-displacement oil pump, which will reduce windage, as well as parasitic losses from the pump itself, under light load.
The new engine design will also feature a drive-by-wire throttle body, long-runner intake manifold, and a coil-near-plug ignition system. So while the return of the pushrod engine architecture for Ford might seem like a step backwards, the level of technology in the new 7.3-liter engine is impressive. Also, it appears the rumor mill got some pretty critical facts wrong, which leads us to wonder… Were they really wrong, or is there another variant of the Godzilla 7X – possibly one a little more performance oriented – sitting in an R&D lab at Ford, awaiting its reveal?
Either way, we look forward to learning more details about this new generation of big-block Ford and seeing what – if anything – the aftermarket has in store for it.