Ford Pinto engine

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The Ford Pinto engine is the unofficial but generic nickname for a 4 cylinder internal combustion engine built by the Ford Europe. In Ford sales literature it was referred to as the EAO or OHC engine, it is also sometimes called the "Metric engine" since it was designed using the metric system. The internal Ford codename for the unit was the T88-series engine.

It was used in many European Ford cars and was exported to the United States to be used in the Ford Pinto, a successful Subcompact car of the 1970s, hence the name which is used most often for the unit. In Britain, it is commonly used in many kit cars and hot rods, especially in the 2 litre size.


In Europe, the OHC was introduced in 1970 to replace the Essex V4 in the Mk3 Ford Cortina (Taunus). It was the first Ford engine to feature a belt-driven overhead camshaft (thus the name).


The Pinto engine was available in displacements of 1.3 L, 1.6 L, 1.8 L and 2.0 L. Due to emission requirements it was phased out towards the end of the 1980s to be replaced by the CVH engine and DOHC engine, the latter being (contrary to popular belief) a completely new design and not a twin-cam development of the Pinto unit. The 16-valve version of the Ford DOHC unit is still used on the Ford Transit. The only DOHC direct derivative of Pinto engine is Cosworth YB 16-valve engine, powering Ford Sierra and Ford Escort RS Cosworth variants.

1.6 EAO

The 1.6 L (1593 cc) OHC had a bore of 87.7 mm (3.45 in) and a stroke of 66.0 mm (2.60 in). It produced 61 kW (82 hp) and 130  N·m (96 ft·lbf ) of torque.


2.0 EAO

The 2.0 L (1993 cm³) EAO was used in many vehicles from the early 1970s. Bore was 90.8 mm (3.57 in) and stroke was 76.9 mm (3.03 in). The 1971 Pinto and Capri used this engine with a single Weber 32/36 DFAV carburetor and 8.2:1 compression. In this application, it produced 64  kW (86 hp) and 140 N·m (103 ft·lbf). The engine was produced in Cologne, Germany.

Output in the Escort RS2000 was 82 kW (110 hp) and 161 N·m (119 ft·lbf).


2.3 OHC

The Ford Pinto used the OHC version, a 2.3 L (2302 cm³) unit introduced in 1974 which has a 96.0 mm (3.78 in) bore and 79.5 mm (3.13 in) stroke. This version lasted until 1997 in various guises. The earliest units produced 66 kW (88 hp) and 160  N·m (118 ft·lbf). This engine has also been known as the Lima engine, after the Lima Engine plant in Lima, Ohio, where it was first manufactured (it was also later manufactured in Brazil).

In 1979-80, a draw-through, non-intercooled turbo version was produced for Mustang Cobras and some Capris. Lack of dealership and owner training resulted in many stuck turbochargers and other maintenance problems. They were limited to 5 PSI of boost though Ford Motorsport sold a wastegate with an adjustable rod which allowed an increase of up to 9 PSI. It was used in this carbureted form in a number of passenger cars, from the Fairmont Futura Turbo to the 1979 Indy Pace Car edition Mustang.

In the 1980s, a turbocharged and intercooled version was used in the Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe. This was made practical by the introduction of Ford's EECIV port fuel injection system; 1983's 2.3 Liter Turbo was the first production implementation of that advance in technology, which paved the way for across the board use in many Ford passenger car and light truck engines; however, the turbo version never made it into any Ford trucks. Output for this turbo/intercooled version was 142 kW (190 hp) and 325 N·m (240 ft·lbf) for the 1987-88 models with the (T-5) 5-speed manual transmission.

The turbocharged and intercooled 2.3 was also used in the 1984-86 Mustang SVO, while the 1983-1984 Mustang TurboGT, 1985-89 Merkur XR4Ti, 1983-1986 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe and 1984-1986 Mercury Cougar XR7 all skipped the intercooler on their turbo versions, which dropped output to 180 hp (130 kW) and 205 ft·lbf (278 N·m) of torque). The SVO Mustang's output increased in 1985 1/2 to 205 HP.

A dual-spark version (with two spark plugs per cylinder and distributorless ignition) was introduced in the 1989 Ford Ranger and 1991 Ford Mustang. This version produced 78 kW (105 hp) and 183 N·m (135 ft·lbf).


  • used as a conversion engine on VW based cars like Sandrail and Baja Bug

1.3 OHC

The smallest member of the family was the 1.3 L (1294 cc) "1.3 HC JCT". With a 79.0 mm (3.11 in) bore and 66.0 mm (2.60 in) stroke, it produced 44 kW (59 hp) and 98 N·m (72 ft·lbf) in the Ford Sierra.

1.6 OHC

A later version also displaced 1.6 L but measured 1597 cc with an 81.3 mm (3.20 in) bore and 76.9 mm (3.03 in) stroke. This "HC E LSD", used in the Ford Sierra, produced 55 kW (73.8 hp) and 123 N·m (90 ft·lbf).

1.8 OHC

A 1.8 L (1796 cc) version was used in the Ford Sierra. This engine, the "HC E REB", had an 86.2 mm (3.39 in) bore and 76.9 mm (3.03 in) stroke. Output was 66 kW (88.5 hp) and 140 N·m (103 ft·lbf).

2.0 OHC

A de-bored version of the 2.3 OHC was introduced in 1983 for Ford's light trucks. Output was 73 hp (54 kW). Bore was 3.520 in (89.4 mm) and stroke was 3.126 in (79.4 mm) for a total of 1994 cc displacement.


  • Ford Sierra
    • HC NET, 77 kW (103.3 hp) and 157 N·m (115 ft·lbf)
    • HC i NR, 85 kW (114 hp) and 160 N·m (118 ft·lbf)
    • N5A (Sierra Cosworth 2wd), 150 kW (204 hp) and 278 N·m (205 ft·lbf)
    • N5C (Sierra Cosworth 4wd), 162 kW (220 hp) and 290 N·m (213 ft·lbf)
  • Ford Escort
    • N5F (Escort Cosworth 4wd), 165 kW (227 hp) and 290 N·m (213 ft·lbf)
    • Escort mk1 rs2000 rwd, 100 hp (75 kW)

2.5 OHC

A stroked (by 7 mm) version of the 2.3 OHC Ford Ranger engine appeared in 1998. It also used higher-flow cylinder heads for better intake and combustion. Output was 89 kW (119 hp) and 202 N·m (149 ft·lbf). It was replaced in 2001 by the Mazda-derived Duratec 23, but Ford Power Products continues to sell this engine as the LRG-425.



A 16-valve DOHC variant of the Pinto engine was not developed before 1984. Instead Michael Costin and Keith Duckworth of Cosworth Engineering introduced the 16-valve DOHC unit based on Ford earlier Kent X-flow engine. Although only 1.6 and 1.8 versions of the so-called Cosworth BDA (Belt Driven A-type) were put into volume production, the rally Escorts were homologated within the 2000 cc class. This allowed further boring and stroking to gain several more HP for the 2-litre works cars.


The 1.6 L (1601 cm³) DOHC engine used an 81.0 mm (3.19 in) bore and 77.62 mm (3.06 in) stroke. It produced 88 kW (120 hp) and 152 N·m (112 ft·lbf).


The 1.8 L (1845 cm³) DOHC engine used an 86.8 mm (3.42 in) bore and 77.62 mm (3.06 in) stroke. It produced 86 kW (115 hp) and 163 N·m (120 ft·lbf).


See also