Today In Ford History--feb. 8
On Feb. 8, 1977, Ford Motor Company announced that selected 1978 cars would be used to pilot two new electronic concepts to improve fuel economy, emission controls and performance on future Ford vehicles.
The first—an electronic engine control (EEC) system—would be offered across the U.S. on some 30,000 cars equipped with the 302 cubic inch V-8.
The EEC system is designed to regulate the engine’s spark timing and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) through a combination of sensors, integrated circuits and a digital microprocessor.
The solid-state ignition module controls both spark timing and the EGR valve actuator, based on continuous feedback on the engine’s crankshaft and throttle positions, coolant and inlet air temperatures, and barometric and manifold absolute pressures.
The second pilot system combines an electronically controlled carburetor and a three-way catalytic converter on Ford’s 2.3-liter four-cylinder engines. The system would be piloted in California on approximately 30,000 Ford Pintos and Mercury Bobcats with that engine.
The air-fuel ratio in the staged two-barrel carburetor is continually adjusted, based on feedback from an oxygen sensor in the exhaust manifold that detects any fluctuation from the levels required for optimum functioning of the three-way catalyst.