The idyll of Ken Block with the pick-ups Ford it has deep roots. He learned to drive in one, did his first burn-out in another, and now he has chosen a F 1977 as the star of his last video, the Gymkhana TEN.
El Hoonitruck, as he baptized this pick-up, is equipped with the same 6-liter, twin-turbo V3.5 EcoBoost engine than Ford GT, tuned to offer more than 900 horsepower, and is equipped with the largest 3D printed metal part for a working vehicle in automotive history.
The project is the result of a global effort. The engineers of Ford Performance In the United States, they conducted simulations of engine performance and collaborated with a team of European-based Ford research engineers to design the part and perform structural analysis.
In collaboration with the Institute of Production of Digital Additives from RWTH Aachen in Germany, the team built a complex aluminum intake manifold that supplies air from the turbochargers to the engine cylinders.
“We are fortunate to have access to incredible technology, but this has been a project that has pushed us - and our computing power - to the absolute limit. The collector has a complex structure in the form of a net that cannot be manufactured with traditional methods. Finally it was necessary to dissolve the anchors with acid "he counted Raphael koch, Advanced Materials and Processes Engineer, Ford of Europe.
3D printing, or additive manufacturing, is a tool-less production method that offers design flexibility to help reduce weight and improve performance. Technology is typically used in Ford vehicle development to help test and refine different design approaches and create tools faster and more cost-effectively. For the Hoonitruck collector, which weighs almost 6 kilos, the entire construction process took five days.
“I think Ford has done an exceptional job. This is my favorite part of the Hoonitruck. You couldn't have done it any other way ”, Block stated.
It is worth remembering that Ford was awarded by the Automotive Division of the Society of Plastics Engineers for the 3D printed parts fitted to the Ford Ranger and Mustang.