Why 7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 Engine Offers Two Tunes In 2021 E-Series: Exclusive

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There’s no denying that the new 7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 engine is a beast in every respect. Like its codename – Godzilla – implies, this Ford motor is big and powerful, with a big-block, pushrod configuration and a cast iron block. Though the combination is intriguing for a modern gasoline engine, we have already covered that here at the Ford Authority. We’ve also covered that The Blue Oval has made the engine standard in the 2021 E-Series. But what we have yet to cover is that the Godzilla is available in two unique calibrations in Ford’s popular cutaway.

The first tune for the 7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 engine in the 2021 E-Series is called Premium, while the second is called Economy. You can probably deduce from the names the purpose of the calibrations, but here are the specifics: the Economy tune puts out 50 less horsepower and 43 pound-feet less torque than the Premium tune.

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7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 - 2020-2021 MY Vehicle Applications
Vehicle E-Series E-Series F-Series Super Duty F-600 F-650 / F-750
Engine 7.3L V8 Godzilla – Premium Tune 7.3L V8 Godzilla – Economy Tune 7.3L V8 Godzilla 7.3L V8 Godzilla – Premium Tune 7.3L V8 Godzilla – Premium Tune
Horsepower (hp @ RPM) 350 @ 3,900 300 @ 3,750 430 @ 5,500 350 @ 3,900 350 @ 3,900
Torque (lb-ft @ RPM) 468 @ 3,900 425 @ 3,250 475 @ 4,000 468 @ 3,900 468 @ 3,900
Transmission 6-Speed Auto Overdrive 6-Speed Auto Overdrive 10-speed auto 10-speed auto 6-Speed Auto Double Overdrive
Configuration 90-degree V8, single in-block cam 90-degree V8, single in-block cam 90-degree V8, single in-block cam 90-degree V8, single in-block cam 90-degree V8, single in-block cam
Block/head material Cast iron block, aluminum heads Cast iron block, aluminum heads Cast iron block, aluminum heads Cast iron block, aluminum heads Cast iron block, aluminum heads
Displacement 7.3 liters (445 cubic inches) 7.3 liters (445 cubic inches) 7.3 liters (445 cubic inches) 7.3 liters (445 cubic inches) 7.3 liters (445 cubic inches)
Bore x stroke 4.22 x 3.97 4.22 x 3.97 4.22 x 3.97 4.22 x 3.97 4.22 x 3.97
Compression ratio 10.5:1 10.5:1 10.5:1 10.5:1 10.5:1
Valvetrain Pushrod and rocker arms, two valves per cylinder Pushrod and rocker arms, two valves per cylinder Pushrod and rocker arms, two valves per cylinder Pushrod and rocker arms, two valves per cylinder Pushrod and rocker arms, two valves per cylinder
Recommended fuel 87 octane 87 octane 87 octane 87 octane 87 octane
Fuel delivery Sequential multiport electronic Sequential multiport electronic Sequential multiport electronic Sequential multiport electronic Sequential multiport electronic
Engine control system Electronic Electronic Electronic Electronic Electronic
Intake manifold Naturally aspirated, tuned intake Naturally aspirated, tuned intake Naturally aspirated, tuned intake Naturally aspirated, tuned intake Naturally aspirated, tuned intake

The reduced power and torque figures of the Economy tune allow it to deliver better fuel efficiency for commercial customers who might not need the additional torque of the Premium tune.

“[The Economy tune] trades off capability for fuel efficiency,” Ford Commercial Vehicle Communications Manager, Elizabeth Kraft, told Ford Authority. “It’s all about right-sizing your engine for the job and getting the maximum efficiency possible. For example, the delivery segment would choose [the Economy tune] because they might not need the extra torque or max capability as they can have lower cargo weight.”

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So, better MPGs is the biggest benefit of the Economy calibration in the 7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 engine, though it’s difficult to pin down the fuel economy gains since vehicle applications and upfits of the E-Series cutaways can differ so drastically.

Interestingly, the Premium tune is standard on the 2021 Ford E-Series, and the Economy tune is optional. In fact, customers who opt for the Economy tune will get a $350 discount from the MSRP.

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The two unique Ford Godzilla calibrations make sense when tracing back their lineage: after all, the Premium calibration (option code 99N) replaces the 6.8L EFI Triton V10 engine, while the Economy calibration (option code 99K) replaces the 6.2L SFI V8 FFV engine. In both tunes, the engine is mated to Ford’s 6-speed automatic transmission driving the rear wheels. For those keeping track, the Ford F-650 and F-750 Medium Duty trucks also use the Premium tune.

In fact, there is actually a third calibration for the Godzilla, which manifests itself in the 2020 Ford F-Series Super Duty. We could call it the “extra Premium” tune, as it makes 430 horsepower and 475 pound-feet of torque, but that’s a topic for another day.

Back to the 2021 Ford E-Series, the 7.3L Ford engine gives the cutaways a maximum GVWR of 14,500 pounds, enabling it to carry the heaviest van upfits or RV chassis. And if that wasn’t enough, then we should also note that Ford has announced that the 2022 E-Series will gain a Gaseos flex-fuel option for the Godzilla V8 in both Premium and Economy tunes, enabling it to run on gasoline or blends of up to 85 percent ethanol (E85). Ford expects it to be a popular option for state and federal fleets.

We’ll have a lot more about the 7.3L Ford Godzilla V8 as well as about Ford Commercial offerings soon, so be sure to subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford E-Series news as well as around-the-clock Ford news coverage.

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Written by Alex Luft

Ford Authority founder with a passion for global automotive business strategy.

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2 Comments

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  1. It makes good sense to have the same engine with different HP and torque ratings. Keep it simple based on the same platform in place.
    I’ve read somewhere that the 7.3L will be the new gasoline and propane engine for the BLUEBIRD VISION school bus late the year or perhaps 2021 since the grand old V10 was in that role for several years. I’ll miss the V10’s unique smooth sound. Rode in many hotel/airport shuttles with that engine.

    • This is interesting. I had no idea there are two tunes. My company typically orders anywhere from 10 to 30 E350s a year… good to know this.

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