Remember how we told you that in recent history, automakers have made a handful of three-cylinder engines, and all but the one in the 2014 Ford Fiesta 1.0-liter EcoBoost were terrible? One of the culprits was the Smart Fortwo, which is a joke of a car made even worse by its underpowered engine and jerky transmission.

Apparently, Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz and Smart, is all-too-aware of this and is now consulting with Ford on how to make a better powerplant for its next-generation Smart Fortwo and the overseas Renault Twingo that’s being co-developed with it.

“It’s a very interesting and impressive engine,” Roland Kemmler, engine development director of Daimler, said in an interview with Automotive News Europe about the Ford engine. ”We have had some discussions with Ford engineers about this engine.”

Daimler and Ford have already been collaborating on hydrogen fuel-cell technology, which they hope to get to market by 2017. This expands their partnership just  a bit further.

Renault-Nissan and Daimler signed an agreement to supply technologies and codevelop some vehicles with one another for their vehicles. Renault is supplying engines for Mercedes-Benz’s small, front-wheel-drive cars in Europe. Mercedes is giving Renault the architecture from the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class for an upcoming Infiniti. Both are developing the Smart Fortwo and Renault Twingo together in addition to a few other vehicles.

As much as the automotive environment seems like one of autonomy, the partnerships each automaker has with one another aren’t rare. For large-scale manufacturers, sometimes it just makes more sense to consult with those who have specialties in areas where they may not. For Daimler, looking to Ford for help with its next-gen turbocharged three-cylinder engine is a no-brainer.

Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription required)

Compact Car, European Cars, Ford, International, Mercedes-Benz, Renault, Smart

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