Ford Motor Co.'s new 3.5L Duratec 35 V-6 will power the Lincoln Zephyr beginning with model year '07, Ward's has learned.

Built at Ford's Lima, OH, plant, the 250-hp engine is the same one that will be used to power the upcoming Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX cross/utility vehicles, unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The plant was given a $335 million overhaul in 2003 and is part of Ford's flexible manufacturing scheme.

Ford has said the 3.5L V-6 fits in any space the current 3.0L V-6 sits. Two of the auto maker's other prize sedans, the '06 Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan, offer both the 3.0L Duratec V-6 and 2.3L 4-cyl. Duratec.

The '06 Zephyr is powered by the outdated 3.0L Duratec that generates 221 hp.

The Lima plant, which builds the 3.0L Duratec V-6, will have capacity to turn out 325,000 3.5L engines annually when it begins production later this year.

The Duratec 35 is projected by Ford to power one in five of the company's North American vehicles by the end of the decade. Mated to the 6-speed automatic transaxle, the combination is expected to improve fuel economy as much as 7%.