Syyn Labs Lifts the Hood on the Ford EcoBoost® Engine

Publish date:

Los Angeles, CA


Syyn Labs

, the creative collective behind mind-bending installations like the Rube Goldberg Machine in OK Go's "This Too Shall Pass" music video, recently collaborated with Team Detroit to design, assemble and produce a series of on-camera physics experiments to illustrate the science behind Ford's EcoBoost engines. Directed by Syyn Labs President/Founder Adam Sadowsky and produced via


, the spots star racecar driver Tanner Foust and Sadowsky. The pair execute test lab demonstrations that separately highlight the built-in turbocharger feature and the power of the EcoBoost engine. The experiments can be viewed here:


“Syyn Labs is all about revealing what’s behind the curtain,” said Sadowsky. “We wanted to create a few cool stunts for Ford and Team Detroit that would not only highlight the fuel efficiency, power and performance of the engine, but also explain the technology behind it in a way that’s easy for audiences to understand and is interesting to watch.”

Syyn Labs started by brainstorming dozens of ways to highlight the engine’s features. After zeroing in on the ideas that would be put into production, Sadowsky and Syyn Labs’ head of engineering, Michael Lantieri, then enlisted a team of expert engineers and developed the high-quality components needed to build and shoot each experiment. Filming was conducted in downtown Los Angeles over three days in November.

In “Deadlift,” Foust reluctantly climbs into a 4,050lb Ford Edge, which Syyn Labs rigged with cables connected to a truss high above the car. When Foust pushes the accelerator, the car is pulled up off the ground as the cables wrap themselves around the wheels. Sadowsky then explains how the torque (rotational force) of the engine pushes through the drive shaft and transmission to make the wheels rotate and pull the car upward, suspending it several feet into the air.

“Pumpkin” reveals the power of compressed air as Foust and Sadowsky first use a custom-built high-pressure chamber to launch a pumpkin into a brick wall. After the experiment, they proceed to a warehouse and examine a deconstructed turbocharger from a Ford Fusion. Using a blower to simulate exhaust coming off an engine, Sadowsky details how the turbocharger improves performance and efficiency.

“A project like this not only requires a critical eye, but just the right combination of creativity and engineering know-how, which is Syyn Labs’ favorite kind of project to tackle,” says Sadowsky. “We worked with an extraordinary team of people. It was an absolute blast collaborating with Ford, Team Detroit and all of the engineers who were involved.”

About Syyn Labs

Called “The League of Extraordinary Nerds” by Fast Company magazine, Syyn Labs is a Los Angeles-based organization that fuses the worlds of technology and interactive sciences with artistic media to design and construct visually dynamic spectacles that inspire thought and provoke conversation. Boasting 30+ members, deriving from varied fields of study in the worlds of technology, engineering, computer science, robotics, architecture, science, performing arts and more, Syyn Labs first gained fame for their production of OK GO's award-winning viral video “This Too Shall Pass” that has garnered more than 40 million hits. Syyn Labs has since been commissioned to produce multi-faceted programs for Google, Sears, Disney XD, LACMA, Wonka, Microsoft, Target and Endemol USA, to name a few.

About Motion Theory

Motion Theory is a creative home for directors with a sharp visual and narrative focus. The company's talent roster ranges from award-winning veterans to emerging filmmakers, all sharing extraordinary visual style and the storytelling ability to transform creative potential into compelling viewer experiences across advertising and entertainment.



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