July 1, 2010

Rather Have a 4.6
Have you ever done an article on replacing a 3.8-liter V-6 in a '94-'98 Mustang with a V-8? I've got a '95 V-6 Mustang and I would like to install a 4.6-liter modular V-8 and AOD trans out of a '98 Crown Victoria. I can't find anything online with a guide or the equivalent. I can do it myself and learn from my mistakes. I have to think someone has already done this or something similar. I would appreciate any info you can share.
Dan Phillips
Midland, TX

I have been associated with Mustang Monthly since 2001 and I don't think we have done a story on this subject. I know it can be done as people have been swapping 4.6-liter V-8s into six-cylinder SN-95 Mustangs for years. Swapping 4.6s into Fox-body Mustangs is also fairly common place.

Try various Google searches like "Mustang 4.6 swaps" or "Swapping 4.6-liter V-8 engines into V-6 Mustangs." The first thing is that you hopefully have access to the complete Crown Vic donor car. That will really help as any parts you'd need from that car would be there as you determine that you need them.

Covering Seats
I own a '00 Mustang and the seat covers are fairly torn up. I'd like to upholster them myself but my problem is I can't find any upholstery kits for my model year. Do you know if there are any available or if another year would fit my car's seats?
Ambar Estrada
San Antonio, TX

Latemodel Restoration Supply has seat upholstery for just about any late-model Mustang from '79-'04. The company's website is easy to use and very extensive. There are covers in cloth, vinyl, and leather. Check out www.latemodelrestoration.com for more information.

VIN Decoder
I have a Redfire '03 Mustang GT convertible. It has SVT Cobra wheels and center caps along with some other pieces that might indicate that it may not be a standard GT. Is there any way I could find out if this car is a true SVT model or just a car with add-ons? The VIN on my car is 1FAFP45X33F377688.
Kenneth Broden
Sarasota FL

I would say there is about a 99 percent chance that your car is a regular Mustang GT. If it was an '03 SVT supercharged Cobra, you would certainly recognize its most obvious clues, like the DOHC four-valve-per-cylinder supercharged engine and six-speed transmission.

Nevertheless, I searched around a little online and found a Ford VIN decoder. I plugged in your VIN and it did come up as basically a "convertible Mustang GT passenger car with a 4.6L 8 cylinder gasoline engine."

For anyone who wants to plug in a standard 17-character late-model-type Ford VIN, you can try it at www.fleet.ford.com/maintenance/vin_tools/default.asp.

Use the VIN Decoder
I purchased my '94 Mustang GT new. On some of the paperwork, it is listed as a Saleen Mustang. Was that the designation given by Ford for all '94 Mustangs?
Dan Disabato
Tinley Park, IL

I would say in word, no. A Saleen Mustang for 1994 is much different than a regular Mustang. Maybe the Saleen references you have are some erroneous references made by your selling dealership. Saleen Mustangs throughout the SN-95 generation ('94-'04) are pretty much considered separate models from Saleen Autosport, a separate small-volume manufacturer. Most '94 Mustangs were definitely not Saleens.

For more information on your car, you could also plug your VIN into the VIN decoder that I supplied in the previous letter.

Basic Bolt Ons
I have a '91 LX 5.0 hatchback with a five-speed and have swapped the 3.08 gears for a set of 3.73s. I am interested in doing a few more basic upgrades that won't be too difficult. The car has about 110,000 miles and I am also considering the installation of a set of headers. Any other ideas you can run by me that will make the car a little faster?
Tony Mears
Via email

Fox 5.0s can certainly run well into the six-figure range when it comes to mileage and as long as you aren't throwing a big load of nitrous or boost at the engine, they can last upwards of 200,000 miles.

The usual menu of Fox Mustang bolt-on goodies are still tough to beat, just like they were more than 20 years ago. That includes your aforementioned headers; an exhaust system; roller rockers; a better intake like an Edelbrock, Trick Flow, or Ford Racing unit, such as a '93 Cobra style; underdrive pulleys, a bigger (65mm or larger) throttle body, and maybe a larger mass-air meter.

Down the road you might also consider better cylinder heads like the ones available from Edelbrock, AFR, and others. Though a larger ticket item, they will exponentially help the above-mentioned parts make even more of a difference.

Send your late-model Mustang questions or comments to: Late-Model Corral, c/o Mustang Monthly, 9036 Brittany Way, Tampa, FL 33619. Or send email to mustang.monthly@sorc.com.