T5 or T56 Swap in a 5.0L | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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T5 or T56 Swap in a 5.0L


New Member
March 24, 2005
Reaction score
City, State
Missoula, MT
Year, Model & Trim Level
'91 4x4
Has anyone done or know how to swap a T5 or a T56 into a 5.0L X? I know the v6 swaps are easier because donor cars exist, but to my knowledge, there were no 5.0l X's made with manual transmissions, which means no donor car (plus I don't think the M5OD will work with a V8). My biggest questions are: how to make it work with the transfer case (either the AWD or swap a 4x4) and computer/wiring. Thanks for your help!

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5.0L explorer computer wants to see the automatic transmission.
This is a difficult conversion to do
the computer is also specific to the Explorer 5.0L bacause it has DIS ignition and OBD-II electronics.

Try a search, this has been asked and discussed ALOT

Dont think it should be that hard, installation of the clutch pedal shouldnt be a problem at all since they make a 5 speed V6, have a chip or programmer to fix the computer, use the Thunderbird TurboCoupe hydraulic clutch slave cylinder, maybe a custom driveshaft maybe for a 2WD dont know what transfer case will bolt up...Im just talking out of my ass but how hard could it be?:D (90 up Mustang T5s are stronger than previous versions) for 5 speeds. Has anyone ever done this swap yet?

I didn't think the T5 was not strong enough for an Explorer.:dunno:

Not that I am aware of.

the computer will need to be fooled, otherwise you can get it to bolt up I am sure, you likely will not be able to use the AWD t case anymore behind the 4x4 version of the 5 speed trans...

You will need alot of parts and you will have alot of wiring to do (3 position clutch switch, remove auto trans control wires if you are **** like me, and re wire the trans nuetral safety and reverse sensors, etc)

The shifter will come through where your Gen II likely has a center console, something to consider, I am betting the parts from a 5 speed gen II would likely work with your new trans as far as pedal assembly, boot, center console, etc but who knows if the shifter will be in the same spot, probably close.

the Gen II 5 speed pedal and master cyylinder were made for the V6 slave cylinder, hopefully the master will still drive your v8 slave.

Conversions like this ALWAYS have bugs that need to be addressed for sure.

I dont see anything wrong with the 4r70w auto, but a 5 speed would be alot of fun to drive!

Chief34 has a 5 speed in his 5.0l Powered gen I, but I believe he has a Mustang computer and distributor

A few 5.0 Mustangs had 5 Speeds behind them. Which one I don't know, and I don't think it would be strong enough for an Explorer.

It would be strong enough for daily driving, you can get upgraded ones with hardened shafts and gears(usually a powershift into 3rd), but I wouldnt personally trust any stock T5 if abused, not sure if the 94/95 units are stronger, I know they have different length bellhousings/input shafts, slightly longer?. I just picked that since it would be the easiest one to swap.

this is not an easy swap no matter how you shake it or what SBF 5 speed you use IMO

5.0L computer from a '96 F-150? Should have been OBD-II.

96 F-150 had a 5.0L?
Likely had a distributor?

96 F-150 had a 5.0L?
Likely had a distributor?

Yup, a friend had a '95 or '96 F-150 and it had a 5.0L. I don't know if it was OBD-II or if it had a distributor. I can't imagine it have a distributor though. I wouldn't be surprised if it was OBD-I though.

all vehicles in the US after 95 were required to be OBD-II (at least have the OBD-II diagnostic port) With Ford and most others 95 was an odd year keeping an OBD-I/EEC-IV computer but using the OBD-II diagnostics port.

At least thats how I understand it.

If ford put the 5.0L into the F-150 in 96 it is either going to be identical to the previous years of the Bronco/F-150 (96 last year for the FSB right?)
or it would be damn close to the GT-40 explorer engine, something tells me under the hood of a 96 F-150 looks just like under the hood of a 94 F-150 (dual plan intake, weakish truck 5.0L with distributor)