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v8 swap


Active Member
August 18, 2007
Reaction score
City, State
Los Angeles, California
Year, Model & Trim Level
'93 4x4
ive been thinking about the V8 swap for a loooong time and im getting close to the point where i will buy a DD and have the explorer as a weekend toy....just wanted to ask some questions and get some advice in either direction.

ok so i know the 5.0 v8 swap has been done time and time again and its legal in CA and theres tons of info out there

im really leaning towards the 5.0 because there are tons of engine upgrades, good solid powerplant to start with, tons of options for trans, sounds awesome....good old fashion reliable pushrod v8

i know i could get it out of the 5.0 explorer with the auto and use a manual transfer case. but i would like the use the HO v8 with a manual trans out of a mustang....what would it take to get a transfer case to bolt to the back of the mustang trans? or should i just use the mustang motor and the F-150 manual trans/transfer case....if the 5.0 out of the f150 was higher compression motor and made some power it would make things lots easier!

oh well

im not concerned about being able to retain AC/heater or ABS and i can relocate the battery. basically i can make room if i need to....

what do you think?

I think the HO will only makes a bit more power and torque then your current OHV 4.0L engine.

Converting a Mustang 5 speed to be 4x4 is tricky, the output shaft and tailhousing must be converted from the 2wd slip yoke style to the 4x4 t case style.

I am not sure a Mustang HO conversion would be CA legal in your 93, it depends on the year of Mustang. Your 93 truck is MAS, EFI and has a cat converter and 02 sensors. CA emissions is going to require you to retain these items, the rule of thumb is you need to use a 93+ Mustang donor.

I know people who have done the HO 5.0L conversion into a Gen I explorer and in the end were not happy with the amount of power and torque it makes.

Alot of work and $$$ for a little bit of gain.

Do some more research online, the 5.0L conversion with CA emissions is a bit more tricky, I vote you use a better version of the 5.0L for your swap.

Also the HO 5.0L is a BIG sucker, the front belt and pulley system eats up ALOT of room under the hood. Many of them had air pumps and in CA you would be required to retain the air pump I believe if it was a part of the donor vehicle.

Good luck and let us know what you find out!

well what i know about doing an engine swap is the doner engine has to be of the same year or newer and had to come in a production vehicle. the new engine must look stock, as it came in the other vehicle under your hood. all the emissions stuff, stock air box, etc

and what you do to make it legal is you go to a referee station and get it labled as an "engine change," as if your stock motor blew up and had to put a new one in.

i thought the HO mustang engine was the same as what came in the 5.0 explorer? im not lookin for a motor to give me 12 sec quarters, i just want a a bit more power all throughout the powerband

everywhere i look it seems like the swap out of a 5.0 explorer would be the easiest and best bet because the explorers most likely werent driven as hard as the stangs and its just going from one explorer to the other. i just havent come along a 5.0 explorer for salvage or that was rolled in a while so i was asking about other options.

i will look into the stang motor some more. theres tons of 5.0L out of F150's but i would need to do some motor work to make it feel like a strong motor and i dont want to go into the motor if i dont have to