22 hours ago in Articles
Christina Lam went from the sidelines to full-on track enthusiast in 8 simple steps.
Now before you all light me on fire for either A: a "learn me" thread (lighten up) or 2: a V6 Mustang, this is for SWMBO! She's been eyeing the 05-09 Mustangs since they were new, and she really wants one. I've chosen the last 30-ish cars, and I'm very happy with my fleet now (Mazda5 for the daily, Javelin for cruising, 914 for autocrossing), so it's really her turn.
I've been wanting to get her back into autocrossing for sometime now and to do that we need a car that can transport the 2 of us plus the kiddo in her car seat (so no Miatas or 944s) and the Mustang will do that. She wants an automatic.
Here's why I'm thinking V6: It's lighter and most of that weight is in the nose, in front of the front tires. So it should steer better and have less understeer. (Shelby even did a Terilingua V6 Mustang that focused on handling, interesting car) Also, in autocross absolute power isn't everything (my race car has 85!), so the V8 won't have a real advantage, especially at local venues. Plus, we can get one for about $5K cheaper than a GT, the MPG's are better, and we will save money on insurance.
Okay, all that out of the way, what to look for? Any years better than the others on the V6? Is the V6/Auto a total dog, or can you wake it up with some good parts?
As an aside, if anybody has an 05-09 Mustang Coupe V6/Auto in Windveil Blue with the cloth interior and wants to sell it, CALL ME!
The 4.0L is a complete pile of crap. OTher than that, I got nothing.
In reply to Bobzilla:
Even worse than the 4.6?
So the answer is buy a V6 Mustang with a blown motor and swap in a 5.3LS/4L60E?
I dunno, I had a couple of 4.0 as rentals and they didn't strike me as that bad.
The last one we had with the new V6 was nicer, though, engine-wise.
You're really not giving up much fuel economy by getting the V8. And the 4.6 Modular V8 is pretty stout and reliable in stock form. They're also fairly easy to work on. And the SOUND. That glorious V8 sound!
Also, the V6s (especially the autos) were designed to be driven by secretaries and real estate agents named "Babs." You'll find that they have much less robust parts all around, from transmissions to suspension and chassis components. I believe even the rear axle assemblies are different: some of them don't even have the 8.8 rear end. If you want to autox it at all, you really should consider the V8.
That being said, you can upgrade to stock GT components for farily cheap. Hell, I've got control arms, sway bars, shocks, and a bunch of other stock GT parts just sitting in my garage.
In reply to BoxheadTim:
We rented a 2011 3.7L convertible Mustang on our honeymoon and really enjoyed it. I don't have that kind of budget though.
In reply to Sky_Render:
According to the anecdotal online evidence I've found, the V6/Auto is better on gas than the V8/Auto, though you are correct if both are manuals. Also, the insurance is a lot cheaper. Also, they are ~$5000 less or more than a same-year GT. Also, we have a 6.0L V8 to make "glorious sound".
SWMBO is a school teacher, she's perfect for the V6 Mustang demographic. I drove a white and purple Miata and have a friggin AMC, I don't care what people think about me.
I know everything for the GT (and for that matter, the Boss and the Shelby) can all bolt to the V6, which is why I'm so inrigued by it. I'm pretty sure all the 05+ Mustangs had an 8.8" rear end though...
"From 86-2010 the Ford 8.8” rear end went into all V8 Mustangs (5.0L, 4.6L and 5.4L) and the Ford 7.5” rear end went into all 4 cylinder (2.3L) and V6 Mustangs (3.8L). "
Seriously, though, buy the V6 Mustang. Go on S197Forum, and you'll find a ton of people who will sell you stock GT parts for dirt cheap! Some guy right now is selling a complete 3.73-geared 8.8-inch rear axle assembly for like $500.
Heck, I've got lower control arms, an upper control arm, springs, shocks/struts, and sway bars I could sell you.
Big difference between the 4.0 and the 3.7.
I bought an 05 GT new. I still DD it, autox it, and will probably track it shortly. It will hit 100k miles in the next month, and the only repairs needed have been shocks/struts, an alternator, brake pads, and (of course) the spark plugs. The plugs have known issues before 07, so always ask if they've been changed. If they haven't and it's over 50k miles, expect issues removing them but it's not a deal breaker and can be done ( broke 3 of mine but managed it without much issue) It could be a bargaining point, though. If the engine hasn't been aftermarket tuned, the throttle lag is a PITA, at least in a stick. A good tune is cheap and an absolute requirement IMHO, and it actually improved my mileage. I loaded an SCT 93 oct tune at about 25k miles and it was the best change I've made.
V8 vs 6 - get the 8. There's less than a 3mpg difference and the 4.6 3V is a fun, fun motor. If you keep it under 3k rpm, it's a docile, torque-strong motor that's good in traffic and can be lugged down happily. Get it over 3k and it's like the starfield when the Enterprise goes warp.
05 and maybe 06 cars couldn't be had with power passenger seats. They really need them, the barely-adjustable manual seats are positioned all wrong. OTOH, the power driver's seat in mine is the most comfortable factory seat I've ever found. I've got the red leather interior and it hasn't worn as well as I'd hoped, but it's better than a lot of cars I've seen. There are some minor dashboard rattles if it's cold outside but fewer than the MINI we had. The vinyl inserts in the doors will peel of and fall in the floor at some point. You just glue them back in. Trunk space is great, but the opening's a bit small.
Long distance comfort is good IF the ergonomics work for you, but if they don't it's torture. Visibility when raining is worse than average, something about the slope of the windshield.
Seriously, I love mine and I'm happy to share. If you have specific questions, just ask.
In reply to Sky_Render:
3.8L Mustangs were through the end-of-the-fox 04 only.
bravenrace wrote: Big difference between the 4.0 and the 3.7.
Yes, I know. Bigger difference in price though. I can afford an 05-09 4.0 Mustang, I can't afford an 11-13 3.7 Mustang.
I think the main thing to look for on an 05-09 v6 mustang is mostly regular used car stuff. I dont know of anything specific to watch for.
I think they are decent cars for people who arent picky. They arent slow and dont handle horribly (as opposed to 04-down v6 which ARE SLOW for a smallish car with a biggish motor), so for a new-ish autox driver there will be some room to grow into it as-is and if you want to spend money, the sky is the limit on mustang upgradability so it has plenty of mod potential.
ultraclyde wrote: V8 vs 6 - get the 8.
First, thanks for all of the info on your 05, I really appreciate it!
I could talk her into a V8 if we could find one that we can afford. Right now it looks like a GT runs ~$5000 more than a V6 at the years we're shopping. That puts it solidly out of my budget.
Javelin wrote: In reply to Sky_Render: 3.8L Mustangs were through the end-of-the-fox 04 only.
This is true. However, the 7.5" rear end was still used on all V6 S197s prior to 2011, as well.
In reply to Vigo:
She's picky about the looks, but you're right, as a new-ish AX'er, she doesn't really know vehicle dynamics to the nth degree. I figure we'll plop some good tires on it (200TW, Rivals maybe?) and see what happens the first season. I'll lookout for cheap take-offs from GT's and look at doing a suspension upgrade for next season.
If there's that much of a price difference, I can see it being justified. If you go V6, look for a pony package car - they had fog lights in the grill like the GTs but slightly smaller (and with chrome trim?) but more importantly they got the 17x8 bullet rims ( over the 16x7 V6 wheels) and I think the GT swaybars/springs/shocks as well. Maybe some interior trim bits too. All those are easy upgrades to find used as Render mentioned, but if you can get some of it already installed for the same price, why not...
One other thought - from the factory the cars were under damped. They really needed slightly more aggressive shocks/struts to match the springs. Stock they're a little pogo-y. Something to keep in mind.
EDIT: speaking of AX, all 05 GTs were LSD equipped and 3.55 geared. After that it was an option. FYI if you're gonna junkyard upgrade the rear end.
Sky_Render wrote: "From 86-2010 the Ford 8.8” rear end went into all V8 Mustangs (5.0L, 4.6L and 5.4L) and the Ford 7.5” rear end went into all 4 cylinder (2.3L) and V6 Mustangs (3.8L). " Source: http://www.latemodelrestoration.com/products/Mustang-7-5-8-8-Rear-End-Axle-Info Seriously, though, buy the V6 Mustang. Go on S197Forum, and you'll find a ton of people who will sell you stock GT parts for dirt cheap! Some guy right now is selling a *complete* 3.73-geared 8.8-inch rear axle assembly for like $500. Heck, I've got lower control arms, an upper control arm, springs, shocks/struts, and sway bars I could sell you.
Why does he need an 8.8" He keeps stating he has other cars for fun things. This sounds like a DD to keep SWMBO happy, I fail to see how an 7.5" is in any way a hinderance to a DD driven car.
We have a 2013 V6 auto Vert as a DD and a 14MY will be replacing it in a couple of months. V6's make excellent DD's and with our 3.7L I posted proof of close to 30mpg at 80mph average over 140 miles. Gas really insn't bad for the performance. If it didn't say Mustang on the back no one would complain about the V6 rather than V8's. Do people not buy 3 series, Nissan Z cars, Audi's, Jags etc etc as they 'only' have 6 cyls?
In reply to ultraclyde:
Good call on the Pony Package, I was just reading about that. You're right, it includes the smaller, chrome-trimmed foglights, the GT wheels, and the GT suspension (shocks, swaybars). SWMBO wants the side stripes and spoiler, so the PP would be perfect for her needs and wants. Hmm...
Adrian_Thompson wrote: Why does he need an 8.8" He keeps stating he has other cars for fun things. This sounds like a DD to keep SWMBO happy, I fail to see how an 7.5" is in any way a hinderance to a DD driven car. We have a 2013 V6 auto Vert as a DD and a 14MY will be replacing it in a couple of months. V6's make excellent DD's and with our 3.7L I posted proof of close to 30mpg at 80mph average over 140 miles. Gas really insn't bad for the performance. If it didn't say Mustang on the back no one would complain about the V6 rather than V8's. Do people not buy 3 series, Nissan Z cars, Audi's, Jags etc etc as they 'only' have 6 cyls?
He needs an 8.8" if he wants to use different gearing and/or a limited slip differential. Also, the 8.8 rears are stronger, have more options available, and are pretty much dirt cheap.
Also, your 2013 V6 Mustang already has the 8.8 rear end. All V6 cars got them starting in 2011 with the new 3.7 v6. Ones prior to that year got the 7.5s with open diffs.
I think the same argument would be made for the 3 series if the M3 was only a few dollars more. It's not that the V6s are bad per se, it's just that the V8s are so good....
Hotlink because Mustang
The Mustang also has arguably the best aftermarket support of any car in North America. Hell, I can think of three companies that exist solely to sell Mustang parts and accessories:
www.americanmuscle.com www.latemodelrestoration.com www.cjponyparts.com
Adrian_Thompson wrote: We have a 2013 V6 auto Vert as a DD and a 14MY will be replacing it in a couple of months.
Sidetrack, but why replace a 2013 v6 Mustang with a 2014 v6 Mustang? Money burning a hole in your pocket or something? :-)
In reply to dculberson:
IIRC, it's his company car.
I found an 05 V6 locally that matches a lot of boxes, but I want to try and rustle up a Pony Package 06+ now. The in-town dealer has a plain GT for us to go try, but it's $20-freaking-grand!
Speaking of pricing, the 05-09 V6 coupes with cloth are running $8K-$12K and the GT's are $14K-$20K. It looks like $10K would buy us a really nice V6. I've seen some as low as $7K though...
Just an FYI, you can purchase all parts needed to turn a base model v6 into a "pony package" car without the premium price tag through newtakeoff.com, as well as Roush, Saleen, and other upgrade companies. You can also upgrade to 05-09 GT 12.4" front brakes for under $150, or the 11+ 13.2" GT front brakes for not much more. On the plus side of the 4.6, it's all aluminum, whereas the v6 had an iron block. I'm unsure about the v6 heads. I wouldn't pay more than $15k for a NICE GT, and maybe $7-8k for the v6. I paid $14k for my old 05 GT with 50k miles on the clock back in 2009 from a Nissan stealership, and it was a premium model.
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