TCCoA Forums banner

1 - 20 of 79 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now I know the basic differences between the two engine types. I'm just after some general info and opinions.

How does the 4.6 SOHC compare to the 5.0 OHV in terms of:

-Driveability (which is nicer to drive and why)

-MPG

-Relaibility

-Maintance

-Stock performance

-Lightly modded performance

-Noise/sound (induction or exhaust)

-Mods (availability and ease)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,566 Posts
I will jump on this one. For the Driveability, the difference is really in the computer. Look at the SN95 mustangs. A few years ago, they had them switching to an older computer that allowed a bit more leeway for the cam. As far as realibility goes...what do you mean? Which one will go longer? I THINK (as in my opinion) you would be better off distance wise with a 4.6 because of the cyl angle being wider for a smoother running engine. There is also not as much side to side wear on the valves as there is on the 5.0. But if break/slip a chain on the 5.0, you just replace it without worring about the valves (stock). The rest of the stuff all pertains to each persons preference. Like performance. Is that a set of heads? An intake? N20? You need to specify for your performance catagory. Now for the mods, I have heard that there are FINALLY a couple of intakes available for the 2v. I have not seen any other than the RR and the Bullitt. The rest of the stuff is all available. From blocks, cranks, rods, pistons, exhaust, cams, etc. Its all there, you just have to pay for it. And the 5.0 stuff is WAY easier to install than the 4.6 stuff.

Chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,407 Posts
I think the 4.6 is a more reliable engine that gets better mileage with less moving parts.As far as performance the aftermarket is too large for the 5.0 and will take the 4.6 years to catch up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,244 Posts
95xbird said:
As far as performance the aftermarket is too large for the 5.0 and will take the 4.6 years to catch up.
The Modular Market has already caught up. You can get everything for the 4.6L SOCH/DOHC now that you can for a 5.0L OHV :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,407 Posts
Mod Motor Cat said:
The Modular Market has already caught up. You can get everything for the 4.6L SOCH/DOHC now that you can for a 5.0L OHV :)
But not as cheap as what you can get the 5.0 stuff for.:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,244 Posts
95xbird said:
But not as cheap as what you can get the 5.0 stuff for.:)
You'de think that wouldn't you. But unless you're buying used, the cost of the new stuff is pretty close to one and other in most cases. It's not like 5-10 years ago when most 4.6L stuff was priced through the roof. Intake, Exhaust, Power adders, etc are all pretty evenly priced now......and it's all expensive. :D
 

·
Refrigerator Raider Hater
Joined
·
11,719 Posts
Mod Motor Cat said:
The Modular Market has already caught up. You can get everything for the 4.6L SOCH/DOHC now that you can for a 5.0L OHV :)
Please tell us where you can buy aftermarket heads.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
seawalkersee said:
I will jump on this one. For the Driveability, the difference is really in the computer. Look at the SN95 mustangs. A few years ago, they had them switching to an older computer that allowed a bit more leeway for the cam. As far as realibility goes...what do you mean? Which one will go longer? I THINK (as in my opinion) you would be better off distance wise with a 4.6 because of the cyl angle being wider for a smoother running engine. There is also not as much side to side wear on the valves as there is on the 5.0. But if break/slip a chain on the 5.0, you just replace it without worring about the valves (stock). The rest of the stuff all pertains to each persons preference. Like performance. Is that a set of heads? An intake? N20? You need to specify for your performance catagory. Now for the mods, I have heard that there are FINALLY a couple of intakes available for the 2v. I have not seen any other than the RR and the Bullitt. The rest of the stuff is all available. From blocks, cranks, rods, pistons, exhaust, cams, etc. Its all there, you just have to pay for it. And the 5.0 stuff is WAY easier to install than the 4.6 stuff.

Chris
Cheers for the reply.

And as for performance I was just meaning which one is faster stock and feels faster stock.

I know from experience you can have 2 identical performing cars against the clock but one feels sluggish where the other feels rather brisk and willing.

I've never driven anything with the 5.0 in so I don't know what they are like to dirve. I driven a couple of 4.6's so have an idea what they drive like.

And I'm not really worried about making big HP, was thinking just a CAI and exhaust type of bolt on mod.

Which would respond better and would such mods have more of a dramatic affect on MPG than on the other engine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,244 Posts
GreenBird said:
Please tell us where you can buy aftermarket heads.
Why would you need aftermarket heads? Ported stock castings will outflow 90% of the aftermarket 5.0L heads anyway. And last time I checked, you could actually have a set of stock heads done for a lot less that buying a set of aftermarket heads for a 5.0L? :zdunno: You gotta think outside the box on this one. The aftermarket hasn't produced any modular heads because frankly we don't need them. Ported stock heads will suport over 800fwhp+ with various power adder applications......OHV guys are struggling to make half that with even the most extreme ported set of E7TE heads.

That's one area us Modular guys have the leg up over the pushrod crowd. A set of stock PI heads/intake will move more than enough air for most applications. We don't even really need to dip into ported castings or aftermarket intakes until we start getting really serious with making power.

.....when on the other hand, 5.0L guys are struggling to break 300fwhp N/A with even ported stock parts.

Just cause they have it.....doesn't mean we need it. ;)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,976 Posts
Ok, first of all, are we talking about just the engine or the whole car? One of the big differences between the 4.6 tbirds and the 5.0 ones is the trans. The 5.0s got the AOD which has inferior gearing to the 4R70W that was put behind the 4.6. A lot of people rebuild their AOD with the 4R70 gearset which really wakes up the 5.0 cars. With that information laid out, and being someone who owns both versions, I will try to answer your questions as best I can.

-Driveability (which is nicer to drive and why)
For around town I prefer the 5.0. On the highway I'll take the 4.6. In stock form, the 5.0 has a broader torque curve which means you can actually accelerate without making the trans drop down a gear. The 4.6 doesn't come alive until higher rpms, so for going driving around town it will be downshifting much more often than the 5.0.

-MPG
This goes to the 4.6 hands down. On one trip from north carolina to new jersey (about 600 miles) I averaged 29mpg while going 80-85 mph the whole way. The best I could ever muster with my 5.0 car on the same trip was 23. Of course at this time my 5.0 did have different heads and cam, but my mom owned the car since it was brand new and drove it in completely stock form for over 200K miles and never averaged more than 22mpg with it.

-Relaibility
This is kind of a toss-up. Both engines are extremely reliable. It also depends largely on the year of the 4.6. The 96/97 cars had problems with the plastic intake cracking and leaking coolant. Most cars have had the intake replaced with one that has an aluminum coolant crossover and that fixes that problem. High mileage 4.6s also start leaking oil from the valve seals, which doesn't really interfere with them running, but it gets annoying and is a lot of labor to fix. The 5.0s occasionally like to eat up harmonic balancers, which is easy enough to fix but if not caught could cost you an engine. Personally, I wouldn't make a decision between the 2 cars based on reliability. Just to give you an idea, my 91 cougar had 235K miles on the original engine when I pulled it, and there was nothing wrong with it. The only reason I pulled it was I didn't want to do a cam and headswap on a bottom end with that many miles so I bought a low mileage motor to replace it with. My 94 cougar has about 205K miles. It burns a little bit of oil through the valve seals (about a quart every 1000 miles), but otherwise still runs great. I have a 94 crown vic with the 4.6 with over 265K miles, and I would trust that car to drive across the country without even thinking about it (just have to make sure theres a case of oil in the trunk cause the valve seals are shot on that and it burns about a quart every 500 miles).

-Maintance
I give this to the 5.0. The engine is much smaller externally, which means easier access to stuff. Plus having the cam in the block means no timing chains going up to the top of the motor. If you ever tried to change the oil filter on a 4.6 tbird, you know much of a PITA it is and that there is basically no way to remove the filter without dumping the oil all down your arm. Headswaps on a 5.0 can be done from start to finish in 5 hours if you know what you are doing. About the only thing that's easier on the 4.6 is changing the spark plugs.

-Stock performance
Again with the transmission. Stock the 5.0 was rated at 200hp, 285ft-lbs. The 4.6 was rated at 205hp and 275ft-lbs. The biggest difference between the cars is not the engine, but the transmission. Stock for stock, a 4.6 will walk all over a 5.0, but don't blame the engine for that. Swap the gearset in the trans and the 5.0 will probably beat the 4.6.

-Lightly modded performance
Well it depends how much you want to spend. For about $600 you can put PI heads cams and intake on the stock bottom end and get about 240 RWHP, a significant improvement over the 170 or so that they dyno at stock. Also with a 4.6 car you can do a J-mod to the trans to firm up shifts and that makes for a really nice driving car. On the other hand, for about $2000 you can get aftermarket aluminum heads, better cam, intake manifold, throttle body, MAF and tune and make 300hp with a 5.0. Basically it depends on your definition of "lightly modded." At first the 4.6 will do better, but as you spend more money, the 5.0 will start to take the lead. Also this is assuming you do all the work to the car yourself. If you have to pay someone to do a headswap on a 4.6, it will cost you a lot more money than to do it on the 5.0

-Noise/sound (induction or exhaust)
Personal preference. But I must say the DOHC 4.6 sounds really mean.

-Mods (availability and ease)
Probably the 5.0 here. There are more parts available for the 5.0, and they are generally a little bit cheaper than comparable parts for the 4.6. Plus you can get used stuff for the 5.0 a lot easier and a lot cheaper than for the 4.6. But you also have to consider that most of the aftermarket parts for both these engines are designed for the mustang, and many of them will not work with our chassis. For example lets look at headers. For the 4.6 tbird, you can get the kooks mid-length headers for about $700. For the 5.0 tbird, you are stuck with shorty headers unless you modify the steering shaft (cost about $150) in which case you can pick from a multitude of sets of long tubes designed for a mustang for anywhere from $125-400. Be careful though cause not all mustang headers will fit even after the steering mod. For the ease part of the question, that goes to the 5.0 (see maintenance). Like I said before, if you have done it a few times and have all the tools you need and you know what you are doing, you can swap heads/cam/intake on a 5.0 in a matter of hours. On a 4.6 you have 2 cams to worry about, 2 timing chains, both of which go all the way to the top of the motor instead of just a few inches above the crank, you have less room to work on both sides of the motor and less room at the back of the motor too, more wiring, vacuum lines, and sensors to keep track of, etc. The 5.0 is a very simple design, and the 4.6 is more advanced, but also much more complicated. Another issue you might eventually run into is how far you are going to go with the car. The 5.0 can be stroked to 347cu. in., or about 5.7L. If that isn't enough, you could swap it out for the 351 block, which can be stroked to 427" or about 7L. The 4.6 on the other hand already has a very long stroke, and stroking it further will not necessarily net you any gain. Some people have swapped to a 5.4L (same bore as 4.6 with longer stroke) and while they gain low end torque, they can't always feed it enough air because of the small bore. The only viable option for a larger displacement 4.6 is the big-bore block which re-sleeves the 4.6 block and increases the bore to give you 5.0L displacement. As the old saying goes, there's no replacement for displacement, and being limited to 2 liters less than the 5.0 based car could go certainly isn't going to help you. If you never plan to bore or stroke either motor, then this point is moot, but just trying to cover all the bases here.

Hope that answers all your questions.

Mike
 

·
Refrigerator Raider Hater
Joined
·
11,719 Posts
Mod Motor Cat said:
Why would you need aftermarket heads? Ported stock castings will outflow 90% of the aftermarket 5.0L heads anyway.
So because our starting point is better than some of their upgrades we should just be happy with what we've got? There is tons of potential left on the table.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
MadMikeyL said:
Ok, first of all, are we talking about just the engine or the whole car? One of the big differences between the 4.6 tbirds and the 5.0 ones is the trans. The 5.0s got the AOD which has inferior gearing to the 4R70W that was put behind the 4.6. A lot of people rebuild their AOD with the 4R70 gearset which really wakes up the 5.0 cars. With that information laid out, and being someone who owns both versions, I will try to answer your questions as best I can.

-Driveability (which is nicer to drive and why)
For around town I prefer the 5.0. On the highway I'll take the 4.6. In stock form, the 5.0 has a broader torque curve which means you can actually accelerate without making the trans drop down a gear. The 4.6 doesn't come alive until higher rpms, so for going driving around town it will be downshifting much more often than the 5.0.

-MPG
This goes to the 4.6 hands down. On one trip from north carolina to new jersey (about 600 miles) I averaged 29mpg while going 80-85 mph the whole way. The best I could ever muster with my 5.0 car on the same trip was 23. Of course at this time my 5.0 did have different heads and cam, but my mom owned the car since it was brand new and drove it in completely stock form for over 200K miles and never averaged more than 22mpg with it.

-Relaibility
This is kind of a toss-up. Both engines are extremely reliable. It also depends largely on the year of the 4.6. The 96/97 cars had problems with the plastic intake cracking and leaking coolant. Most cars have had the intake replaced with one that has an aluminum coolant crossover and that fixes that problem. High mileage 4.6s also start leaking oil from the valve seals, which doesn't really interfere with them running, but it gets annoying and is a lot of labor to fix. The 5.0s occasionally like to eat up harmonic balancers, which is easy enough to fix but if not caught could cost you an engine. Personally, I wouldn't make a decision between the 2 cars based on reliability. Just to give you an idea, my 91 cougar had 235K miles on the original engine when I pulled it, and there was nothing wrong with it. The only reason I pulled it was I didn't want to do a cam and headswap on a bottom end with that many miles so I bought a low mileage motor to replace it with. My 94 cougar has about 205K miles. It burns a little bit of oil through the valve seals (about a quart every 1000 miles), but otherwise still runs great. I have a 94 crown vic with the 4.6 with over 265K miles, and I would trust that car to drive across the country without even thinking about it (just have to make sure theres a case of oil in the trunk cause the valve seals are shot on that and it burns about a quart every 500 miles).

-Maintance
I give this to the 5.0. The engine is much smaller externally, which means easier access to stuff. Plus having the cam in the block means no timing chains going up to the top of the motor. If you ever tried to change the oil filter on a 4.6 tbird, you know much of a PITA it is and that there is basically no way to remove the filter without dumping the oil all down your arm. Headswaps on a 5.0 can be done from start to finish in 5 hours if you know what you are doing. About the only thing that's easier on the 4.6 is changing the spark plugs.

-Stock performance
Again with the transmission. Stock the 5.0 was rated at 200hp, 285ft-lbs. The 4.6 was rated at 205hp and 275ft-lbs. The biggest difference between the cars is not the engine, but the transmission. Stock for stock, a 4.6 will walk all over a 5.0, but don't blame the engine for that. Swap the gearset in the trans and the 5.0 will probably beat the 4.6.

-Lightly modded performance
Well it depends how much you want to spend. For about $600 you can put PI heads cams and intake on the stock bottom end and get about 240 RWHP, a significant improvement over the 170 or so that they dyno at stock. Also with a 4.6 car you can do a J-mod to the trans to firm up shifts and that makes for a really nice driving car. On the other hand, for about $2000 you can get aftermarket aluminum heads, better cam, intake manifold, throttle body, MAF and tune and make 300hp with a 5.0. Basically it depends on your definition of "lightly modded." At first the 4.6 will do better, but as you spend more money, the 5.0 will start to take the lead. Also this is assuming you do all the work to the car yourself. If you have to pay someone to do a headswap on a 4.6, it will cost you a lot more money than to do it on the 5.0

-Noise/sound (induction or exhaust)
Personal preference. But I must say the DOHC 4.6 sounds really mean.

-Mods (availability and ease)
Probably the 5.0 here. There are more parts available for the 5.0, and they are generally a little bit cheaper than comparable parts for the 4.6. Plus you can get used stuff for the 5.0 a lot easier and a lot cheaper than for the 4.6. But you also have to consider that most of the aftermarket parts for both these engines are designed for the mustang, and many of them will not work with our chassis. For example lets look at headers. For the 4.6 tbird, you can get the kooks mid-length headers for about $700. For the 5.0 tbird, you are stuck with shorty headers unless you modify the steering shaft (cost about $150) in which case you can pick from a multitude of sets of long tubes designed for a mustang for anywhere from $125-400. Be careful though cause not all mustang headers will fit even after the steering mod. For the ease part of the question, that goes to the 5.0 (see maintenance). Like I said before, if you have done it a few times and have all the tools you need and you know what you are doing, you can swap heads/cam/intake on a 5.0 in a matter of hours. On a 4.6 you have 2 cams to worry about, 2 timing chains, both of which go all the way to the top of the motor instead of just a few inches above the crank, you have less room to work on both sides of the motor and less room at the back of the motor too, more wiring, vacuum lines, and sensors to keep track of, etc. The 5.0 is a very simple design, and the 4.6 is more advanced, but also much more complicated. Another issue you might eventually run into is how far you are going to go with the car. The 5.0 can be stroked to 347cu. in., or about 5.7L. If that isn't enough, you could swap it out for the 351 block, which can be stroked to 427" or about 7L. The 4.6 on the other hand already has a very long stroke, and stroking it further will not necessarily net you any gain. Some people have swapped to a 5.4L (same bore as 4.6 with longer stroke) and while they gain low end torque, they can't always feed it enough air because of the small bore. The only viable option for a larger displacement 4.6 is the big-bore block which re-sleeves the 4.6 block and increases the bore to give you 5.0L displacement. As the old saying goes, there's no replacement for displacement, and being limited to 2 liters less than the 5.0 based car could go certainly isn't going to help you. If you never plan to bore or stroke either motor, then this point is moot, but just trying to cover all the bases here.

Hope that answers all your questions.

Mike
Thanks for the comprehensive answer :D

It's certainly helped, think I'm going to try and find a nice clean fairly low mileage 96/97 4.6 model.

I've already sorted the shipping out, I'm in the UK in case no one noticed.

A couple more Q's

1. What sort of money should I be looking to pay for a 1996/7 4.6 T-Bird, fairly clean and tidy with shall we say lowish milage (under 50k miles for preference)?

2. Does anyone sell catback exhaust for the 96/7 T-Bird? (I know search..... lol)

3. Although BIG HP isn't really a goal with the T-Bird as I have a Ls1 z/28 already (yay I know GM, shoot me ;) ). Does anyone offer any supercharger kits for the T-Bird?

Cheers for the help.
 

·
Newbie
Joined
·
5,650 Posts
300bhp/ton said:
1. What sort of money should I be looking to pay for a 1996/7 4.6 T-Bird, fairly clean and tidy with shall we say lowish milage (under 50k miles for preference)?

2. Does anyone sell catback exhaust for the 96/7 T-Bird? (I know search..... lol)

3. Although BIG HP isn't really a goal with the T-Bird as I have a Ls1 z/28 already (yay I know GM, shoot me ;) ). Does anyone offer any supercharger kits for the T-Bird?

Cheers for the help.
1. You'll be hard-pressed to find a 10/11 year old car with that few miles. Expect to pay above $5k if you do, and around $3 for a higher mileage one in excellent condition.

2. Off the top of my head, Flowmaster and SCP (Super Coupe Performance) make a catback system. I think Walker/Dynomax might also and I'm not sure about Borla or Magnaflow or any others.

3. Allen superchargers offers a kit specifically for the 4.6L Thunderbird. Vortech and Procharger also make kits but they are designed for Mustangs and I believe have to be adapted to fit the Birds.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,566 Posts
Mad mike...are both of your cars chipped? If not, what mods do you have to get almost 30mpg? Also, what it boils down to as you said in your post is where your driving is. I should have mentioned the torque earlier. I have 3.73s in my car and if my OD ratio was higher, I would go with 4.10s or better. The 4.6 loves to rev and makes it power higher.

As mike stated the torque setup of the five ohh is a much broader range. Basically, you would not be unhappy with either choice of the 4.6 or the 5.0. HOWEVER, I think the interrior of the 94 and newer cars fairs MUCH better than the previous cars. My 93 just can not hang with the abuse that my 97 gets. And the 97s inside still looks a TON better. Again, my .02.

And Brian, you said we can get our heads ported on the cheep for less than a set of aftermarket 5.0 heads? Where? You can get aluminum GT40s for less than $600. AFRs and such are less than $1500. Last I checked, that was right about where a set of PI heads cost to port. Maybe a few dollars less, but then thats the top of the line for street heads too.

Chris
 

·
Refrigerator Raider Hater
Joined
·
11,719 Posts
300bhp/ton said:
1. What sort of money should I be looking to pay for a 1996/7 4.6 T-Bird, fairly clean and tidy with shall we say lowish milage (under 50k miles for preference)?

2. Does anyone sell catback exhaust for the 96/7 T-Bird? (I know search..... lol)

3. Although BIG HP isn't really a goal with the T-Bird as I have a Ls1 z/28 already (yay I know GM, shoot me ;) ). Does anyone offer any supercharger kits for the T-Bird?

Cheers for the help.
1. $2000-$400
2. Cat-backs are only good for sound. Flowmaster makes one.
3. Any mustang kit can be made to work.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,976 Posts
seawalker, the 94 is chipped. It is bone stock except for a T45 swap and the chip to run on 93 octane. Before the T45 swap and chip I used to get about 26mpg on the highway. I think between the 5-speed having less power loss than the auto and top gear being slightly taller (I think it is .63 instead of .7) was what made the biggest difference to get the extra mileage.

Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,566 Posts
I ask about the milage because there are some guys who run 5.0 stuff that calim almost 30mpg. I can not confirm that, but I do know that I could always get 18 out of my 289 when I was beatin the piss out of it. Once or twice I got better than 22, but it was carbed and I did beat the piss out of it (with no OD).

Chris
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
7,976 Posts
I never got anywhere close to that with the 5.0 car, only with the 4.6. I never tried to get decent mileage out of the 5.0 when it was stock though. I got the car when I was 17, beat the hell out of it until I lost my license for a while, then I pulled the motor out of it and swapped in a 5.0 with GT40 heads and a B303 cam. Now that motor is out and I'm going to put a 393 in it, so I doubt the car will ever see even 20mpg again.

Mike
 
1 - 20 of 79 Posts
Top