Ask around at local dealers. I know of at least one dealer that said they had replaced several before they cracked. Also, not all 97's are covered. Sometime in the model year Ford started using a somewhat improved version. Mine cracked at around 51,000. It seems that most I've read about happened around 50,000.
I have heard that all 97's made after mid june of 97 have "less" risk of cracking due to a change in the composite structure & larger rubber isolators where the alternator mounts to the water crossover. I have a 97 (mfg 8-29-97) that has 77k & seems to be okay still. What happens to the cars with over 100k miles??
I found out more information today. I've been going to the Irving, TX Ford Quick Lane for service for some time and I've made friends with the manager, Dave Parks. He accessed the Ford computer system for me and showed me what it said. The info is below.
The open campaign code is: 97M91 Intake manifold additional coverage.
The coverage is free unlimited replacement for 7 years. That means that it ends in 2004, and the owner would then be responsible for paying for a replacement intake manifold. The language in the campaign said they would replace the intake if there was "noted concern."
If anyone has a 96/97 TBird, you may want to talk to your local Ford dealer and have your intake replaced with the newer one. The replacements are made with thicker material along the water channel near the alternator.
The build date for my 97 was 12/05/96. I'm going to have it replaced next week.
Hey W. Cup,
You said your car was built in August 1997. Just for the record, I have a '97 Sport built on 8/11/97 with almost 83K miles still running strong. I hope I never have to replace the intake, even though I do run her hard on occasion. Who knows if it will blow one of these days, but if it does, I hope it happens BEFORE 2004.
Thanks for the info.
Sidenote: The stock plug wires I just replaced said "1998" on them. Were late '97 builds sold as 1998 models at dealers? I bought mine in Feb. 1999 so I wouldn't know.
Thanks, but I know that Ford didn't make any '98 Birds. I saw 1998 on my plug wires and just wondered if some DEALERS sold late 97's as "1998" models. They've been know to do that on occasion. Makes me wonder who has The Last MN12 T-Bird.
as of december of last year they came out with a modified intake manifold with a metal water channel like the newer mustangs. I know this bc we have put one on a tbird and they are coming like this for cv also. the old part #F8AZ-9424-BC (NOT TO BE USED WHEN ORDERING) AND NEW AND IMPROVED! PART #F6SZ-9424-AA. TOTAL ELLIMINATION OF LEAKY INTAKE.
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