Coyote Swapping Your Fox Body Mustang Made Easy

The 5.0-liter Coyote engine has proven to be the preferred choice for individuals seeking to modernize their Fox Body Mustang with a powerplant that excels both in stock form and when enhanced with boost. The aftermarket swiftly embraced this engine early on, making it an easy go-to option for swaps. However, one drawback of the Coyote is its overall size, primarily due to the cam-in-head modular engine design. This aspect concerns many enthusiasts, as the K-member, engine mounts, oil pan, and headers all require careful consideration during the swap process to avoid unnecessary expenditure of time and money.

Coyote Swap Made Easy

Needless to say, the planning stages require significantly more time than simply choosing which generation of Coyote engine to utilize. The initial step involves ensuring that your chassis is outfitted with the appropriate K-member. If the K-member lacks integrated engine mounts, addressing this will be the subsequent task. Following the selection of the preferred K-member, you’ll need to make sure you have the corresponding oil pan and headers to avoid any custom fabrication or replacement parts. 

QA1 offers two distinct tubular K-members for the Fox Body Mustang, identified by their part numbers MUK01 and MUK02. The MUK01 K-member maintains the factory track width for 1979-86 Mustangs and the narrow track width for 1987-93 non-V8 factory-equipped cars. On the other hand, the MUK02 K-member provides the factory track width for 1987-93 factory-equipped V8 cars, commonly referred to as the wide track width. Additionally, the MUK02 K-member is compatible with SN95 and New Edge Mustangs. It’s worth noting that both the MUK01 and MUK02 K-members are interchangeable and can be bolted into any Fox Body model.

While QA1’s K-member does not include engine mounts, they provide an engine mount brackets that are compatible with both the 4.6-liter modular and Coyote engines. Additionally, acquiring Prothane mounts (part number 6-504) is necessary. It’s important to note that the factory oil pan is incompatible, requiring a Holley Coyote Swap Oil Pan Kit. Completing the mounting of your Coyote power plant into your Fox Body Mustang also necessitates Ford Motor Company’s oil filter adapter (part number AL3Z-6890-A).

Getting Fitted

Now that your Coyote engine snugly fits in your Fox Body chassis, it’s time to consider the headers. If you intend to go turbocharged, you can skip this section, as you’ll likely need a custom-fabricated setup. However, for the majority of supercharged and naturally aspirated setups that utilize the Ford 6R80 and 10R80 transmission, Ultimate Headers (PN: 473041) offer the simplest installation and efficiently address space considerations. It’s worth noting that if you’ve opted for a Gen-1 Coyote engine, you’ll need to switch to a Gen-2 or Gen-3 Coyote starter to prevent clearance issues with the headers.

While this list provides a solid starting point for your Coyote swap, there are several other crucial items to consider. These include determining which transmission you plan to run, addressing the removal of the factory oil cooler, upgrading the fuel system, and exploring options such as hydro boost or manual brakes to save space. Additionally, you’ll need to invest in control packs for both the engine and transmission.

Given that the Coyote engine and transmission combination likely differs in length compared to the factory 2.3-liter turbo or 5.0-liter small-block Ford, QA1 offers custom-length QA1 driveshafts. These specialized driveshafts ensure the efficient transmission of the Coyote’s power to the rear end, completing the essential components needed for a successful Coyote swap.

Do It Right, Do It Once

When it comes to working in the garage, few things are as frustrating as having to fabricate parts or resort to notching to make them fit. Second only to the agonizing wait for products to arrive. This comprehensive list eliminates such hassles, ensuring a smooth installation of your Coyote engine within the strut towers of your Fox Body. With all the associated parts included, your swap will continue to start up without a hitch.

For additional information and technical guidance, don’t hesitate to reach out to QA1. Their team can address all your queries and ensure that your Fox Body Mustang swap process brings you more joy than headaches.

Article Sources

About the author

James Elkins

Born into a household of motorsport lovers, James learned that wrenching takes priority over broken skin and damaged nerves. Passions include fixing previous owners’ mistakes, writing, and driving.
Read My Articles