1. General Info Ford Rangers

Ford V8 engine conversions into Bronco IIs, Ranger pickups & Explorers have become very popular. Since pioneering conversions for these vehicles well over 20 years ago, we’ve strived to research every possible problem or difficulty you might encounter when converting your vehicle.

The parts we manufacture are available for small block Ford V8s retrofitting stock engines, while keeping the stock transmission or installing a new transmission. Because of the diversity of applications, we do not offer complete conversion packages. We have grouped the conversion components by application. Many of our components are necessary when converting your engine and/or transmission. Items such as exhaust and radiators can be modified or sourced elsewhere.

The Rangers & Bronco IIs were first introduced in 1983, and come stock with either a 2.8 V6 or 4 cylinder. They later came equipped with a 2.9L, 3.0L or 4.0L V6 engine. Ford used various transmissions. The manual transmissions consisted of the Toyo Koygo, Mitsubishi or Mazda. These transmissions are all light-duty 4 & 5 speeds. The automatics that Ford used were the C3, C5 and A4LD. The conversion components we manufacture fit all Bronco II & Rangers. Currently, engine conversions using our components have been performed on Ranger pickups as new as 1997. Vehicles 1998 & newer had frame rail and suspension changes in which our components do not fit.  (We have had customers that have used our components on trucks as new as 2002 without any issues).

In 1991, the Ford Explorer was introduced, retiring the Bronco II models. This vehicle came stock with a 4.0L V6, and the A4LD transmission. The adapters we manufacture fit Explorers 1991-94.

Many questions arise when considering any engine swap and/or transmission swap. Some of these questions include what year & size block to use, transmission choice, transfer case & axle strength, suspension requirements, body lift, cooling, exhaust, etc. We’ve tried to address as many of these questions as possible.

These vehicles utilize most metric fasteners. The engine is from Germany and the transmission is from Japan. Therefore, it is suggested that before you begin your conversion you should obtain the proper metric wrenches to ease the removal and installation of your new engine and transmission. In addition to these tools, you will need an engine hoist and torque wrench, and the capability to drill 1/2" diameter holes. These conversions can be accomplished without welding or cutting; however, in some cases modifications may be required. We recommend that the individual Ford shop manuals be obtained for torquing and electronic wiring specifications.

First check your local Department of Motor Vehicles for smog & engine requirements. Certain states (such as California) require the same year or newer engine as the vehicle. The engine should be complete, retaining all smog equipment. The most recommended engine is the Ford 302. If your engine choice is a 351 Windsor, extra consideration should be given regarding exhaust clearance. A special oil pan must also be purchased.
Ford 289 V8 Engines Seldom used
Ford 302 V8 Engines Most popular
Ford 351W V8 Engines Difficult (oil pan & exhaust problems must be considered)
Ford 360, 390, 351M & 400 Not available
Ford 429 or 460 Engines Not available

 Bronco II, Ranger Trucks & Explorer Swap Information

To remove the engine, take off the hood, drain the cooling system and depressurize the A/C system. Next, disconnect all necessary electrical connections and remove the fan shroud, radiator, and fan. Make sure that you label all of the electrical connections to ensure proper identification for the new engine. The next step is to remove the heater hoses, air cleaner, vacuum hoses, throttle cable, and the upper "Y" pipe bolts. It is advised that you label all of your vacuum hoses so that they can be reattached in the correct location. Now, remove the fuel lines and the transmission strut rods and, finally, the motor mount bolts. In some instances, it will be necessary to remove the A/C compressor and the power steering pump; however, in most applications this can be avoided. This procedure for removing the engine will take between two and six hours. The transmission should be removed prior to the removal of the engine.