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I was given this 1983 Ford Ranger today. It shows 54500 miles,I’m assuming it’s rolled over. I’m not entirely certain what engine it has, but runs poorly and leaks out of everygasket on the carburetor.
It has no brakes which made it fun getting home and no reverse.

Im contemplating rebuilding the transmission and just freshening up the engine, but I’m not above a powertrain swap.

What ideas would you have for this little guy?

Chris
 

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This is what a lonely 5.0 is for. I'm sure there's one up for adoption near you.
 

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2021 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2018 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring
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Grab a 2.3L out of a sad Mustang LX and beat the hell out of the combo.
 

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I assume you won't want to sink real money into this so that rules out anything new like Coyote or 2.7/3.5 Ecoboost swap.

Ford 4.9 liter / 302 V8 should be plentiful and easy to find. Fireside has the right idea... find the Explorer version with transmission and rear diff and it shouldn't require too much fabrication.

Another fairly easy swap possibility, although less exciting is 4.0 SOHC Cologne V6 from later Ranger/Explorer.

If you want something newer and not guzzle as much gas, the MZR/Duratec 2.3 I4 found in all kinds of Mazda and Ford should work too. It was used in the final version of OG Ranger so you can probably source everything you need for this swap from auto parts store.
 

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Nice! The body may be in better shape than mine, even if the drivetrain isn’t. Since the trans needs to be gone through and the engine is questionable it seems ready for a 5.0!

I have a 3.0 Vulcan in my ‘92, but in that time I think there was just the 2.0 4-popper and 2.9 V6. Is it a 4 or V6?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Nice! The body may be in better shape than mine, even if the drivetrain isn’t. Since the trans needs to be gone through and the engine is questionable it seems ready for a 5.0!

I have a 3.0 Vulcan in my ‘92, but in that time I think there was just the 2.0 4-popper and 2.9 V6. Is it a 4 or V6?
It’s got a 4 cylinder in it.
 
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