How Much Is A Ford Mustang Engine? (Read This First!)

The Ford Mustang is an iconic American muscle car with heritage going back many decades.

It was a car made famous by appearances in Hollywood, such as the 1968 movie Bullitt in which Steve McQueen drives a Ford Mustang.

Since then, the car has become popular around the world, symbolizing horsepower, performance, and American automotive heritage.

This article answers the question “How Much Is A Ford Mustang Engine?”…

How Much Is A Ford Mustang Engine?

A Ford Mustang engine is not cheap to purchase as a complete unit. The price range is typically from $8,000 to $20,000 depending on the exact specification.

The lower range will get you a 5.0L crate engine with 460hp, but the higher end of the price range can deliver a high-performance 5.2L with more power and features.

Pros & Cons Of Replacing The Engine

If one is thinking about replacing their Ford Mustang engine, then there are numerous factors to consider first. You should certainly think about all the pros and cons:

Pros Of Mustang Engine Replacement

The first advantage of engine replacement is that you won’t need to spend lots of time and endure lots of difficulty in locating replacement parts.

Many people buy classic Mustangs (and other classic models) that they plan to “restore” to their original condition.

This can be very hard if the parts that you need are no longer in production.

Engine replacement can solve this problem and makes it easier when you need future replacement parts. Modern engines have replacement components aplenty.

Another advantage of engine replacement is a boost in performance.

Modern engines are more efficient and powerful and can give you the benefit of modernity without impacting the car’s aesthetic.

You can get more horsepower, greater torque, increased fuel efficiency, and even a better final sound on the exhaust with a modern engine as opposed to older ones.

Though it may seem expensive to buy a whole new engine, the financial risk is much lower because the chance of needing replacement parts is lower.

You could spend a huge amount restoring an older engine, but sooner or later run into a wall and then become forced to replace it.

Overall you’d spend more money going down that route than if you just replaced it in the first place.

Cons Of Mustang Engine Replacement

First of all, even with the possibility of longer-term savings, the short-term cost of a new engine is incredibly high on most cars, and especially on the Ford Mustang.

This takes a huge chunk out of your financial savings, especially if you go to the high end of the spectrum where you might be spending a large fraction of the car’s MSRP depending on which specific model you buy.

Another drawback is the lack of authenticity. It’s not really a “restored” Mustang if you purchase a modern engine for it. Some regard it as a form of mechanical cheating.

Installing an entirely new engine is also a very time-consuming activity, as well as incredibly complex.

You will likely have to enlist the help of a professional to ensure that it is all done correctly, and that adds more time and more cost to the project.

What Is A Rebuilt Engine?

A rebuilt engine is one that has possibly been retired or otherwise removed from a car due to damage and then remanufactured back to usable specification.

An engine that has been rebuilt typically will be disassembled first, and then cleaned.

Any damaged or faulty parts will be replaced as it is reconstructed, and new gaskets are usually installed as a default approach.

The completed and cleaned engine will then be tested, but invariably works just as well as a brand-new one, with some of them lasting for hundreds of thousands of miles.

Warranties can be a worry for those seeking rebuilt engines. They do typically come with a warranty, but the length and conditions vary greatly.

At the low end of the warranty spectrum, you have perhaps just 90-day protection.

Some, however, at the higher end, have warranties for up to 12,000 miles, which is just under a year of driving for the average American who covers 13,500 miles.

The price and labor costs will run from between $2,500 and $4,000 for rebuilt engines on average including labor.

For a Mustang, you would most likely be at the high-end of that spectrum and quite possibly beyond it, especially if it’s a Shelby engine.

What Parts Are Needed For a Rebuild And What Is The Process?

The fact is that almost any part in the engine could be needed when rebuilding.

It’s impossible to know for sure which parts of the engine being worked on are already broken or otherwise defunct.

If you look at the most common scenarios, the parts most likely to be needed when rebuilding an engine include:

  • O rings
  • Bearings
  • Gaskets
  • Seals
  • Timing belt or chain
  • Valve springs
  • Oil pump
  • Camshaft
  • Crankshaft
  • Pistons

In most engine rebuilding jobs, the items above listed from O rings to the oil pumps are important but relatively minor components.

These are most commonly replaced because they are affordable and nearly always worth replacing.

The final three: camshaft, crankshaft, and pistons will only be replaced if they are damaged or unusable. Otherwise, the original will be kept, cleaned, and/or repaired.

There Are 5 Basic Steps To An Engine Rebuild

  • Step 1: Removal, inspection, and disassembly. The engine is taken apart and individual components checked to see which just need cleaning and which will need repair or replacement.
  • Step 2: Machining. At this stage, parts are smoothened so that they can work properly in conjunction with other components.
  • Step 3: Reassembly. The cleaned, restored, machined and replacement parts are put back together into the original engine form.
  • Step 4: Testing. The engine must be checked before reinstalling to ensure that everything is working as normal.
  • Step 5: Reinstallation. The engine is placed back into the bay and installed correctly to work in conjunction with the rest of the car.

What Is A Refurbished Engine?

While some people in the industry use “rebuild” and “refurbish” interchangeably, there is a subtle difference between the two.

A refurbished engine is one that is repaired of any defects, but it does not undergo the same disassembly and reassembly as a rebuilt engine.

To give you an example, a refurbished engine might be an old one that a user returns to an auto shop after having replaced it with a new one.

This older engine may not have any major defects and is therefore still usable.

The auto shop will then clean up and test the engine and repair any apparent minor issues. The product will then be resold to another customer.

For these reasons, refurbishing an engine is typically much cheaper than rebuilding. It usually costs between $500 and $2,000 to refurbish an engine with labor.

The labor costs are similar to those of rebuilding, around $50-100 an hour, but there will likely be far fewer hours.

If the engine is refurbished by an OEM shop and dealership, then it will likely come to the next user with a warranty, perhaps 12 months, or whatever warranty is remaining on the engine if that’s the case.

How Do Specialized Factories Refurbish An Engine?

Engine refurbishing is a much simpler process than rebuilding. Most refurbishing work is carried out by OEM shops, but sometimes it is contracted to other suppliers.

The factory can refurbish an engine first by inspecting it thoroughly to check for signs of damage or defects.

If the engine appears to be at least largely physically intact, then they move on to the next stage.

The engine will be cleaned up and any signs of damage (usually minor) will be repaired. The engine is then thoroughly tested under different conditions to ensure proper function.

After the testing, the factory will repackage the engine and prepare it for sale.

If the factory conforms to proper OEM standards, presumably it does if it is contracted, then the work will also be covered by some warranty.

How Long Do Mustang Engines Last?

The typical Ford Mustang engine can make it as high as 200,000 miles when properly maintained and cared for.

As with any other car, the ultimate lifespan of the engine depends so much on how it is looked after and how it is regularly maintained.

Providing the owner checks and replaces the fluids, services the engine annually, sees to any signs of damage or disrepair as early as possible, and doesn’t overtax the engine with bad driving habits, then reaching 200,000 miles shouldn’t be a problem.

There was one owner of a 1996 Mustang GT who achieved 300,000 miles in the car with only clutch issues to deal with in all that time.

How Much Can I Get For The Car With Dead Engine From A Scrapyard?

In this case, you could expect anywhere from $3,000 to $5,000 for your Mustang depending on the year.

With a dead engine, however, you do always risk being at the lower end of the estimated price range.

How Much Is A Good Used Mustang?

A good used Mustang’s price will depend massively on its model year and whether or not it has “classic value.” The overall average is $25,950.

Below is a table of estimated average prices for each year of Mustang.

Model YearAverage Price (USD)

How Much Is A New Mustang?

As you might expect, the exact cost of a new Ford Mustang depends on which model and trim you get.

  • EcoBoost Fastback – starts at $27,155
  • EcoBoost Premium Fastback – starts at $32,175
  • EcoBoost Convertible – starts at $32,655
  • GT Fastback – starts at $36,120
  • EcoBoost Premium Convertible – starts at $37,675
  • GT Premium Fastback – starts at $40,120
  • GT Premium Convertible – starts at $45,620
  • Mach1 – starts at $52,720
  • Mach1 Premium – starts at $54,315
  • Shelby GT500 – starts at $72,900