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Project 5.0 Mustang (The White One) Building the 302 Coyote Engine!

By Mike Kojima

We have been accumulating parts to build the Coyote 302 engine in our Mustang for awhile. Scheduling demands from the owner of the car have kept us from getting to taking the car down to do the motor, but we were finally able to get a time slot to do it.  

We were eager to get into our motor and install the Ford Motorsports parts that would basically enable us to rev to over 8000 rpm reliably and breathe better on top. The parts we accumulated would bring us to a spec about the same as the Ford Motorsports Aluminator performance crate engine and a little bit more than the Drag Racing Cobra Jet NA engine. 

Read more about Project Mustang!

 

The first step was to pull the motor from the car.  The Coyote engine is a fully world-class engine with a DOHC valvetrain arrangement and an alloy block. The Coyote was designed to make as much power as the Chevy LS3 in a lighter package with smaller displacement.

The Coyote is interesting because it has a 90 degree V-angle, which is greater than your typical modern V-8. Ford chose to keep the 90 degree V for better NVH reasons, when most other manufacturers like Chevy run a tighter V-angle to build a more compact engine. A 90 degree V has better balance than tighter V angles. 

The engine block and heads are all aluminum, and although the Coyote is lighter than the venerable 5.0 liter Windsor motor by about 20 lbs, it is still larger and slightly heavier than the Chevy LS, for example. Thanks to its free breathing, DOHC 4-valve per cylinder heads, the Coyote makes more power per cc of displacement than the LS. 

 

The Coyote has excellent intake ports that can outflow the famous Roush/Yates NASCAR cylinder heads up to 0.475 lift. The ports are very direct and drop straight down into the cylinder. 

Looking down the port, you can easily see nearly the entire intake valve. That is a straight shot, and it is no wonder why the ports flow so well. Our CNC-ported Ford Motorsports heads that we are going to install can top that number as well. 

 

When he first assembles any engine, Howard first spends a lot of time measuring everything to make sure the clearances are all in line with the specs. 

Howard measured the cylinder bores and the pistons to make sure the piston to wall clearances were ok. Since our engine is a low milage one, everything was fine, so he simply cleaned up the bores with a fine ball hone to help the new JE piston rings to seat. 

Howard also measured the crank journals and the ID of the bearing bores with the bearings in placed and torqued.  Since aluminum blocks grow a lot with heat, they require really tight main bearing clearances. This requires very precise fitment of the main bearings.

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Comments
jeffreyball610
jeffreyball610link
Monday, January 23, 2017 6:55 AM
I'm curious as to how much more power this will make vs. a stock bottom end with these heads. What was the reasoning for replacing the pistons and rods? Is this a "while we're in there" mod, or insurance for later mods? Keeping the stock compression ratio leads me to believe there won't be forced induction in the future.
Supercharged111
Supercharged111link
Monday, January 23, 2017 8:55 AM
I was always under the impression that RPM strained lower end fasteners a lot more than boost.
Truckinduc
Truckinduclink
Monday, January 23, 2017 9:03 AM
"The Coyote was designed to make as much power as the Chevy LS3 in a lighter package with smaller displacement."

"it is still larger and slightly heavier than the Chevy LS"

well at least they tried.
warmmilk
warmmilklink
Monday, January 23, 2017 1:43 PM
^haha, came here to say that
Mike Kojima
Mike Kojimalink
Monday, January 23, 2017 2:06 PM
We did the pistons and rods so we could spin the motor past 8k rpm if need be.
Mike Kojima
Mike Kojimalink
Monday, January 23, 2017 2:28 PM
The Coyote makes more power per cubic inch than the LS but it is still bigger and a little heavier than the LS.
warmmilk
warmmilklink
Monday, January 23, 2017 4:50 PM
I'm a huge Coyote fan, I've owned an S197 Mustang with one, its one of my favorite engines for how it feels driving it.

but in the real world, when push comes to shove, power per cubic inch matters a lot less than power per weight and size. according to google the Coyote is only 12lb heavier, so that really doesn't matter. but the size is a pretty big difference in favor of the LS, so is aftermarket support, and in turn the all important power per dollar. not to mention the big torque advantage of the LS. And in my opinion the LS sounds better too.

going by the numbers, the LS is easily the better engine. That being said I'll still take the Coyote 9 times out of 10.
Mike Kojima
Mike Kojimalink
Monday, January 23, 2017 5:27 PM
I like the LS simply because it's easier to package and very power dense. It's hard to beat its power to physical size and power to weight.
engineered
engineeredlink
Tuesday, January 24, 2017 9:36 PM
Always a fan of the Coyote. Looking forward to more.
Mike Kojima
Mike Kojimalink
Tuesday, January 24, 2017 10:40 PM
Did you know that Ford studied the Nissan VH45 extensively in the development of the Coyote and improved on it a lot? The improvements are mostly in the cylinder head and valvetrain.
Micah McMahan
Micah McMahanlink
Monday, January 30, 2017 5:25 PM

"The Coyote has excellent intake ports that can outflow the famous Roush/Yates NASCAR cylinder heads up to 0.475 lift. The ports are very direct and drop straight down into the cylinder."
That's a pretty tall claim. Have a source/citaction for that?
asad137
asad137link
Monday, March 20, 2017 4:02 PM
Since when are "typical modern" V-8s not 90 degrees? I'm sure that would be news to Chevy's engineers, as well as Chrysler's, BMW's, Mercedes-Benz', Nissan's, Toyota's, etc -- not to mention Ford's. I would say that non-90-degree V8s are the exception rather than the norm.
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