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Old 02-19-2016, 11:49 AM   #1
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Looking at Mach 1 for next and would like some imput!!

Good afternoon! I know this is the GT forum, but I didn't see a Mach 1 specific forum besides "other special editions" and I'm not sure how much that gets visited, so please forgive me if this doesn't belong 😐

Earlier this week I sold my 2003 GT to my friend for around $3500. The car was fun for the time I had it, but I wanted to move on to something better and he really wanted it.



I'm finally going for a 2004 Mach 1 in Torch Red (5 Speed of course), which has always been my favorite New Edge Mustang, mainly because of how the car looks (Shaker helps 😁) and because I was always a fan of the N/A DOHC engines.



Before I pull the trigger on one, I wanted to hear input from other Mach 1 owners. My goal for this car is to be an all-rounder. Sometimes I'll drive it as a daily, sometimes take it on long trips, sometimes I'll take it to the strip, maybe autocross it every once and a while, and definitely take it to shows and show it off. Would this be a good car for all that? I would love for it to be comfortable on long highway distances, yet be able to run mid-high 12s with bolt-ons and a good tune, but also be a decent handling car so I can go for "spirited" drives. Finally, I'd eventually like to add a 100-125 shot of nitrous to use only down at the track, but I'm not sure if the stock block and internals could handle that.



I'm hoping a Mach 1 could handle all that because I've always really wanted one, and I'll be able to finally get one soon


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Old 02-19-2016, 08:44 PM   #2
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Dsg owner here, it certainly can do everything you are wanting to do, the nos part as well but nos isnt everybodys favorite.... but the main thing is make sure the motor is solid before you buy bc i bought a lemon before my current one, the main issues you have to look out for is it knocking but other than that it would be a solid car.
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Old 02-19-2016, 09:32 PM   #3
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You can have all those worlds if thats what you want. You can have a more auto x type susension and still do well on the strip IMO, maybe not as good if it was dedicated to either but at least still be good and fun at both. I want a Mach 1 too one day, maybe Ill sell my 2 and get the one that is still by me for sale at a local dealer for 11,500 but he will take 10,800..

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Old 02-19-2016, 09:51 PM   #4
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Dsg owner here, it certainly can do everything you are wanting to do, the nos part as well but nos isnt everybodys favorite.... but the main thing is make sure the motor is solid before you buy bc i bought a lemon before my current one, the main issues you have to look out for is it knocking but other than that it would be a solid car.

I'd prefer the nitrous option just because I can shut it off and drive around normally when I want and spray only when I choose. I know, probably seems strange, but running N/A most of the time would seek to be more reliable. I'll definitely inspect it first for any knocks


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Old 02-19-2016, 09:54 PM   #5
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You can have all those worlds if thats what you want. You can have a more auto x type susension and still do well on the strip IMO, maybe not as good if it was dedicated to either but at least still be good and fun at both. I want a Mach 1 too one day, maybe Ill sell my 2 and get the one that is still by me for sale at a local dealer for 11,500 but he will take 10,800..

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There's one around me a dealer has that's listed for $14895 with 40K miles. Seems a bit high but it looks really clean. Either way, as long as Nos doesn't grenade the motor then it all seems good for me


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Old 02-19-2016, 10:47 PM   #6
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I'd prefer the nitrous option just because I can shut it off and drive around normally when I want and spray only when I choose. I know, probably seems strange, but running N/A most of the time would seek to be more reliable. I'll definitely inspect it first for any knocks


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Im not the one who hates it btw, i saw the huge benefits that it gave the boat anchor motor 4.0 v6. Im leaving my car n/a as long as it has a 4.6l 4v in it so i understand what your saying
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Old 02-19-2016, 10:54 PM   #7
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Im not the one who hates it btw, i saw the huge benefits that it gave the boat anchor motor 4.0 v6. Im leaving my car n/a as long as it has a 4.6l 4v in it so i understand what your saying

Nitrous just seems ideal for what I'm looking for. My bad; I didn't think you hated it lol. Someone I was talking to the other day said any power adder on a Mach 1 was "engine suicide."


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Old 02-19-2016, 11:00 PM   #8
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Nitrous just seems ideal for what I'm looking for. My bad; I didn't think you hated it lol. Someone I was talking to the other day said any power adder on a Mach 1 was "engine suicide."


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I can understand what the dude is thinking lol, these motors if they arent tuned properly and set up for too much boost they will go very easily.
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:04 PM   #9
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I can understand what the dude is thinking lol, these motors if they arent tuned properly and set up for too much boost they will go very easily.

Yeah it made sense, hence what made me bring this question up in the first place, amongst other things. I'll stick to a 125 shot with a good tune and call it a day. I don't need This car to be the fastest around lol


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Old 02-19-2016, 11:09 PM   #10
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Yeah it made sense, hence what made me bring this question up in the first place, amongst other things. I'll stick to a 125 shot with a good tune and call it a day. I don't need This car to be the fastest around lol


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Yeah 125 shot shouldnt kill the car, i dont even think you would need any supporting mods other than a clutch,
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:12 PM   #11
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There's one around me a dealer has that's listed for $14895 with 40K miles. Seems a bit high but it looks really clean. Either way, as long as Nos doesn't grenade the motor then it all seems good for me


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The one by me has 67k miles and started at 16k, now is down to 11500 and it can be had cheaper. Their probably worth the higher amounts but you have to find that perfect buyer. A lot of people would wonder why an 03 or 04 Mustang was so expensive if they werent an enthusiast of cars.

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Old 02-20-2016, 10:44 AM   #12
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Yeah 125 shot shouldnt kill the car, i dont even think you would need any supporting mods other than a clutch,

Most like that and eventually the rear. What about colder plugs? Would I be able to run that with N/A anyways?


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Old 02-20-2016, 11:18 AM   #13
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Most like that and eventually the rear. What about colder plugs? Would I be able to run that with N/A anyways?


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Im not sure about that as i have yet to change my plugs out
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Old 02-21-2016, 10:07 PM   #14
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https://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/cto/5455884533.html there selling this one around my area

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Old 02-21-2016, 10:26 PM   #15
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Nitrous just seems ideal for what I'm looking for. My bad; I didn't think you hated it lol. Someone I was talking to the other day said any power adder on a Mach 1 was "engine suicide."

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I don't believe that to be 100% true. There are plenty of 99/01 Cobra and 03/04 Mach 1 guys running low boost on stock internals and doing fine.

I plan on running either a D1 Procharger or Vortech V3 in another year. Run no more than 10lbs of boost on a conservative tune. That's what I like about the D1, you can upgrade a P1 kit to a D1 for ~400 and pulley it down till you're built and capable of handling more boost.

Biggest factors are having a healthy engine to start with, adequate air and fuel, and a solid tune to tie everything together.
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Old 02-22-2016, 07:24 AM   #16
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Nitrous just seems ideal for what I'm looking for. My bad; I didn't think you hated it lol. Someone I was talking to the other day said any power adder on a Mach 1 was "engine suicide."


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People really need to stop listening to other people who have their heads so far up their asses they see out of their mouths.

There are tons of people running appropriate boost for the stock 2V/4V internals and making 400hp all day reliably for a long time.

The trick is to not be a moron. Apparently its not an easy trick to learn for some ppl out there like the previous owner of my car lol.
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Old 02-22-2016, 09:04 AM   #17
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https://sfbay.craigslist.org/eby/cto/5455884533.html there selling this one around my area

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That looks pretty clean!! Too bad I'm all the way on the other side in NJ lol.

Is there any real differences between the 2003-2004? I've read that 04s have a bit more power?


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Old 02-22-2016, 09:06 AM   #18
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People really need to stop listening to other people who have their heads so far up their asses they see out of their mouths.

There are tons of people running appropriate boost for the stock 2V/4V internals and making 400hp all day reliably for a long time.

The trick is to not be a moron. Apparently its not an easy trick to learn for some ppl out there like the previous owner of my car lol.

This was my thought exactly: A healthy engined treated right should hold up. Question is, where I should look to get a good tune? I'm in the northeast right by Philly


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Old 02-22-2016, 12:03 PM   #19
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Im near you. I'm going to Wicked Performance in Toms River when I get an actual dyno tune but I'm going remote at first just to get going with Tuning by James.
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Old 02-22-2016, 03:19 PM   #20
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Im near you. I'm going to Wicked Performance in Toms River when I get an actual dyno tune but I'm going remote at first just to get going with Tuning by James.

I've heard of them mentioned only a couple times, but those times were filled with nothing but praise. That's maybe only an hour away from me so that could work.


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Old 02-22-2016, 06:46 PM   #21
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From Philly to Toms River you go across the Whitman and get on 295 north and then get off onto rt70 and take it all the way into Brick and then go down Brick Blvd to Rt70 and you are there. About one hour from Philly.

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Old 02-22-2016, 08:38 PM   #22
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That looks pretty clean!! Too bad I'm all the way on the other side in NJ lol.

Is there any real differences between the 2003-2004? I've read that 04s have a bit more power?

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Cosmetic differences between the two years:
- black valve covers on 03's vs cast/bare covers on 04's
- keyhole surround is black on 03's vs polished on 04's
- cubby with net on roof on 03's vs no cubby on 04's
- Mach 460 on 04's was satellite ready
- 03's had tri bar fender emblems vs 40th anniversary badges on 04's
- zinc yellow in 03 vs screaming yellow in 04 and comp orange for 04 only

Interior upgrade package was optional for both years which included the larger, adjustable headrests, faux drilled pedals, silver painted bezel/shifter ring and door locks. The non IUP cars are rarer, and had the standard headrests, pedals,door locks, unpainted bezel and no shifter ring.

More importantly were the spark plug thread counts. Most 03's had 5 effective threads where the 04's had 9 effective threads. I believe this was the case for all 4V's during those years. 04 Automatics got the 4R75W 4spd w/ overdrive vs the 03's that got the 4R70W. Biggest difference was the torque rating, 700 vs 750. Factory shift points suck a** regardless of transmission lol.
5spd cars got the Cobra's forged crankshaft while the autos kept the standard cast crankshaft. This applied to both years.

I believe the 04's were factory rated higher than the 03's 305hp/320tq (03) vs 310hp/330tq (04), but most factory cars on dynos read about the same. There was a supposed revision to the cats on the 04's to achieve the improved numbers, but again I cannot confirm that.
Average cars make 275-285rwhp, and if you are lucky to get a higher than average car expect ~5-10rwhp more.
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:27 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by sonicpony03 View Post
Cosmetic differences between the two years:
- black valve covers on 03's vs cast/bare covers on 04's
- keyhole surround is black on 03's vs polished on 04's
- cubby with net on roof on 03's vs no cubby on 04's
- Mach 460 on 04's was satellite ready
- 03's had tri bar fender emblems vs 40th anniversary badges on 04's
- zinc yellow in 03 vs screaming yellow in 04 and comp orange for 04 only

Interior upgrade package was optional for both years which included the larger, adjustable headrests, faux drilled pedals, silver painted bezel/shifter ring and door locks. The non IUP cars are rarer, and had the standard headrests, pedals,door locks, unpainted bezel and no shifter ring.

More importantly were the spark plug thread counts. Most 03's had 5 effective threads where the 04's had 9 effective threads. I believe this was the case for all 4V's during those years. 04 Automatics got the 4R75W 4spd w/ overdrive vs the 03's that got the 4R70W. Biggest difference was the torque rating, 700 vs 750. Factory shift points suck a** regardless of transmission lol.
5spd cars got the Cobra's forged crankshaft while the autos kept the standard cast crankshaft. This applied to both years.

I believe the 04's were factory rated higher than the 03's 305hp/320tq (03) vs 310hp/330tq (04), but most factory cars on dynos read about the same. There was a supposed revision to the cats on the 04's to achieve the improved numbers, but again I cannot confirm that.
Average cars make 275-285rwhp, and if you are lucky to get a higher than average car expect ~5-10rwhp more.
Tons of info here. Can tell you have a done just a little research on the Machs

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Old 02-23-2016, 02:57 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by sonicpony03 View Post
Cosmetic differences between the two years:
- black valve covers on 03's vs cast/bare covers on 04's
- keyhole surround is black on 03's vs polished on 04's
- cubby with net on roof on 03's vs no cubby on 04's
- Mach 460 on 04's was satellite ready
- 03's had tri bar fender emblems vs 40th anniversary badges on 04's
- zinc yellow in 03 vs screaming yellow in 04 and comp orange for 04 only

Interior upgrade package was optional for both years which included the larger, adjustable headrests, faux drilled pedals, silver painted bezel/shifter ring and door locks. The non IUP cars are rarer, and had the standard headrests, pedals,door locks, unpainted bezel and no shifter ring.

More importantly were the spark plug thread counts. Most 03's had 5 effective threads where the 04's had 9 effective threads. I believe this was the case for all 4V's during those years. 04 Automatics got the 4R75W 4spd w/ overdrive vs the 03's that got the 4R70W. Biggest difference was the torque rating, 700 vs 750. Factory shift points suck a** regardless of transmission lol.
5spd cars got the Cobra's forged crankshaft while the autos kept the standard cast crankshaft. This applied to both years.

I believe the 04's were factory rated higher than the 03's 305hp/320tq (03) vs 310hp/330tq (04), but most factory cars on dynos read about the same. There was a supposed revision to the cats on the 04's to achieve the improved numbers, but again I cannot confirm that.
Average cars make 275-285rwhp, and if you are lucky to get a higher than average car expect ~5-10rwhp more.
Tons of info here. Can tell you have a done just a little research on the Machs


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Old 02-23-2016, 07:12 AM   #25
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Im near you. I'm going to Wicked Performance in Toms River when I get an actual dyno tune but I'm going remote at first just to get going with Tuning by James.
your also not far from crazy horse racing just off rt 9 in Perth Amboy
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Old 02-23-2016, 09:33 AM   #26
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TBTH, the Mach to get is the 04 auto, yes auto. Best transmission to come out in any mustang (along with the 04 GT auto) until 2011. Cast vs forged crank is a non issue, Mach got a better converter than the GT as well. If you want a ready to go 1/4 mile car on a budget, a 2004 Mach or GT with a shot of N2O is about as good as it gets. The Mach SYM2 computer is also better hardware wise than any other 04-down car. Its fast enough to shift a 9 second vehicle, the GT computer will bounce off the limiter. The good news is the SYM2 is PnP with the GT.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:10 AM   #27
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Tons of info here. Can tell you have a done just a little research on the Machs

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Yes, I am a fan lol. That was all off the top of my head so I may be missing a few things.

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TBTH, the Mach to get is the 04 auto, yes auto. Best transmission to come out in any mustang (along with the 04 GT auto) until 2011. Cast vs forged crank is a non issue, Mach got a better converter than the GT as well. If you want a ready to go 1/4 mile car on a budget, a 2004 Mach or GT with a shot of N2O is about as good as it gets. The Mach SYM2 computer is also better hardware wise than any other 04-down car. Its fast enough to shift a 9 second vehicle, the GT computer will bounce off the limiter. The good news is the SYM2 is PnP with the GT.
I agree 100%. If you want a late model budget mustang that's capable in the 1/4 it's the way to go. 26" slicks, tune, converter, 125 shot, Boom! 11's-12's all day.
I have heard the Sym2 is tougher hardware to tune but it seems everyone that tunes one does fine, so I'm not buying into it.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:50 AM   #28
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From Philly to Toms River you go across the Whitman and get on 295 north and then get off onto rt70 and take it all the way into Brick and then go down Brick Blvd to Rt70 and you are there. About one hour from Philly.

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I'm on the NJ side of Philly right by 295 so it's closer than I thought. Sounds perfect to me.

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your also not far from crazy horse racing just off rt 9 in Perth Amboy
How good are they??

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Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
TBTH, the Mach to get is the 04 auto, yes auto. Best transmission to come out in any mustang (along with the 04 GT auto) until 2011. Cast vs forged crank is a non issue, Mach got a better converter than the GT as well. If you want a ready to go 1/4 mile car on a budget, a 2004 Mach or GT with a shot of N2O is about as good as it gets. The Mach SYM2 computer is also better hardware wise than any other 04-down car. Its fast enough to shift a 9 second vehicle, the GT computer will bounce off the limiter. The good news is the SYM2 is PnP with the GT.
Well that's good to know. I always thought those Autos couldn't hold up to any real abuse. That said, I'm dead set on a 5-speed. I've had my fair share of autos and I really want the stick car for the Mach 1, which is more fun on the street. That said, I wouldn't discount getting an auto 04 GT in the future to build a cheap 1/4 car. You never know
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:57 AM   #29
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I'm on the NJ side of Philly right by 295 so it's closer than I thought. Sounds perfect to me.



How good are they??



Well that's good to know. I always thought those Autos couldn't hold up to any real abuse. That said, I'm dead set on a 5-speed. I've had my fair share of autos and I really want the stick car for the Mach 1, which is more fun on the street. That said, I wouldn't discount getting an auto 04 GT in the future to build a cheap 1/4 car. You never know
Too much old school thinking on the autos. After 1997 they are pretty stout (500ft lbs or so is the limit) and the very late 03 and all 04 autos are monsters. Think 600+ft lbs no problem, more with a stub shaft upgrade and stock internals.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:58 AM   #30
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Cosmetic differences between the two years:
- black valve covers on 03's vs cast/bare covers on 04's
- keyhole surround is black on 03's vs polished on 04's
- cubby with net on roof on 03's vs no cubby on 04's
- Mach 460 on 04's was satellite ready
- 03's had tri bar fender emblems vs 40th anniversary badges on 04's
- zinc yellow in 03 vs screaming yellow in 04 and comp orange for 04 only

Interior upgrade package was optional for both years which included the larger, adjustable headrests, faux drilled pedals, silver painted bezel/shifter ring and door locks. The non IUP cars are rarer, and had the standard headrests, pedals,door locks, unpainted bezel and no shifter ring.

More importantly were the spark plug thread counts. Most 03's had 5 effective threads where the 04's had 9 effective threads. I believe this was the case for all 4V's during those years. 04 Automatics got the 4R75W 4spd w/ overdrive vs the 03's that got the 4R70W. Biggest difference was the torque rating, 700 vs 750. Factory shift points suck a** regardless of transmission lol.
5spd cars got the Cobra's forged crankshaft while the autos kept the standard cast crankshaft. This applied to both years.

I believe the 04's were factory rated higher than the 03's 305hp/320tq (03) vs 310hp/330tq (04), but most factory cars on dynos read about the same. There was a supposed revision to the cats on the 04's to achieve the improved numbers, but again I cannot confirm that.
Average cars make 275-285rwhp, and if you are lucky to get a higher than average car expect ~5-10rwhp more.
Well I'm definitely pro-2004 then. I'd prefer the cast valve covers, the 40th anniversary badge (Loved it on my old 2004 GT), no stupid roof cubby, and the potential for that little extra edge of power. Also I like the IUP on the Mach 1s. It makes the car look a little better, and I like to concentrate on the small details. I heard the big difference between the 2003-2004 was the heads themselves, mainly because they shared the same heads as the Terminator, they received the revised coolant passages because of the 2003's coolant issues. I've also heard later in the 2004 model year the heads were slightly different again? Idk, but I know revisions to the cats won't matter because I already have a Bassani X-Pipe from my old car standing by for it (Assuming it'll fit, for it was from my prior GT.)
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Old 02-23-2016, 11:02 AM   #31
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The final revision heads came out on the 2005 Aviator motors. A 2004 may or may not have the 8 thread plugs but likely will have the second to last revision. IIRC mid 03+ all had the second to last revision.


Also don't fall for the "blue stripe" crap, it means nothing. It was a simple inventory marker, nothing more.
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Old 02-23-2016, 11:20 AM   #32
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The final revision heads came out on the 2005 Aviator motors. A 2004 may or may not have the 8 thread plugs but likely will have the second to last revision. IIRC mid 03+ all had the second to last revision.


Also don't fall for the "blue stripe" crap, it means nothing. It was a simple inventory marker, nothing more.
I don't think I've heard of the "blue stripe" thing. So long as it's a Mach, it's good for me, even though I prefer 2004 lol

One thing I've always wanted to do was find my old 1997 GT again and build a sweet 1/4 mile drag car out of it. It was my first car and I miss it to death. It was also an automatic car, so with what you're saying, I know it could handle the abuse of the track. Would be cool to coyote swap it too but that's for another day. Unless I find this car again, I'm going to stick to Mach 1 hunting
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Old 02-23-2016, 12:07 PM   #33
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Well I'm definitely pro-2004 then. I'd prefer the cast valve covers, the 40th anniversary badge (Loved it on my old 2004 GT), no stupid roof cubby, and the potential for that little extra edge of power. Also I like the IUP on the Mach 1s. It makes the car look a little better, and I like to concentrate on the small details. I heard the big difference between the 2003-2004 was the heads themselves, mainly because they shared the same heads as the Terminator, they received the revised coolant passages because of the 2003's coolant issues. I've also heard later in the 2004 model year the heads were slightly different again? Idk, but I know revisions to the cats won't matter because I already have a Bassani X-Pipe from my old car standing by for it (Assuming it'll fit, for it was from my prior GT.)
Ha I'm almost opposite. I prefer the black valve covers over the bare cast, mainly because the damn things start to flake and peel. I like the cubby storage because I have it on my 03 but again neither of these things were deal breakers for me as I still got an 04.
I like the IUP mainly for the pedals and silver bezel. While it's not outstanding it does brighten up an otherwise bland interior. The larger headrests look nicer too.

I have heard so many different statements about the head cooling problem I don't even know what is actually true anymore. The heads are the same as the Cobras, as far as a further revised head being added in 04, I do not know. I would have to research but again find so many opinions it's hard to decipher what's factual.

I do like to rib 03 owners by telling them Ford practiced in 03 and perfected it in 04

The xpipe should fit the Mach just fine. Most midpipes/catbacks work on GT's and Machs.
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Old 02-23-2016, 06:31 PM   #34
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Ha I'm almost opposite. I prefer the black valve covers over the bare cast, mainly because the damn things start to flake and peel. I like the cubby storage because I have it on my 03 but again neither of these things were deal breakers for me as I still got an 04.
I like the IUP mainly for the pedals and silver bezel. While it's not outstanding it does brighten up an otherwise bland interior. The larger headrests look nicer too.

I have heard so many different statements about the head cooling problem I don't even know what is actually true anymore. The heads are the same as the Cobras, as far as a further revised head being added in 04, I do not know. I would have to research but again find so many opinions it's hard to decipher what's factual.

I do like to rib 03 owners by telling them Ford practiced in 03 and perfected it in 04

The xpipe should fit the Mach just fine. Most midpipes/catbacks work on GT's and Machs.
LOL I'm definitely gonna use the "Practiced in 03, perfected in 04" line. I've heard many about the heads too. Unless if it' starts causing me problems, then I won't worry about it. Any 2004 will do. And that's good then. Bassani says it's interchangeable too so that's comforting to know lol
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:33 PM   #35
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Any 2003 or 2004 will do if you are getting a stick. Whatever is in the best condition. If it doesn't have the head tick by now it is 99% not going to get it. The 4 thread plug thing is a non issue if you use a torque wrench and properly torque your spark plugs to 12-15ft lbs with anti seize.
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