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Old 02-07-2016, 10:37 PM   #1
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New to Mustangs. How Long do they Last?

I am new to mustangs, and I want to pick up a used one for the daily commute to work.

How many miles do the engines and transmissions last? What years are good? What years are bad? Etc.?

I am looking at probably buying a 1998 or newer car. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 02-07-2016, 10:55 PM   #2
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I am new to mustangs, and I want to pick up a used one for the daily commute to work.

How many miles do the engines and transmissions last? What years are good? What years are bad? Etc.?

I am looking at probably buying a 1998 or newer car. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.
It honestly depends on what engine, what the previous owners have donenwith it, and how many miles the car has
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Old 02-07-2016, 11:32 PM   #3
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As with any other machine, given proper care and maintenance a long time.
There is a local guy who has an originally owned 1967 fastback 289. I have no idea how many miles or what has been done throughout the years but he daily drives it and it still looks and sounds great.
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Old 02-08-2016, 12:04 AM   #4
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May help to be a bit more specific if you want specific answers as far as good and bad years as it's hard to cover 18 years of cars. Are you looking for a 98-04, 05-10, 11-14 ? Manual or auto, v6 or v6, etc.

As far as I know no major issues with any or the years assuming they had proper maintenance and previous owners took car of the car.


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Old 02-08-2016, 05:29 AM   #5
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2012 V6 with suspension, shifting, stopping and sound mods.
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:27 AM   #6
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May help to be a bit more specific if you want specific answers as far as good and bad years as it's hard to cover 18 years of cars. Are you looking for a 98-04, 05-10, 11-14 ? Manual or auto, v6 or v6, etc.

As far as I know no major issues with any or the years assuming they had proper maintenance and previous owners took car of the car.


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The cobra/mach 1's have the head ticking issue and are known to knock but other than those i think the rest are fairly reliable
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:33 AM   #7
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The cobra/mach 1's have the head ticking issue and are known to knock but other than those i think the rest are fairly reliable
Bad info here.

The modular motors will all last half a million miles if cared for properly.

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Old 02-08-2016, 10:36 AM   #8
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Bad info here.

The modular motors will all last half a million miles if cared for properly.

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Yup cause after watching a couple of my friends 4vs knock at low miles and then my very own 4v knocking im going to give out bad info 😑
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Old 02-08-2016, 10:41 AM   #9
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Sounds like you and your multiple friends bought abused cars. These motors don't just let go for no reason.

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Old 02-08-2016, 10:44 AM   #10
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Sounds like you and your multiple friends bought abused cars. These motors don't just let go for no reason.

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Mine had a sketchy history, but my buddies 03 cobra had only 20k and he put 15k on it himself and the shop i took my car to had about 4 cars that had the same issue
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Old 02-08-2016, 10:52 AM   #11
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Mine had a sketchy history, but my buddies 03 cobra had only 20k and he put 15k on it himself and the shop i took my car to had about 4 cars that had the same issue
The 03 was most likely due to abuse as well. Early in these engines people were pushing them too far. I've owned my mid year built 03 Cobra since 2007 with absolutely zero issues. Ported setup than runs mid 11's on my heavy vert. Currently adding more power and have no worries about the motor.

I run good oil, keep an eye on my plugs and change fuel filter once a year. Oil cooler will need a rebuild this year ($100). Have never had a tick or knock.

Our GT is an 04 auto. Owned since new. Other than IAC and steering bushings it has been a solid car. My wife refuses to drive anything else so it will continue in daily use for several more years. I plan on updating the interior with integrated bluetooth but everything else is solid.

Both of those cars get an annual oil change with AmSoil Signature 5w20 and Napa Platinum filter. Fuel filters are changed at same time. Plugs on 4v annually and every other year on 2v. All filters, plugs and fluids are clean when changed.

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Old 02-08-2016, 11:00 AM   #12
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The 03 was most likely due to abuse as well. Early in these engines people were pushing them too far. I've owned my mid year built 03 Cobra since 2007 with absolutely zero issues. Ported setup than runs mid 11's on my heavy vert. Currently adding more power and have no worries about the motor.

I run good oil, keep an eye on my plugs and change fuel filter once a year. Oil cooler will need a rebuild this year ($100). Have never had a tick or knock.

Our GT is an 04 auto. Owned since new. Other than IAC and steering bushings it has been a solid car. My wife refuses to drive anything else so it will continue in daily use for several more years. I plan on updating the interior with integrated bluetooth but everything else is solid.

Both of those cars get an annual oil change with AmSoil Signature 5w20 and Napa Platinum filter. Fuel filters are changed at same time. Plugs on 4v annually and every other year on 2v. All filters, plugs and fluids are clean when changed.

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Yeah i understand that they can be very reliable but you have to trust that the previous owner did correct maintence. But what ive seen from the 03/04 4vs is that its easier to mess up really bad.
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Old 02-08-2016, 11:08 AM   #13
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Yeah i understand that they can be very reliable but you have to trust that the previous owner did correct maintence. But what ive seen from the 03/04 4vs is that its easier to mess up really bad.
Comes down to buying the correct car. I'm third owner of my Cobra but bought it bone stock. Contacted the first owner as well as many conversations with owner I bought it from. I paid more than market but got exactly what I wanted. It's the only way I would buy any performance car. Receipts and parts list only give a glimpse of a car's history.

Other than that getting it on a lift and doing an inspection along with a compression/leak down test is a cheap way to check a vehicle's health. Having fluids changed before purchase and inspecting them in person while it's being performed would also be wise.

It's way too easy to return a vehicle to "stock". A wise buyer will know the signs to look for.

Oh, and never trust a tune. First stop with any modified vehicle should be an appointment with a tuner. Either chassis dyno or street datalogging.

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Old 02-08-2016, 11:23 AM   #14
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Comes down to buying the correct car. I'm third owner of my Cobra but bought it bone stock. Contacted the first owner as well as many conversations with owner I bought it from. I paid more than market but got exactly what I wanted. It's the only way I would buy any performance car. Receipts and parts list only give a glimpse of a car's history.

Other than that getting it on a lift and doing an inspection along with a compression/leak down test is a cheap way to check a vehicle's health. Having fluids changed before purchase and inspecting them in person while it's being performed would also be wise.

It's way too easy to return a vehicle to "stock". A wise buyer will know the signs to look for.

Oh, and never trust a tune. First stop with any modified vehicle should be an appointment with a tuner. Either chassis dyno or street datalogging.

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Yeah, my black machs mods were unknown since the car had a rebuilt engine and the previous owner stated it was cammed,cobra block,and new heads. My luck the day after i brought it home it blew a head gasket, then 2 days later it started to knock in the bottom end bad. Now that, i blame on terrible owners lol, it would be nice to know everything about a car but now these cars can be on their 3rd or 4th owner and tracking them down is hard to do without any resources.
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Old 02-08-2016, 11:38 AM   #15
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The advice you're reading above is quite valid. My experience has been that a well-maintained used Mustang will provide trouble free driving for some time, considering all the variables mentioned above. Continued proper maintenance is essential. By all means avoid any car that has been modified - it's an indication of what type of driving it has experienced, and you can assume that to be liability which increases with age. Check the Consumer Reports used car guide at your local library. While Mustangs are generally quite reliable cars when properly used and cared for, the guide will indicate which years experienced specific problems. I think the guide goes back 5 or 6 years. I bought a used '02 from a Ford dealer in '03, and drove it for over ten years with NO major repair problems. It had been a rental.
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Old 02-08-2016, 11:40 AM   #16
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Should have mentioned my '02 was a V-6, which I would absolutely recommend for your purposes.
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Old 02-09-2016, 02:36 AM   #17
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Ford and GM both have nearly identical build quality until you get up to about 2007 or so where Ford finally starts to get its act together ( though slowly) . That is, they are fine, but electrical systems, bushings, gaskets, and so on were only designed to last maybe 8-9 years, and by 15, the car was a rolling pile of needed repairs. The engine and suspension may be fine, but the rest of the car will be coming apart around them.

Also, the build quality of the Mustangs, well, the aren't BMWs or Audisfor a reason. The sheet metal on my 14 is almost half as thick as my dad's Audi. Of course, my car also cost 20K new, so that's a bit to be expected. If the car is well cared for and you are gentle with the interior, it should hold up fairly well. But 15 years is well beyond the lifespan unless the owner was a fanatic. 10 is kind of iffy as well, since a 2006 will be at dangerously close to the 15 year mark after a couple of years of ownership.

I would stick to trying to get as new a car as possible.
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Old 02-09-2016, 09:29 PM   #18
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Do any of the engines have aluminum heads?
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