Ford 4.6L & 5.4L V-8 Engines

Ford Modular V-8 Engine Specs, Tech, & Information

The 4.6L & 5.4L V-8 engines are part of Ford's Modular overhead camshaft engine family, as is the 6.8L V-10 optional in 3/4 & 1 ton Ford trucks through 2010. The 4.6L & 5.4L become optional engines in the Ford F-150 for the 1997 model year. The term "Modular" refers to the ability of the engine production facility to rapidly change its tooling to produce different versions of the engine, and does not necessarily refer to the fact that the engines share components.

The architecture of the 4.6L and 5.4L engines blocks are widely similar, although the 5.4L required a taller deck height than the 4.6L due to its longer stroke. The 4.6L features a square bore stroke ratio (1:1, bore = stroke) while the 5.4L is an undersquare design (bore length < stroke length). The longer stroke of the 5.4L combined with overall greater displacement contributed to its higher peak torque and horsepower ratings. Supercharged variations of the 5.4L V-8 have been used in various specialty and low production applications, including the Shelby Mustang, Ford GT, F-150 Lightning, and Harley Davidson Edition F-150 (for select model years). The 5.4L V-8 and 6.8L V-10 were optional engines in the Ford Super Duty from 1998 through 2010, but were replaced when the 6.2L V-8 was introduced for the 2011 model year.

Like any engine, the modular V-8 family has not been without its inherent problems, which included intake manifold cracking (for composite intakes until 2001) and spark plug threads in the cylinder head stripping. It wouldn't quite be fair to declare the problems widespread, and both engines have earned an overwhelmingly positive reputation amongst owners. Both the 4.6L and 5.4L were featured on Ward's 10 Best Engines List on multiple occasions and received a variety of accolades from various industry outlets during their production run. The engines were advertised as the "Triton V-8" for the entirety of their production. Both engines were retired after the 2010 model year, being replaced by Ford's 5.0L and 6.2L V-8 platforms..

 

Ford 4.6L Modular V-8 Specs

Engine:

4.6L 16v SOHC, 24v SOHC, 32v DOHC V-8

Engine Family:

Ford Modular, "Triton V-8"

Production Plant(s):

Romeo Engine Plant in Romeo, Michigan
Windsor Engine Plant in Windsor, Ontario
Essex Engine Plant in Windsor, Ontario

Applications:

1997 - 2010 model year Ford F-150 pickups
(various Ford cars, including the Mustang)

Displacement:

281 cid, 4.6 liters

Firing Order:

1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8

Engine Block Material:

Aluminum, cast iron depending on model year

Cylinder Head Material:

Aluminum

Deck Height:

8.937"

Cylinder Bore:

3.55"

Cylinder Stroke:

3.55"

Compression Ratio:

9.4 : 1 (2v)
9.8 : 1 (3v)

Aspiration:

Naturally aspirated

Valvetrain:

Single overhead camshaft, available in 16 valve (2 valves per cylinder) or 24 valve (3 valves per cylinder). Ford also built a high performance 32 valve, DOHC 4.6L, but it was never offered in the Ford F-150.

Ignition:

Individual coil-on-plug ignition system

Fuel System:

Sequential multi-port fuel injection

Engine Oil Capacity:

6 quarts w/ filter

Peak Horsepower:

220 hp @ 4,750 rpm (F-150 2v, 1997)
292 hp @ 5,700 rpm (F-150 3v, 2010)

Peak Torque:

265 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm (F-150 2v, 1997)
320 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm (F-150 3v, 2010)

 

Ford 5.4L Modular V-8 Specs

Engine:

5.4L 16v SOHC, 24v SOHC, 32v DOHC V-8

Engine Family:

Ford Modular, "Triton V-8"

Production Plant(s):

2v produced at Windsor Engine Plant in Windsor, Ontario
3v produced at Essex Engine Plant in Windsor, Ontario

Applications:

1997 - 2010 model year Ford F-150/F-250/F-350 pickups
(Supercharged versions of the engine found in F-150 Harley, F-150 Lightning, Shelby Mustang, and Ford GT)

Displacement:

330 cid, 5.4 liters

Firing Order:

1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8

Engine Block Material:

Aluminum, cast iron depending on model year

Cylinder Head Material:

Aluminum

Deck Height:

10.079"

Cylinder Bore:

3.55"

Cylinder Stroke:

4.17"

Compression Ratio:

9.8 : 1

Aspiration:

Naturally aspirated in standard F-150 models; supercharged engines available in Harley Davidson and Lightning models

Valvetrain:

Single overhead camshaft, available in 16 valve (2 valves per cylinder) or 24 valve (3 valves per cylinder). Ford also built a high performance 32 valve 5.4L, but it was never offered in the Ford F-150.

Ignition:

Individual coil-on-plug ignition system

Fuel System:

Sequential multi-port fuel injection

Engine Oil Capacity:

7 quarts w/ filter

Peak Horsepower:

235 hp @ 4,250 rpm (1997 2v ratings)
310 hp @ 5,000 rpm (2010 3v ratings)

Peak Torque:

335 lb-ft @ 3,000 rpm (1997 2v ratings)
365 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm (2010 3v ratings)

 

5.4L & 4.6L V-8 Horsepower, Torque Timeline

Timeline represents the horsepower & torque of the 4.6L & 5.4L V-8 when equipped in the Ford F-150 only

Model Year

4.6L V-8

5.4L V-8

Notes

1997 - 1998

220 hp @ 4,750 rpm
265 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

235 hp @ 4,250 rpm
335 lb-ft @ 3,000 rpm

 

1999 - 2000

220 hp @ 4,750 rpm
265 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

260 hp @ 4,500 rpm
350 lb-ft @ 2,500 rpm

 

2001 - 2003

231 hp @ 4,750 rpm
293 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm

260 hp @ 4,500 rpm
350 lb-ft @ 2,500 rpm

 

2004 -2007

231 hp @ 4,750 rpm
293 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm

300 hp @ 5,000 rpm
365 lb-ft @ 3,750 rpm

5.4L 24v (3v per cylinder) is introduced

2008

248 hp @ 4,750 rpm
294 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

300 hp @ 5,000 rpm
365 lb-ft @ 3,750 rpm

 

2009

292 hp @ 5,700 rpm
320 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

310 hp @ 5,000 rpm
365 lb0ft @ 3,750 rpm

4.6L 24v (3v per cylinder) is introduced

2010

292 hp @ 5,700 rpm
320 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm

310 hp @ 5,000 rpm
365 lb-ft @ 3,500 rpm

 

 

Common 4.6L & 5.4L Engine Issues

Cylinder head spark plug threads stripping - 1997 through 2008 model year modular engines have a history of stripping the spark plug threads in the cylinder head. A short thread depth (producing a relatively small contact area) in the soft aluminum cylinder heads is generally accepted as the root cause. At times, spark plugs are known to physically shoot out of the cylinder head upon stripping the threads. The threads also often become stripped while changing the spark plugs, as it is easy to over-torque a spark plug. This defect had been acknowledged by Ford Motor Company in multiple service bulletins. A threaded insert the is the recommended repair method, for which Ford provides a tool kit specific to the repair.

Composite intake manifold cracking - 1996 through 2001 model year 4.6L and 5.4L engines used a nylon composite intake manifold manufactured by DuPont. These manifolds were prone to cracking, which would result in an engine coolant leak. Ford responded by designing and installing a revised intake manifold late in the 2001 model year. A class action lawsuit filed on behalf of Ford owners was filed and later settled. Eligible owners of affected vehicles were given the option to receive the updated intake manifold free-of-charge within a 90 day period following the settlement.