Is the 5.4 underpowered?

Raul

Adventurer
#16
...An external cooler with electric fan will keep the tranny happy, which is the weak point.
I've seen people using the trans cooler as power steering cooler and getting a bigger cooler for the trans. I am considering it as the transmission (4r75) is the same that Ford used on the Crown Vic. When i was checking transmission places to do the 4x4 swap I have to convince them that that was indeed the transmission on my 1 ton van.
 
#17
I've seen people using the trans cooler as power steering cooler and getting a bigger cooler for the trans. I am considering it as the transmission (4r75) is the same that Ford used on the Crown Vic. When i was checking transmission places to do the 4x4 swap I have to convince them that that was indeed the transmission on my 1 ton van.
Haha, same here.
A deep pan and transmission temp. gauge are worthy investments as well, especially if you are working it.
 
#18
I have a Ujoint converted E350 EB 5.4 with 4.56 on 35's. I also have a stock 2WD 7.3 to compare. While the 5.4 doesn't have the same oomph as the 7.3, it's adequate even loaded with 5 people and a moderate amount of gear.
 
#19
Why start the 10. million thread about that? What does "underpowered" mean to anyone? This a is totally useless term.
Wasn't trying to start a debate. Maybe I should have been more specific. What I'm trying to avoid is downshifting at every overpass (which my Astro does now) and not having any reserve power in traffic situations that call for instant response from the loud pedal.

Thank you everyone else for the input. I'm going to look at the van tomorrow. Seller is motivated and I think I can get it for under $2500. I'll either swap the body onto my 7.3 frame or 4x4 it as is.

If the latter, I'll do a tune and 4.30's on 33's (only because I can get 2013+ axles already geared that way); or re-gear it to 4.56's on 35's.
Pretty sure I can make a few bucks flipping it at that point if the 5.4 doesn't meet my needs.
 
#20
Raul - You can do 85mph with a coil suspension confidently?
For sure. They are fine on the highway.

From my experience I'd say most of the people who tell the coil/quigley horror stories are running empty with horrible tires. After swapping to a wider, higher quality tire the van is much more confident on the highway. Weight is also a factor- driving one of these vans when it is gutted is pure hell. The springs are barely flexed so the ride is super stiff and frankly dangerous in the rain. Once outfitted and loaded down the springs are compressed enough for a decent ride quality.
 
#21
I have a chance to pick up a 2001 E250 RB with a Mark III conversion and a 5.4 for what I think is a steal. Seems to be in good shape.
Update: Turns out it was an E150 with the 4.6. But I put down a deposit anyway because its bones are good, it has no rust, it started right up and drove well (except for some slop in the steering wheel and a slip in the trans or torque converter at about 45mph), and it has all power options and cruise.

I'm either going to do a body swap onto my 7.3; or my girl who does hair and makeup for the movies is going to take this one and turn it into a mobile studio. Her current daily driver is a Honda Insight so she won't mind that the 4.6 is a slug!

BTW "steal" = $1500! Even if it needs a new trans, a re-man'd 4R70W is $1100 or less so I think she'll be ok.
 
#22
I answered this question a lot with my old Motovan. The 5.4 with appropriate gearing was totally fine. I would always point out how many VW vans are out there with totally inadequate engines. They break down more than most and go up hills at lower speeds. My 5.4 had to rev to hold the speed limit up steep hills but it still did it whereas a VW would not have been able to without an engine swap.