302 engine

i just got my first car, and i wanna get a better engine. theres a straight 6 200ci in it now. i wanna put a 302 in it, and dont know if i gotta change the tranny or not. as well as what else ill need for it. please tell me!

Yes, you’ll need to change the transmission, or you’ll break it in no time. You’ll also need to change the driveshaft and rear end for the same reason. You’ll also need to change the front springs to get the front bumper off the ground.

So it’s your first car. Were you planning on driving it? If so, forget changing the engine. Get a different car that already has a bigger engine in it.

lol, good advice. what would you suggest for a larger engine that would be good? im lookin for something diverse, but remember im not gonna be speedin around like an idiot. im just liikin for it to be dependable and have a little power. i dont have the money for a different car, because i wouldnt sell my mustang. i love it, ive already put a lotta time in sanding the coat to get painted, replaced the oil pan, oil pan gasket, exhaust gasket,replaced the battery mount, re-alligned the hood/trunk top.and got a custom black/red interior put in.and got the dash speaker put back in place. so if you could make a good suggestion of a more powerful/dependable engine, itd be a lotta help. thnx!

Did you start the other Mustang thread about “66 Mustang what engine”??
The 302 is a good choice for an agile corner carver and easy to drive around town. You don’t want a big block unless you plan on drag raceing it. Big blocks are too heavy and don’t handle well except in a straight line.
My sister has a 67 with the 289 in it and IT’S A DOG, so don’t go smaller than the 302, but I wouldn’t go bigger either. Big blocks are also BIG EXPENSIVE $$$$

A fuel injected 5.0 liter engine out of a later year Mustang would be ideal. But this would also require that the computer/emission control components/gas tank/fuel lines would need to be be swapped over to the 66 Mustang.


There is a great deal of difference in the 6 and 8 cylinder Mustangs. Maybe more than you want to deal with. It might be worthwhile to fully investigate the idea before dismantling the car.

FWIW, the Australian Ford’s used that 6cylinder engine with cross-flow heads. They are likely available still.

Google Mustang engine swap, there’s a mountain of info out there. To go to a v8 from a 6 in a '66 you need new engine, tranny, driveshaft, rear axle, brakes (front an rear, wheels, etc. The 6 had 4-lug wheels, the 8 had 5 lug. It’s a lot of stuff, but people do it all the time. I had a '65 with a 170 and a 4 speed, fun but slooooooow. Good luck!

thnx for your help! but i was wondering if i could keep it mostly the same, and just take it easy.its probbably a stupid question, but remember that its my first car…lol, so yeah, what would you estimate the cost to change it to a 302(including new tranny,driveshaft, rear axle, and what bkind of breaks id need. its got the original drum breaks) also im gettin ready to paint it, its been sanded and prepped, but i wanna know if itd be a better idea to change its color to black, or keep it its original white color.

can you tell me more about cross-flow heads? im new to the differences in engines, i only know the basics.srry…lol

Here’s an alternative to making a run-of-the-mill V8 Mustang - how about hopping up your 200? Clifford Performance specializes in performance parts for 6s (their motto is “6=8”). They have loads of parts for the Ford 200. Find them here:

This also sounds like a great starting point, and it’s only $16: http://falconperformance.sundog.net/

You won’t likely be faster than a V8, but it’ll be different, and might just handle a bit better with the lighter front end.

As for changing color, that takes a bit more work, because the original color (Wimbledon White, I think they called it, that was the color of my '65) is in lots of hard-to-reach places. Me, I’d keep it white, but that’s your call.

66Stang: all these guys are right, for the most part, but I would change the engine and tranny and probably the drive shaft, and of course, the exhaust, but not all that other stuff. I bought a NEW '67 mustang with a 289 auto and I was pleased with the performance. Didn’t seem like a dog to me. I put dual exhaust on it and it sounded great. Good luck.

You could get by just changing the engine/tranny, but the rest of a 6 cyl Mustang’s suspension and brakes were set up for the much lower power/weight/speed of the 6. The brakes on my 6’s were weak, I think the V8’s brakes were larger. A good thing for a kid with a fast V8!

I should have clairified in my post above, that my sisters 289 is a dog because of the high miles. You are correct, 289’s aren’t necessarily dogs, I have seen some “built” 289’s that would eat stock 302’s for lunch…

You should know…With the early Mustangs, the 6 cylinder cars were a completely different animal then the V8’s…The suspension and steering and brakes and rear end and radiator all are different. You can’t just “drop in” a V8 and expect anything other than a deathtrap…If you want a V8 Mustang, buy a factory-built one. MUCH cheaper than building your own…289’s have more performance potential unless you have LOTS of money…

The brakes on my '65 were absolutely puny. If someone had a pile of money, they can upgrade everything. I’d go for the power front discs that are available, but $$$$…

Rod is exactly correct in saying the 6 to 8 swap has much more to it when dealing with a 66 Mustang than you want to take on.

If you want more power our of your mustang then you’re going to have to start changing a LOT more parts then just the engine. The 289 or 302 might bolt directly up to the existing transmission. If so then if money is tight…keep the tranny and rear-axle for NOW…But you’ll have to really keep off the throttle until they are replaced.

What will need to be replaced IMMEDIATELY is the suspension and brakes. Since you’re NOT keeping it stock…I suggest to upgrade to 4-wheel disk. The extra weight and power of that engine you’re going to need better braking and a beefier suspension.

As for the engine…you have many options…Do a google search. There’s a plethora of data. You can get a complete engine for this vehicle…which includes carbs (or fuel injection)…many many options.