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CATEGORIES (articles) > Engines > Ford Engines > Ford Essex V6 as used in the Mustang

Ford Essex V6 as used in the Mustang

The Canadian Essex (90 Degree V) engine was a V6 engine family built by Ford Motor Company in Windsor, Ontario. Unlike the British Essex V6, the Canadian Essex was a 90 design, being derived from the Windsor V8.

The Canadian Essex, like the Windsor V8, was a pushrod design. The main difference from the V8 design was that it featured aluminum heads, which reduced its weight considerably and made it a very powerful engine for its size. The engine was offered in two sizes, 3.8 L for mid-size cars and minivans, and 4.2 L for pickup trucks. The 3.8 L was replaced by the 3.9 L in 2004. The Essex and the smaller Vulcan V6 are the last traditional pushrod OHV engines built by Ford.


The 3.8 L (3797 cc/232 inł) model was introduced in 1981 for the 1982 model year, first appearing as an option on the Ford Granada. The 3.8 L was replaced by a new 3.9 L model in 2004.

Bore was 96.8mm and stroke was 86mm. Output was 140 hp (104 kW) and 215 ft.lbf (292 Nm). A supercharged version was used in the Ford Thunderbird, producing 230 hp (171 kW) and 330 ft.lbf (447 Nm).

The Mustang version was updated for 1999 with Teflon-coated pistons, a variable length intake manifold, and a more open cylinder head. These bumped output up by 40 hp to 190.


  • 1982 Ford Granada
  • 1982-1997 Ford Thunderbird
  • 1982-1997 Mercury Cougar
  • 1982-2003 Ford Mustang
  • 1988-1995 Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable
  • 1995-2003 Ford Windstar

Engine Numbers: A nine-digit serial number appears on a label on the right side(front) valve cover. It also appears on a barcode label on the transmission side of the right side head.


A 3.9 L (238 inł) 12-valve version with 3.8 in (96.5 mm) bore and 3.46 in (87.9 mm) stroke was introduced in 2004. It had a one-year run in the Mustang before it was replaced by the 4.0 L Cologne OHC engine.


  • 2004 Ford Mustang
  • 2004-present Ford Freestar


The 4.2 L (256 inł) model appeared in the 1997 model year as a replacement for the durable but aging Ford 300 straight-6. It was a long-stroke version of the 3.8 with 12 valves and pushrods. Ford Power Products sells this engine as the ESG-642.


  • 1997-present Ford F-150
  • 2004-present Ford Freestar

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CATEGORIES (articles) > Engines > Ford Engines > Ford Essex V6 as used in the Mustang

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