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Future Ford Mustang, F-150 Derivatives Will Reportedly Get New 6.8L Engine

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As we reported yesterday, Ford and Canadian union Unifor have officially come to terms on a historic new labor deal that includes a $1.8 billion dollar investment by the automaker to retool the Ford Oakville Assembly Plant to produce five electric vehicles, a process that will begin in 2024, with the first EV scheduled to roll off the assembly line in 2025, as well as a series of pay increases and new benefits for workers. However, Unifor president Jerry Dias also caused quite the stir when he announced that future Ford Mustang and Ford F-150 derivatives will be receiving a new engine.

Dias noted that the automaker is making a $148 million investment in the Ford Windsor Engine Plant as well. According to Unifor, Ford “has committed to source new 6.8L engines to the Windsor Engine Plant and sole source 5.0L engine assembly and current component machining to the Ford Essex Engine Plant, along with any derivatives.”

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This would be notable in and of itself, but Dias stoked the flames of curiosity even further with his comments during a press conference announcing the new labor deal. At one point, Dias specifically said that the new 6.8L engine would be used in “derivatives for the Mustang and F-150.” The internet immediately went into a frenzy, speculating that this could be some sort of new pushrod V8 in the vein of the Ford 7.3L Godzilla V8.

Dias didn’t provide any additional details about this future Ford Mustang and F-150 engine, however, so there’s really no telling what it might be. It could indeed be some sort of pushrod V8, or a V10, or even a diesel engine of some sort. It’s also quite possible that Dias misspoke and the 6.8L is slated for use in the F-150, Ford Super Duty, or something entirely different altogether. In fact, in Unifor’s press release, it referred to the engine as a “6.XL,” so we don’t even know if it actually displaces 6.8L.

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There’s also the fact that Dias says the new engine is coming to “derivatives” of the Mustang and F-150. That could mean a wide variety of things, including a potential future Mustang SUV or something entirely different. It’s more believable as a future engine for the F-150, but even then, Ford’s current focus is on smaller, turbocharged EcoBoost engines, the 3.5L PowerBoost hybrid, and electric power – not V8s.

At the end of the day, it’s hard to imagine, in a world where emissions requirements are ever-tightening, that Ford would put a big cubic-inch pushrod V8 in the Mustang. We certainly wish they would, of course, but until we see further proof that it’s actually happening, we won’t be getting our hopes up.

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We’ll have more on this as soon as it’s available, so be sure to subscribe to Ford Authority for more Ford Mustang news, Ford F-Series news, Ford F-150 news, and 24/7 Ford news coverage.

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Written by Brett Foote

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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4 Comments

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  1. Several things about this here that need to be pointed out. First thing is the fuel mileage thing and all of that. Chevrolet’s Corvette has a 6.2L V8 that has a listed mpg rating of 15mpg city/27mpg highway with the LT2 pushrod V8 and makes 495hp and 470lb-ft of torque. Ford’s precious 5.0L Coyote V8 powered Mustang GT has a listed mpg rating of 16mpg city/25mpg highway and makes a decent 460hp/420tq. Just for good measure, Dodge’s heavy Challenger 392 has its rating at 15mpg city/24highway and makes 485hp/475tq. Let’s just say Ford makes a Derivative of the 6.8L (which ideally would be a 6.4L V8 or 390ci of displacement) it would make a lot of sense. Let’s also think about this as well, Ford is planning a Hybrid V8 AWD mustang of sorts. Ford already has a hybrid system in the Lincoln Aviator with the 10-speed hybrid setup so it won’t take much to really figure out how to do this in the next mustang. Ford already used the GKN Differentials on the Focus RS so an E-Twinster front differential makes a lot of sense for the Front-drive section. Quite frankly It makes a lot more sense to have a pushrod engine with this setup. A set up like this would definitely push the car over the 485hp mark and also makes room for other “variants” of the 6x pushrod V8. Another thing that makes this interesting is that it means the Mustang can go back to sounding like a Mustang again hopefully and get some of that Fox Body sound back. The Coyote sounds good but nothing sounds like a Fox 5.0L GT with a set of Flowmaster 40-series original tone mufflers.

    • ” nothing sounds like a Fox 5.0L GT with a set of Flowmaster 40-series original tone mufflers.”
      Best sounding small block V8 PERIOD!
      I don’t see a 6.8L coming to the the Mustang.
      Wouldn’t surprise me if Ford did build a pushrod V8 (5.0 to 6.0L) engine for the Mustang soon, cost being a big factor.
      Happen to have an 86 Mustang GT, mostly stock except for exhaust.
      The sound………………..Eargasm!

      • I can’t argue with any of that. I miss hearing pushrod 5.0 mustangs ripping up and down the street. Honestly not that either of them sound as good as a ford 5.0 but it’s why Mopars sound as good as they do. Pushrod V8 and mid mounted mufflers. Truthfully I would love to see a pushrod 5.8L V8 make its way back into the mustang. But we shall see.

  2. This is potentially exciting news! If this 6.X L V-8 is based on a shorter deck version the 7.3 L Godzilla, I think we’ll all be pleasantly surprised with the outcome. Ford has really done their homework with that engine design as far as durability and efficiency.

    Many will ask: why go back to OHV? My guess is that high-revving OHC engines are progressively becoming harder to pass EPA requirements as they move so much air. An undersquare bore OHV motor with a good rod-to-stroke ratio VVT and a combo of MPI and DI will offer gobs of torque at lower RPM, plus decent upper range power and reward you with respectable fuel economy.

    While I’m still a huge fan of Ford’s Modular engines, I’m fully on board with a new-old-school cam-in-block motor for the F-150 and Mustang if it means V-8s will be around another decade or so.

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