The Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 looks great and boasts lots of exciting features, from Magneride suspension to lightweight aluminum wheels, but its real party piece is its 526 horsepower 5.2-liter flat plane crank V8. The Blue Oval released some performance specs and other small details on the engine earlier this week, but AutoGuide decided to take a true deep dive into the high-revving all-American eight-cylinder.
We’ll start at the flat plane crankshaft, which is the main aspect that sets this V8 apart from the standard 5.0-liter Coyote engine. The connecting rods on a normal cross plane engine attach to the crank at 90-degrees, whereas the intervals on a flat-plane engine are 180 degrees apart. This allows the engine to breathe a little better and thus rev higher, which explains the 5.2-liter’s high 8,250 RPM fuel cutoff mark. The GT350’s engine is the first flat plane engine from Ford and the highest revving V8 in its history.
While the engine block used in the GT350 is very similar to the 5.0-liter’s, it has gained an addition 0.2 liters of displacement. This is thanks to the longer bore of 94 millimeters and stroke of 93 millimeters. By comparison, a regular 5.0-liter Ford V8 has a bore and stroke of 92.2 millimeters and 92.7 millimeters, respectively. The GT350’s engine will also be built at Ford’s plant in Romeo, Michigan and not alongside its 5.0-liter motor in Windsor, Ontario.
Ford got creative inside the cylinder chambers. According to AutoGuide, Ford used plasma transferred wire arc welding technology to place the cylinder liners rather than pressing or casting them into place, which saved weight. The bores are also deck-plate honed, a process which involves attaching metal jigs to the engine block before boring out the cylinders to ensure they are as round as possible. This process allowed Ford to drop the ring tension on the motor, giving it more power.
The engine runs a high 12:1 compression ratio, but will run on 93 octane pump gas. It’s also port injected, surprisingly, as direct injection “wasn’t necessary to meet our performance targets,” Ford told AutoGuide. Feeding air to the engine will be a 87-millimeter throttle-body, Ford’s largest ever, along with an open-element air filter. There’s also an all-new intake manifold with longer and larger runners than those found in the fifth-generation based Boss 302.
Ford’s new 5.2-liter engine will be backed by the same warranty as its other V8 engines, despite offering up an insane 529 horsepower and a sky-high 8,250 RPM redline. Best of all, the GT350 will come in at just $49,995, which in our opinion is a lot of car (and a whole lot of engine) for the money.