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Old 08-09-2010, 12:14 PM   #1
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Ford V8 or V10?

I'm looking to purchase a new Ford E350 and must decide between the v8 and v10 options.

It will be 4wd, and probably a RB. Towing would only be for light trailers, on rare occasions. It will be mid weight with options.

My 1st thought was that a v10 might last longer, but not sure about this. Quigley told me they can't retro a v10 because of gas tank changes.

Mileage, reliability, durability and cost/ease of maintenance, not in that order, are my considerations.

Would appreciate any advice or insights.

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Old 08-09-2010, 12:53 PM   #2
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

i have a 2001 v10 eb with quigly and tranflow tanks

very greatfull for the v10
dont tow
dont wanna tow

(but i really want one of these cool trailers

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Old 08-09-2010, 01:18 PM   #3
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

I think your build-out should factor significantly into your decision. Interior cabinets, aftermarket bumpers, winch, appliances, large fuel tank...all add fairly considerable weight. Also, where you live and where you will drive your van also factor significantly. A lot of mountains and valleys and you'll appreciate the extra power.

SMB-less as of 02/04/2012. Our savings account is richer, but our adventures are poorer.
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Old 08-09-2010, 01:44 PM   #4
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

Most V10 owners will tell you that you need the power of the bigger engine. Most diesel owners feel the same.

Most V8 owners are happy with the smaller engine.

If I were to do it again, I'd probably opt for the V8 over the V10.

My dad pulls a 6K# trailer with his V8, no issues.

Unless you feel the need to get up to speed quickly, or to drive 75+ the V8 has enough power. And if you pull a heavy trailer, you may have to slow down going up mountain grades - so what? I've pulled a trailer across country with a VW Van with 75 horsepower - and it was an enjoyable trip.

Drive a V8 van and a V10 van and then decide.

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Old 08-09-2010, 06:18 PM   #5
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

If it was me, I'd go with the 5.4, but then I have no need to push a vehicle on 35" tires down the road at 75MPH either. If you think you might want to add huge tires and drive like what I just described, go with the 6.8.

If you like power, there is no "replacement for displacement." Proper rear end gearing can help a small motor pull big loads but you will sacrifice top end and your fuel economy will suffer.

When you only have 4 or 5 gears in your transmission, you must choose wisely. could talk to Gear Vendors about their over/ under splitter and double the available gears. I'm surprised I haven't read anything about them on this forum yet. But at $4 or $5k, I would take the $600 option for the V 10. If you like power.

I wanted a 5.4 in the van I bought, it wasn't hard to find, but I really wanted one because they have such a great track record. I'll take $400 spark plug changes once every few years and 15 MPG over a P.O.S. 6L diesel any day. There a many 5.4's in commercial service that have gone into the 4 or 500,000 mile range without trouble and at least one that has over 1,200,000 miles on it. Sounds like a proven, reliable product to me.
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:55 AM   #6
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

Our van weighs in at over 10,000 lbs due to the 4x4 conversion, winch, steel (rather than aluminum) bumpers front and back, twin 28 gallon gas tanks, 6 gallon water heater, etc. It is an EB and stuffed with stuff. When going into the back country, I add 20 gallons of water on the rear bumper.

I'm sure that a V-8 would get us out and back with all of that weight but I really appreciate our V-10. It is much like the 283 V-8 in my 1959 60 mph on the freeway, that engine seemed to be running only slightly faster than at idle. Likewise, the V-10 is not even straining at 60 mph. It just seems to make sense that an engine will last a lot longer if it isn't continually over-extended.
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Old 08-11-2010, 10:55 AM   #7
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

The V10 is a great motor. It is also paired to the much more robust 5R110 transmission compared to the 4R75 with the V8.

QuadVan will and has done new V10-powerd vans, and they can also do a TransferFlow 46 gallon tank and also an aux rear tank, neither of which Quigley can do.

Fuel economy of the V10 isn't that much worse than the V8. 1-2 MPG solo. But the V10 usually gets better fuel economy when towing.

If you ever sell your van, you will have an easier time if it has the V10.

PS - I have 290,000 miles on my V10, and I'm running it hard (up to 25,000 pounds combined, and it chipped), and it has had zero problems. Repairs so far have been a starter relay, both forward O2 sensors, and recently the radiator (upper tank burst coming over Siskiyou pass, but I still drove to Medford without overheating).
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Old 08-11-2010, 10:43 PM   #8
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

We've towed with both the 4.6L and 5.4L V8s.

We sold the 4.6L after 6 months.

Now we have the 5.4L, and are very happy with it.

Keep in mind that we're towing a double jetski trailer that weighs ~ 3000 lbs with fuel and gear. It's quite sufficient for that.

If I were towing a lot more weight, a V10 would be the thing; the mileage is pretty similar to the 5.4L.

Our issue is that finding a V10 with the barn door configuration on the used market? D*mn near mythical, if not impossible. So we would most likely have had to buy new, which would have doubled our van costs.

2006 Ford RB E-350 Cargo Van
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Old 08-12-2010, 01:19 PM   #9
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?

For an SMB 4x4 I would think that a V10 is the natural choice. Running at or above GVWR 100% of the time on high rolling resistance tires ( all terrains or worse) will do nothing positive to your fuel economy. So I would not be concerned about the extra fuel consumption at this point. Plus you are buying new so $$$ are probably not that big a concern. FWIW, I just bought a 2008 E350 12 passenger for 35% of MSRP on a 2010. 30K miles, still under warranty. You can buy a lot of Bling for $30K or enough fuel to drive 150,000 miles.
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Old 08-12-2010, 04:11 PM   #10
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Re: Ford V8 or V10?


I'd rather be overpowered than underpowered in pretty much any situation I can think of.

Unless fuel economy is a major deciding factor.

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