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Old 09-12-2018, 02:26 PM   #1
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FORD E250/E350 Van Engine sizes mountain capabilities.

Im buying a Ford E250/350 Extended Cargo Van

-Will install a 24' High Top
-Will Install a 4x4 system

What size motor do i need for getting through mountains and back trails. (no rock climbing)
-I will not be towing

i feel the 5.4 will not be powerful enough

6.8L V10?
6.0L Diesel?

Will be living in Van full time and working a pop up shop all around the US and Canada and hope to explore the NorthWest territories.

Can we discuss these two motors and how im gonna be driving alot of miles and how the maintenance is on these motors? And long term durability?

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Old 09-12-2018, 02:33 PM   #2
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Any engine can climb mountains, with the right gearing. People used to tow a couple tons of trailer with 5.0L V8s making 150 horsepower. Power is more a question of how fast you want to go up those grades. If you want to maintain freeway speeds up 6 or 7 percent grades youíll need a lot of oomph; if youíre crawling up logging roads at 15 mph just about any engine will do.

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Old 09-12-2018, 04:24 PM   #3
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That being said, the 5.4l is a viable option and can be "woken up" with a nice tune from 5 star tuning. I also tuned my V10. Gearing is important. I left mine at 3.73 and it has good jump with the V10 but I often wonder if I should have gone 4.10. I would definitely consider regearing and tuning a 5.4l to get that extra push off the line. Having the torqueshift transmission on my 2013 V10 is a great bonus. Both of the gas motors require little maintenance. Oil changes and new plugs and coils at 100k. Another bonus is any shop can work on these motors for the most part and parts are readily available, literally millions of them on the road.

The 6.0l is entirely another game, and I do own one in my F250 and it has treated me pretty well. Love the torque. Maintenance more costly and of course there is a good amount of issues that can come up and thus many choose to bulletproof the engines and get the most out of them with tuning. Great setup. Cold weather starts can be a bit of an issue.

Love my V10 and certainly it has it's downside with needing to stop for fuel every 100 yards (meters in canada) but it's a hell of an engine/trans combo. they all have their upsides. If you are going gas, then try for a V10, you won't lose much gas mileage if any but you will gain a lot of push, especially if your van is heavy. A bulletproofed 6.0l is a pretty nice thing as well though.
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Old 09-12-2018, 06:08 PM   #4
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Have the 5.4 with 4.10 gearig and 4x4. Had no problem going up 10% grades in 4low when we were in Mexico. In 2wd can go up interstate freeway hills at about 60 with no problem. The rig just downshifts and keeps on going. Normally travel between 65 and 70 on the flat with no issues. I do not tow.
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:25 PM   #5
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The 5.4L will do the job. The V10 will do the job better. The 6.0 diesel will do the job until it doesn't.

Scheduled maintenance intervals are similar. Basically, change the oil every 7500 miles. Use good oil and filters. Do the fuel filter and service the transmission fluid every 30,000.

Triton motors require spark plugs every 100,000 and a coolant flush every 150,000.

6.0 PSD doesn't have spark plugs, but you'll probably be doing a lot of parts swaps before 100,000. Factory gold coolant should be flushed every 30,000 but if you upgrade to CAT/Cummins ELC (the pink stuff) 150,000 should be fine.
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Old 09-20-2018, 11:02 AM   #6
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The 5.4L will do the job. The V10 will do the job better. The 6.0 diesel will do the job until it doesn't

Succinct, humor infused, summary!
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Old 09-20-2018, 12:36 PM   #7
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I have the V10 with 4.1 gears and it has no problem getting up any pass. Mine weighs about 9,500 lbs loaded down. I do have a 5 Star tune for it and love the 91 octane tune. With the tunes it runs better and the shifts are improved as well.

The V10's are used in a ton of fleet vehicles and, from what I have read, have been very reliable.
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Old 09-20-2018, 04:21 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by carringb View Post
The 5.4L will do the job. The V10 will do the job better. The 6.0 diesel will do the job until it doesn't.
Originally Posted by moorefc View Post
Succinct, humor infused, summary!
Yes, excellent. I would edit it only slightly:

The 5.4L will do the job. The V10 will do the job better. The 6.0 diesel will do the job until it doesn't, which is right about the time you need it to, and it will cost you thousands when this happens.

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Old 09-20-2018, 04:56 PM   #9
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"I feel" is the important point here. The only thing that matters is how you feel about it.

I was totally happy with my 5.4L because it got the job done here in CO over plenty of mountain passes. I generally wasn't leading the pack and it was kinda a pain sometimes trying to merge left if somebody slowed way down in front of me. But it never gave me trouble and I never once feared it wouldn't get me where I wanted to go.

For reference I'm shopping for something to replace a manual subaru forester XT (turbo)... and I want something with get-up-and-go in whatever we buy. For no really good reason at all. I also stopped buying 1000cc+ motorcycles because I ride to fast on them. Just when I'm in the van I have a different mindset.
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Old 09-20-2018, 05:48 PM   #10
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I know that you are considering V10 vs Diesel, I was too. Then I found the perfect van in all regards except that it had the 5.4. I bought it.

I'm around 9,500lbs, Quigley, 33.5" tires, 4.10's. I just got back from a long trip from Minnesota, up and through the Banff/Revelstoke/Canadian Rockies area.

I was totally happy with the 5.4 and would actually trade some power for economy.

I would encourage the OP to not pass up the perfect van because it's a 5.4 and you won't be towing. If I was towing frequently I might think differently.

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