North American Turbocoupe Organization

T5 Swap... Hi everybody!
imjamesw Offline
Senior Member
Hey everyone! Long time no see!

I want to apologize for my disappearing act- I moved away, came back, all kinds of stuff...

Here is the new deal!
The Turbo Coupe has now switched hands to my brother. It's still very much in the family, my dad just bestowed it upon him. My dad went out and bought a 94...
The car is eventually mine, you know, so I still have a say in what happens to it. The linkage is jacked up on the car, the transmission is still new, but it is giving me and my brother a serious excuse to start looking at swapping it out of there (now that my dad really can't say anything) and putting in a T5. I went yard-hopping today and found a complete setup for 250 out of an 88 turbo coupe that looks to be in pretty good shape. I need to know:

What exactly I am going to need...

I don't imagine that it will take much modification, it should be a fairly easy task with a new bellhousing, right?

How much labor do you think is involved?

If anyone has anything for me, I would greatly appreciate it. If anyone has the setup that they are looking at trashing, let me know (what a shot in the dark, eh?)

I'll be waiting- I appreciate everything.

Hi to Pete, Jeff, Dan, Glenn and everyone else!!!!!!!!

88 Medium Red Turbo Coupe. 172K. Stock. Horrible A4LD. 5k miles since 2006. She will be a part of my family as long as I am.

imjamesw Offline
Senior Member
Hey again-
I don't need anyone to really break it down to me if there is a page that explains it- I don't want to act like a newbie posting non-searching jerk.

[Image: biggrin.gif] James
88 Medium Red Turbo Coupe. 172K. Stock. Horrible A4LD. 5k miles since 2006. She will be a part of my family as long as I am.

Pete D Offline
Hi James, welcome back.
Parts list @

Many pages of the trials, tribulations and triumphs at

Lots of people have done the swap and I'm sure a few will chime in. I don't think we have the whole swap in any one place but I'm
willing to review and critique all writeups submitted [Image: biggrin.gif] Pictures appreciated
Pete Dunham


imjamesw Offline
Senior Member
Well, it's a definite deal that it's going to be done... within a month or so... so I am going to take some pictures and write some in-depth notes regarding the trials and tribulations throughout the swap so I can write a heck of an article that Pete can post.

I have a plea for all TC owners that have done this:

Post what you have done and what you have dealt with and I promise to give you credit when this is done. I want all of the information on this topic to be in one place to help out all who are planning on doing this in the future. This is a big undertaking for me- not only will I appreciate this forever, but so will the rest of the Turbotbird readers from here on out.

Please be kind enough to share what you know and when this is all done, nobody will have to search through the archives of message board postings to get info- I will beg Pete to have it placed on the Tech Info page with your names attached as contributors!!!

Thanks so much to all of you,

88 Medium Red Turbo Coupe. 172K. Stock. Horrible A4LD. 5k miles since 2006. She will be a part of my family as long as I am.

88silver-bullet Offline
It's not that bad of a job, make sure you grab the manual transmission wiring harness for vss, and reverse lights.and the pedal assembly is kinda a''ll have to partially drop the steering column to change the pedals.and you'll definately need the manual driveshft,for the auto, ones are to short. GUY
88 silver t.c100,000 just did an engine and t5 swap

Pete D Offline
You won't have to beg. This is a subject that we would love to have a good, cohesive writeup about. I'll be glad to help with the writing process from a writing standpoint. I haven't done the swap so there isn't much I can add exerientially.
I encourage anyone that has done this swap to send James your info

[This message has been edited by Pete D (edited 10-12-2005).]
Pete Dunham


Liquid_force Offline
Senior Member
Dug up some quotes from when I did mine...

Time-wise - as a complete rookie - had I had ALL the RIGHT parts in hand when I started I would say 3 good days of work and I could have had it done with no help at all. As it was - with a couple parts run-arounds and a hang up here and there it took me the better part of 3 weekends. A helper and a LITTLE know-how I think it's a two day job.

Quote:Originally posted by Liquid_force:
Wow, if you have an automatic and about $500...PUT IN A 5 SPEED and a gillis valve. I used to like this car as a stock automatic, now I LOVE it.

I'm a complete and total novice when it comes to working on cars. Before I took on the trans swap my experience consisted of putting on new PRC struts, and putting in a new radiator. I'd estimate the time it took me to pull the old a4ld and put in the t5 from putting it on jack stands to rolling it out of the garage to be about 20 hours. I did it completely by myself and the only special tool I needed was a transmission jack.
[Image: biggrin.gif]

I'm planning to get my K&N in the fenderwell done this weekend. Then it's on to body work.

Quote:Originally posted by Liquid_force:
I did mine with the hydraulic clutch system, this is what I needed.

The tranny (obviously) I was patient and got a hold of one for $150 with the bellhousing
Master/Slave clutch cylinders - fluid lines
Flywheel (from any 2.3 5 speed)
Clutch/Pressure Plate
Driveshaft from t5 bird or AOD bird - mine came from a '90 crown vic
Bell housing
Clutch fork
Throwout bearing ($10) autozone
Pilot bearing ($5) autozone
Alignment tool ($3) autozone

Quote:Originally posted by Liquid_force:
My wiring changes were minimal. I still have the auto computer. The 2 things I had to come up with on my own were reverse lights and neutral start. Rev lights are easy. There's a bundle of 4 wires with a connector to the a4ld, you have to cut off the connector. Probe the wires until you find the hot one. Then touch it to the 3 remaining wires until the rev lights come on. Then you can use a pair of female bullet connectors to connect those 2 wires to the brass prongs on the tranny. You have rev. lights. You might want to silicone over the connectors on the tranny to make sure they don't corrode quickly.

For neutral safety you just use a butt connector and short the other 2 wires. The only problem is that your car will start in gear. Just get in the habit of pressing the clutch on all start ups.

The other thing you have to mess with is the speedo. The "plug" for my t5 was mechanical only so I had to remove the plug from the a4ld, and trim the snout to match the length of the one that came from the t5. Install it in the new tranny, plug in the harness and you should be good to go.

88 TC -- Dark Blue
  • 12/01 - A4LD failed - T5 install complete 1/5/02

  • Boost control valve 1/02

  • K&N cone 1/02

  • Single 2-1/2" dynomax ultraflo muff. & TP

  • gutted cat

  • A ton of maintenance items not worth mentioning
1/4 million mile club (252+ K) [Image: smile.gif] 16psi and running well

'95 Mitsubishi Montero LS 3.0L 4x4 - 138k

'89 Sunbird Corsica - 19' 4.3L OMC

[This message has been edited by Liquid_force (edited 10-12-2005).]
88 TC -- Dark Blue 283k
RIP - 9/22/07
She was a great TC and went down swinging Smile
Now -- Me: A minivan, I'll spare you the details.
Her: '09 VW Tiguan AWD 2.0T 101k

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