Ford 390 V8 Engine

The 390 V8 engine was first introduced in 1961 and was Ford’s chance to jump ahead of the all-new Chevrolet 409 that was introduced later the same year. The Ford 390 produced a lot more horsepower than the 409 with its top end performance engine putting out a respectable 401 horsepower in its first year of production (41 more horsepower than the high-end Chevy 409).

The 390 was used by Ford and Mercury in a large number of their production cars as well as several trucks. Unfortunately, most car enthusiasts were more excited about Chevrolet’s 409 simply because of its larger size which diminished a lot of publicity for the Ford 390. Even today the Chevy Impalas with a 409 sell for twice and even three times the amount than a Ford Galaxie with a 390. Plus the Beach Boys never wrote any songs about the 390 V8:-)

Today the 390 is still a very popular motor due to the fact that it is very easy to get parts for these engines that can easily push the horsepower into the 500+ horsepower range if the motor is built for racing.

Engine Specifications

1961 - 1965 with 4 Barrel Carb (Lower Horsepower Model)

Max Brake Horsepower: 300 @ 4600 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 2800 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 9.6 (1964 and 1965 compression increased to 10.1)
Firing Order: 15426378

1961, 1963, 1965 with 4 Barrel Carb (Higher Horsepower Model)

Max Brake Horsepower: 330 @ 5000 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 3200 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 9.6 (1961) - 10.5 (1963) - 10.1 (1965)
Firing Order: 15426378

1961 - 1962 with 4 Barrel Carb

Max Brake Horsepower: 375 @ 6000 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 2600 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 11.1
Firing Order: 15426378

1961 - 1962 with 3 x 2 Barrel Carbs

Max Brake Horsepower: 401 @ 6000 rpm
Max Torque: 430 @ 3500 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 11.1
Firing Order: 15426378

1966 - 1969 with 2 Barrel Carb

Max Brake Horsepower: 265 @ 4400 rpm (Standard Transmission) 270 - 275 @ 4400 rpm (Automatic Transmission)
Max Torque: 401 @ 2600 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 9.5
Firing Order: 15426378

1966 - 1968 with 4 Barrel Carb

Max Brake Horsepower: 315 @ 4600 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 2800 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 10.5
Firing Order: 15426378

1967 - 1968 with 4 Barrel Carb

Max Brake Horsepower: 320 @ 4600 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 3200 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 10.5
Firing Order: 15426378

1966 - 1968 with 4 Barrel Carb "GT Model"

Max Brake Horsepower: 335 @ 4800 rpm 320 - 325 @ 4800 rpm in 1968
Max Torque: 427 @ 3200 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 10.5
Firing Order: 15426378

1969 with 4 Barrel Carb

Max Brake Horsepower: 320 @ 4800 rpm
Max Torque: 427 @ 3200 rpm
Stroke: 3.781
Bore: 4.0468
Compression: 10.5
Firing Order: 15426378
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