Needed best 4.6 intake manifold for 97 GT


New Member
Sep 11, 2019
I have a 1997 Mustang GT,4.6 ,owned since new.40 k miles.The intake manifold started to leak at the thermostat.
Went to the dealer, the updated Ford/Motor-craft intake is obsolete and unavailable.
I see Dorman and API makes one but the screws that hold the injectors look weak.
So which aftermarket brand is best? Failing that can I use a Ford PI unit as a straight bolt on ,no other upgrades planned.
Only want to fix it once.
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Founding Member
Jan 29, 2002
Have you considered upgrading to PI heads at the same time. I'm not sure that different manifolds will make much difference with the stock heads.


Active Member
Jul 2, 2019
Eh, Dorman one should be fine. I've got an even cheaper knock off on mine ($135 special off Amazon, same design as the Dorman) and it's actually pretty solid where it counts (COP screw holes are weak, but this car doesn't have COPs). No issues in the 6 months it's been on.

I did try a PI intake on my NPI heads and never could get the coolant ports to seal correctly. If you're going to go that route, get the heads/cams and do it all.
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New Member
Sep 11, 2019
I think whoever makes the dorman and API brand, makes them all.
The hardware is the same, probably from China.
I’d like to find an New ford upgraded one, the one Ford used to repair this issue in the early 2000’s ,but they are sold out/ obsolete
Thanks for your input


Active Member
Jul 12, 2018
+1 Tsemmett
Hello Pete,
Ford dropped the ball, there..all 96’-98’4.6L 2V NPI Motors affected.
Haven’t seen one in a while. Looks obvious that 97’ is your pride & joy.
I’d swapped out over 15 in my own shop, including my personal 96’ GT. Ford list was 460$ for that Intake, (2007). Be happy they’re not available now, lol.
I’ve used Ford’s, once backordering, was forced to use the Dorman part, as well as another Mfg. All (3) types functioned appropriately. Upgrade hardware, that’s easily accomplished. I usually replace fasteners.
Only differences between the OE part and Fords response to overwhelming Dealer & Tech coolant leak TSB’s (96’-98’ stock, non PI replacement) was the aluminum coolant crossover.
Remaining Intake material was a revised polymer matrix composite.
Swap is easy and will take an hour or two moving slowly with basic hand tools.
Though appearances suggest it’s a PI Intake, It is not. As suggested above, PI Heads are designed for a PI manifold. Will it fit? Yes. Correctly? No. Present course, you should opt for a 96’-98’ OE replacement.
Something else to consider:
Though more costly, I’d dropped a few links below with information regarding the PI Intake/Head/Cam swap. The motor runs much more efficiently, mileage improves, 50HP gains are not unusual.
Cams have a large role in this, but geared for all driving types.
99’- 04’ factory PI motors have dished pistons yielding a 9:1 C.R. using the same PI parts you’d be adding, while the Compression ratio is at 10.5:1 with 96-98’ Motors, giving an edge on gains.
Stock, 96’s, 97’s 98’s were 210HP, 215HP, 225HP. Same motors, 96’-98’ with a PI swap: 97’’s around 260-270-280 HP. Drivetrain losses aside, you’d still be planting at the tires more HP/TQ than you previously made at the Crank. Better throttle response, mileage, HP/TQ, less emissions...and running all Ford parts.
Around 230HP/290Ft/lbs of Torque, at the wheels. More than the 99’-04’s.

Hope that helps!