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Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

Created by Neal Jimenez
Date Created: 4/27/2022
Last Updated: 4/27/2022

When shopping for an intake manifold for the 2015-2022 Mustang GT, there are many options to choose from. LMR ranks and reviews the best Coyote intake manifolds to make your choice much easier.

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  • Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

Since the birth of the Coyote in the 2011 Ford Mustang GT, this 5.0l engine has become a staple of the performance Mustang lineup. Over the last couple of years, this engine has undergone tweaks and improvements through various models like the Boss 302, Mach 1, GT350, and Ford Performance’s Cobra Jet. One of the main improvements over the multiple generations of coyotes is the improvements to the intake manifold designs for the various generations and special edition mustangs. Below we will dive into some of these intake manifolds providing information on the compatibility, benefits, the expected horsepower that these intake manifolds might provide, and a list of supporting modifications that might be needed when installing these intake manifolds to your coyote-powered Mustang or project car.

Some of the most popular intake manifolds available for the 5.0L engine fall into two different styles, short-runner, and long-runner intake manifolds. The intake manifolds that will be highlighted are below:


  • Ford Performance Boss 302 Intake Manifold
  • 2018+ Mustang Gen 3 Intake Manifold
  • Ford Performance Cobra Jet Intake Manifold
  • Ford Performance GT350 Intake Manifold Intake
  • Edelbrock Victor II Coyote Intake Manifold

    Ford Performance Boss 302 Intake Manifold

    Upon the release of the 2012 Boss 302 Mustang, Ford provided a noticeable upgrade to the engine, and this was the beautiful intake manifold that adorned the top of the Coyote’s DOHC heads. This high-rise intake manifold was notably different in design from the stock intake manifold included on the GT 5.0L engine.

    Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide - Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

    Compatability

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed or replaced with a Boss 302 compatible strut tower bar.
  • Factory Mustang GT throttle body can be reused.
  • Mustang GT with automatic transmissions will require a cold air intake with the extra provision for the aspirator vacuum tube.
  • Custom tune required.
  • Provision to the EVAP sensor connection is required. M9424M50BR-HDW can be used to help with the installation of the intake.

  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • This is an OEM replacement and will install without additional modification

  • 2015-2022 Mustang GT
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed.
  • Engine mounts that will lower the engine and/or modification to hood bracing for additional clearance are required.
  • Custom tune required.

  • What Are The Benefits Of The Ford Performance Boss Intake Manifold?

    There are many benefits to installing the Boss 302 intake manifold to your Coyote-powered Mustang. The Boss 302 intake manifold is designed to take advantage of the high RPM characteristics of the Mustang 5.0 engine. The short runner design of the intake manifold is designed to allow a shorter path for the airflow improving the high RPM performance of the Coyote. This short runner intake is great for Mustangs that have added a supercharger or turbo!

  • Short runners for improved airflow, especially on turbo and supercharged Mustangs
  • Large plenum for increased air volume over gen 1 and gen 2 intake manifolds
  • Increased high RPM horsepower band
  • Clean underhood appearance
  • Increased RPM capability due to shorter runners

  • How Much Horsepower Does A Boss Intake Manifold Add To Your Mustang?

    Increasing horsepower on your Coyote by installing the Boss 302 intake manifold will vary on many factors, including the model or generation of the engine, tune, fuel type, and other modifications, including long tube headers and types of forced induction.

  • 2011-2014 Mustang GT - 20-35 horsepower can be expected with the custom tune when installed to a factory car. The Boss 302 intake manifold is better suited to increase horsepower when combined with turbo, ported cylinder heads, aftermarket cams, or superchargers.
  • 2015-2022 Mustang GT - Due to the charge motion control valves, commonly referred to as CMCV or IMRC on the Mustang, installation on a nearly stock Gen 2/3 Coyote may lose torque and horsepower. The Boss 302 intake manifold is better suited to increase horsepower when combined with turbo, ported cylinder heads, aftermarket cams, or superchargers.

  • What Supporting Mods Should I Add With A Boss Intake Manifold Installation?

    The Boss 302 intake will not be the best option for a stock coyote engine but can be a great performing intake for Mustang 5.0 with heavy bolt-on modifications and forced induction. Below are some of the supporting medications that would be recommended when installing a Boss 302 intake manifold. These modifications will help improve the efficiency of the intake manifold and the dyno rear wheel horsepower (RWHP) that the engine will produce.

  • Long Tube Headers
  • Supercharger or Turbocharger
  • Handheld Tuner and custom tune
  • Larger throttle body
  • Aftermarket Camshafts
  • Ported cylinder heads
  • Ported intake manifold

  • 2018+ GT Gen 3 Mustang GT Intake Manifold

    With the introduction of the 2018 Mustang, the introduction of the most powerful naturally aspirated 5.0L engine in a Mustang was released. People quickly realized that the additional power of the gen 3 coyote was coming from the increase in compression ratio and dual injection, and a revision of the stock intake manifold. This stock intake manifold improves on the previous success of the GT350 intake manifold with improvements that boast the largest intake volume and runner cross-section size of all the intake manifolds on the production 5.0L engine.

    Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide - Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

    Compatability

    2011-2014 Mustang GT & 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • Removal of the charge motion control valves actuators
  • Requires IMRC lockouts - MMR-478911
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner
  • Modification to EVAP vacuum lines

  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • Requires IMRC lockouts - MMR-478911 or modification of the factory wiring harness to adapt the wiring harness to the 2018 CMCV actuators.
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner
  • Modification to EVAP vacuum lines

  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • Factory replacement and will not require additional parts

  • What Are The Benefits Of A Mustang Gen 3 Intake Manifold?

    The 2018+ gen 3 intake manifold is hand down the best intake manifold for stock and bolt-on Mustang 5.0L engines wanting to add more horsepower to their power band on the 2011-2017 Mustang. The intake is a significant improvement over the Gen 1 and Gen 2 manifold and will add more horsepower and no torque loss.

  • Long intake runners for increased torque
  • Large diameter intake runners for increased airflow over gen 1 and 2 intake manifold
  • Increased RPM powerband for 2011-2017 Mustangs
  • Stock appearance for sleeper performance
  • How Much Horsepower Does A Gen 3 Mustang Intake Manifold Add?

    The 2018 Gen 3 intake manifold is a great upgrade for the 2011-2014 Mustang 5.0 and 2015-2017 Mustang 5.0 utilizing the typical bolt-on headers, cold air intakes, and throttle bodies. Typical gains in horsepower will vary depending on tuners, fuel, location, and modifications but significant gains can be expected.

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • 10-20 RWHP can be expected with little to no loss in torque
  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • Due to the calibration and design of the Boss 302, this manifold can be used on the 302 but the factory Boss 302 intake manifold is better suited for the characteristics of the high revving engine.
  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • 10-20 RWHP can be expected with little to no loss in torque
  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • This is a stock replacement for the 2018 model year, no additional gains will be expected.

  • What Supporting Mods Should I Add With A Gen 3 Intake Manifold Installation?

    The normal supporting modifications can be added to the 2018 gen 3 to help bolster the power than can be produced by the intake manifold. There are a couple of additional parts that can aid in the simplification of the 2018+ intake manifold on the 2011-2017 Mustang.

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • If you are utilizing a cold air intake on your 2011-2014 Mustang, LRS-400352 can be used to correct the angle of the intake cold air intake tube.
  • For additional water neck clearance when installing on the 2011-2014 gen 1 coyote use LRS-9424AAHDW.
  • Larger diameter throttle body. You will want to use a larger throttle body designed for the 2011-2014 Mustang when replacing the throttle body with a larger unit.
  • Porting of the intake manifold for additional flow

  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • If you are utilizing a cold air intake on your 2015-2017 Mustang, LRS-400352 can be used to correct the angle of the intake cold air intake tube.
  • For additional water neck clearance when installing on the 2015-2017 gen 2 coyote use LRS-9424AAHDW.
  • Larger diameter throttle body, you will want to use a larger throttle body designed for the 2015-2017 Mustang when replacing the throttle body with a larger unit.
  • Porting of the intake manifold for additional flow

  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • While these intakes come installed from Ford, additional modifications can be done to further improve the performance and power that the intake can produce in stock form.
  • Porting of the intake manifold for increased airflow.
  • Larger throttle body designed for the 2018+ Mustang.

  • Ford Performance Cobra Jet Intake Manifold

    With the introduction of the Coyote engine, Ford Performance manufactured a special edition naturally aspirated Cobra Jet race car that featured a special intake manifold designed for high RPM horsepower up to 7750 RPM. This intake is similar in design to the Boss 302 intake but with modifications for additional airflow. These modifications include an oval throttle body bore and a larger plenum when compared to the Boss 302 intake manifold.

    Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide - Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

    Compatability

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • Custom tune and tuner required
  • Requires Ford Performance M-9926-CJ65, M-9926-MSVT, or M-9926-SCJ Throttle Body
  • Requires Cobra Jet specific cold air intake
  • Provision to the EVAP sensor connection is required. M9424M50BR-HDW can be used to help with the installation of the intake.
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed or replaced with a Boss 302 compatible strut tower bar.

  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • A custom tune and tuner is required.

  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • Hood clearancing (modification to the stock hood), aftermarket hood, and/or lower engine mounts are required.
  • A custom tune and tuner are required.
  • Requires Ford Performance M-9926-CJ65, M-9926-MSVT, or M-9926-SCJ Throttle Body
  • Requires Cobra Jet specific cold air intake
  • Provision to the EVAP sensor connection is required. M9424M50BR-HDW can be used to help with the installation of the intake.
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed or replaced with a Boss 302 compatible strut tower bar.

  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • Hood clearancing (modification to the stock hood), aftermarket hood, and/or lower engine mounts are required.
  • A custom tune and tuner are required.
  • 2018+ Mustangs require specific 2018+ Mustang dual blade throttle body
  • Requires Cobra Jet specific cold air intake
  • Provision to the EVAP sensor connection is required. M9424M50BR-HDW can be used to help with the installation of the intake.
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed or replaced with a Boss 302 compatible strut tower bar.

  • What Are The Benefits Of A Cobra Jet Intake Manifold?

    The Cobra Jet intake manifold boasts the best high RPM performance of all the intake manifolds. This intake is designed to utilize the upper power band, which is normally used in competition use drag racing or fast track road racing. This intake is especially potent with Mustangs running superchargers and turbochargers.

  • Short runners for increasing high RPM power up to 7750 RPM
  • Large 635 intake plenum volume
  • Increased performance of stock Coyote intakes when combined with boost. Designed for boost pressure up to 20 PSI
  • Clean underhood appearance

  • How Much Horsepower Does An Cobra Jet Add To A Mustang?

    As with the Boss 302 Manifold, the Ford Performance Cobra Jet will shine when being combined with power adders like turbo and centrifugal superchargers. The short runner intake design is designed to be a high rpm powerband with a focus on peak horsepower gains. While this is the best short runner intake manifold to run on a mild bolt-on Mustang 5.0, it will be better suited for full bolt and forced induction.

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • 10-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold. This intake has been shown to lose torque over the stock intake manifold.
  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • 5-10 horsepower over the stock intake manifold can be expected.
  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • 8-15 peak horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold. This intake has been shown to lose torque over the stock intake manifold.
  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • 5-10 peak horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold. This intake has been shown to lose torque over the stock intake manifold.
  • What Supporting Mods Should I Add With An Cobra Jet Intake Manifold?

    The cobra jet intake manifold will require the use of a dual blade or single blade oval throttle body for all applications. This intake will benefit from additional medication including the following.

  • Long Tube Headers
  • Upgraded camshafts
  • Ported cylinder heads
  • Centrifugal supercharger or turbocharger

  • Ford Performance GT350 Intake Manifold

    With the introduction of the Shelby GT350 came yet another intake manifold for Ford designed for high RPM performance. The GT350 manifold was designed by Ford for the increased engine airflow capacity and high RPM operation of the Voodoo 5.2 GT350 flat-plane crank engine. The GT350 intake was a great bolt-on improvement to the Gen 1 and Gen 2 Coyote engines until the release of the 2018 Mustang gen 3 Coyote engine.

    Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide - Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

    Compatability

    2011-2014 Mustang GT & 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • Removal of the charge motion control valves actuators
  • Requires IMRC lockouts - MMR-477191
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner
  • Modification to EVAP vacuum lines
  • Throttle body adapter to use the 2011-2014 Mustang GT throttle body on the GT350 intake manifold.

  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner
  • Modification to EVAP vacuum lines
  • Throttle body adapter to use the 2015-2017 Mustang GT throttle body on the GT350 intake manifold or GT350 throttle body
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner

  • 2018+ Mustang GT
  • Requires IMRC lockouts - MMR-477191 or modification of the factory wiring harness to adapt the wiring harness to the 2015-2017 CMCV actuators connections.
  • Requires custom tune and handheld tuner
  • Modification to EVAP vacuum lines
  • Throttle body adapter to use the 2018-2022 Mustang GT throttle body on the GT350 intake manifold.

  • What Are The Benefits Of A GT350 Intake Manifold?

    The GT350 intake manifold has many performance attributes that make it a strong performance option for the 5.0L Coyote engine. The GT350 intake manifold features many improvements over the 2011-2014 gen 1 and 2015-2017 gen 2 5.0L intake manifolds to improve performance. Listed below are specifics on the GT350 intake manifold.

  • Long intake runners to improve low-end torque - 16.1”
  • Large intake runner cross diameter - 4.1”
  • Large intake volume for increased high RPM capacity - 671.2 ci
  • CMCV/IMRC valves to improve low-end torque, emissions, idle, and increase high rpm performance.
  • Stock style appearance similar to factory 5.0L intake manifolds

  • How Much Horsepower Does An GT350 Intake Add To A Mustang?

    The GT350 intake manifold is a significant performance upgrade for the 2011-2017 Mustang GT engines. Due to the similar design to the 2018+ Gen 3 intake, the performance improvement is minimal to null.

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • 10-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold when combined with a custom tune.
  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • Due to the calibration and design of the Boss 302, this manifold can be used on the 302, but the factory Boss 302 intake manifold is better suited for the characteristics of the high revving engine.
  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • 10-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold when combined with a custom tune.
  • 2018-2022 Mustang GT
  • Due to the improvements made to the 2018+ Mustang stock gen 3 intake manifold, most dyno tests show that the GT350 intake manifold will not make extra horsepower.

  • What Supporting Mods Should I Add With An GT350 Intake Manifold?

    As with other intake manifolds and performance parts, performance potential can be improved by adding these supporting modifications. The GT350 intake manifold is great in stock to lightly bolt-on 2011-2017 Mustangs but extra horsepower can be added with the addition of the following parts:

  • Cold air intake
  • Headers
  • Nitrous, supercharger, or turbocharger
  • Porting of the intake manifold, throttle body. or cylinder headers
  • Larger throttle body if using GT throttle body adapter
  • Aftermarket camshafts

  • Edelbrock Victor II Coyote Intake Manifold

    The Edelbrock Victor II Coyote intake manifold is a great intake manifold for the Mustang that is looking to have a very robust intake that will handle high boost pressures and large amounts of nitrous. The aluminum construction is the best option for Mustangs that want to run peak horsepower with power adders.

    Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide - Best Mustang 5.0L Intake Manifolds For Coyote Engines - Full Guide

    Compatability

    2011-2014 Mustang GT & 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed.
  • Custom tuning and tuner required.
  • Factory 80mm throttle body is compatible, but 90mm throttle body is recommended.
  • 2015-2022 Mustang GT
  • Mustang GT with factory strut tower bar will need to be removed.
  • Custom tuning and tuner required.
  • Factory 80mm throttle body is compatible, but 90mm throttle body is recommended.
  • 2018+ Mustangs will require 2011-2017 intake manifold to cylinder head gaskets.

  • What Are The Benefits Of A Edelbrock Victor II Coyote Intake?

    The Edelbrock Victor II intake manifold is the perfect choice for the Mustang running extremely high boost pressures and nitrous where damage to plastic manifolds may exist from nitrous backfires or high internal manifold pressures. Below are some specific benefits of the Edelbrock intake:

  • 90mm throttle body opening
  • Short runner for increased high rpm performance
  • Large plenum volume
  • Emission component connections
  • Pre-drilled nitrous direct injection bosses
  • Robust aluminum construction

  • How Much Horsepower Does An Edelbrock Victor II Add To A Mustang?

    Edelbrock claims gains of 16 horsepower and 27 ft/lbs of torque on Mustangs with a powerband of 1500-1700 RPM. This intake will be better suited for Mustangs looking to achieve high rpm performance with heavy bolt-ons, superchargers, turbochargers, or nitrous rather than stock and light bolt-on Mustangs.

    2011-2014 Mustang GT
  • 5-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold when combined with a custom tune but will be better suited for highly modified Mustangs, including nitrous and forced induction.
  • 2012-2013 Boss 302
  • 5-10 horsepower can be expected over the stock Boss 302 intake due to the increased flow of the Edelbrock intake.
  • 2015-2017 Mustang GT
  • 5-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold when combined with a custom tune but will be better suited for highly modified Mustangs, including nitrous and forced induction.
  • 2018-2022 Mustang GT
  • 5-15 horsepower can be expected over the stock intake manifold when combined with a custom tune but will be better suited for highly modified Mustangs, including nitrous and forced induction.

  • What Supporting Mods Should I Add With An Edelbrock Victor II Intake Manifold?

    The Edelbrock intake will be best when combined with heavy modifications as suggested below.

  • 90mm throttle body is highly recommended
  • Nitrous, turbo, or supercharger
  • Ported cylinder heads
  • Aftermarket high-performance camshafts
  • Longtube headers
  • Stroker or increased displacements

  • Overall, the correct intake manifold for your Coyote-powered Mustangs comes down to the power level you are looking to achieve, the powerband you are looking to have, and the modifications you are looking to install on your car. The short intake runner intake, Boss 302, Cobra Jet, and Victor II, are designed to shift your power band to the upper RPM with peak gains coming at the upper RPM range. The GT350 and Gen 3 intakes are designed to take advantage of the long intake runners that help to provide a mix of excellent low-end torque and great high-end power.


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    Thumbnail image of the author of this article, Neal Jimenez.

    About the Author

    Neal has owned a 1996 3.8L, 2003 3.8L (Cobra Swapped), 2003 GT, 1998 3.8L (4.6L SOHC Swapped), 1990 GT Hatchback, 1990 GT Convertible, 2006 GT Single Turbo, and 2011 Twin Turbo/Cammed GT. Read more...