Mustang & Other Fords


This page will discuss the styles of convertible top motors used in Mustangs and other Ford vehicles from 1965 through 2004. The standard Method 1 rebuild price for any of these models is $75 + $10 shipping. An additional core fee of $65 is required if using Method 2.


Number 1: This style motor was used in the early Mustang and Ford convertibles from about 1965 through somewhere in the early 1970s. It's easily identified by the reservoir fill hole being located on the side instead of on the end of the reservoir at the 12 o'clock position. The reservoir is on the left. The pump housing is in the center and the drive motor is on the right. The motor uses three wires. Power is applied on the red wire to raise the top. Power is applied on the yellow wire to lower the top. The black wire is the ground wire. It must be connected to the car body for the motor to operate. This model uses two acorn style rubber mounts and two grommet style rubber mounts. Each grommet style mount has a hole in the center for a mounting bolt. The most common failures I see for this style motor are worn out brushes, shorted armatures and burned open armatures. Sometimes the motor and pump are completely packed with hydraulic fluid which has turned to gel and corroded everything.




Number 2: This style replaced Number 1 and was used until around 1987. The only significant differences are the reservoir fill hole was relocated to the end and it now uses four acorn style rubber mounts. Failure modes are all identical to Number 1.










Number 3: This style replaced Number 2 and was used through the 1993 model year. All the mounting dimensions and electrical connectors remained the same, but the pump housing and motor changed. Notice the aluminum pump housing is about 3x longer than the previous models and the motor was made more compact. Typical failures are burned open armatures and worn out brushes. 1993 was the last year of the 3 wire top motor in Mustangs. 





Number 4: Starting in 1994, the Mustang shifted over to a more modern permanent magnet style motor. The mounting dimensions, rubber mounts and the reservoir remained the same. The aluminum pump housing went back to the thin style. The electrical connector was changed to ensure an older style motor would not plug into the car's harness. The motor got larger but more efficient. It utilizes two large magnets mounted on the interior circumference of the housing instead of copper wire coils. This style motor needs only two wires. Each wire can be either power or ground. When red gets power, yellow is ground and the top will raise. When yellow gets power, red is ground and the top will lower. The application of power and ground is controlled by the top motor relays. Now, nothing personal, but I see people on ebay trying to sell old style motors as fitting a 1994 and up Mustang. If you try to install an older 3 wire motor the first thing you should notice is the plugs don't match up. If you're crazy enough to cut the connectors off and twist the wires together, your second clue will be massive amounts of current going through the wires the first time you try to operate the top and maybe even smoke as your car tries to burn to the ground. Please don't do this. Typical failure modes are worn out brushes, bad armatures and cracked magnets.




Number 5: This style motor was used starting in 1999 and went through at least 2004. I'm not certain about post 2004. It remains a permanent magnet style two wire motor. The rubber mounts, mounting dimensions and the electrical connector remained the same as the 1994-1998 version. As for outward appearance, everything changed. The entire assembly is about the same length but much smaller in overall size and weight. Same failure modes as Number 4.

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