Final drive ratio on 99 with 5 speed - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 12-13-2015
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Final drive ratio on 99 with 5 speed

Recently picked up a 99 2.5 with a 5 speed. It runs really well, gets great gas mileage, and passed emissions like a champ. But, it seems geared a little "tall" in that I find myself having to shift out of 5th on moderate highway grades in and around Atlanta when carrying even a moderate load (like a dirt bike). Also, I'm finding 1st gear to be a little tall when creeping down rough dirt roads getting my dirt bike to the riding area, and I end up doing a lot of clutch slipping. Did these trucks come with optional rear end ratios? And if parts are available , is a bigger gear for the rear a worthwhile mod, or would it be more trouble than it's worth to fix. Thanks.
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Old 12-13-2015
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yes there were a few options for rear axles

Look here, the axle info is on the Door Tag: Ford 7.5 & 8.8 Inch Axle Tag & Door Codes

The 4 cylinder Rangers can go either way, if original buyer wanted MPG, point of 4 cylinder engine, then he may have opted for a 3.08 or 3.45 ratio, great for highway MPG, but sucks with any weight in the bed.
3.73 was the most popular mid range ratio

4.10 would pull better and not unpopular in the 4 cylinder, when ordered for Fleet work, i.e. delivery or small work trucks, around town MPG was important not long highway trips.

You should also check if you have stock tire size, adding an inch or two to tire diameter lowers the final drive, so a 3.73 might now drive like a 3.45 with a slightly taller tire, speedo would be off as well.
Stock tire size is on the same label, adding taller tires is popular with 4x4s, but there are related effects to doing that.

No, it is not to hard to swap axles or swap the ring and pinion gears, but with a 4x4 you have to do BOTH axles, they need to match.

Last edited by RonD; 12-13-2015 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 12-14-2015
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Thanks for the info. Looks like I have a 3.75. I'll live with the truck for now and see how much these two irritants bother me vs. how much I like the truck. Maybe an axle swap will do the trick if the truck is doing well otherwise.
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Old 12-14-2015
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It just occurred to me that Ford stopped selling 4x4s with 4 cylinder engines in '96 or '97.

And I see now that you do have 2WD listed and just 4 x, so miss read it.

So you do just need to change the one axle.

Stock tire should be 205/75R14 which has 26" diameter

If you were to use 195/60R14 which has 23" diameter

Your 3.73 ratio would be changed to 4.22 ratio
You also lose 1.5" of ground clearance

Speedo would be off, but it would be with axle change as well.
In '99 I believe the GEM needs to be reprogrammed when there is an axle or tire diameter change.
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Old 12-27-2015
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My problem has been solved in an unexpected way. The issue that I was most concerned with was that I could not "creep" slowly enough down rough dirt roads with my bike in the bed to get to riding areas. I was constantly having to slip the clutch to go slow enough. This truck is a "fixer upper" and next on my list was replacing all four worn out shocks, none of which could dampen a screen door. With new shocks, I can now go down the dirt roads fast enough in first gear that I am not riding the clutch. I was not expecting that result, but I'll take it!
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