by Rob Wagner
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Borg-Warner manufactured the Tremec T5 five-speed manual transmission for numerous American-made automobiles and a limited number of Japanese automobiles. Borg-Warner based the T5 on the older version of the T4 and built it in a lightweight aluminum case.
Ford used the T5 transmission extensively in the 1979-1993 Ford Mustangs. Ford also used the T5 in the Mercury Capri, Ford Thunderbird, and the Australian Ford Falcon. American Motors Corporation (AMC) equipped its Spirit, Concord, Jeep and Eagle models with the T5. Chevrolet put the T5 in its S-10, Blazer and Camaro compact pickup. Nissan 280ZX and 300ZX models from 1982 to 1986 also used the T5.
Ford put the first T5 transmissions in Mustangs from 1979 to 1983 powered by a 5-liter V8 engine. The engine, along with the transmission, developed a healthy 305 pound-feet of torque. Torque is the torque energy created within the engine and transmitted to the rear axle through the transmission to give the car its acceleration. Gear ratios were 2.95 (1st gear), 1.94 (2nd), 1.34 (3rd), 1.00 (4th), and 0.63 (5th).
Ford used an improved T5 manual transmission in its 1990 and later vehicles, with an emphasis on the Mustang. Many parts contained nickel for stronger gears. Gears 3 and 4 featured carbon fiber content for a smoother shifting. Maximum torque was 310 foot-pounds.