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79-98 Mustang rear end?

Mrs L

New Member
Can anyone help me identify this rear end?
My husband began modifying it and added a custom housing.
I believe it has all the "good stuff" inside that makes a car go faster and is lighter in weight.
Your help would be greatly appreciated!!
Can send other pics if needed.
Rear End.jpg Rear End 2.jpg
4-lug 8.8 rear end should be for a fox body. It's set up for drum brakes, which is another hint. Long studs is a performance upgrade...or at least, a modification required by most tracks. The aluminum cover acts as a stiffener to help keep the rear end together under hard launch. Can't tell what brand it is, but I recently purchased a Ford Racing one for $175. They're not exactly cheap. To be honest, most of the money will most likely be inside the unit. Gears, possibly upgraded carbon fiber clutches, maybe even an aftermarket carrier. Judging by the 4-lug axles, I would guess it's a standard 28-spline dif/axles. Hard to tell if the axles are aftermarket "forged" or just factory steel. They also make 31 spline axles in 4-lug. It would be nice to get a closer look...pop off the cover and maybe pull an axle, if they look like they're forged. Depending on upgrades, around here that rear end would bring $300 at an absolute minimum and around $600 depending on whether or not the axles are forged and the carrier inside is upgraded with an aftermarket or 31 spline unit of some sort. It would also be worth removing the cover to check the gear ratio. The ring gear will be stamped on the edge. With all the work he did to this, I'm betting it has a nice low gear, such as 3.73 or 4.11.

Mrs L

New Member
Thank you bronco junkie for your quick and detailed response! If I get someone to take off the aluminum cover and took some pictures - would that help you to know for certain what's inside? I just remember my husband telling me how lucky he was to find this axle and how much money he saved-opposed to buying a new one.


Mrs L
By pulling the cover, you can spin the axel (very easy to do) around until you can read the stamp on the edge of the ring gear. You'll most likely see a number like 327, 355, 373,410, 411, or 456. The higher the number, the lower the gear and probably more desirable to someone looking to buy a rear end. The upgraded/lower gear isn't very expensive in itself, but it's not easy to swap them, so people will usually pay more if the work has already been done. Also, a look inside will tell us if it has a stock-style or aftermarket carrier. It will be a little more difficult to find out if a stock-style 31-spline carrier is in it. The passenger car/mustang 8.8 rear ends had 28-spline carriers/axles. A popular upgrade is to pull a 31-spline stock carrier out of an explorer rear end and buy new aftermarket forged 31-spline axles to match. I don't have a lot of experience with this upgrade, but I figure it may be a little more difficult to check unless someone pulled an axle out. That's a good 30-minute job to take one out, check it, and put it back in.

But I can tell you that you need to pull the cover to check the ring gear ratio. If you sell the rear end, that's the first question someone will ask. Hope this helps!