Ford Ranger Powered by 6.5 HP Harbor Freight Engine Might be the Coolest Swap Ever
Harbor Freight really does sell a little bit of everything. From lawn and garden equipment all the way to tools that one might find in a mechanic shop and even the occasional engine, Harbor Freight is known as the home to affordably priced tools and equipment. While there are definitely gems hidden in the value-priced store, we never thought that we would see a Harbor Freight engine under the hood of a roadworthy vehicle.
When the owner of a 1999 Ford Ranger had an engine that lost its luster after about 200,000 miles, he saw things differently, though. Following the loss of the original 2.3L 4-cylinder under the hood of his Ranger, one individual decided to modify the truck to take on a new engine.
That new engine would be one of the small 6.5 hp engines found at Harbor Freight that one would purchase to power something like a go-kart or a lawn mower. This particular engine wasn’t being used for one of those applications, though, as a lot of modifications would be made for the power plant to fit under the hood of the small pickup truck. When combined with a go-kart clutch and a five-speed transmission from an older Ford Ranger, the combination actually made this truck nothing short of roadworthy. Sure, it might’ve been a little bit loud and probably underpowered compared to the original power plant but we have to admit that we were impressed at what that small engine could do.
The application is pretty slick as the truck has a custom dashboard and racing seats. It even has the pull start rope from the engine under the hood going through the dashboard.
The owner says that the engine is simply a placeholder for the time being as he plans on replacing it with an 18 hp Duramax engine. While this also sounds like a low horsepower application, after seeing how the 6 hp engine drives, we would think that tripling that output and improving the torque with the likes of a small diesel engine would probably be pretty interesting to see.