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How to Identify a World Class T5 Transmission

by Floyd Drake III

The Borg Warner T5 five-speed manual transmission has been used by most auto manufacturers in many different models since 1982. Two versions of the T5 exist, the World Class (WC) and non-World Class (NWC). T5s are commonly found in Ford Mustangs, Chevrolet Camaros, Pontiac Firebirds and Chevrolet S-10 pickups. The WC designation was first used the 1985 5.0 liter Ford Mustang and then on Camaros/Firebirds in 1988. Chevy S-10 use started in 1993. T5 production ended for production vehicles in 1995. Identification requires both ID tag decoding and visual differentiation between WC and NWC models.


Find the ID tag attached to one of the transmission's tail-housing bolts. The tag has a five to seven-digit model number, with the final three-digits, the model application number, being the most important. The number follows this pattern: 13-52-XXX.


Match the model application number to a T5 model number listing similar to one found on the Mongosgarage website. All T5 ID codes begin with "13-52" the final three digits are the numbers to be referenced to this listing.


Identify the differences between the WC and NWC T5 transmissions. According to the FlatheadV8 website, the main differences are in the bearings and synchros, however, there is one external difference-the front counter-shaft bearing retainer. The NWC has a one-piece design that looks like a large freeze-plug and the WC has a two-piece design resembling two concentric circles. An illustration appears on the FlatheadV8 website.

About the Author

A native of New Haven, Conn., Floyd Drake III began writing in 1984. His work has appeared in the "New Haven Register," Medford's "Mail-Tribune" and the "Ashland Daily Tidings." Drake studied journalism at Southern Connecticut State University. After working as a reporter in Oregon, he is now based back home in New Haven.

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