2016 Tech Pack Reliability/GT350 buying advice

mpetrosi

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I’m in the market for a GT350 and have been lurking around this forum for the past few days. Was going to buy an E92 M3 but then test drove a GT350 and fell in love. My budget is $40k, $42k max. I could afford a more expensive car but have aggressive investment goals and am not keen on financing the car. I want a large screen so I’m either looking at a 2016 tech pack or a higher mileage 2017 at this price point.

-I’ve read up on the tech pack vs track pack threads. Seems like if you aren’t tracking it a lot, there is not a need for the coolers. I plan on tracking only 2-3 times per year. If I start tracking more, I could add the parts at a reasonable cost. Is this all correct? I test drove a 2016 tech pack and loved the non Recaro seats, so no Recaro’s is not a deal breaker for me.

-Is there a concern with the reliability of 2016 tech packs because they are missing some of these components? Or are they similar to track pack and 2017+ reliability in terms of daily driving?

-Should I worry about buying a car with over 40k miles?

-What’s a reasonable price (as of February 2021) to pay for a 2016 tech pack or high mileage 2017? I test drove a 2016 tech pack with 24k miles, dealer was asking $45k and said he would do $43.5k. Not going to buy this car because it’s black and I’m sick of owning black cars. Dealer also knew nothing about the car. Definitely would want to buy private party if I can.





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key01

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You should be able to buy a low mile 2017 with all of the track hardware, electronic package, recaros, for $50K if you search. That's what I would do. You may be disappointed in your 1-2 days of track service with a car that goes into limp mode on you more than you would like. Adding those components later to a non-track car will not be easy or cheap.
 

NoXiDe

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I'm probably the best person on this forum who drove the tech beyond it's limits without adding any coolers and etc. Fun fact, it has it all now.

I personally think if you're not grandpa taking it out to church then you're making a mistake getting into a tech. I learned my lesson but then again I wasn't aware how important cooling for the trans would be. Unless, you plan on putting the funds at a later date to upgrade the components that will let you run a full session at a track event.

I only plan on tracking 2-3 times a year and I have a tech pack but never did tracking since instead of 20 minute session your cut to 10-15 minutes due to hitting limp on the transmission. Let's forget the track part of this discussion, what about how you'll hold the rest of the gt350s you'll hang out with because you'll hit limp forcing the whole group to wait. I'll share what I spent on my upgrades to make it a track edition GT350.

Costs to get to Track Edition
$1,200 GT350 2017 Track Trans with 10K miles (steal price from another member) <- normally goes for 4K
$800 GT350 Track FP Coolers
$1,532.71 Trans/Cooler Install Labor
-couldn't stop there had to get the Diff Cooler as well too
$1,100 Full Tilt Boogie Racing Differential Cooler Kit
$2,161.58 Differential Cooler Install Labor
tally, $6.794.29.

As far as the rest of the mods, loads more and at this point I'm proud to say it's better than an R. That's my own opinion though. :)

I hope the above helps give you an idea if it's worth holding out for more funds to get into a track edition. I think it would be a great idea.

Edit:
Just realized you made a comment about buying a car with 40k miles over. I'll be honest, you're buying into a race platform and the mileage on the vehicle isn't a concern. This is a big HOWEVER, If you're not going to get extended warranty, please be prepared to have 20K for reserves to replace the engine at some point in it's lifetime. Could be the moment after you drive it or it could be 6 years later.
 
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Lurker_350

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I mostly agree with the statements above, but have really enjoyed my tech pack in its typical use case (street). I am not an experienced track driver and hit limp mode in 12 minutes on my first outing on a very tight, momentum track while trying to limit revs/short shift, and then hit limp mode in less than 10 minutes in the 2 subsequent sessions when not trying to short shift as much.

@NoXiDe has a good list of costs to upgrade a 2016 tech pack, but if you want to tackle yourself you could remove ~ $3600 of labor - but you won't find a track pack transmission for less than $2500 (his price was really good). You could also use an external pump with a wired switch or thermostat, but that is much less OEM. I think my major issue with a non-track transmission and external pump is that the only available inlets/outlets are very close and you probably aren't effectively cooling the transmission - more likely just cooling the temp sensor to prevent limp mode.

If I had it to do over again, I would have bought the 2017 (Ford didn't release the info on a combined tech/track pack before I bought mine) - but if you can save $5 to $6k on a low mileage tech with the "stigma" - I think it is a good value and you can upgrade to what you need. I have too much analysis paralysis and still haven't tackled cooling upgrades.

My tech pack is certainly not track capable, but I am not on track often. I have never hit limp mode in South Texas on the street - even when having fun in the hill country at > 105 F ambient (trans temp usually maxes at 230-ish on street). You could, but it would take some effort.

Good luck!
 
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mpetrosi

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Thanks for all the replies and insight. Seems like if I had to chose between a 2016 tech pack vs a high mileage 2017 at the same price point, it would be better to get a high mileage 2017 (assuming PPI checks out). Unless I can snag a low mileage tech pack for mid-high 30's. Which seems unlikely? Hopefully I can find one with extended warranty from Ford. It seems like a hassle to add the components later on, and I'm not very mechanically inclined so need to pay someone for labor.
 

lenFeb

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Friend of my have 2016 without track pack(coolers). He's car goes into limp mode often driving on the street during hot days.
 

svttim

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I'm probably the best person on this forum who drove the tech beyond it's limits without adding any coolers and etc. Fun fact, it has it all now.

I personally think if you're not grandpa taking it out to church then you're making a mistake getting into a tech. I learned my lesson but then again I wasn't aware how important cooling for the trans would be. Unless, you plan on putting the funds at a later date to upgrade the components that will let you run a full session at a track event.

I only plan on tracking 2-3 times a year and I have a tech pack but never did tracking since instead of 20 minute session your cut to 10-15 minutes due to hitting limp on the transmission. Let's forget the track part of this discussion, what about how you'll hold the rest of the gt350s you'll hang out with because you'll hit limp forcing the whole group to wait. I'll share what I spent on my upgrades to make it a track edition GT350.

Costs to get to Track Edition
$1,200 GT350 2017 Track Trans with 10K miles (steal price from another member) <- normally goes for 4K
$800 GT350 Track FP Coolers
$1,532.71 Trans/Cooler Install Labor
-couldn't stop there had to get the Diff Cooler as well too
$1,100 Full Tilt Boogie Racing Differential Cooler Kit
$2,161.58 Differential Cooler Install Labor
tally, $6.794.29.

As far as the rest of the mods, loads more and at this point I'm proud to say it's better than an R. That's my own opinion though. :)

I hope the above helps give you an idea if it's worth holding out for more funds to get into a track edition. I think it would be a great idea.

Edit:
Just realized you made a comment about buying a car with 40k miles over. I'll be honest, you're buying into a race platform and the mileage on the vehicle isn't a concern. This is a big HOWEVER, If you're not going to get extended warranty, please be prepared to have 20K for reserves to replace the engine at some point in it's lifetime. Could be the moment after you drive it or it could be 6 years later.
Did the same thing with my tech pack. I caught the timing when Ford sold the trans new for 2500. Then sold the trans from the car so, 1500 in that. Another 12 or so for the Full Tilt Boogie diff coolers and I was good to go. Then I bought my R :) If you are going to track, skip the 16 Tech pack car. Its a great car for the street and never had any issues there. But you will put too much in it to make any sense
 

RPDBlueMoon

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Friend of my have 2016 without track pack(coolers). He's car goes into limp mode often driving on the street during hot days.
I believe that once it gets up to ~240 degrees F it goes into limp mode
 

5.2 VooDoo

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I activated my trans temp gauge on my '16 tech...in the most hottest and humid weather (90's F) and even in the occasional stop and go traffic I've encountered, I have yet to break the 125 mark (Celsius) on the temp gauge... ever. Put it this way, I spent a whole driving season with just this gauge as primary wanting to see how hot the trans got. Now, I am sure if i wringing the car out like a FP Track Attack car it would be a different story...but for the street I have no concerns.

Oh and BTW add mine to the list of 16's with zero oil burn, zero issues other than the plastic rocker panels rattling at speed which was remedied by pushing back in the push pins underneath...

IMG_5631.jpg
 

svttim

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I activated my trans temp gauge on my '16 tech...in the most hottest and humid weather (90's F) and even in the occasional stop and go traffic I've encountered, I have yet to break the 125 mark (Celsius) on the temp gauge... ever. Put it this way, I spent a whole driving season with just this gauge as primary wanting to see how hot the trans got. Now, I am sure if i wringing the car out like a FP Track Attack car it would be a different story...but for the street I have no concerns.

Oh and BTW add mine to the list of 16's with zero oil burn, zero issues other than the plastic rocker panels rattling at speed which was remedied by pushing back in the push pins underneath...

IMG_5631.jpg
My 16 was the same as well as no oil issues. Street diving is not an issue as you point out. Track driving for more than 10 to 15 minutes is another story
 

Lurker_350

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I believe that once it gets up to ~240 degrees F it goes into limp mode
I think mine was ~ 260F when it experienced limp mode on the track

I activated my trans temp gauge on my '16 tech...in the most hottest and humid weather (90's F) and even in the occasional stop and go traffic I've encountered, I have yet to break the 125 mark (Celsius) on the temp gauge... ever. Put it this way, I spent a whole driving season with just this gauge as primary wanting to see how hot the trans got. Now, I am sure if i wringing the car out like a FP Track Attack car it would be a different story...but for the street I have no concerns.

Oh and BTW add mine to the list of 16's with zero oil burn, zero issues other than the plastic rocker panels rattling at speed which was remedied by pushing back in the push pins underneath...
Agreed. I have really enjoyed mine and no issues on the street.
 

EBTAGMOTO

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I’m in the market for a GT350 and have been lurking around this forum for the past few days. Was going to buy an E92 M3 but then test drove a GT350 and fell in love. My budget is $40k, $42k max. I could afford a more expensive car but have aggressive investment goals and am not keen on financing the car. I want a large screen so I’m either looking at a 2016 tech pack or a higher mileage 2017 at this price point.

-I’ve read up on the tech pack vs track pack threads. Seems like if you aren’t tracking it a lot, there is not a need for the coolers. I plan on tracking only 2-3 times per year. If I start tracking more, I could add the parts at a reasonable cost. Is this all correct? I test drove a 2016 tech pack and loved the non Recaro seats, so no Recaro’s is not a deal breaker for me.

-Is there a concern with the reliability of 2016 tech packs because they are missing some of these components? Or are they similar to track pack and 2017+ reliability in terms of daily driving?

-Should I worry about buying a car with over 40k miles?

-What’s a reasonable price (as of February 2021) to pay for a 2016 tech pack or high mileage 2017? I test drove a 2016 tech pack with 24k miles, dealer was asking $45k and said he would do $43.5k. Not going to buy this car because it’s black and I’m sick of owning black cars. Dealer also knew nothing about the car. Definitely would want to buy private party if I can.
Have you checked the classifieds on the forum? Looks like there is an Avalanche 350 Track pack in your price range.
 

5.2 VooDoo

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That's a really nice looking car...
 

volcanogod

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Living in Austin Texas I have yet to see mine go into limp mode. I have a 2016 Tech pack and have had zero issues even on the many 100+ days in Austin stop/go traffic. I do drive spiritedly and vary rarely listen to anything on the radio other than the sweet sounds of the voodoo. There a number of options that don't cost as much, but are intended for driving speeds.

Don't write off the tech packs. If you are handy with tools, you can bring your techy up to the same abilities as the R on trans/diff cooling with a bit-o-work.
 

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