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Comp Cams Stage 5 Xtreme Energy XE278AH Camshafts (96-04 GT)

Item 30160
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$595.99 (pair)

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      Review & Installation Video

      These are the Comp Cams Stage 5 Xtreme Energy Camshafts for naturally-aspirated '96 to '04 GT Mustangs. These cams are gonna be ideal for those 4.6-liter owners out there that are looking to get the most horsepower out of their naturally-aspirated build. These cams work best when installed on a car that's already heavily modified. They need to be paired with items like an aftermarket high-flowing intake manifold, full exhaust, long tube headers, and they will require a tune. If you're planning a forced-induction or nitrous build, Comp Cams does make cams specifically for those builds. If your GT isn't heavily modified yet, Comp also makes cams that will be better suited for that build. And Comp does say that these specific cams require a 3.73 or steeper rear gear and specific valve springs, which will add to the overall price of these.These cams cost about $600, and the install will be a three out of three wrenches on the difficulty meter. Before we really get into these cams and talk more about them, I really have to get home the fact that these are Stage 5 cams, so you get power gains and, of course, that coveted rough idle. But these really are specifically for those highly-modified, naturally-aspirated cars. A lot of technical things come into play when you're looking at cams and specs. So if you add these without the correct supporting mods, you're gonna end up with a car that doesn't run right, that can be difficult to drive on the street, and that doesn't make the power that it should. With those details out of the way, we can take a closer look at the cams. When we start to look at powerband, Comp tells us that we can expect mid to high-range power and torque gains, and that these are ideal for both street and strip. The cams have an RPM range of 2,200 to 6,200, once again, for those naturally-aspirated builds. Due to the nature of these cams, Comp specifically calls out needing a 3.73 or steeper rear gear and a 2,400-plus stall converter if you have an auto car. Of course, custom tuning and valve springs will be required too. Speaking of needing valve springs, when you're shopping for a cam, you'll need to think about all of the cam specs. You want to consider specs like the lift and duration of the camshafts, since that'll tell you how your valves will be opening and closing. Comp tells us that the specs for these cams are as follows, a duration of 278 and 282, a valve lift of 0.55, lobe lift of 0.3, and lobe separation of 113 degrees. So you have a bigger lift than the stock cams, which is gonna allow for more air into the cylinders and more duration too, which ultimately means more power. And because you are changing so much with your lift and duration, Comp does say that you'll need to upgrade to their Beehive valve spring in order to support the added lift. And if you're thinking of not doing this, the only thing that I'll say is that you've already gone this far with your build. You're already doing the cams, and you already have your supporting mods, so why not do it right? It would really stink to do all of this work and then have issues with your valve springs down the road and, worst case, drop a valve and lose the engine. You also have to always consider piston-to-valve clearance when shopping for cams. So the correct valve springs and even a new set of retainers are always a good idea to upgrade. You also have to always consider piston-to-valve clearance when shopping for cams. So the correct valve springs and even a new set of retainers are always a good idea to upgrade. As far as numbers go, these are always gonna be hard to nail down. You have to consider the differences in builds, fuel, and tunes. These are things that'll create different power numbers for different people, so it's really hard to say. The other thing that comes into play here besides power gains is that wonderful sound. Everyone loves that big, lopey idle, and these cams certainly deliver that. Comp Cams calls out a rough idle as one of the big features here, so you won't be disappointed there. That's gonna wrap up this review. Keep in mind that you can check these out more online right here, at

      Product Information

      Features, Description, Reviews, Q&A, Specs & Installation


      • Street and Strip
      • More Horsepower and Torque
      • Rough Idle
      • Custom Tuning Required
      • For 1996-2004 GT and Bullitt Mustangs


      Street and Strip. If you're looking to get even more power out of your SOHC 4.6L without stepping up to a forced induction set up, then consider a set of Comp Cams XE278AH Camshafts. They will give you great mid to high range power gains in both horsepower and torque making them ideal for street and strip.

      Rough Idle. If you love the sound of a rough idle, you won't be disappointed by this cam. Like the muscle cars of yesteryear, this cam yields a sound that will make lesser cars clear a path out of your way at lights.

      Adjustable Cam Gears. Maximize the power from your new camshafts with a set of Adjustable Cam Gears, which will allow you the ability to fine tune your camshaft timing - a critical necessity when doing mods that can change your camshaft-to-crankshaft centerline position. Please see drop down option above.

      Application. This SOHC Camshaft is designed for 1996-2004 4.6L two valve V8 Mustangs with 3.73 or steeper rear gears and a 2400 plus stall speed converter on automatic transmissions. Intake, exhaust, custom tuning and valve spring upgrades are required.

      Technical Note: Comp Cams are designed for modified cars that include upgraded valve springs for clearance related issues. It is recommended to use COMP Cams® 26113 Valve Springs for proper fitment, see drop down option above. Combine the valve springs with a new set of valve spring steel retainers to handle the higher pressures developed by the springs.

      Fitment: 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 Details

      MPN# 102700

      CA Residents: WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm -


      Customer Reviews (6)

      Write a Review

      Ratings Summary

      5.0 out of 5 overall rating from 6 customers

      Installation Time: Full Day

      Installation Cost: $500-$1000

      • September 13, 2018

        5 2000 GT - OmarA Installation Time: Weekend

        Verg good

        The car has crazy sound after i installed the cams and running smothley

        Helpful (7)
      • September 29, 2017

        5 2003 Other - JoseS


        Awesome cam! Installed in my 03 f150 Sounds great! Shreads the streets. It calls for a minimum of 3.73 which is what i went with because it's my daily driver with 2400 stall. Definate increase in horse power and torque. Once again. Sounds great!

        Helpful (7)
      • July 19, 2017

        5 2003 GT - Leanos88 Installation Time: Shop Install Installation Cost: $500-$1000


        I love the sound these cams have given my car. I have yet to push it but I'm sure it'll be amazing.

        Helpful (6)
      • April 02, 2017

        5 1997 GT - AngelF Installation Time: Weekend

        Deep rough idle

        Installed this cams on my 1997 Gt engine went threw a fully rebuilt with pi heads heads from an 2003 mustang gt used with all recommended parts for this cam set with a set of headers pipes catback and x pipe my stang sounds good and feels good to get it up so 6k rpms great mod highly recommended tune is a must

        Helpful (17)
      • March 29, 2017

        5 2002 GT - wooddro Installation Time: Afternoon

        just installed. tech note

        install very easy but be warned a few years I believe 02-04 they switched to a smaller main cam bolt you will need larger one's for comp cam.

        Helpful (8)
      • March 20, 2016

        5 2000 GT - StangboyE Installation Time: Afternoon

        Real power

        If your looking for real power and a good sound then this is your camshaft. I thought I had to do a lot of upgrade to run it nope but I do suggest if you have full Bolton's or are going full Bolton's I highly recommend this cam .

        Helpful (22)

      Questions & Answers (28 answers)

      5 Top Rated Questions

      Hi I have a 2002 roush stage 2 mustang with a stock bottom end and vortech V2 and running about 13 pounds of boost with 42 # injectors and double fuel pumps. What cams would you recommend to sound amazing and perform well with my setup? I’m running 373 gears with 5 speed.. thanks

      • The Comp Cams Stage 5 Xtreme Energy XE278AH Camshafts would not be a good option for your setup, due to the supercharger. We would recommend a blower cam, with the profile designed specifically for the needs of a supercharged engine.

      Helpful (3)

      What all modifications to the engine will these cams require? Will they go directly in a stock 99 GT without having to change the heads and so on

      • These cams will fit a 99 GT motor. We would recommend the following maintenance items be changed when you have have the timing cover off. New timing chains, chain guides, as well as a crank sprocket. Also be sure to check you hydraulic chain tensioners and lifters to ensure they are in good function order. Another worthwhile part to consider changing to ensure the motor's reliability for years to come is the Ford Performance SVT 4V Modular Rocker Arm/Follower Set item #50318. Of course the normally recommended upgrades such as cam gears, valve springs, and valve spring retainers are a required upgrade for larger lift cams. All of the aforementioned modifications will need to be professionally installed, and the cam's will need to be professionally timed/degreed to ensure there is no PTV clearance issues. I would however like to guide you maybe in a different direction for cam selection. Reason for that is that a Stage 5 cam on a stock 1999 GT will not be the best cam to go with unless the vehicle is heavily modified. If the engine is stock with little to no bolt on modifications, I would suggest a Stage 2 cam (also offered by Comp Cams) item #30158. If too large of a cam is used, it will surpass the performance capabilities of the motor which will result in poor "off the line" performance and result in poor drivability.

      Helpful (3)

      nitrous Can this cam work with nitrous?

      • Yes they do work with nitrous while being able to be street driven. But if you are looking for max performance and no street driving get a nitrous only cam.

      Helpful (3)

      What all is recommended to use these cams for my 1998 mustang gt pi swapped

      How much hp should I expect I have a 98 gt pi swapped, long tube headers off road x pipe 3.73 gears and I’m plan on 75 shot of nitrous and I’m planning on getting a new intake sometime

      10 More Questions
      do these cams require notched pistons? 0 answer
      I have a 2003 mustang gt. It has bbk long tubes. Bbk intake. Bbk 78 mm throttle body. Pypes h pipe. No resonators. No cats. Flowmaster mufflers. 4.10 gears. It is currently tuned on 93. Im also upgrading the intake manifold. I was looking into comp cams stage 5 for a rough idle. Would this cam work with this setup? 1 answer
      What # Injectors would be best to run with this camshaft setup? 1 answer
      can you use these with a single turbo if not what cams should i use 1 answer
      Would you recommend these for a turbo set up? 0 answer
      I have a near full Bolt on 99 GT with trickflow 38cc chambers cylinder heads. They have a 90lb spring in them and was wondering if I need to upgrade to a heavier spring to run this cam. 1 answer
      We have a 2003 GT and just looking for something that has a nice thumpy sound. Will these work in it? 1 answer
      Why are you steering others away from these cams for the street? We all want 9 second street cars. What makes the stage 5 cams so unstreetable, in your opinion? Lack of vacuum? And you keep dancing around clearance issues. Straight up, can I expect clearance issues if i just throw these in my stock 2002 engine with the correct springs, etc? 1 answer
      How much lift and how much duration do these have? 1 answer
      Will this cam fit in stock pi heads? 1 answer

      Installation & What's in the Box

      Installation Info

      What's in the Box

      • (2) Camshafts

      Tech Specs

      Comp Cam Data Sheet
      Part Number: 102700 Grind Number: XE278AH
      Lifter Type: None - OHC Engine Type: FORD 4.6 and 5.4 SOHC MODULAR 2-V (1992-Present)
      RPM Range: 2200 to 6200 Valve Timing : 0.05
      Lobe-Center Angle 113 Intake Center Line: 109

        Intake Exhaust
      Valve Lash: Hyd. Hyd.
      Duration: 278 282
      Duration @ .050" Lift: 242 246
      Valve Lift: 0.55 0.55
      Lobe Lift: 0.3 0.3

      Valve Timing @ 0.05" Lift: Open Close
      Intake: 12 BTDC 50 ABDC
      Exhaust: 60 BBDC 6 ATDC

      Will It Fit My Mustang

      • Bullitt - 01
      • GT - 96, 97, 98, 99, 00, 01, 02, 03, 04

      Fits 1996-2004 4.6L Two Valve Mustangs Only

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