I replaced the stock motorcrafts after 6 years, but only because one was damaged in the collision before I bought it. My dad's '03 is on the OEM motorcrafts still and they're still going strong. With that said, I replaced mine with a pair of Interstate MTP-65 batteries and wouldn't use anything else.
Did'nt do it on purpose but somehow I went into Advance auto hell bent on some yellow tops and came out with two shinny new duralast's.....lol (for about ten $'s less than one yellow top) So far so good but the charging system on these ford's are a lil shady so good luck with whatever ya buy...
Unless you're putting batteries in a off-road vehicle that will be at extreme angles and on it's side often, the Optimas are just overpriced and overkill. Interstates are the best conventional lead-acid batteries IMO.
I dunno, I started all last winter on a single yellow top, and never had to plug in. (Knew I had a battery test bad, but forgot about it.) I just replaced it with a second yellow top, and works for me.
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