Thanks to Ed for contributing this article.
In 1989 Ford began using a newer style starter called the Permanent Magnet Gear Reduction, or PMGR, starter. It weighs half as much as the old style starter that our cars came with: the old one is about 30 lbs., and this one is about 15! The new starter provides more torque and requires less power to operate. This upgrade is a win/win situation all around. The PMGR starter can be had purchased from your local salvage yard or from parts stores. Here's a list of potential donor vehicles for the newer starter:
Vehicles that use the PMGR starter compatible with the 3.8L, 5.0L, and 5.8L:
Vehicles that use the PMGR starter compatible with the 2.3L:
Left: The old starter on the left; the new one on the right (these are for the 5.0L engine).
Left: There is one wiring change that must be made for the new starter to work on your car. Here's a picture of that change.