Ford Mustang GT : Muscle machine

ford mustang
(Photos: Ford Motor Company)
It is to cars what apple pie is to dessert — the Ford Mustang is probably the most quintessential of all American cars and the most popular sports car. Conjuring romanticized promises of attainable ability and uncomplicated, unpretentious performance, the Mustang first launched in 1964 as an affordable but stylish and sporty coupe. The opening shot and most enduring icon of the first American muscle car war, the Mustang re-ignited the conflict and set the trend for heavily retro-influenced modern muscle cars when it re-launched in its fifth generation in 2005.اضافة اعلان

 Arriving in 2014, the following — still current and possibly last pure combustion-powered generation — Mustang was a somewhat more sophisticated beast. The first Mustang to trade its live-axle for fully independent rear suspension — with an eye on greater global appeal — the Mustang was revised again in 2018. Subtly updated with a leaner, meaner, and hungrier aesthetic, it gained a more powerful reworked engine for its core GT version, and new gearbox, re-calibrated suspension, digital instrumentation, new colors, and improved cabin and driver assistance systems.

 A dramatically aggressive, robust, and practical daily drive coupe oozing charisma, the Mustang well-reconciles an evolutionary design anchored in classic styling cues and details. With forward jutting front and forward slanted rear fascias, lasciviously long bonnet, curt rear deck, twin ridge side character lines, and low-slung fastback roofline, it cuts a predatorily shark-like profile. Its menacing persona is characterized by its broad, hungry mesh grille, squinty, deep-set, and strongly browed headlights, and trademark three-strip vertical rear light signature, which project athletic urgency and tension from every angle.

 Updated for a more dramatic look with narrower inward-tilted headlights, the Mustang receives a new air splitter, LED lights, and subtly altered bumper and spoiler options. Under its tauter, curvier, lower bonnet line and re-positioned bonnet air scoops, the revised Mustang GT’s familiar “Coyote” engine is retuned and reworked. With a new crankshaft, connecting rods, two knock sensors, increased bore diameter, and dual port and direct fuel injection, the Mustang GT’s revised, higher-revving, more efficient engine gains 25HP and 28Nm torque.

 Brutally charismatic, the Mustang GT’s improved naturally-aspirated 5-liter V8 engine is intensely fluent and consistently progressive through revs and develops 466HP at 7,000rpm. Responsive from standstill and muscularly versatile in mid-range, it produces 570Nm at 4,600rpm, and rockets through 0–100km/h in 4.3-seconds or less before topping out at 250km/h. Abundant and responsive throughout its rev band, whether over-taking, charging inclines, or pouncing out of corners, the Mustang GT delivers precise, linear throttle responsive to fine-tune power increments to the driven rear wheels. It is also responsive and quick winding down on lift-off.

 Digging deep and pulling hard with bass-rich low-rev burbles and induction percolation, the Mustang GT’s eight-pot soundtrack is piped through a more vocal “active” exhaust mode and quad rear ports. Coalescing to a mid-range rumble, the Mustang’s acoustics transition to a thundering staccato as it urgently spins to redline. Available with either a driver-engaging six-speed manual or a quicker, more convenient new 10-speed automatic, the latter replaces its predecessor’s six-speed auto gearbox and features a broader range of ratios for improved performance, efficiency, and versatility.

With fully-independent rear integral link suspension already providing good lateral stiffness and vertical absorption, the revised Mustang’s new dampers, anti-roll bars, and rear cross joint axis enable sharper, more responsive handling. Turning with crisp tidiness and textured direct steering, the Mustang is balanced and adjustable through corners, with an exact, intuitive feel and feedback for grip limits, position, and road. With accurate throttle control allowing one to fine-tune slip and grip, the Mustang GT’s limited-slip rear differential meanwhile prevents wheel spin and provides better cornering agility, stability, and traction.

 The revised suspension improves the Mustang’s handling fluency, and enables it to seamlessly settle into sharp corners with less seemingly sudden weight transfer. Well-reconciling stiff body control and ride comfort for its segment, the Mustang is reasonably forgiving over most but the harshest road imperfection. Optional automatically adaptive magnetic dampers meanwhile provide supple ride comfort but become taut for better cornering roll control. Settled over imperfections and on a rebound and stable at speed, the Mustang GT feels reassuring but communicates an accurate feeling of speed.

 A visceral machine with a nuanced steering feel, balanced chassis, and low, well-adjustable driving position behind its twin-dome bonnet, the Mustang provides an intuitive sense of driver involvement. Airier inside, with better visibility, ergonomics, and driver headroom than primary competitors, it is a practical coupe with a 382-liter boot and useable, if not generous rear seats. Receiving improved seat side bolstering and better textures and surfaces, its revised equipment meanwhile includes a configurable 12-inch digital instrument cluster, various performance gauges, “drag start” launch control, and numerous driver assistance and safety features.

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