Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), also known as "sticker" price, is a recommended selling price that automakers give a new car that is above the invoice price paid by the dealer. It is a price that does not include any options that can be added to a particular car style. When shown as a range, the prices are starting MSRPs, without options, for multiple styles for that model.
This price range reflects the Kelley Blue Book Suggested Retail value for all trim levels, but not necessarily all available options.
The Kelley Blue Book Suggested Retail value represents the amount an auto dealer might ask for a specific vehicle; the actual sale price will vary. A vehicle's popularity, condition, warranty, color and local market conditions are factors involved in determining a final price. The retail value is not a trade-in or private party value.
The Suggested Retail value assumes that the vehicle has been fully reconditioned and has a clean title history. The Suggested Retail value also allows for advertising, sales commissions, insurance and other costs of doing business as a dealer. Most vehicles offered at this price have passed an inspection, and some may carry a warranty. Vehicle mileage is assumed to be normal or below normal.
Best Bets get average or better mpg, have average or better reliability, good crash-test ratings, and our experts' recommendations.
By Jim Flammang
April 7, 2004
Vehicle Overview Ford’s “pony car” celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2004, and all models wear special commemorative front-fender badging. A limited-edition 40th Anniversary Package that features performance-oriented upgrades and Arizona Beige stripes on the hood, lower rockers and deck lid is available.
Last year saw the return of the limited-production Mach 1 Mustang, which first debuted in 1969. Continuing into 2004, the current version has a functional “shaker” scoop on its hood as well as an air-dam extension and low-gloss black striping above the rocker moldings. Not only has the Mach 1’s body been lowered by half an inch, but its 4.6-liter V-8 engine is also good for 305 horsepower. An SVT version of the Mustang called the Mustang Cobra is also available. (Skip to details on the: SVT Mustang Cobra)
Coupes and convertibles are available. Regular V-6 Mustangs come in standard, Deluxe and Premium trim levels, while the GT V-8 is offered in Deluxe and Premium levels.
Ford’s Mustang is the last of the traditional rear-wheel-drive pony cars. At the 2004 North American International Auto Show, Ford introduced a brand-new Mustang that will go on sale as a 2005 model-year vehicle.
Exterior Even in the tamer, V-6-powered trim levels, the Mustang flaunts a sporty appearance with its long hood and short rear deck. Several styling cues, including the hood scoop, side scoops and a grille that contains a pony emblem in a chrome corral, are evolutions of the Mustang’s appearance from more than three decades ago. Convertibles have a glass back window and a power-operated top that stows beneath a hard boot.
Interior Mustangs seat four occupants on front bucket seats and a split, folding rear seat; the seatback is fixed in convertibles. Seating is reasonably upright for easy entry and exit, but the doors demand considerable space in order to be fully opened. Cargo volumes are a modest 10.9 cubic feet in the coupe and 7.7 cubic feet in convertible models.
Under the Hood Base-model Mustangs carry a 190-hp, 3.8-liter V-6 engine, while the GT gets a 4.6-liter single-overhead-cam V-8 rated at 260 hp. Either engine can team with a five-speed-manual transmission or an optional four-speed automatic. With the manual shift, the Mach 1’s 4.6-liter V-8 generates 305 hp at 5,800 rpm and 320 pounds-feet of torque at 4,200 rpm. A limited-slip rear axle is standard on GT models.
Safety All-disc antilock brakes are standard on the Mach 1 and SVT Mustang Cobra and optional on other models. Side-impact airbags are not available.
Driving Impressions Whether it packs a V-6 or V-8 engine, the Mustang is a strong performer, yet it’s easy enough to live with for everyday driving due to its relatively smooth ride and quiet operation.
Handling is another bonus, especially when driving a GT. Steering demands moderate effort, but you get firm, secure responses and a tenacious grip through curves. The GT’s V-8 delivers a satisfying exhaust sound. Ford’s five-speed-manual gearbox isn’t always the easiest to shift, and some of them have made a clanking sound.
Related Model: SVT Mustang Cobra Revived as a 2003 model, the SVT Mustang Cobra dishes out more power than any of its predecessors — 390 hp at 6,000 rpm and 390 pounds-feet of torque at 3,500 rpm. The extra horsepower on the current version results from an Eaton Roots-type supercharger that features a water-to-air intercooler for the 4.6-liter V-8 engine. A six-speed-manual transmission sends all the Cobra’s vigor to the back wheels.
Coupe and convertible body styles are available, but the soft-top Cobra has its own suspension tuning. The Cobra is capable of accelerating from zero to 60 mph in 4.9 seconds.
For 2004, 1,000 examples of a limited-edition Mystichrome Appearance Package, which features color-shifting body paint, will be produced. Two new regular colors are available: Screaming Yellow and Competition Orange. Ford halted the production of all SVT products midway through the model year, but a new group is expected in a year or so. Back to top
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