The Mustang comes in coupe and convertible forms, with V-6 and V-8 engines in the base and GT trim levels, respectively. The two versions are further divided into Deluxe and Premium variants. Ford has added legendary monikers to the Mustang throughout the model years; for 2009 those variants include Bullitt, Shelby GT500 and GT500KR. Competitors include the Dodge Challenger and upcoming Chevrolet Camaro.
New for 2009
The Mustang receives a glass roof option, available on both the V-6 and GT models.
Styling cues are borrowed from Mustangs of the 1960s, characterized by a forward-leaning grille under an overhanging hood, and a fastback profile in the coupe version. Styling touches from the past include C-scoops in the sides, tri-bar taillamps and a unique 45th anniversary "galloping horse" badge on the front fenders. Opting for the Bullitt package will give you a unique Highland Green or black paint job, 18-inch Euro-flange wheels, a modified grille and stainless steel exhaust tips. For 2009, there's a glass roof option made out of tinted privacy glass to block UV rays. It includes a blind to block the sun. The glass-roof Mustang is built like the coupe and has been developed to maintain the structural integrity of the car.
- 16-, 17-, or 18-inch alloy wheels
- Standard power mirrors
- Fog lamps (standard on GT models)
- Optional rear spoiler (standard on V-6 Premium and GT models)
- Optional high-intensity-discharge headlamps
- Optional racing stripes
Technically a "2+2," the Mustang has two front seats and two rear buckets that might qualify as seats, but are not intended for most adult passengers. The coupe's back bench has a 50/50 split folding function. The dashboard features chrome-ringed air vents and large barrel-style gauges. An available color-configurable instrument panel can display more than 125 background colors. For 2009, Premium option packages now include ambient lighting, satin aluminum instrument panel trim, interior upgrades and Sirius Satellite Radio.
- Available cloth or leather seating
- Standard air conditioning
- Standard power windows and locks
Under the Hood
The Mustang comes with either a V-6 or V-8 engine. Both engines run on regular gasoline and work with either a five-speed manual transmission or an optional five-speed automatic. The Bullitt package gets an upgraded V-8 with a new open-element cold air induction system, along with a hood blanket and revised cam timing at peak power. The Bullitt is only available with a five-speed manual transmission.
- 210-horsepower, 4.0-liter V-6 with 240 pounds-feet of torque
- 300-hp, 4.6-liter V-8 with 320 pounds-feet of torque
- 315-hp, 4.6-liter V-8 with 325 pounds-feet of torque (Bullitt)
- Five-speed manual transmission
- Five-speed automatic transmission
- Sport-tuned suspension (on Bullitt)
In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash tests, the Mustang scored Good (the highest rating) for side-impact protection and Acceptable (one step lower) for frontal protection.
- Standard front seat side airbags
- Optional traction control (standard on GT)
- Optional four-disc antilock braking system (standard on GT)
- Optional alarm system
Differences between the regular Mustang and the Shelby GT500 are subtle for the most part. The traditional pony logo on the grille is replaced with an offset cobra design on the Shelby GT500, and the headlight enclosures angle in more sharply than those on the regular edition. The hood is fitted with two openings designed to vent heat from the engine bay. Coupes have racing stripes, but convertibles do not. Changes to the interior are understated as well. The large round speedometer and tachometer swap positions in the instrument panel, which Ford says gives drivers a better view of the tach when changing gears. Leather seating surfaces are standard and come in two color schemes: Charcoal Black or Charcoal Black and Crimson Red, the latter featuring red inserts on the seat and doors. Serpent logos rear their heads on the steering wheel and seatbacks.
- 500-hp, supercharged 5.4-liter V-8 with 480 pounds-feet of torque
- Heavy-duty six-speed manual transmission
- Unique 18-inch aluminum wheels with SVT center cap
- SVT performance-tuned suspension components
Forty years ago, Ford fielded a special-edition King of the Road Mustang. Commemorating that model is the Shelby GT500KR, which builds off the strength of the earlier Shelby GT500 with an even more powerful supercharged 5.4-liter V-8. Ford Racing upgrades also include a sport suspension, a short-throw shifter and a fast rear-axle ratio. A composite hood decreases weight. Differences between the regular Mustang and the earlier GT500 variants were subtle, and the KR follows but with additional KR badging and stripes. The wheels were designed by Carroll Shelby himself, according to Ford.
- 540-hp, 5.4-liter supercharged V-8 with 510 pounds-feet of torque
- Heavy-duty six-speed manual transmission
- Ford Racing performance exhaust system
- Unique performance suspension tuning, including unique springs, dampers and stabilizer bars
- Shelby-designed 18-inch wheels
- Unique carbon composite hood
Cars.com Expert Reviews
|Mike Hanley||Cars.com National||November 7, 2008|
|Cars.com Staff||Cars.com National||August 25, 2008|
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