So you decide you want to get a new ride. There's so many choices out there...what do you pick? If your like me (an admitted car geek/enthusiast) not just any car will do. You want something sporty, g...
So you decide you want to get a new ride. There's so many choices out there...what do you pick? If your like me (an admitted car geek/enthusiast) not just any car will do. You want something sporty, great styling, decent mileage (MPG), good build quality and reliable. If you don't need four doors then look no further than the Ford Mustang.
Ford Mustang you say? That's not a car for me! All I can tell you is I thought the very same way for nearly 15 years....then I gave one a chance and boy am I gald I did.
Mine is a beautiful blue (vista blue) with camel color cloth interior, which is hands down the best looking interior I've ever seen in a mustang. Slide into the sculpted sport seats and you are hugged by nicely bolstered and cushioned surfaces. Adjust the power lumbar and power seat to achieve a good position. Set the power mirrors and buckle up.
Press the firm clutch pedal to the floor turn the key and the 4.0L engine comes to life not with a roar but a soft purr. You are greeted with a full comliment of retro style dual pod tach and speedo gauges with the fuel, oil pressure, water temp, and battery charge level indicators between them. The Ford my color system allows you to customize the back lighting of this gauge pack to your liking. Options are red, pink, deep blue, light blue, green, purple and other colors in the spectrum. The trip computer also has nice real time MPG, fuel gallons used, range remaining and trip timers.
Clutch take up is smooth and finding the right gears is easy on the 5 speed Tremec unit (the very same one found in the GT version) as it is not stiff to move the lever and the gating is easy to "feel" your way around. As you drive and accelerate through 1st, 2nd and 3rd you are pleasantly surprised by the torque of the engine and acceleration is surprisingly quick with the 3.31 final drive axle. You'll also notice the engine sounds wonderful! No it isn't that familiar burbling V8 sound (one of the best in the world by the way) but the 4.0L has its own throaty growl that is reminiscent of BMW and Jaguar sixies of days gone by. It really is a nice sounding engine and I find myself turning the radio down so I can enjoy it!
Zero to sixty is easily achieved in around 6 seconds when you really open it up...which for 210 HP is darn respectable for a 3,300 lb car. I believe that the generous torque combined with a great transmission is a perfect recipie for this. Ford did a nice job with this car as it can handle agressive driving well and meager commuting at the same time with a good yet firm ride quality. I regularly get 25-28 MPG on my daily drive which is 45 miles of which about 65% highway travel.
The shaker 500 stereo has good sound quality with plenty of audio adjustment and a decent (if a bit slow to operate) six disc in dash CD changer with MP3 capability. Loading a CD takes about 10 seconds, so figure a good minute or so to load up the magazine. I do not reccomend doing this at stoplights, but you may have time to exchange out and in one CD successfully. HVAC controls are simple and easy to manipulate and the AC and heat are strong.
The car has good road manners with tight steering and a nice on center feel. Handling in the curves is actually very good considering the solid rear axle design. It can get a bit jerky on particularly bumpy and damaged pavement but hopefully you aren't driving in that sort of place too often. The four wheel disc brakes have good modulation with a firm pedal feel. Road noise while cruisng is louder than some cars but not intrusive and you can easily talk on your phone (hands free of course) or your passengers without needing to speak over it.
Overall you just can't beat the Mustang for that killer exterior and nostalgic interior styling. Its a well built great car with good road manners and a torquey 4.0L yet fuel efficient engine that provides great sounds when you want to get aggressive. Try one out and you'll see there is lots to love about "not a GT".