The venerable Ford Mustang has been around for half a century now, its production uninterrupted since it was introduced in 1964. The quintessential pony car has changed dramatically over the years, with Ford offering a multitude of model variations. A variety of engines and transmissions have found their way under the hood, not to mention several body styles and special editions with each generation. First redesigned in 2015, Ford decided to update the Mustang for the 2018 model year. The Ford Mustang GT still comes with a 5.0-liter V8, and is available in both convertible and coupe form.
The 2018 Ford Mustang GT bows with a sleeker and more aerodynamic design form, more advanced technology as well as enhanced performance. It sports a lower, restyled hood and grille, along with new hood vents that provide a more athletic persona. For the first time, the entire lineup features all-LED headlights and taillights, as well as an available performance spoiler.
Dual-tip exhaust is standard issue for the Mustang EcoBoost, while V8-powered Mustang GTs comes with a standard quad-tip exhaust. An available 12-inch, all-digital LCD instrument cluster exhibits unique displays for normal, sport and track modes, and an all-new MyMode feature allows consumers to save drive settings when ordered with the digital cluster.
The 5.0-liter Coyote V8 barks impressively to life instantly when fired up, even when the Drive mode is set to Normal. The 460 horses instantly declare their high performance intent. The experience just gets more intense as one cranks up the Drive mode settings, which includes Sport +, Track, Drag Strip and Snow/Wet modes. Ford bumped up the torque in the new Mustang by 20 lb-ft, to a healthy 420, and the redline bumps up to a gnarly 7,400 RPM. The engine also makes 460 horsepower at 7,000 RPM.
The longitudinally-mounted engine sends power to the rear wheels through a standard Tremac six-speed manual transmission. It features a twin-disc clutch and dual-mass flywheel that delivers better torque-handling capability and more efficient clutch modulation. Ford also fitted a 10-speed automatic transmission to the 5.0-liter V8 and the smaller 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine. You can personalize the engine note with an all-new active valve performance exhaust, available on Mustang GT models.
New shock absorbers, a cross-axis joint on the rear suspension and innovative stabilizer bars improve the car’s ride. MagneRide magnetically-controlled dampers are a new $1,695 option in the 2018 Ford Mustang GT. The steering feel is positive and direct, compelling the Mustang to dive into corners with precision. The car is extremely stable and sticks to the road surface with aplomb.
Comfort and Convenience
Standard features in the 2018 Ford Mustang GT include two 12-volt power points, air conditioning, an AM/FM stereo/single-CD player with a six-speaker audio system, cruise control and Intelligent Access with push-button start. There are also the standard LED headlamps and taillamps, a Limited-slip rear differential, and an 8.0-inch capacitive touchscreen infotainment display with SYNC 3 and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto support.
Ford didn’t forget about safety and security features either. In addition to the AdvanceTrac stability control system and myriad of standard airbags, there is also a range of driver assistance technology. There’s Pre-collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist, plus a Driver Alert System that will tell the driver if they’re moving out of their lane.
The sweet sounding engine sounds phenomenal, approaching something of a NASCAR note with the pedal to the metal. Despite the thundering noise, power in the 2018 Ford Mustang GT comes on in a fairly predictable fashion. The car’s reworked manual gearbox incorporates new gear ratios for quicker low-end acceleration. The ride quality was firm, but it wasn’t harsh thanks to the MagneRide’s adjustable damping system.
This year’s changes should be enough to raise its level of competitiveness in the ever escalating pony car battle. The 5.0-liter GT is serious fun, but the rear seats might as well not even be there, as they’re not the most accommodating for adult passengers.
The base sticker price for the 2018 Ford Mustang GT stands at $39,190 excluding destination charges. Optional equipment includes Equipment Group 401A, which adds the heated steering wheel, the 12.0-inch instrument cluster, and a Wi-Fi hotspot. There’s also Orange paint finish, Active Valve Performance Exhaust, the HGT Performance Package and the MagneRide Damping System. After destination charges, the final price rose to $49,275.
SPECIFICATIONS: 2018 Ford Mustang GT Premium Coupe
|Price as Tested:
|Engine:||5.0-liter TI-VCT V8 w/ Dual-Fuel direct and port injection|
|Drivetrain (Layout):||Longitudinally mounted front engine, rear-wheel drive|
|Horsepower:||460 hp @ 7,000 rpm|
|Torque:||420 lb-ft @ 4,600 rpm|
|Transmission:||Tremac 6-speed manual|
|Suspension:||Front: Double-ball-joint MacPherson strut w/ stabilizer bar and MagneRide Damping system
Rear: Integral-link independent suspension w/ coil springs, stabilizer bar and MagneRide Damping system
|Brakes:||Power-assisted four-wheel discs|
|Tires:||Front: Michelin Pilot Sport S P255/40 ZR19
Rear: Michelin Pilot Sport S P275/40 ZR19
|Fuel capacity:||16.0 gallons|
|Fuel economy (EPA):||15 City / 25 Highway / 18 Combined MPG|
|Width:||81.9 inches (including mirrors)|
|Curb Weight:||3,705 pounds|