Ford takes the wraps off the next generation of its iconic pony car with style.
On the eve before the media invade the L.A. Auto Show, Ford showed off its new Mustang in front of hundreds of enthusiasts and members of the press. Not content to just pull the covers off, Ford put on a great show with new Mustangs sliding across the stage, wheels spinning and engines roaring.
While the new design is more evolutionary than revolutionary, the restyled Mustang should be easily recognizable when compared to the previous version. In fact, with the exception of the roofline, all sheet metal is new on the 2010 model.
The front end is bolder, with larger grille openings as well as more sleekly styled headlights inspired by the 1970 Mustang. The hood is more sculpted while the wheel arches are larger and flow better into the overall design. In the rear, the taillights carry on the traditional three-lens design but are lit by LEDs and light in sequence as they did on the Mustangs of the 1960s.
Wheels and tires are also larger for the 2010 Mustang, with wheel sizes ranging from 17 to 19 inches.
Inside is also all new, with upgraded materials and new surfaces, including a one-piece soft instrument panel constructed in seamless TPO (thermoplastic olefin) skin. The revised center stack features the latest version of Ford SYNC, with new features 911 Assist and Vehicle Health Report. That ever-present link to Mustang’s heritage is evident in the aluminum panels, jeweled design of the air registers and conical lenses on the redesigned gauge cluster. Drivers also can customize the interior lighting through Ford’s My Color system, which allows the driver to choose from 125 color options.
"We understand Mustang’s heritage and iconic status it has in the world and as a symbol of Americana," said Peter Horbury, executive director of Design, The Americas. "We wanted to create a face that is more muscular but unquestionably, unequivocally Mustang and carry that spirit through to the entire car."
When the new Mustang goes on sale, it will be available with V6 or V8 powerplants in coupe or convertible form. A new glass-roof version will also be available. The V6 is differentiated from the V8 with fog lamps located on the lower fascia, while on the GT, the fog lamps are again located in the upper grille – but are smaller than the outgoing model.
The available V6 engine is a 4.0-liter rated at 210 horsepower with 240 lb-ft of torque. The 4.6-liter V8 now produces 315 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque. A 5-speed manual or 5-speed automatic is available with both engines.
But that’s not the end of the Mustang story, it’s just another chapter. And the next chapter is due to be read at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January. No confirmation from Ford, but we expect this next chapter may feature the work of Carroll Shelby.