2018 Ford Mus­tang

Australian Muscle Car - - News -

Ford

has re­vealed de­tails of its new and im­proved Mus­tang, which gets a more pow­er­ful 5.0-litre V8, a new 10-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion, fresh styling and colours, an up­graded cabin, and a raft of crash-avoidance tech­nol­ogy.

We held over news of the Mus­tang up­date given the rush of fi­nal Holden and HSV ma­chines that were un­veiled just as last is­sue, AMC #93, went to press. The wait to get be­hind the wheel will be even longer, with right-hand drive pro­duc­tion of the facelifted Mus­tang sched­uled to start ar­riv­ing in Aus­tralia in 2018. Left-hand­drive de­liv­er­ies, mean­while, will start flow­ing from Ford’s Flat Rock, Michi­gan plant in the North Amer­i­can ‘Fall’ (Septem­ber/Oc­to­ber) 2017.

New colours in­clud­ing the sig­na­ture Orange Fury (pic­tured) and a re­designed front-end will her­ald our 2018 Mus­tang. The new nose fea­tures a lower, more aero­dy­namic bon­net with repo­si­tioned vents, and a re­worked front fas­cia with new up­per and lower grilles and all-LED lights.

Re­designed LED tail­lights and new rear bumper, fas­cia and op­tional spoiler com­plete the rear-end restyle, with quad tailpipes to set the V8 apart from the dual-tipped EcoBoost turbo four-cylin­der.

Some of the big news re­sides where it should, un­der the bon­net. The 5.0-litre V8 is re­worked for more ponies, a higher rev ceil­ing and im­proved ef­fi­ciency. The bent-eight adopts a high-pres­sure di­rect in­jec­tion and low-pres­sure port fuel in­jec­tion sys­tem and its com­pres­sion ra­tio is upped from 11 to 12:1.

An op­tional ac­tive valve ex­haust for the Mus­tang GT will give the flag­ship V8 ver­sion a more im­pos­ing vo­cal pres­ence.

The 2.3-litre tur­bocharged EcoBoost four gains a ‘tran­sient over­boost’ func­tion which means it will make more peak power and torque than the cur­rent en­gine, though only dur­ing wide open throt­tle con­di­tions. The V6 en­gine cur­rently of­fered in other mar­kets is set to be dis­con­tin­ued.

An all-new 10-speed au­to­matic co-de­vel­oped with Gen­eral Mo­tors will re­place the cur­rent six- Ford has yet to feel any sales im­pact in the wake of the Mus­tang GT’s ANCAP two-star crash rat­ing, which was re­vealed at the end of Jan­uary. Fe­bru­ary’s re­sult of 577 units amounted to a steady track­ing of sales com­pared with pre­ced­ing months, though given the wait­ing list to se­cure a Mus­tang in Oz, any down­turn may well be re­flected in sub­se­quent months. How­ever, in a blow to sales vol­umes, the Mus­tang, which was un­der­go­ing eval­u­a­tion as a high­way pa­trol ve­hi­cle, is now off po­lice radar as a re­sult of the ANCAP re­sult be­cause it does not meet pro­cure­ment rules for gov­ern­ment ve­hi­cles, which call for five-star safety. The Aus­tralian New Car As­sess­ment Pro­gram re­vealed in Jan­uary that the Mus­tang of­fered poor oc­cu­pant pro­tec­tion as a re­sult of in­cor­rectly in­flat­ing airbags, a crash struc­ture that al­lowed the driver’s door to open dur­ing speed au­to­matic, and gives auto-pi­lots pad­dle shifters for man­ual con­trol. A six-speed man­ual with up­graded torque ca­pac­ity now fea­tures; for the V8 the ’box has been re­designed to in­clude a twin-disc clutch and a dual-mass fly­wheel for a fur­ther in­crease in torque ca­pa­bil­ity and more ef­fi­cient clutch mod­u­la­tion.

Mag­neRide adap­tive dampers sus­pen­sion, which was pre­vi­ously avail­able only in the hi-po Shelby GT350, will be of­fered by Ford as part of the Mus­tang Per­for­mance Pack­age.

New non-adap­tive shock ab­sorbers will fea­ture in all ver­sions of the new Mus­tang, along with new anti-roll bars, and a ‘cross-axis joint’ in the rear sus­pen­sion that’s said to de­liver in­creased lat­eral stiff­ness.

The most ob­vi­ous up­date from the driver’s seat is a new, 12-inch cus­tomis­able dig­i­tal LCD in­stru­ment panel fill­ing the clus­ter. It will of­fer three sep­a­rate views that re­late to ‘nor­mal’, ‘sport’ and ‘track’ modes, the lat­ter in­clud­ing a Christ­mas-tree count­down graphic for drag-strip­style get­aways. a pole test, and the ab­sence of in­creas­ingly com­mon crash avoidance tech­nolo­gies that ANCAP con­sid­ers to be vi­tal. The out­come of the test­ing con­ducted with Euro NCAP was a poor two-star rat­ing for the Mus­tang GT ver­sion.

Ford de­fended the safety test re­sult, hint­ing that it was dis­ap­pointed with the test pro­to­col rather than the per­for­mance of the car.

The Mus­tang is the first two-door sports coupe to be tested un­der the new test pro­to­col, which was in­tro­duced in 2016, while sim­i­lar cars tested un­der the pre­vi­ous regime were not sub­jected to the rear oc­cu­pant el­e­ment of the pro­gram.

“The over­all Euro NCAP rat­ing is based on four pil­lars, with a very strong fo­cus on fam­ily car safety char­ac­ter­is­tics and spe­cific safety as­sist fea­tures, which are usu­ally not part of the stan­dard equip­ment of cars in the Mus­tang cat­e­gory,” read a state­ment is­sued by Ford.

“The Mus­tang is a safe ve­hi­cle, equipped with ad­vanced safety fea­tures and a struc­ture

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