Mid-life makeover for Mus­tang

Styling changes are sub­tle, but there are some ma­jor up­dates un­der the skin

The Star Early Edition - - NEW MODELS - IOL MO­TOR­ING

BE­ING global, as Ford’s Mus­tang be­came in its lat­est gen­er­a­tion, means keep­ing with the times, even if you are a pony car tug­ging at nos­tal­gic heart­strings.

So with­out fur­ther ado, let’s check out the Mus­tang’s mid-life re­fresh, which in­cludes a sub­tle facelift front and back as well as up­graded en­gines, a new dig­i­tal in­stru­ment clus­ter and some driver-as­sis­tance gad­gets.

The ex­te­rior de­sign changes are noth­ing rad­i­cal, but Ford has re­designed the grille, bumper and bon­net and those ag­gro-look­ing new all-LED head­lights will fea­ture across the range, as will the re­vised LED tail­lights.

The big news un­der the bon­net is an up­graded 5-litre normally as­pi­rated V8 en­gine, which gains a new ‘dual fuel’ high-pres­sure di­rect in­jec­tion and low-pres­sure port fuel in­jec­tion sys­tem, which im­proves lower-end torque and in­creases high­rpm power. How­ever, Ford has yet to dis­close how many ponies the new mo­tor ac­tu­ally makes. Same goes for the ex­tra torque pro­duced by the mildly-re­vised 2.3-litre four-cylin­der tur­bopetrol op­tion. Both en­gines will be avail­able with an im­proved man­ual gear­box or an all-new 10-speed au­to­matic trans­mis­sion.

An­other area where some wel­come moderni­sa­tion takes place is in­side, where be­sides a few new trims and de­sign touches, there’s the op­tion of a new Audi-style 30.5cm LCD dig­i­tal in­stru­ment clus­ter, of­fer­ing easy per­son­al­i­sa­tion through three sep­a­rate views (nor­mal, sport and track).

Talk­ing per­son­al­i­sa­tion, there’s a MyMode gad­get that al­lows driv­ers to save their favourite drive set­tings and buy­ers of the GT can even ad­just the V8 en­gine’s beastly sound­track through an op­tional ac­tive valve ex­haust sys­tem.

Other new giz­mos in­clude Ford Sync Con­nect, with an app that al­lows you to start, lock/un­lock or lo­cate the car through your smart-phone, and var­i­ous driver aids such as Pre-Col­li­sion As­sist with pedes­trian de­tec­tion, lane-keep­ing as­sist and dis­tance alert.

Hardly your ba­sic bang-for-buck pony car then, but then it’s not 1964 any­more is it?

The 2017 Mus­tang goes on sale in its home mar­ket dur­ing the third quar­ter and our con­tact at Ford SA said that lo­cal tim­ing has yet to be de­ter­mined.

A new grille and ag­gro-look­ing LED head­lights dif­fer­en­ti­ate the facelifted model.

An Audi-in­spired dig­i­tal clus­ter and loads of new gad­gets in the cabin.

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