Six things you need to know about the new 2019 Ford Mustang
Ford this week launched its refreshed Mustang on South African shores. Taughter, faster and sharper to drive, these are the most important things you need to know about it.
1: A muscular new look
Ford's iconic pony car now wears a more aggressive face thanks to numerous sheet metal tweaks. The biggest change is up front where a new reprofiled bonnet now sports two integrated air vents. These not only aid in engine cooling but also give a tip of the hat to the great American muscle cars that ruled the roost back in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The front and rear aprons have been refreshed; the rear also featuring a brand new air diffuser element that houses standard quad exhaust tailpipes in the case of the 5.0-litre V8 model. For enhanced performance and improved energy-efficiency all Mustang derivatives now come with LED headlights, daytime running lights, indicators, tail lights and fog lights. New 19-inch alloy wheels also debut as do three new metallic paint colours – Kona Blue, Orange Fury and Velocity Blue.
2: More power and snappier acceleration
Although the 2019 Mustang range sticks with a tried and tested engine line-up, both available powerplants now benefit from increased muscle. The 5.0-litre V8 has been fettled with Ford's new high-pressure direct injection and low-pressure port fuel injection system, which sees it deliver 331kW – 22kW more than it churned out before. Torque weighs in at 529Nm. The somewhat controversial 213kW, 2.3-litre EcoBoost (does a four-cylinder really belong in a Mustang?) has been made more responsive with a "transient overboost function" that helps produce 441Nm of torque – 11Nm more than its predecessor. Both models now come standard with Ford's new 10-speed automatic transmission, with no option of a six-speed manual. While purists will lament this spec-sheet caveat, Ford claims that the auto 'box gives improved acceleration and better fuel consumption.
3: Even better through the curvy bits
When it was launched back in 2014 the sixth-generation Mustang proved to the world that an American pony car actually could be enjoyed on roads not drawn with a ruler. For 2019 Ford has upped the 'Stang's dynamic ante with a host of chassis revisions that promise even sharper handling characteristics. Put on your X-ray glasses and you will notice that the Dearborn engineers have bolted in recalibrated shock absorbers, increased the stiffness of the rear suspension courtesy a new cross-axis joint as well as adding in a set of thicker anti-roll bars. The result is less body roll and improved cornering stability.
4: Safer than ever
The new 2019 Mustang is now equipped with Adaptive Cruise Control and Distance Alert technologies that help drivers maintain an appropriate distance to the vehicle ahead. It also benefits from Lane Departure Warning as well as Lane Keeping Aid that can automatically apply torque to the steering wheel to steer the vehicle back into lane. To make everyday driving even safer (especially in urban areas), Ford spliced in Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection – systems that have been designed to reduce the severity of and, in some cases, even mitigate frontal collisions involving vehicles and pedestrians.
5: A mini interior makeover
For a slightly more premium feel the the 2019 Mustang now features soft-touch materials on the door cards while the door handles have been trimmed in aluminium. The biggest news, however, is that the instrument cluster has received a comprehensive makeover: the analogue gauges of old being junked in favour of a slick and customisable 12-inch digital display. Although its appearance is automatically optimised to complement the selected Drive Mode, this system can also be programmed to display a range of gauges in one of seven colours. In-car entertainment is taken care of with Ford's excellent SYNC 3 infotainment system that, linked to an eight-inch touchscreen situated on the centre console, allows you to control everything from climate control to audio settings. For added convenience it's also compatible with both Apple CarPlay as well as Android Auto.
6: A Bullitt you won't want to dodge
For the first time ever the limited-edition Mustang Bullitt is being made available in South Africa. An ode to the original GT370 fastback that was piloted to fame by Steve McQueen in the 1968 crime-drama of the same name, the Mustang Bullitt, available in either Dark Highland Green or Shadow Black, promises enhanced driving enjoyment thanks to the fitment of a 338kW, 5.0-litre V8 engine. It also comes standard with a proper six-speed manual gearbox. Only 50 have been allocated to SA, so if you want one you better be quick.
2019 Ford Mustang Pricing:
Mustang 2.3 Fastback 10AT R768 000
Mustang 2.3 Convertible 10AT R831 000
Mustang 5.0 GT Fastback 10AT R915 800
Mustang 5.0 GT Convertible 10AT R978 400
Mustang Bullitt 5.0 V8 GT Fastback 6MT R995 400
- Keep an eye out for our first drive impressions uploading within the next few days.