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We drive the new Ford Mustang GT

by Ali Arsham
Tuesday, October 16, 2012


2013 Mustang GT
Since 1982, the Mustang GT has been a car that most muscle car enthusiasts lust after.  The 1982 version made 157 hp and was the quickest American car you could buy back then.  A lot has changed since then but the Mustang spirit remains the same.  What has changed is that everything is better.  The Mustang GT has become faster, more fuel efficient and a lot better handling.  The Mustang has been continuously improved and the 2013 version is the best ever.  To get a closer look we got our hands on a 2013 Mustang GT to see.

For the 2013 model, the front end of the Mustang offers a more aggressive design with a significantly more prominent grille.  A more powerful splitter adds to the appearance and functional heat extractors on the hood of the GT help move hot air out of the engine compartment and cool the engine.  The rear of the car has been updated with smoked LED tail lights which gives the car a more aggressive appearance.  HID headlights are now standard on all Mustangs as well.  The Mustang interior is also improved with optional Recaro seats that until now were only available on the Boss 302 and GT500 models.  The seats have large bolsters to support the body during spirited driving.  As a bonus, the seats are specifically designed to be comfortable when wearing a helmet on track days.

Mustang GT engine
The most important feature of a Mustang is not the design but what is under the hood.  The 2013 GT does not disappoint.  Under the hood of every GT is a 5.0 liter V8 that has to be one of the best production engines.  The engine gets a few more horsepower for 2013 thanks to a few improvements adapted from the Boss 302 engine.  The total for 2013 Is now 420 hp which is far cry from the 1982’s 157 hp.  We prefer our Mustangs with manual transmissions but Ford is offering a new six speed automatic transmission for 2013.  This advanced transmission offers the driver a choice between fully automatic operation and manual control.  The system is controlled with a selector button on the side of the shifter.  Unlike some competitive transmissions, the SelectShift transmission won’t second-guess the driver with an override shift.  With this transmission, manual control is truly manually controlled, allowing the driver to hold a gear right up to redline if desired.

All of that V8 power does not mean that it will eat your savings in gas money.  The engine is also very efficient getting 18 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the freeway.  We managed to get 23 mpg during mixed driving.

If you do own a Mustang, you should know that the engine is intoxicating and it will be hard to keep things under control.  For one, the engine sounds awesome and the more you rev it, the better it sounds.  You will find yourself rolling down the windows just so that you can hear the engine better.  The 5.0 liter Coyote engine cranks out 390 lb. ft. of torque at 4200 rpm and pulls hard at any rpm.  Romp on it at 10 mph and the front end lifts up like a Pro Stock drag race car. 

What is really nice about the 2013 Mustang is that it also handles and can be a very comfortable every day car.  The steering is the only issue with the Mustang as it provides very little feedback.  There are settings for sport, normal and comfort for the level of power assist but none improve the lack of feedback through the steering wheel.  That is too bad because the rest of the chassis is actually very good in hard cornering and will surprise most drivers. 

In the great Mustang tradition, it will be difficult to beat the Mustang GT’s performance per dollar ratio.  You can get a Mustang V6 for as little as $22,200.  The GT starts out at $30,300 and the GT Premium starts out at $34,300.  The Premium gives you a few more goodies such as Sync system and a better audio system.  For pure performance the basic Mustang GT is the best deal.

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