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The 2015 Ford Mustang brings the iconic pony car into an even more fuel-efficient future.
Turbocharged Mustangs can be a lot of fun; you can still have a V8; new rear suspension should make for a better handling car.
Four-cylinder will never sound as good as a V8; more sophisticated suspension could increase cost.
The 2015 Ford Mustang will be fully redesigned.
The 2015 Ford Mustang marks the model's 50th anniversary. And what better way to celebrate an enduring symbol of American working-class muscle than to give it a turbocharged four-cylinder? Ford won't confirm the Mustang engine for the U.S., protesting slightly too much that the turbo-4 is intended only for Europe, Ford's newest market for the iconic pony car.
Ford plans to satisfy its legion of European Steve McQueen fans with a V8 option, but is also betting that plenty of European enthusiasts want Mustang style and authenticity, without paying the V8's attendant tax and fuel bill. According to one Ford source, engineering a new four-cylinder for what will be a small-volume specialty car in Europe wouldn't make sense. To justify the engineering expense, the new engine will need buyers: Americans, most likely.
Four-cylinders aren't new to the Mustang, and some applications have fared better than others. But if any to date were to have meaningful success, the EcoBoost four-cylinder might be the one. The European version will likely be a 2.3-liter mill based on the current 2.0-liter engine found in the Focus ST. That engine makes 252 horsepower in the ST, and the earliest mumblings are that a 2.3-liter could ratchet that up to around 300 hp.
Given that the 2015 Mustang is almost certainly on a strict diet already in its development stages, fuel economy shouldn't suffer horribly. The 2.0-liter in the Focus ST returns 23 mpg city and 32 mpg highway.
Will this new Mustang finally get an independent rear suspension? Spy shots have shown an IRS setup under a current Mustang body, which could mean anything or nothing. But with most of the Mustang's direct rivals offering an independent rear, the pony's day of reckoning draws near.
Whether the thought of a turbo-4 Mustang excites or reviles you, get used to it. Look for the 2015 Ford Mustang to bow either next winter at the Detroit auto show, or next spring in New York where the original '64 was introduced. Check back for more info on the redesigned Mustang, including specs, driving impressions and buying advice as it becomes available.
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