2004 Ford Mustang Review

Pros & Cons

  • Available V8 power, variety of trim levels, healthy dose of American attitude.
  • Archaic underpinnings, cheap interior materials, choppy ride.
List Price
$5,995

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Fittingly, the Mustang is the last surviving member of the "pony car" breed. For the 2004 Ford Mustang, the Anniversary Edition should give enthusiasts something to brag about.

Vehicle overview

The Ford Mustang debuted in April of 1964 as either a coupe or convertible with six or eight cylinders under the hood, and became a national sensation. Ford sold hundreds of thousands of Mustangs, convincing General Motors and Chrysler Corporation to release their own variations on the theme. By the late 1960s, the Mustang competed against the AMC Javelin, Chevrolet Camaro, Plymouth Barracuda and Pontiac Firebird. But, like Elvis Presley, the Mustang had evolved from lightweight and simple agile to overweight and cumbersome. By the time the oil crisis of 1973 hit, the Mustang had lost its edge in terms of performance and appeal. Reborn for 1974, the much smaller Mustang II rode on a Pinto platform to save development costs and improve fuel economy. Emissions regulations had stifled performance, and the convertible model had disappeared from the lineup. The mid-1970s represented a dismal time for the American automobile industry, and the emasculation of the Ford Mustang is perhaps the greatest example of what went wrong in the middle of this decade. Not surprisingly, sales reached an all-time low during this period of time. Still, Ford wasn't ready to give up on the Mustang. In 1979, it was completely redesigned. There was even a performance model with a turbocharged 2.3-liter, four-cylinder engine, and a stripes-and-decals Cobra version. The new Mustang proved popular, and by 1982, Ford had endowed it with a relatively strong (for the time) V8 engine and the GT designation that continues today. General Motors released a sexy new Camaro and Firebird duo in '82, so Ford countered by continually updating the Mustang GT and engineering a special turbocharged performance model called the SVO. In the late 1980s, Mustang enthusiasts heard that Ford planned to replace the rear-drive model with a front-drive car based on a Mazda. Recoiling in revulsion, these purists bombarded Ford with hate mail, effectively convincing corporate brass to keep the all-American Mustang as it was and release the new vehicle under development as the Probe. This delay meant Ford needed to market the existing and aged Mustang beyond its expiration date until a suitable replacement could be styled and engineered. To retain buyer interest, Ford kept boosting power and improving the Mustang in subtle but effective ways. The new car arrived in 1994 wearing retro styling cues such as tri-bar taillights and a side scoop. Inside, a dual-cowl dashboard provided plenty of pizzazz. A coupe and convertible were available, with either a V6 or V8 engine. A Cobra model with added horsepower and special performance upgrades paced the Indianapolis 500 that year. In 1999, the Mustang was updated with boxy new styling and more power. The 2004 Ford Mustang appeals to those who love the burble of a V8, the handling of rear-wheel drive and the appeal of a legendary car with a long and storied history. For 2004, Ford will offer a 40th Anniversary trim package to commemorate the longevity of the original American muscle car.

2004 Ford Mustang models

Base, Deluxe and Premium models have a V6 engine. The GT Deluxe, GT Premium and Mach 1 get a V8. Coupes are available in each trim, while the convertible is limited to regular and GT versions of Deluxe and Premium trim. Standard equipment on base models includes 16-inch wheels, air conditioning, a CD player and power windows, mirrors and locks. Deluxe models add a power driver seat, cruise control and a spoiler on coupes; additionally, the GT Deluxe gets 17-inch wheels, an upgraded suspension, sport seats and a limited-slip differential. Premium models come with leather upholstery, an upgraded sound system and a CD changer. The 40th Anniversary Package is available on all Premium models (either engine) and specifies either red, black or white exterior paint; special Arizona Beige wheels; brushed aluminum pedals; and embroidered floor mats, while deleting the spoiler on coupes and adding a better-insulated cloth top on convertibles. The limited-production Mach 1 includes a functional shaker hood with ram-air scoop; special interior detailing; unique alloy wheels and exterior trim; a lowered, retuned sport suspension; and upgraded brakes.

2004 Highlights

With an all-new model scheduled for '05, there are few changes for the 2004 Ford Mustang. All models wear commemorative 40th anniversary exterior badging, while V6 and GT models can be ordered with a full 40th anniversary package that includes additional exterior and interior enhancements.

Performance & mpg

Standard on base, Deluxe and Premium Mustangs is a 190-horsepower, 3.8-liter V6. Step up to the GT Deluxe and GT Premium, and you'll get a 260-horsepower, 4.6-liter V8. The Mach 1 gets a tweaked version of this V8 worthy of 310 horsepower and 335 pound-feet of torque. All Mustangs are rear-drive and can be equipped with either a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission.

Safety

Four-wheel disc brakes are standard on the 2004 Ford Mustang. Antilock brakes and traction control are optional on all Deluxe models and standard on all Premium and Mach 1 models. The Mustang coupe received five-star frontal crash test scores for the driver and passenger. Side-impact testing resulted in three-star scores for both front- and rear-seat occupants.

Driving

Mustangs are crude by modern standards, but strong engines and low prices keep them plenty desirable next to the more refined sport coupes and convertibles on the market. The performance-oriented Mach 1 is a terrific blend of power, handling and retro design, while the GT offers V8 power for under $25,000. Even V6 models can be entertaining when equipped with a manual transmission. Both the GT and the V6 make fine daily drivers, especially for those who crave tail-out thrills and don't mind a less-than-ideal seating position.

Interior

Instrumentation is simple and controls are straightforward, if sometimes hard to locate and reach. Seats in the V6 and GT models are flat and featureless; the Mach 1's seats offer a retro design to go along with their stiffer bolsters and greater adjustability. You can spruce up the interior by adding the 40th Anniversary Package, which bundles together metallic trim, aluminum pedals, embroidered floor mats and upgraded head restraints. It's not uncommon for Mustang drivers to find it difficult to achieve a comfortable driving position. This is because of the rather awkward placement of the shifter and steering wheel in relation to the driver seat.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2004 Ford Mustang.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Reliable car
bull_gator,10/29/2014
GT Premium 2dr Coupe (4.6L 8cyl 5M)
Only a few problems have shown up in 107K miles. I have replaced the fuel pump, alternator, battery, tires, and suspension. Of those, only the fuel pump was unexpected. The rest are things you expect to replace. 144K mile update. Car still running strong. Since the last review, I have gone through another battery and tires.
My First Car
Mustang04,06/24/2010
My parents bought this car for me for my first car. I am definitely a car person and was thrilled to get a Mustang. This car is so reliable. Every time I need to go somewhere I know that it will get me there safely. I also get excellent gas mileage. I usually get between 23 and 26 highway driving.If you take good care of your Mustang and treat it right you will not have any problems.
Favorite Car I've Owned
automaniac9,01/19/2014
Bought this car with 104,000 miles on it, and wow, good car for the money. It might seem like thats high mileage, but I bought it with an extended warrenty. I bought it with many performance upgrades, and I have to say it helps this car with its performance and personality. I drove a stock 01 GT, and it felt a bit boring. The interior leaves something to be desired, but it's simple and has no extra fluff you don't need. All in all, it is a good all rounder that now a days is a good used alternantive to a brand new one.
1st Mustang for the family
Fenderboss,09/11/2010
Moving to a Mustang has been an interesting experience. This is the first Mustang our family has owned and we find that there is a lot of coveting of the cars from everyone. I use it as a daily driver, and my commute is a joy covering 20 miles on some twisty country back roads. There is very little we don't enjoy about the car. That said, there are probably better interiors out there as well as fuel economy, but these shortcomings are more than compensated for when it comes to the overall experience of driving a proper American muscle car.

Features & Specs

MPG
15 city / 22 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed manual
Gas
390 hp @ 6000 rpm
MPG
18 city / 27 hwy
Seats 4
5-speed manual
Gas
190 hp @ 5250 rpm
MPG
15 city / 23 hwy
Seats 4
5-speed manual
Gas
260 hp @ 5250 rpm
MPG
15 city / 23 hwy
Seats 4
5-speed manual
Gas
260 hp @ 5250 rpm
See all Used 2004 Ford Mustang features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover5 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated

More about the 2004 Ford Mustang

Used 2004 Ford Mustang Overview

The Used 2004 Ford Mustang is offered in the following submodels: Mustang Mach 1 Premium, Mustang Coupe, Mustang Convertible, Mustang SVT Cobra. Available styles include SVT Cobra 2dr Coupe (4.6L 8cyl S/C 6M), SVT Cobra 2dr Convertible (4.6L 8cyl S/C 6M), Deluxe 2dr Convertible (3.8L 6cyl 5M), 2dr Coupe (3.8L 6cyl 5M), GT Premium 2dr Convertible (4.6L 8cyl 5M), Deluxe 2dr Coupe (3.8L 6cyl 5M), GT Deluxe 2dr Convertible (4.6L 8cyl 5M), GT Deluxe 2dr Coupe (4.6L 8cyl 5M), GT Premium 2dr Coupe (4.6L 8cyl 5M), Premium 2dr Convertible (3.8L 6cyl 4A), Premium 2dr Coupe (3.8L 6cyl 5M), and Mach 1 2dr Coupe (4.6L 8cyl 5M).

What's a good price on a Used 2004 Ford Mustang?

Price comparisons for Used 2004 Ford Mustang trim styles:

  • The Used 2004 Ford Mustang Mach 1 Premium is priced between $7,900 and$7,900 with odometer readings between 59575 and59575 miles.
  • The Used 2004 Ford Mustang Premium is priced between $4,995 and$4,995 with odometer readings between 216307 and216307 miles.

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Which used 2004 Ford Mustangs are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2004 Ford Mustang for sale near. There are currently 5 used and CPO 2004 Mustangs listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $4,995 and mileage as low as 46984 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2004 Ford Mustang.

Can't find a used 2004 Ford Mustangs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Ford Mustang for sale - 6 great deals out of 6 listings starting at $14,701.

Find a used Ford for sale - 10 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $14,855.

Find a used certified pre-owned Ford Mustang for sale - 3 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $22,114.

Find a used certified pre-owned Ford for sale - 1 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $23,337.

Should I lease or buy a 2004 Ford Mustang?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Ford lease specials
Check out Ford Mustang lease specials