2011 Ford Mustang GT: Overdue for a Real Drive
March 21, 2011
As daylight faded on Saturday, I realized how screwed up my priorities were: I hadn't carved out 2 hours to take our long-term 2011 Ford Mustang GT on some mountain roads. A few hours later, the monsoon began, and I can only hope my favorite roads will be dried out by next weekend.
The reason I care is because our 2011 Mustang GT is one of those cars that manages to be fun in any driving situation. For me, it's a bit like the Mazdaspeed 3 in its character.
Of course, the 5.0-liter Coyote V8 in the Mustang has a far more interesting soundtrack than the Mazda's powerful but soulless, turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder, but that's only part of the Ford's appeal.
The new Getrag six-speed manual gearbox is far more satisfying to shift than the Tremec you usually get in an American muscle car. The clutch takeup actually has some feel to it, with a natural, predictable engagement point. As you've likely figured out by this point, shifting is far more than a necessity to me in a three-pedal car -- it's something I really look forward to and this 2011 GT finally makes it a pleasure.
Another surprise is the electric-assisted power steering, which, at least in normal driving, feels pretty good in our Mustang GT. It doesn't strike me as artificially light nor unnecessarily heavy, and the ratio feels pretty quick.
Turn-in feel is also quick -- when you put a little something extra on a left turn or a trip down a tight freeway exit ramp. There's definitely the sensation here that the chassis engineers dug deep when tuning the 2011 Mustang to make it feel a little sportier, a little more special than in previous years. I can't wait to try it on Glendora Mountain Road, gem of Southern California's San Gabriel Mountains, when the weather clears.
Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 4,717 miles