2015 Ford Mustang GT: GT Performance Pack + Recaros
February 12, 2015
I've already gone on record saying we were right to get the 2015 Ford Mustang GT instead of the EcoBoost. It's certainly the engine I'd opt for, and I would sure as hell get the manual transmission. However, after my first extended amount of time in our new Mustang, there are several elements on our build sheet I would think twice about if I were in the market for one.
First, the GT Performance package. For $2,495, it adds Brembo 6-piston front brake calipers and larger rotors, a 3.73 Torsen rear axle, extra gauges, special stability control and ABS tuning, and the deletion of the rear spoiler. I don't have a problem with any of these items. Rather, it is the myriad changes to the suspension and chassis tuning that result in an overall ride that feels too rough and busy during casual driving and too soft when really pushing it. It's conflicted, and when it comes down to it, I'd rather my muscle car err on the side of cruising than canyon carving. (Because if I were to do the latter with some regularity, I wouldn't buy a Mustang).
Second, the black wheels. They also come with the GT Performance package and I'm sorry, I don't understand them. They either look appallingly dirty, or from afar, like we've affixed snow tires. Or rather, those black steel wheels people put snow tires on instead of paying to put them on the stock rims every year.
Third, the Recaro seats. As Ron Montoya pointed out, they add more lateral support, but they cannot be heated, ventilated, or most importantly, power adjusted. With only two-way, manual height adjustment, I couldn't get as comfortable as I can in the eight-way power-adjustable regular seats. So although the Recaros provided plenty of lateral support when I was bombing around the Santa Monica Mountains, without power adjustment they couldn't provide the under-thigh support I prefer the rest of the time.
And then, there's the orange. I have no problem with orange in theory and am fervently pro-color of any variety in lieu of the dullard greyscale palette that has become the unfortunate norm. It's just this particular orange. It's traffic cone flat and reminds me of some sort of government-issue railroad vehicle. Something livelier like our Jaguar's metallic orange would be preferable.
Now, aside from the color, these elements may make the GT a better performance machine, but I think they compromise it in ways that would irritate on a daily basis, and don't really go far enough to make it the track- or canyon-carving weapon some may expect or desire. I'm curious to drive a base GT suspension or the EcoBoost Performance package to see how they compare.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 2,568.7 miles