Few cars can claim a half-century of heritage, and the Ford Mustang is one. But don't mistake the 2017 Ford Mustang for the stripped-down muscle car of the 1960s. The Mustang has always been willing to change with the years. And the most recent generation competes well on many fronts, even against European luxury cars.
One key to the Mustang's character is its engine. We remain fans of the Mustang's V8, a thoroughly modern 5.0-liter engine that delivers 435 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque with impressive refinement. EPA fuel economy estimates for the big engine are 18 mpg combined (16 city/24 highway) for the automatic coupe. Manuals differ only on the highway figure, which is 25 mpg.
Base-model Mustangs are certainly not lacking for power. The 3.7-liter V6 delivers 300 horsepower and 280 lb-ft, numbers that many old-time muscle-bound Mustangs can't match. The V6 models achieve 21 mpg combined (18 city/27 highway). And if you need any proof that Ford is evolving the Mustang with the times, look no further than the 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine. It is a thoroughly modern powerplant with direct fuel injection and a turbocharger that raises output to 310 hp and 320 lb-ft. EPA fuel economy for the four-cylinder Mustang coupe is 24 mpg combined (21 city/30 highway). During Edmunds testing, the turbo reached 60 mph in 5.9 seconds, behind the V8's 4.7 seconds.
We like the Mustang's interior and its pleasant mix of retro and modern technology. We're especially pleased with the touchscreen stereo. Ford has replaced the MyFord Touch system with a new interface called Sync 3, which is faster, simpler and more intuitive. Throughout the interior, materials quality is high. Trunk size is average for the segment. Backseat space is similarly on par, which means tight.
Ford offers a Performance package on GT and EcoBoost models that stiffens the suspension to improve handling. This option is a noticeable improvement over the base setup at a track or on canyon roads, but we'd avoid it. The standard suspension is plenty capable with far better everyday comfort. Both V6 and V8 engines are smooth and refined, but the EcoBoost engine lags behind. It does reduce weight over the nose, however, which improves handling. We think the V8 is the way to go. It is powerful and well-behaved, and though it lacks the low-end rumble of competitive muscle cars, that is nothing an aftermarket exhaust can't fix.
Ford offers the Mustang in V6, EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT, and GT Premium trim levels. The base V6 comes with a long list of standard equipment that will please most buyers. EcoBoost and GT packages add the turbo-four and V8 engines, respectively. Premium models add further comfort and convenience. Which Mustang is best? Let Edmunds help find the perfect 2017 Ford Mustang for you.
Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.