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Ford Mustang (2014) more news and pictures
Ollie Kew (artist's impressions by Christian Schulte)
26 October 2012 11:00
Have you always wanted a Ford Mustang? If you're European, the only option was a grey import, but under the streamlined 'One Ford' policy the Blue Oval will officially sell you a right-hand drive 'Stang on this side of the Pond in 2014.
Sources say the design approach to the new Mustang is evolutionary, as our computer generated image suggests. Plus, we've got details on the downsized engines and specs for the coupe. Still want that BMW M3?
I thought the next Mustang was ditching the retro look?
Initially, the rumours suggested the retro Mustang design that's served the latest iteration so well since 2005 would die along with the current car. There was even talk of the Mustang replicating the look of the Ford Evos concept, whose slim grille and headlights influenced the snout of the new Mondeo and facelifted Fiesta.
Instead, there's been a change of heart at Ford. The Mustang will keep its retro cues, but make slight tweaks to the design. The grille and headlights will indeed shrink, and the rear arches will be sharply profiled to give the car's 'shoulders' more definition. Angular creases and a frowning face have done the resurrected Chevrolet Camaro no harm at all in the US, so expect Ford to take a leaf out of its arch enemy's styling book as inspiration.
Are things staying the same under the skin?
While the styling keeps a direct link to the Sixties, mechanically the Mustang is galloping into the 21st Century. Ford says that building an internationally available Mustang allows the sort of ground-up rethink that simply wouldn't be approved (or neccessary) if the car was simply being tweaked for the USA. That means a new engine family, less weight, and better suspension.
In the UK we're accustomed to Ford's low-displacement turbocharged Ecoboost engines, like the 1.0-litre three-cylinder in the new Fiesta. In America, Ecoboost technology is used in larger motors; the 3.5-litre twin-turbocharged Ecoboost V6 is good for up to 360bhp. It's been hugely popular in the F-150 pick-up truck, rapidly outselling the thirstier V8s.
The next Mustang will certainly use Ecoboost technology when it enters more fuel-conscious European markets, though a GT-badged V8 flagship could be offered here.
What about the live rear axle?
Ford has gamely honed its live rear axle set-up throughout the Mustang's half-century career - it even sees duty in the mentalist 662bhp GT500 on sale in the US right now. However, the all-new 'world Mustang' gives the opportunity to switch to a more advanced independent set-up, like the Holden-based Camaro's.
Ford always argued the Mustang's bang-for-buck value was partly a result of the lo-fi suspension, and a more complex multi-link design would up the car's bargain price-tag. But now the car will have more scale to fund the upgrade.
Any word on prices?
Currently, a 301bhp V6 Mustang coupe retails for $22,200 Stateside (working out at £13,640). Don't expect a Mustang for Fiesta cash over here though. Ford told CAR that the certification and testing procedures needed to bring the Mustang to European markets would increase costs.
We predict entry-level Mustangs will do battle in the sub-$30k bracket alongside the Nissan 370Z and Audi A5. Higher-powered, higher spec cars will surge towards £50,000, but still undercut the M- and AMG-badged opposition.
Since the Cougar disappeared in 2002, Ford has had a big coupe-sized hole in its range. Lack of demand for imported LHD Mustangs didn't encourage matters, but at last, a Blue Oval-badged coupe with modern componentry could at last become a compelling alternative to the Germans, with official Ford dealer backing.
>> Is Ford mad to offer the Mustang in Europe, or is this the highlight of the company's 'One Ford' world car policy? Tell us in the comments