Today was one of those days when someone makes you turn back for a hundred times after the parting words. Every turn is with a descending smile and ascending thoughts in the headquarter of your nervous system. It has been several hundred complete moon cycles since I have had this feeling and now, the blood is still over speeding through my nerves.
This is exactly what happens when you meet your childhood posters, or rather what you use to term as the god. The rendezvous was quite shaking and why not, it was the legend known as Mustang. America is losing almost all the muscle in exchange of fat to the fa(s)t food chains but this American muscle is only growing stronger.
It took Ford 52 years to finally produce Right Hand Drive configuration of the car. Although the Mustang is now six generations old, it has only become stronger with age. This is the first ever muscle car that has been launched in India and we did score some time with the American dream.
The Mustang looks angry, it looks beautiful and the bulges make it look like the muscles will rip apart the sheet of the body. This is an all-new Mustang, which means it looks nothing like previous generations of the car but as a family, it still shares the genes with the past members.
The front is dominated by the well-known signature Mustang grille with sharp new headlamps on the side. The vertical LED strips inside act as daytime running lamps. The hood has a huge bulge on it but overall, the car looks very well-toned. Both the front and rear windscreens are tilted at a steep angle and echoes Ford’s claim of aviation making an influence on the latest Mustang’s design.
At the rear, the tail lamps have a similar symmetry with the DRLs in the front and this adds a retro look and feel to the car. The 19-inch split spoke wheels with low profile tyres make sure that the “pony” never loses grip and always moves in style. In short, while the Mustang would not win the beauty pageant, it has enough character to intimidate all other candidates into not accepting the crown too.
Even though Ford Mustang has become modern, the classic looks are kept alive inside the cage. During the short time we spent with the car, it was impossible to figure out which switch will do what but details like aviation style toggle switches look really at home in this car.
The car comes with two doors but four seats inside. The rear bench looks out of space and we did not dare to pull down the front seat and enter the cave. The front seats are large and comfortable bucket seats that support the body even during high-speed turns and churns.
The car is loaded with ambient lighting package, eight airbags including a knee airbag for the driver, dual-zone climate control, leather seats with heating and cooling function in front two seats. The front seats are power adjustable with memory function.
The entertainment needs are taken care by Ford’s SYNC2 system that can be controlled by voice and has an 8-inch touchscreen. There are various apps in the system to track the performance of the car. For example, the accelerometer shows the acceleration times and the braking performance for the vehicle.
The three-spoke steering wheel is very ergonomic and has a lot of grip to it. The Mustang logo sits in between and on either side, you get buttons to control your smartphone or the 4.2-inch coloured cluster screen for the driver that shows various readings.
For sure, we left a lot of things and gizmos untouched because of lack of time but the Mustang feels very brutish, safe and advanced from inside.
Engine and Driving:
India only gets the most powerful 5.0-litre V8 engine under the hood. The fire-breathing engine block exhales through twin exhaust tip with a suppressed growl. There are no crackles or thunders here but the engine sounds smooth. Mustang has finally become the Morgan Freeman in the automotive world with the stricter sound-level norms.
During the first lap at the BIC, we drove by giving full responsibility to the 6-speed automatic gearbox. The car is quick, theoretically, it can do a 0-100 km/h dash in just 5 seconds but it does not feel like it, maybe because of the slow gearbox. Even though international models receive advanced dual-clutch transmissions, India only receives the good old torque converter, which does not stand a chance in front of modern transmissions. Even in the “Sport+” mode the gears could not keep up with the needs. The best part is the paddle shifters, that are really responsive and uses your brain instead of the car’s judgement about gears.
Push the pedal against the floor and 401 PS of maximum power and 515 Nm of torque rush to the rear wheels to make the car leap. In gear accelerations are not that much fun, though. India also gets a detuned version of the engine because of lower quality of fuel available here but that is only 10 PS of power and not much.
The all-new Ford Mustang also gets independent suspensions on all four wheels, making it a first for Mustang. Handling is not high precise but it gets you where you need to go. For a matter of fact, this is a muscle car designed to go fast in straight line, it would not set a lap time so don’t expect one from it. The car does have a lot of body roll but the steering has the right amount of weight to give you enough confidence during your moves.
For Rs. 65 lakh (ex-showroom), you can get a lot of cars with more precise driving experience but you will miss out on the only muscle car available in the country. This car would become the first choice for people who want to live in the limelight. It looks brutal, it is a hooligan to drive, it can do a trick or two with the traction control off, and then some. Have the money? Go for it!