A noteworthy refresh for America’s best-selling sports car.
The 2018 Ford Mustang dropped cover and the changes include revised front and rear fascias, a new transmission and interior updates. Just three years after the redesigned 2015 model rolled out, the Mustang refresh aims to keep this handsome pony car ahead of the competition.
Ford waited until the public days of the Detroit Auto Show were underway to showcase the new car. Along with the Detroit reveal, the automaker unveiled the 2018 Mustang at events in New York and Los Angeles. The new model goes on sale this fall.
Front and Rear Changes
The refreshed Mustang receives a more dynamic appearance with a redesigned hood and grille that result in a streamlined look and improved aerodynamics. Ford tweaked the design of the upper and lower grilles, and repositioned the hood vents. Beginning with the new model, all Mustang models will feature all-LED front lights, including the daytime running lights, low- and high-beams, turn signals and available LED fog lights.
From the rear, the Mustang receives updated LED tail lamps, a new bumper, a refreshed fascia and an optional performance spoiler. All EcoBoost models come with dual-tip exhaust, while the Mustang GT features a quad-tip exhaust.
One Fewer Engine and a New Transmission
As for the engines and transmissions, the 3.7-liter V6 was discontinued due to minimal demand. Ford will continue with its two other engine choices: a turbocharged 2.3-liter four cylinder and a 5.0-liter V8. The reworked V8 now provides improved low-end torque, high-rpm power and improved fuel economy. Both engines come paired with an updated six-speed manual gearbox or a newly available 10-speed automatic transmission.
In a press release, Ford says “the new 10-speed transmission has quicker shift times, better low-speed tip-in response and significantly reduced friction losses.” It is also expected to improve highway fuel economy over the currently available six-speed automatic.
A MagneRide suspension system (currently available only on the Shelby GT350) will be available as part of a performance package. The system optimizes ride and handling in all driving situations, and improves track performance without sacrificing ride comfort.
New and Updated Tech, Safety Features
The 2018 Mustang will be offered with Ford’s first-ever 12-inch all-digital LCD screen in the dashboard. This fully customizable display has a trio of independent views for normal, sport and track modes. Also rolling out is Mustang MyMode with memory function, enabling drivers to save their preferred drive settings, including suspension and steering choices.
Mustang GT buyers will find that the engine note is also customizable and adjustable. An optional active valve exhaust system comes with a fully variable soundtrack to match the full acceleration spectrum.
New for 2018 is an available package of driver-assist technologies that brings features such as lane departure warning, lane keep assist and a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection to the Mustang for the first time.
Also never before offered, but available for the first time is Ford Sync Connect with FordPass. When accessed by means of a smartphone app, drivers can start, lock, unlock and locate their car.
Other changes of note include additional exterior color choices, restyled seating surfaces and an available heated steering wheel. Customers will also have a collection of 12 alloy wheel designs to consider.
The Bottom Line
Ford’s continuous investment in improving the Mustang comes despite an overall decline in muscle car sales. Although U.S. sales were down in 2016, Ford has its eye on growing Mustang demand in more than 100 markets worldwide. Truly, America’s pony car has a global appeal and the updated model does everything to enhance that.