Friday, November 19, 2010
A Classic Gets Better: 2011 Ford Mustang
Last year, great American muscle car Ford Mustang underwent a refresh that touched its interior and exterior styling.
For the 2011 model year, the Mustang gets two more powerful engines, to accentuate the muscle in its muscle car description.
The standard engine now is a 3.7-liter, 305-horsepower V-6, which takes the place of the 4.0-liter, 210-horsepower engine. The base power plant is linked to a six-speed manual, with an optional six-speed automatic transmission.
Ford says the new model is quicker off the line, jumping to 280 pounds-feet of torque, a gain of 40 over last year's model. Fuel economy has risen, too, to 19 mpg in the city and 31 on the highway.
But the real muscle comes from the optional 5.0-liter, 412-horsepower V-8, which makes 390 pounds-feet of torque.
Like the V-6, the V-8 is linked to a six-speed manual or automatic transmission, with both being rear-wheel drive.
Fuel economy is a surprisingly decent 17-18 mpg in the city and 25-26 mpg on the highway.
Ford has emphasized its commitment to raising fuel economy in recent years, and it certainly is paying handsome dividends for the blue oval. When the company can make a muscle car that gets this kind of mileage, it has to be doing something right.
As in the previous model, the 2011 Mustang is available as a coupe or convertible and in four trims: V-6, V-6 Premium, GT and GT Premium. The convertible comes with a power-folding top and optional soft boot for open-air fun, and the coupe adorns an optional panoramic glass roof.
On the inside, this Mustang provides an optional 8-inch, voice-activated touch screen navigation system with SIRIUS Travel Link. Two hearty Shaker audio systems are offered – a 500-watt version and a piercing 1,000-watt version with dual trunk subwoofers.
There is an auxiliary audio input jack to accommodate an iPod, and Sirius satellite radio comes standard.
The Sync Communications and Entertainment System allows you to control the music verbally, choosing genre, album, artist or song title. You can also operate your Bluetooth.
Standard cloth or optional heated leather upholstery cover comfortable front bucket seats, and coupes have a 50/50 split rear seat that allows for some cargo capacity.
For safety, the Mustang has dual front and side airbags, and an anti-lock braking system that is optional on V-6 models and standard on the GT. New for this model year is an electronic stability system.
The Mustang ranges in price from around $23,000 to about $39,000.
So if it's red-blooded American driving fun you are after, the Mustang will move you.