In the 1960’s a race for the best muscle car began in America. Termed the “Pony Wars,” Ford, Chevrolet, and Dodge all participated in this great race. Ford started the pony class of vehicles and ultimately started the Pony Wars when they created the 1964 Mustang. Since 1964 the Mustang has continued to be manufactured and has a different model for every year from 1964 to 2010. The next great model that will live up to the legacy will be the 2011 Mustang GT.
Ford announced on December 28, 2009 that the 2011 Mustang GT will feature a 5.0 liter engine displacement that will produce 412 horsepower and 390 ft/lbs of torque. In 1995 Ford the 5.0 Mustang was replaced with a 4.6 liter GT. This disappointed many Mustang enthusiast due to the fact the 5.0 was widely known as the most powerful version. This disappoint exists no more because the 2011 Mustang GT is on the way.
As a Ford engineer has stated, “the 2011 Mustang GT is world class athlete. But it is also a 4.0 student.” There is truth in these words as the features being introduced in the new Mustang doesn’t only exemplify brawny performance, but wittiness in the 21st century automotive industry. Today as the pony wars begin to light up once again, the technology used in the cars award a lot of points. Fortunately for the Mustang, it exceeds in both areas.
The amazing power and performance that the 2011 Mustang GT puts out is largely due to the new Ford 5.0-liter V8 “Coyote” engine. The Coyote is a 32 valve (4 valves per cylinder) with Twin Independent Variable Cam Timing (TiVCT). These cams will control intake and exhaust functions of the vehicle which will maximize combustion and ultimately power. The transmission can be bought in a 6 speed automatic or manual. This is up from the previous 5 speed transmission. The 2011 Mustang GT’s performance numbers are astonishing because of this new technology being implemented. A stock 2011 Mustang GT will do a quarter mile run in about 12.7 seconds and go from 0-60 in about 4.3 seconds. This is an amazing improvement when compared to the 2010 version.
Also what will be featured is the innovative Electronic Power Assist Steering (EPAS) which renders conventional hydraulic power steering pumps useless. The EPAS setup will allow better handling and increased response time. Since this gets rid of the belts previously required for steering, drive train horsepower loss is decreased while fuel efficiency is increased. The EPAS system will make the ride smooth in the Mustang and will defeat the pull of the car as experienced in the hydraulic systems. The main difference will most likely be experienced in the parking lot as it turning into your spot becomes smooth.
One of Ford’s past weaknesses was the brakes they featured on their vehicles. This too has been fixed as the Mustang GT’s brakes are something to brag about. From 60-0 the new Mustang can stop in about 106 feet. This is a great accomplishment on Ford’s part. Ford will also offer an optional brake upgrade by Brembo. Brembo is known for designing brakes that are used on race cars. These brakes essentially come from the Shelby GT-500 and this the first time they will be offered on the Mustang. In addition to the upgraded brake package, Ford will throw in a pair of 19” wheels and performance tires.
As mentioned in the beginning of this article, the 2011 Mustang GT will put out 412 horsepower and 390 ft/lbs of torque. This is more than a 100 horsepower increase from the 2010 model. This is largely contributed to the larger engine but also the choice to use an aluminum block instead of a cast iron one. The 2010 Camaro SS and the 2010 SRT8 Challenger both put out more horsepower than the Mustang, but this does not mean they are faster or perform better. In fact, the 2011 Mustang reigns over both of them and by a large margin too. The 2010 Camaro SS puts out 422 horsepower and the 2010 SRT8 Challenger produces about 425. The weight of the vehicle largely influences how the horsepower will move the car. The curb weight of the Camaro SS is 3902lbs while the Challenger tips the scales at 4144lbs. The mustang only has 3500lbs so it has much less weight to pull. Another aspect that gives the Mustang GT the edge is it’s traditional rear axle suspension as opposed to both the Camaro and Challenger using independent suspension. The only reason why the Camaro and Challenger have more horsepower is the engine displacement of the two is much larger than the Mustangs 5.0. Regardless, the advanced technology and innovative design the engineers at Ford have created will put the 2011 Mustang GT above the competition.
In addition to the amazing performance of the new GT, the Mustang will also have new features dedicated to the simple comfort and convenience of the driver. One of the most hyped feature is Sync by Microsoft. Sync allows the driver to use their personal technological devices in a unique way while driving. For example, a driver can connect his/her mobile device and Sync will allow the driver to operate that device with voice commands. It even has the ability to read text messages out loud using the cars audio system. “Samantha,” or the narrator that reads the messages, knows almost any word that would be used in a message including short hand acronyms like “LOL.” It also has the ability to narrate curse words but will not say obscene acronyms. Also, Sync will automatically save all of the contacts found in the mobile device into the car and they can be called by simply saying his/her name. An Ipod or MP3 device can be connected to Sync and the music can be played through the existing audio system in the car. Again, the driver can use his/her voice to play the desired song. Traffic reports are also available in addition to giving directions to a specific location. Sync will also automatically call emergency services in the even the air bag is deployed in a collision. The driver has the ability to terminate the call for 10 seconds. Once 10 seconds is passed, the call will be made. Sync incorporates 21st century technology in the 2011 Mustang GT while keeping it safe and ensuring the driver keeps his/her hands on the wheels at all time.
Ford continues to offer Sirus Satellite Radio and it will be optional in the new GT. With Sirus, drivers have the ability to tune to countless more stations and channels than would be possible if living in a location with few radio stations. It is also possible to tune into news channels in addition to music. This is a good feature to have if living in a place that radio stations are scarce.
Another nifty feature that Ford has implemented in the 2011 Mustang GT is “MyKey.” MyKey is designed for parents who wish to share their vehicle with their teenage drivers. MyKey allows parents to set certain restrictions on the vehicle that the teenager will have to follow while driving. For example, parents can set the maximum speed of the vehicle to be 80 mph so the teen cannot exceed that limit. An even clever restriction is not allowing the radio to be turned on until all seatbelts are fastened. The volume of the radio can also be limited. This will promote safety while driving the Mustang GT.
The exterior appearance of the 2011 Mustang GT remains almost identical to the 2010 version. The first exterior change is the aluminum pony in the grill of the car has been lightened a shade. The rear and front fascias have been changed a bit and an underbody aeroshield was added to promote better aerodynamics. The spoiler is now lower on the trunk. The most noticeable change with the exterior of the vehicle is those nice shiny badges that gleam 5.0. The interior of the vehicle also remains relatively the same but with a few nice changes such as a sun storage visor, universal garage door opener, blind spot mirrors, rear view camera, optional navigation screen, leather bucket seats (premium version), and most importantly the speedometer now goes to 160mph and the tachometer redlines from 6500 to 7000 rpms. Also the leather interior immerses yourself in luxury as if you were driving a high dollar Audi or BMW.
In conclusion the new 2011 Mustang GT is an amazing vehicle and is pushing Ford ahead of the rest of the car manufacturers. The engineers at Ford set out to not only create a vehicle that will out perform the competition but also contains more convenient technology for the driver. Needless to say, they accomplished what they set out to do. If not everything the 2011 Mustang GT has to offer isn’t enough, it sells at a base price of $30,000. Low price and high performance was and still is the foundations of a pony car.
America is the greatest country in the world because of it’s competitiveness to be the best. Ford is based on these values as well. America once set out to send a man to the moon and it was accomplished. Ford once set out to create the greatest pony car in the world, and it has also been accomplished. It took the return of the Camaro to wake up Ford but now the giant has awoken. Let the “Pony Wars” once again reign.