By on September 3, 2013

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TTAC reader Richard Murdocco submits his tale of doing the unthinkable…willingly buying a V6 muscle car. While TTAC has been a proponent of the most recent V6 Mustang, few are so enlightened to its performance potential.

It was early 2011, and my last car, a 2003 Infiniti I30, became intimate with a Dodge minivan. I was just starting out my professional career, and I needed a car. Weeks prior I walked the lot of a Ford dealer on Long Island, and saw it there…a 2011 Kona Blue Ford Mustang, with the tech package, brown saddle leather seats and white stripes down the rocker panels. It was beautiful. It is a V6… *Gasp!*

I read the reviews before going shopping- despite the non-muscle car reputation of a V6 Mustang, everything on paper told me that Ford’s latest offering was nasty. A game changer. The 3.7 engine produces 305 horsepower, 280 pound-feet of torque and gets around 30 mpg on the highway (I’ve found that with my driving, it’s roughly 20-25…). Not bad for a car that starts around $23,000.

There are two questions that transcend the big three brands you get when you buy a Pony Car – “Bro…is it a V8?” and it’s follow up “It’s a manual right?”.  Answer no to either (or God forbid both) and the quizzical looks start. “Why wouldn’t you buy a V8? Why wouldn’t you buy a manual? Ugh!”  For a moment, you feel a mix of shame and regret. While these questions run rampant on car forums and sites such as this, thanks to innovations and radical advances in engine performance, the question isn’t as relevant as it used to be.

Despite what anyone says, today’s V6 muscle cars are the real deal.

Each year, Car and Driver conducts their annual Lightning Lap, which tests all sorts of sports cars, from the Golf GTi to Lamborghini’s, around Virginia International Speedway. At the time of my purchase, my V6 Mustang was tossed around the track with cars faster, slower, and it’s peers. Here is where things get impressive-

The V6 Mustang, once considered a rental-fleet joke, posted a time of 3 minutes, 12.5 seconds. That lap time beat V8 muscle cars: Dodge Charger SRT 8 (3:18.2), Challenger SRT8 (3:16), Rally legends Subaru WRX STi (3.13.8) and the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution MR (3.13.3), and a variety of other impressive contenders: BMW 335is (3.13.8), Lotus Elise SC (3:16.6), Lexus IS F (3:14), and the 2010 Mustang GT 3:13.3 (Since then, the latest iteration of the Mustang GT with the 5.0 Coyote power plant beat the V6, posting an impressive 3:08 lap time).

What does all of this mean? One, we’re experiencing a renaissance of the American muscle car- enjoy it while it lasts. Two, most people can get their hands on a pony car that is more than enough for their everyday needs at an approachable price.

In fact, with 305 horsepower, a V6 Mustang is now more powerful than 90% of all of the

Mustangs ever produced. For the sake of perspective, a 1969 Shelby GT-350 produces 290 horsepower, the Fox-bodied SVR Cobra produced 235 horsepower, the 1995 Cobra R had 300 horses, and the last generation of the Mustang GT, produced from 2005 to 2010, had 300 horsepower. It’s incredible that such performance from the big three domestic auto makers is available with upwards of 250 horsepower+ for entry-level pricing. You can now essentially buy a V6 with the performance of yesteryear’s V8 for cheap, and get it all in a safer, lighter better handling package. And the trend is continuing. Each year power specs improve and handling capability increases across the industry. It is a great time to be an auto enthusiast, regardless of how many track days you partake in or how large your car collection is.

That being said, it’s going to be exciting see how today’s Pony cars evolve in the coming years. With each generation’s V8’s dominating the conversation, their V6 little brothers are becoming contenders in their own class.

The real winners here are the consumers. Poor us- having to choose between an impressive V6 or a monstrous V8…what a terrible decision to have to make.

My Mustang at Sunset on Long Island

My Mustang at Sunset on Long Island

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190 Comments on “Ur-Turn: Confessions of a V6 Muscle Car Owner...”


  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    That’s an excellent point. People rant and rave about the 5.0L, but the 3.7L is also excellent, as are the 3.6L engines in the Camaro and the Challenger/Charger…

    • 0 avatar
      Slave2anMG

      I had a V6 Challenger as a rental a couple of weeks ago. Plenty quick and tractable. Too bad the interior was cheapity cheap cheap…

    • 0 avatar

      A turbocharged v6 can be a better engine for thrust than a V8. The Taurus SHO is faster in the quarter mile than Chrysler’s ousted 5.7-L Hemi in the first generation 300.

      Unfortunately, they strap the Ecoboost to the MKS and SHO rather than making it an option on the Fusion. If I was at Ford, you can bet I’d have a special edition Fusion with Brembo brakes, Ecoboost 3.5-L and a Recaros sitting on a lowered suspension tuned for sport.

    • 0 avatar
      Pig_Iron

      Yesterday I procured a copy of “The Buick Fireball V-6″ by Joe Turlay and Cliff Studaker. Its a fun read. They took an aluminum V8, left two cylinders empty, and put in specially made cam and crank shafts to do the early trials.

      Thanks to their team, including Messrs Kunz and Hoffman in the development work, and Mr Holtzkemper for the production pilot effort, the Buick V6 became a success for nearly half a century. They had no CAD; just slide-rules, vellum, pencils, and determination.

      The Buick V6, along with the Ford Cologne laid the groundwork for the current generation of excellent V6s. I think my favorite is the present series of Nissan VQ code V6s. V6s really seem to be the sweet-spot in both naturally aspirated and forced induction forms.

    • 0 avatar
      dolorean

      “the Fox-bodied SVR Cobra produced 235 horsepower, the 1995 Cobra R had 300 horses…”

      I agree that on paper the old 5.0L 302 short-block seemed weezy with its HP; however, the real strength of the five-OH was its massive torque curve and the Nine-inch ‘pumpkin’ locking rear diff that some GTs and the Cobra models had. My ’95 Cobra had at the factory 255HP but 305 torques that with relatively little money and work on my part, is cranking out nearly 310HP and 500 torques to the rear wheels. The 5.0L stuck with the original mission of the Mustang V8; to be the fastest off the line Pony-car at the stoplight.

  • avatar
    motorrader

    I have a 2012 V6 Mustang with the 6-speed manual. While I love a V8 rumble, I really like the high-rev, high-strung sound of this V6. In Race Red with polished aluminum wheels it is a real head turner. I cannot convey how much fun it is – all for under $30k with room to spare.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      I rented a 2012 Mustang Convertible, and frankly, the engine owed no one an apology. Really, the only shortcoming was the exhaust note; perhaps fixable by a better cat back system…

    • 0 avatar
      Travis

      As an owner of a ’13 5.0, I feel inclined to point out that with with very basic modifications from the Boss, the 5.0 shines quite nicely from 5000-7700rpm, which is usually around where the rev limiter is set. It is definitely not a midrange torque machine. It loves to sing.

  • avatar
    bachewy

    Great article. I checked out a showroom model last weekend and the V-6 was attractive to the eye from every angle. Ford could have easily made it with steel wheels and plastic hubcaps but they didn’t. The engine could have been left looking lost in the engine bay but it looks really good with the hood up. Hard to beat at the price.

  • avatar
    Nicholas Weaver

    I’ve driven the V6 as rentals a few times. The previous gen V6 was a dog, about 200 hp and unremarkable.

    The current one? It most decidedly DOES NOT SUCK, even with an automatic. It is really remarkable how good the modern V6 engines are. If I was buying a modern Mustang, it would be a V6, not a V8, no question about it. 300 hp, better mileage, costs less, and less weight over the nose? DEAL!

    • 0 avatar
      Michael500

      You are right, people gotta stop listening to the haters and over 45 year-old whiners that keep talking about V8s. Those 50-year-olds drove an “IROC Z” in 1987 with 160 HP and thought it was fast.
      Engine technology has changed. I still don’t like 4-bangers, but if “50 is the new 40″ then the Mustang 3.7 and Challenger 3.6 must be “the new V8s.”

      • 0 avatar
        Hank

        No one over 45 drove an IROC and thought it was fast. They drove it and lamented with weaping and gnashing of teeth what the Camaro was before smog control.

        The hesitance of the older crowd to buy into the reality that newer V6 Mustangs and Camaros actually are quite the road-burners they are has more to do with decades of marketing by Ford and GM. They were told for decades that a V6 Pony car was a secretary’s ride (some dealers even talked about them as the “Secretary Special”). To them, it’s like asking them to think of a VW Rabbit convertible in all white as a muscle car. It’s not really about the performance, but their perception.

        I’m under 45, but from the IROC era. I used blast past them and Mustang 5.0s all day long in my ’68 Plymouth and mock them for being slower than my big barge.

        • 0 avatar
          mnm4ever

          @Michael500 – No one is “hating’ on the V6, every pro-V8 comment here has people complimenting the V6 engine in these cars and the performance of the car in general. But they have a preference for the extra performance, the sound, the resale value, whatever, of the V8 Mustang. And every pro-V6 comment says essentially the same thing: 300hp is enough, its faster than my 1978 whatever, why do you need 400hp, the V6 goes around a racetrack fast enough, I saved money, etc, etc. You don’t have to defend the choice so much, its a good package, just not everyone’s choice. I guess us older guys just grew up with V8 Mustangs so we are more likely to prefer them that way.

        • 0 avatar
          old5.0

          It seems as though your perception is a bit skewed. Any third-gen F-body with either the TPI 305/5-speed or the L98/Automatic drivetrain will run bottom 14’s to around 14 flat in the quarter. Production 60’s Camaro’s that can equal or better that performance are few and between.

          I’ve owned a wide assortment of performance cars from both the 60’s and 80’s. 5.0 Mustangs from 85-on and the late TPI third gens can take the measure of almost anything from the 60’s in a straight line. I wonder how many drivers of all those 5.0s you used to “blast past in your barge” were aware you were racing?

      • 0 avatar
        Bill Wade

        Please let me whine. Every time I fire up my’67 Hemi GTX I’m reminded how much I LOVE the sound of a V8. In today’s world it’s unreliable, slow, lousy brakes and handling that would embarrass the USS Nimitz but the whole experience massages the soul.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Yup the V6 Muscle Car is now the true bang for the buck in sports cars. More HP and can easily out handle most of the muscle cars built before this decade.

    • 0 avatar
      william442

      Would you like to try against my 50 year old L 76 Corvette?

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        Notice the word “most” in my first post? Good.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        I’d like to see that.

      • 0 avatar
        ICARFAN

        Would that be on the original bias-ply tires. LOL

      • 0 avatar
        rpol35

        Hmmmmmm, an L76 is a 327 with 340 GROSS horsepower which is probably about 275 NET (or current) 2013 horsepower. Yeah I’d like to see that run……May be an interesting result.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          What spotty acceleration figures I can find on the ’63 L76 seem to indicate it would be several tenths slower in acceleration as compared to the current V6 Stang. Having driven vintage Covettes and recent Mustangs, I’m fairly confident the Mustang handles better.

      • 0 avatar
        Sigivald

        Maybe he should – a new V6 Mustang doesn’t have a 50 year old suspension.

        Note he said handle, not drag-race, though even then it might be closer than the weight/HP numbers suggest.

        (Curb weight’s about the same, and noting what rpol35 said about gross vs. net horsepower, even a drag race there’s an excellent chance the modern car simply win.)

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        There is a ’73 Vette that frequents our little local track. With the usual pylon slalom on the main straight, speeds top out around 70 mph, so it’s mostly about handling, and last time out that Vette was the second fastest amongst cars such as: E36 M3, E60 M5, 135i, 335xi, 335ci, G35, FR-S, 350z, RX-8, Z4, Celica GT All-Trac, and C5 Vette. The one that beat it? A ’79 Malibu, as usual, with some engine and suspension work and running on Kumho Ecsta XS tires. The ’73 Vette has a few mods itself.

  • avatar
    kkt

    What you say about the V6 engine is true… but an automatic? Where’s the fun in that?

    • 0 avatar
      ICARFAN

      Sometimes I have to drive into a large city and the manual tranny is definitely not at it best in a stop and go situation and if I had to deal with that crap on even a weekly basis I would go for the auto.

      • 0 avatar
        brenschluss

        Like what you like, but I wish folks would stop acting as if shifting in traffic is any more difficult than shifting when you’re not in traffic.

        • 0 avatar
          afflo

          Agree 100%.

          I’d much rather drive a car that’s not straining against me when my foot is on the brake, trying to push into the bumper ahead of me.

          I’d rather drive a car that responds to inputs instantly, than have a delay.

          I’d rather precisely moderate the power going through the transmission, than have the torque converter spin up and release as it sees fit.

          As someone who drives a manual every day in heavy traffic, and frequently drives slushbox rental cars while traveling on business, I’d always rather have three pedals and a gear stick in heavy traffic.

          If I could’ve traded the automatic Fusion for a stick while driving through rush-hour in DC, I might’ve traded one of my children!

          And hills aren’t scary if you don’t suck. Without using the hand brake, you *might* roll back two-three inches. Using the parking brake, you won’t roll back at all. Rolling back (whether in a standard or automatic*) is a failing move in many countries’ driving tests! Stop sucking!

          *My ex-wife had a CR-V with an automatic that would roll-back in D, but not when you shited down to D2. Strange.

          • 0 avatar
            claytori

            +1, I find riding the brake pedal constantly with an automatic to be both annoying and tiring. With the manual, you just slide it into neutral, often no clutch required. In stop/go traffic, much of the time is spent in neutral. You cannot creep forward at slow speed. You just let the car in front move forward a bit, shift into gear, give it a bit of slip, then back to neutral. If you time it right you don’t have to brake, just coast to a stop.

            The other issue is control. If you want to downshift, you do it yourself. With the auto, you must wait for it to get around to it. It is kind of like the difference between a throttle cable and a servo, or a normally aspirated or turbo lagged motor. On the highway I sometimes do a 5-3 shift to prepare for a pull-out.

            Third issue is lag at start-up. With the manual you can mine the rotational inertia of the engine & flywheel at launch. The auto just loses that stuff. Tires are cheaper than clutches.

            The auto is a lazy way to drive a car. Or are you even driving it? Soon you will have self driving cars. People get what they want.

          • 0 avatar
            Reino

            You know you can shift a slushbox into neutral when stopped to avoid the ‘auto creep’ you speak of?

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            The way I see it, if I am stuck sitting in traffic long enough to really be annoyed by working a clutch, then I may as well pull into a Starbucks and work for 30-60 mins. And if I find myself in that situation more than once or twice a week then I clearly need to adjust my work/commute schedule or move. I did both recently for just that reason.

          • 0 avatar

            God, you sure are an asshole.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            @Josh – was that reply to me or someone else??

        • 0 avatar
          SoCalledMillennial

          ??? shifting in stop and go traffic, several times a minute, from a dead stop is much more annoying (and arguably more difficult) than shifting on a freeway or open road cruise. Not sure what you’re talking about.

          • 0 avatar
            Boff

            Shifting is shifting, is I think what he’s trying to say. Heavy traffic is frustrating no matter what you are driving, but at least with a stick shift you have some mental stimulation. After the Toronto floods this summer I was caught in a 3-hour traffic jam on successive days. I never found myself saying: “gee, this would be easier with an automatic”.

          • 0 avatar
            hf_auto

            I agree with Boff, shifting is shifting. I bought a manual car so I could shift it myself. Traffic is just an excuse to shift more.
            To me, shifting in traffic is no more or less fun than shifting on the open road.

          • 0 avatar
            brenschluss

            If you find shifting often to be annoying, then why would you want to do it at all? Do you enjoy it when you have to do it only rarely?

          • 0 avatar
            SoCalledMillennial

            I drive an automatic for my 45 minute commute in traffic, and a manual on back roads for fun. Makes sense to me. Switching from 1st, to neutral, back to first, never getting over 10 mph is not fun to me. Rev matching, hitting redline, engine braking, and heel toe shifting are fun. I don’t think they’re the same at all, even if the motion is technically identical. If you think shifting in traffic brakes the minutia, fine, but I feel differently. I think most people who commute in traffic on a daily basis would agree.

          • 0 avatar
            afflo

            SoCalledMillenial: If you want the long explanation, here ya go.

            Driving an automatic in low speed stop-n-go traffic, I have:
            – The car straining against me
            – The associated groaning of the brakes as it tries to inch forward.
            – the inability to let off the pedal and reposition my foot on the brake pedal without having the car try to push forward.

            All in all, it’s basically like being in neutral on a downhill slope.

            Now, add in the delayed response to pushing the accelerator pedal, and an even longer response if you shift it into neutral so that you can relieve the pressure on the brakes and brake lines, and you have a sluggish, annoying experience.

            I have to caveat this: I’ve always owned manuals, except for the one automatic. There’s no mental stimulation to driving a manual in traffic – it’s just all of my muscle memory is tuned to it. Driving an automatic in traffic, my feet still want to work the gas and clutch. It’s especially annoying when I’m driving in an unfamiliar city, in an unfamiliar car, and have to consciously modify my control inputs. More than once, when distracted by unexpected traffic patterns, road signs, etc., I’ve gone straight to “manual mode,” jerking to a halt because I tried to push the clutch*, or starting out by giving the car a good bit of throttle expecting to modulate it with my clutch foot, only to have the engine spool up the torque converter for a sudden surge of power that continues after backing off (of course followed by “Oh !@#$!” and pushing the brake and brake-clutch!)

            If you are attuned to an automatic, and that is your baseline, I’m sure your experience will be different. For me, an automatic requires and extra layer of conscious compensation, and distracts me from my surroundings.

            * Why on earth do they make the brake pedal so big in automatics?

          • 0 avatar
            brenschluss

            It’s not (for me) so much about having something to do, as much as that it isn’t even a thing to do. Yeah, playing Fangio on backroads is great, but 1st-neutral-1st-neutral shouldn’t even a conscious act if you’re proficient, fun isn’t a consideration.

            But this is all beside the point. Buy what you like, I’m just tired of the difficulty argument.

          • 0 avatar
            SoCalledMillennial

            I don’t see what it has to do with proficiency. You have your preference and I have mine. I drove manual transmission exclusively from the age of 16 through 26. Once everyday driving became more of a chore than a pleasure, I found that I’d rather be as isolated and uninvolved as possible. Frankly, I’d take a self driving car if I could. If you love driving a manual that much, fine. But I think it’s silly how often people try and press this preference onto others.

          • 0 avatar
            brenschluss

            No one’s trying to push preferences, hence “Buy what you like,” &c.

            I have no problem if you want a self driving car. Saying it is objectively “difficult” to drive stick in traffic is incorrect, whether you want to do it or not.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            As far as I am concerned, being annoyed by an automatic is like being annoyed by driving downhill. If someone doesn’t like having to use the brake pedal at certain times, then it is perfectly reasonable to accept that someone else doesn’t like to use the clutch at certain times. Different people value different things, and that’s okay.

            Unfortunately, many people see car guys talking about transmissions in the same way as religious folk see Kirk Cameron talking about science–they may agree with some of his points, but they really wish he’d just stop talking from time to time.

        • 0 avatar
          Sigivald

          It’s not more difficult for any individual shift.

          But in stop and go traffic one has to do it Over And Over And Over.

          Even the manual-fanatics I know admit it’s not ideal, and gets real old, real fast.

          (Contra afflo, I’d rather not have to deal with any of it than have a manual.

          Or, to be snarky, “I’d rather not have to pay for clutch rebuilds every 50,000 miles.”)

          • 0 avatar
            brenschluss

            If you blow through a modern clutch in 50k, it ain’t the traffic.

          • 0 avatar
            mikey

            Really? I think it was the first thing the oldman taught me about driving. If you drive it right, you will never burn out a clutch.

            I owned a 62 Strato Chief. I didn’t drive it right, and I smoked the clutch.

          • 0 avatar

            298k on an orig clutch. BMW. Engages a bit high, but does not slip.

            Past car, SAAB 9-3. Sold used with 193k. Clutch perfect.

            I’ve never replaced a clutch in over ten manual cars. Of course, WOT waits until the clutch is fully engaged and the left foot has hit the dead pedal.

        • 0 avatar
          flameded

          +1
          Okay, YES and auto is easier to drive.I get it.
          BUT, a manual shift tranny of today is MUCH easier to drive than the manuals of even the late 90’s, let alone the cars of yesteryear.

          So all this talk about shifting in traffic/ on a hill/ in a box / with a fox..hogwash. You Nancys can have your autos, Real men drive a standard.

          ;)

          (let me just say that I’m not insulting, just joking a little..I wish I had a manual shift, I’m stuck in my auto/15mpg max/not faster than anything, 03′ Xterra, but I wanted to comment.)

    • 0 avatar
      SoCalledMillennial

      Yeah, but YOU think it’s less/equally difficult. I don’t. Subjective or not, both are valid opinions. I respect afflo’s writeup about why (for him) driving a manual is preferable/arguably less difficult.

    • 0 avatar
      frenchy

      I bought a 2013 Focus back in February and people were shocked I got a manual. I would have friends get in the car and be all “what’s up with that?” when they look at the shifter. It’s just so much more fun than an auto and I don’t have a goddawful commute to deal with.

      My rule is if a car has a 4 cylinder it has to have a stick. If it is a sports car it has to be a stick. If it’s a midsize or larger and has a powerful V6 or V8, auto would be ok, stick would be better. If it’s a truck, it’s gotta be an auto. I don’t like driving tractors…

      • 0 avatar

        Been driving sticks for over 25 yrs.
        I don’t understand it when people complain how tiring,how much of a pain it is to constantly shift in traffic,as it’s not a problem to me.
        I do wonder if it’s more a function of time driving a stick. For me.it’s how I drive,traffic is a pain in the a** no matter what you’re in and shifting is just “automatic” by now.
        Whenever I talk w/someone in their 20s they all hate driving a stick in LA traffic and want automatics,even when they love their manual car/Jeep/whatever.
        Now there is one drawback to manuals-at least for me. I’ve been tapped 4 times by drivers not realizing no brake lights doesn’t mean I’m moving :)

  • avatar
    ICARFAN

    Ditto here, still enjoying my 2012 V-6/6-spd in black with white stripe package. Picked it up for under 20 large at a dealer who likes to bait and switch with manual cars they think nobody wants. Almost 20 thousand on the clock with no trips back to the dealer for warranty work and I do manage to get up into the 30-31 mpg range on road trips with the tall sixth gear.

    Now let the V-6 bashing begin, the sound of the V-8, the rental car status, too cheap or poor to buy the V-8, heard it all before or read it here numerous times mostly I am guessing from drivers of lesser vehicles. The truth is Ford hit a huge home-run with this car.

  • avatar
    TEXN3

    The 6 is a great all around car but after everytime I drive my dad’s 12 GT with Ford Racing mufflers I’d never forgive myself for not getting the V8 sound and shove. It’s absolutely intoxicating.

  • avatar
    MWebbRambler

    Great article, Rich!

    The V6 w/automatic would be my choice for commuting. It doesn’t have the 5.0 soundtrack and 6-speed, but I wouldn’t miss those things 80% of the time.

    • 0 avatar
      threeer

      Yeah, seriously considering a V6 Mustang when I finish my time in the sandbox over here in Saudi. And while I am a huge fan of manual transmissions, I am very much opposed to opting for a Chinese-made manual (yes, I know…everything is made in China. Who cares? I do.). It’ll be an automatic if I get it. Tested one just before leaving the States and loved it. Yep, a V6…go figure. But it’s hard to argue with 305 HP, decent fuel economy and a price of well under $25,000 (especially if I order through the Exchange New Car Sales program available to military/civilians overseas).

  • avatar
    gmichaelj

    The price difference between the V6 and V8 is approximately 10 Grand. When the time comes, I’ll option-up the V6 with some of the money I don’t spend on the V8.

    • 0 avatar
      Nicholas Weaver

      Yeah, the over $8K savings buys a lot of track time.

      A stock V6 with an owner who spent $8K at the track is going to be vastly faster than a stock V8 with an owner who didn’t spend $8K at the track…

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      We have done this before and it always comes out the same… I am not going to knock a guy for getting the V6. They are quick, no doubt, good on the track too, with the track pack and some other options you have a fine alternative to a 370Z or Gen coupe.

      But the GT is about $8k more than the base V6, not $10k. It also includes essentially the same components that the V6 track pack has, so once you add the track pack to the V6 the difference is now $6k. But where you will really see a difference is come trade/sell time. The V6 Mustangs drop pretty far in value, and the GT, even a base model automatic, are easy to sell, always desirable and hold very good resale value.

      But I am one of those guys who thinks that the V8 is what makes the Mustang a Mustang, same with the Camaro and the Challenger. Why neuter it?? I’d rather get a used GT than a new V6. And if you really liked the V6, why buy new when they are available for such a bargain used?

      • 0 avatar
        greenhan1

        To my Mustang Big Brother, your comments are noted and appreciated. In the purest sense of the Mustang Legend small powerful engines in the affordable, everyman sports car role will always be what the Mustang Pony was about, is about, and will be about. I have owned and driven many mustangs and I enjoyed them all, from my first ’65 coupe with a 200 cid six to the ’69 Mach I 428 CJ to my current 2012 Pony Package premium v6 with a manual (no automatics for me). Remember Big Brother, little Brother is just fine and is a True pony car and if we need a little more muscle we can always call on our Big Brother. Hope to see you at one of the fifty year celebrations in April. God and the people love all Mustangs.

    • 0 avatar
      ranwhenparked

      That was my thinking exactly. I got a very nicely equipped V6 last fall for about the same price as the entry GT. 305hp is more powerful than either of my two previous cars (which both had V8s), and it gets better fuel economy than my old Super Beetle. The only thing it doesn’t have, and that I would have liked, is the panoramic sunroof, but that’s not so bad.

  • avatar
    JMII

    My V6 “muscle car” (a ’03 350Z) runs the same time as the Mustang V6 around VIR according to C&D. Beating out the old Mustang GT V8 and the Challenger SRT8. And I get around 24 MPG in mostly highway driving, it will drop down to around 20 in city only. Some of the boosted 4 cylinder offerings today would out run older V8s, heck my ’97 Eclipse GS-T could it years ago. So no shame in not having a V8.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    A friend picked up a 3.7L manual transmission Mustang not long ago, and I must agree, it’s a real deal sports car. Not just a secretary special. Personally, I will *always* choose the V8, but I cannot poo-poo the latest V6 Mustang, it now runs with the best of them.

  • avatar
    Caboose

    I loved the V6 when I test drove it a couple of times. When I drove the Coyote I was frustrated because I could never use it. If I get caught speeding in a GT in the city, that’ll be $350+ please. Oh, but you say I can open her up out of town? In the kuntree? No thank you, because receiving a citation from Sheriff Deliverance is even worse.

    That said, I am hopeful that the next-gen Mustang (now with Rear Suspension!) and a V6 will be the ticket. It should compete on price (+/-$25k) with the Toyobaru twins and demolish them.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      We will see where the next generation goes. The Mustang has actually been remarkably good at keeping up with the times. People forget that the Mustang II actually sold quite well when it was new, indicating that it was the right car for the time.

      I know some of the rumors are that the next Mustang will be more like the BRZ and FRS than what it currently is. Even as the owner of a 1967 Mustang I see it like this, if the weight comes down and the performance stays the same (maybe turbo 4 and V6 with enough power to match the current GT, then if the Coyote could be shoehorned into a SVT/Cobra/Boss 302/etc. package) then it is a win for Ford and for consumers.

      • 0 avatar
        afflo

        I wonder if the Mustang II would be so repulsive if it weren’t associated with the Pinto. I always understood that to be a “back to the roots” move – the Mustang had suffered from Thunderbird disease, bloating into something more massive than it was at the start – in the T-bird’s case, a competitor roadster to the Corvette, and in the Mustang’s case, a stylish body on a RWD economy car chassis. Who was eating the Mustang’s lunch at the time is the biggest question… F-bodies? or Fairladies and Celicas?

        Even the Fox-body Mustang was a stylish body on a very pedestrian compact Fairmont chassis, and the Mustang didn’t really come into its own until much later, as the complete absence of Muscle cars caused Pony cars to grow and fill the void (as of course, even as late as the late 80’s/early 90’s FMC was planning to continue the “sporty body on a compact chassis” setup, but named the planned Mustang, “Probe” at the last moment.)

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          @afflo, correct the Mustang II was a response to the criticism that the car had gotten too big and bloated. Driving my 67 you are constantly reminded that the car started life as a Falcon. The car is very compact compared to what the Mustang became in the early 70s and then again with the ’05 redesign.

          The Fox Mustang was again the right car at the right time. Sure it took a few years to get the power up, but then so did every other automaker. Care to check the HP figures for SBChevies in the early 80s? :P

          The nearest misstep with the Mustang was the “almost a Mustang” Probe. Even then though I would have agreed with the Probe-stang as long as it was RWD. Enthusiasts expect RWD in their pony/muscle/sports cars. Come to think of it, a RWD turbo 4 or V6 Probe would have been a HOOT!

          • 0 avatar
            mikey

            @ PrincipalDan..Wow! so you got that baby down in Arizona now? Very cool! I hope you have many years of great motoring!

    • 0 avatar
      SC5door

      V-6 will be dead in the next Mustang. Turbo 4 will be base car.

  • avatar
    carinator

    LOL @ a V6 “muscle car.”

    And even V8 Mustangs aren’t muscle cars. They are pony cars.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      The rest of the world would like to inform you that it thinks they’re muscle cars anyway. (I certainly do, and I don’t *like* either set very much.)

      You can “LOL” all you want at 300 horsepower, which is more than almost any of the 60s-era muscle cars once you convert their gross hp numbers to *net*.

      I’d be surprised if (e.g.) a 426 Hemi from the late 60s Challenger produced *much* more than 300 net horsepower (and not very surprised to see it just meet 300) – and 5.9 seconds to 60 is slower than the Mustang V6’s 5.3 …

      LOLing is easier than running the numbers, I suppose.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        The 1960s American concept of a muscle car was a large V8 and sporty body bolted onto a mid-sized (by the standards of that time) family car chassis. The cars were more about grunt from the large motor and looks than about handling. Most would say that the Pontiac GTO was the first.

        The pony car was a coupe body on a compact family car platform. The Mustang was the first.

        The V6 Mustang is a good performer and a relative bargain. The author made a sound choice. But it’s not a muscle car.

        The fact that the new Mustang has more power than the cars of the 60s doesn’t make it a “muscle car”. A muscle car is a genre of design, not just a measure of power output.

        There aren’t many muscle cars left — they’re a bit antiquated — but the Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 would better match that description. It’s big, has sporty looks and a large V8.

        • 0 avatar
          Vojta Dobeš

          426 Hemi is a wrong example. It was basically a race engine and was underrated – remanufactured, bone stock ones run closer to 470hp nowadays. But a 440 (which was fairly common) probably had something like 300hp…

          As for the “muscle car” versus “pony car” – notice the part about muscle cars being based on MIDSIZE sedans? Current Mustang is about the same size as Fusion…

          And, by the definition I’m familiar with, a pony car with large enough engine can be considered a muscle car.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            “As for the “muscle car” versus “pony car” – notice the part about muscle cars being based on MIDSIZE sedans?”

            You were selective in your reading of my comment. You need to note the entirety of it.

            What pony and muscle cars had in common was that their underpinnings came from family cars.

            What distinguished one from the other: (a) the muscle cars were larger than the pony cars and (b) the muscle cars had large V8s.

            A muscle car needs a big V8. The author’s car doesn’t qualify on that basis alone.

            The Challenger SRT8 is a larger car with a larger motor. It better matches the description of muscle car for those reasons.

            At this point, the muscle car segment is practically dead. The large motors are no longer needed, and the family sedans that would have provided the platforms in the past are now FWD.

          • 0 avatar
            old5.0

            No “reman” Street Hemi makes 470 horsepower. I’ve seen numerous truly stock examples on the dyno. The 68-69 solid lifter engine is the strongest, and they generally make around 290 RWHP.

            The term “musclecar” was hardly used in the 60’s. The common term back then was “supercar”, and it was used not only for mid-sizers, but also compacts and pony cars with hot engines. Musclecar came into common usage in the enthusiast mags of the 80’s, and the definition varies from magazine to magazine and writer to writer. There is no correct definition of the word.

      • 0 avatar
        carinator

        Oh please, Mustangs are big and fat and slow by today’s standards. Even an 850HP Super Snake is slower than a 638HP ZR-1.

  • avatar
    qwerty100

    I could argue this both ways.

    I am an owner of an ’08 Mustang GT with the 300 hp V8, and 0-60 at 5 seconds, compared with the reported 5.3 seconds of this 305 hp V6.

    Yeah sure, 305 hp is more than 300 hp, but what is the powerband like?

    I’m guessing you gotta hit 8 grand rpm on the v 6 for all 305 to make their appearance–not so with the v-8, which reflects the faster speed.

    The v6 is a better deal re cost and insurance.

    Still, it is sort of like arguing the merits of a turkey burger vs. Beef. Yes, the turkey is better nutritionally.

    But who’s raising their hands for turkey?

    My v8 gives me silly joy, even minus the alleged 5 hp.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      The 4.6L 3V GT is most definitely faster than the 3.7L V6, in my experience by roughly .5 second in both 0-60 and 1/4 mile, and does sounds pretty darn good. I would choose the 2010 GT over the newer V6 car myself, but as far as new car to new car comparison goes, the V6 is a decent car that one shouldnt be ashamed of.

    • 0 avatar
      cronus

      Torque is pretty comparable to the 2v PI 4.6 V8. Also driving around it feels about the same as the ’01 Mustang GT I had before, not exactly a torque monster but enough that you have to be careful putting the power down even in dry weather and with a limited slip.

    • 0 avatar
      carinator

      This is why my mom got the 2010 Camaro SS instead of the 300HP V6 – not all HP is created equal. The V6 RS felt slower than her 220-ish HP ’91 Z28.

  • avatar
    Boff

    The V-6 Mustang with Performance…er, Mayhem…Package is a great car. But for the love of Dog, please don’t put an aftermarket exhaust on your car: it’ll sound like a cow being anally electrocuted.

  • avatar
    afflo

    I strongly considered a Mustang V6/manual. The lack of rear-seating space (expected for a 2+2) and the impossibility of getting a moonroof short of having an aftermarket shop chop a hole in the roof deterred me. Sure is a beautiful car though!

    I never think twice if someone purchases a V6 instead of the V8 – gas is pricy, and cars have gotten incredibly powerful in recent years. I do shake my head a bit when I hear of an automatic though. I’d take a manual Versa over an automatic Mustang – the feel of an engine through the clutch, the physical act of shifting is so central to the joy of driving for me, I wouldn’t want to miss it.

    I made the “Automatic” mistake once, thinking that flappy paddles would keep me entertained. Never again!

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    A v6 mustang definitely needs to apologies…the automatic transmission does, and I still would have to get the V8 if only for the engine note, but I have all the respect in the world for someone who buys the 6. It is a legitimate performance bargain and unless you need the space, makes one question the purpose of many an alleged enthusiast car that is slower with similar or worse fuel economy (looking at you Civic Si, GTi, WRX, Lancer, etc)

  • avatar
    qwerty100

    I did get the v8 with the 5 speed Gertrag auto. It is not bad, but yes, it is still an auto. I have some regrets, but not in traffic.

    Slightly off topic, but I am not crazy about the post ’09 mustang redesign. Yes, the interior is better than on my ’08, but the exterior is imho, an overdone caricature. This site called it a “moose thinking about something sad” in appearance, and I agree.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    I strongly dislike the overuse of term “muscle car”. It now seems to be used by “Millennials” to mean ANY RWD car. They will call all old Impalas that. The Mustang by itself is a sporty coupe, and not all of them were/are “muscle cars”.

    Now, blog writers call all new Mustangs ‘muscle’, so annoying, and ruins the mystique of cars with true performance packages. The base Mustang 6 cylinder is a sporty coupe, the GT or other special editions are true ‘muscle’.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      Some purists argue that muscle cars only include intermediate coupes with engines from full size cars. It’s all semantics.

      In my opinion, a sports car is a 2 seater designed for performance, a pony car is a 2+2 sports/touring car, and a muscle car is a midsize or larger 4 seater coupe or sedan with well above average power.

      By that defenition, a Taurus SHO could be a muscle car. Fine. Is a 327/powerglide Impala a muscle car, surely not. Is a SS427 Impala a muscle car? I’m fine with that.

      • 0 avatar
        Compaq Deskpro

        If you ask me, the above average power is the deciding factor for being considered something more than just an car. As for muscle vs pony vs sports car, it pretty much comes down to marketing and styling.

        • 0 avatar
          raph

          I’d consider the V6, GT and Boss Mustangs pony cars in this current chassis and the GT500 a bona fide Muscle Car. Its the modern equivalent of the big block Mustangs of yesteryear in almost every way.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      “It now seems to be used by “Millennials” to mean ANY RWD car.”

      I have never heard this usage. In my experience, millennials, et al, who are this clueless don’t know / can’t tell the difference between FWD/RWD anyway, so that is certainly not a part of their reasoning.

      • 0 avatar
        raph

        Neither have I heard muscle car to mean any rear wheel drive car. An American high performance rear wheel drive car perhaps but not much else (even though some German cars would certainly apply).

        I suppose Ford is partially to blame with the Mustang, early on during the introduction of the S-197 they described it as the quintessential “muscle car”.

        I find the term sports car to be terribly bastardized in comparison. When somebody says sports car, I think of a light weight great handling moderately powered car that seats two.

        Talk to most people and sports car seems to mean anything with a set of aluminum wheels and some strips slapped on the hood with a shiny exhaust tip.

  • avatar
    1998S90

    Does anyone know if the current 3.7L is in the same family as the 3.8L or 4.2L? Or is it a different engine family all together?

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      Different engine family. The 3.8 and 4.2 were part of the Essex V6 family, and the SOHC 4.0 was part of the Cologne V6 family.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        And the 3.7L is part of a different engine family still. It’s a Duratec derivative.

      • 0 avatar
        mikey

        I own a 2008 Mustang convertible 4.0 with an automatic. I bought it used two and half years ago. By no stretch of the imagination could you call it a ” muscle car” I call it my toy car. Its a great car and a blast to drive. We have traveled down to the deep U.S south, and all through Eastern Canada. Its no ball of fire, but with 200 hp it does the job quite well.

        My 2011 2SS Camaro with 426 hp and a 6 speed manual,is what you might call a “muscle car” Its very cool to drive,but frankly, sometimes it frightens me.

        I really don’t want to part with either one of them. I’m nearly sixty years old. I’m also a realist,and sooner or later, one of them has to go.

        Without a doubt the Camaro will be the first to go. I’m quite content driving a 6cyl Mustang. Untill that time comes,the sound of that rumbling V8 , still puts a sh– eating grin on my face.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Six cylinder muscles car? Only if the engine is highly tuned. The US has ‘muscle car’ bodies with puny sixes in them, that isn’t a muscle car.

    The E49 Charger, XU-1 Torana, A Barra turbo 4.0 by FPV are muscle cars.

    Maybe a 3.5 Ecoboost in a Mustang could be considered a muscle car. I mean was the original Toyota Celica a muscle car, it had the looks.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      … “Puny”?

      Does that word have a special meaning in Australia?

      Look. I don’t have a dog in this fight, as I don’t care about muscle cars, or Ford vs. Mopar vs. GM.

      But that Mustang has more *net* horsepower than the E49 Charger had *gross*, and is thus – unsurprisingly – .8 seconds faster to 60.

      If that’s “puny”, then I don’t know what words even mean anymore?

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @Sigivald
        A Valiant E49 Charger of the early 70s was quicker on a 1/4 mile than most V8 US muscle cars of the time.

        How quick was a 6 cylinder early 70s Mustang?

        Even in this day and age a 6 cyliner car that can pull 14s like the E49 did would still be considered quick.

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        You are forgetting the “conversion” or BA factor.

  • avatar
    David Hester

    If I had to rely on my Camaro for a daily commuter, naturally I’d have to consider a V-6. Since I don’t, I’ll take the V-8’s soundtrack over a 6- cylinder any day in my toy cars.

  • avatar
    Cubista

    I’m thinking the only way I could make the author’s choice would be for a convertible…300hp + the open sky = 0 compromise.

    If I’m paying for an American-built GT coupe or muscle car, I just wouldn’t feel right if I didn’t take the V8. But I’m definitely not the guy who rags on someone else for selecting otherwise.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    If I was a Ford dealer, I ‘d have one parked in the front row with $22,500 written on the windshield. Kinda makes you think twice about a Camcord.

  • avatar
    shoshone

    I considered this to replace my 1st generation SHO. Apparently the V-6 Mustang is speed limited to protect the less expensive drivetrain from coming apart. The SHO was (supposedly) good for 140 + with no limiter. The V-6 Mustang is limited for 117(?) Anyone know?

    I don’t drive these speeds, but if I pay for performance I want the limiter to be the red line.

    • 0 avatar
      Prado

      From what I’ve read on forums.. the driveshaft in the V6 Mustang is the the weak link and the reason for the low top end limiter.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      See the link to a Youtube video I posted below of a V6 Mustang who’s owner removed the speed limiter with a tuner and then took it for a top speed run.

    • 0 avatar
      raph

      112 mph as others have noted to protect the one-piece driveshaft from catastrophically failing. A victim of wanting to get that all important best in class fuel mileage.

      Easy fix unless your mind set happens to be “when I buy a car I shouldn’t have to buy anything else to go fast”.

      A good aftermarket one piece aluminum or steel driveshaft in combination with a nice cold air intake and tuner (why buy one without the other) and you can run the six’er as hard as you please.

      Speaking of which, at the outer end of a full array of naturally aspirated bolt-ons, I’ve seen the V6 car run as hard as the stock V8’s and while that doesn’t seem impressive it amounts to a very low 13 second car.

      • 0 avatar
        shoshone

        “Easy fix unless your mind set happens to be “when I buy a car I shouldn’t have to buy anything else to go fast”.

        Ford has a kit that won’t void the warranty?

        112 MPH is not fast for a V-6 muscle car. My Passat and the GF’s Hyundai both exceed that without tuners and intakes. In fact, the Passat will exceed 130 + for as long as you like on the Autobahn.

        Does Ford sell this in Europe?

  • avatar
    jacob_coulter

    I drove the V6 model when Ford had a promotion at a car
    show. VERY impressed, but it would still be hard psychologically to get over a V6 Mustang. I think for resale alone, if I was buying new, I’d go for the V8 for about $6k more.

    I actually think these will be the last days of V8 performance cars, CAFE and the EPA will probably make them a thing of the past except for the truly well-heeled.

  • avatar
    TybeeJim

    The V6 not a “muscle car”? OK, think what you will, but think about this for minute. All Porsche sports cars are 6 cylinder cars that costs three times + what the Mustang V6 goes for today.

    • 0 avatar
      Vojta Dobeš

      In the glory days of muscle cars in the 1960s, Porsches were still much more expensive than the most expensive muscle cars. And still, the muscle cars usually had 6+ litre, 300+ hp big blocks, while Porsches had two-litre six cylinders of some 120-140 horsepower, which equalled your kindergarten teacher’s Falcon…

  • avatar
    Vojta Dobeš

    V6 is today’s small block. We don’t have real big blocks anymore, because there’s no need for them. Existing “small blocks” (both Hemi and LSx evolved from small blocks of yore) are available in displacements equalling old big blocks, and with horsepower far exceeding anything that wwas available in the “muscle car heyday”. Or anything that anyone can actually use.

    So, we have “small blocks” in place of former big blocks, offering unnecessary, but still not totally crazy amounts of power, and small blocks being the “sensible choice” of good power with reasonable economy.

    The six cylinder engines of yore would be equal to non-turbo four cylinders now. And to emulate four-cylinder pony cars of the 80s, one would probably need to use a three-cylinder from the Spark or Fiesta…

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      The Mustang already came with a turbo 4. It was called the SVO and it competed for sales against the V8 Mustang GT in the late 80s. As as one would expect. the SVO died because the V8 Mustang was faster and costs less. Who in their right mind would pay more money for a slower Mustang? Apparently, not many people, as evident by the poor sales of the SVO Mustang.

      BTW, it’s really a shame because the SVO had some advantages over the GT. It came with 4-wheel disk brakes and it had better handling. But like most Mustang fans, the speed was really what mattered, and there is where the SVO fell short.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      The V6 isn’t today’s small block. That’s a silly statement. Today’s small block is still a V8, just like it has always been. You know, like the 302 V8 in the Mustang. No engine with less than 8 cylinders should ever be described as a big block or a small block.

      • 0 avatar
        neonturbo

        I think Vojta Dobeš is basically correct. If you look back in history, the smaller small-blocks made 275-325 or so horsepower. Think about your medium duty (non-race spec) 283-327-350 Chevy, your 318-340-360 Mopars, and your 289-302-351 Windsor Fords. Pretty much none of the (supposed) street tune small blocks made much more power than that. The muscle car era engines were quite often overrated power wise because they were rated under the gross, not net system.

        Now the 5.7 Hemi is 375 HP, the 5.3 (truck) Chevy is 355 HP, and the 5.0 Ford (truck) engine is 360 HP. That is under the new stricter modern rating system and not even the highest performance version of each engine. The modern high performance “large” V8 are easily into the old “race tune” engine territory, they are the equivalent of the 426 Hemi the 428 Cobra Jet, and the 427 L88 of old.

        • 0 avatar
          White Shadow

          It has nothing to do with HP. I’m not even sure what makes you think there is any correlation at all. Do a little research so that you’ll understand what makes an engine a big block or a small block. During your research, you’ll find that ONLY V8 ENGINES are ever defined at big blocks or small blocks. HP means nothing in terms of defining them.

          • 0 avatar
            rpn453

            http://www.dictionary.reference.com/browse/metaphor

          • 0 avatar
            White Shadow

            LOL…. “big block” and/or “small block” aren’t metaphors.

            Lets call an apple an apple…not an orange.

          • 0 avatar
            rpn453

            Simile? He’s making some sort of analogy, anyway. He’s not saying the modern V6 is literally a small block. He’s saying the modern V6 is like a small block of decades ago in terms of function.

            It would seem silly to hear someone say that his new Mustang has a 227 small block!

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            “He’s saying the modern V6 is like a small block of decades ago in terms of function.”

            I think that everyone understands that. The point that’s being made is that these descriptive terms such as “muscle car” and “big block” weren’t coined to describe functionality.

            A “big block” was a reference to a size range and configuration of engine, not to a horsepower or performance rating. The fact that engines can produce more power per liter/cubic inch today doesn’t alter the terminology.

        • 0 avatar
          afflo

          I understood exactly what he was saying.

          The ThriftPower I6 wasn’t intended as any sort of performance engine… It would be analogous to the four-banger Mustang LX from the 80’s.

          The 289’s of the mid-late 60s (this is a loose comparison because they changed engines every year it seemed) would be the current V6 – a respectable engine on a budget.

          The 390’s would be more closely analogous to the current GT and Boss trim.

          Small block and big block are indeed defined (albeit loosely, with some blur in the middle depending on the source) as classes of V8 engines. Mr. Dobeš is describing how they fit in the market classes. There’s still an attitude among some, likely harkening back to the 60’s and 70’s when a six was almost shameful. Of course, 300 hp (honest horsepower at that) sixes weren’t an option!

  • avatar
    SaulTigh

    Early this summer my local dealer had two Kona Blue V6’s, base models with nothing on them but the automatic for just over 22k. I came damn close.

  • avatar
    stuki

    Mated to a manual, the V6 is great. As a manual ‘vert, it’s arguably “better” than the Coyote, as the softened ‘vert suspension diminishes the lighter front end of the 6 less than the 8. Sound wise, there’s no contest, though……… With today’s quick to upshift autos, only massive low end torque can save a car’s driveability, tilting the balance in the 8s favor.

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      @OP –
      “Bro…is it a V8?” and it’s follow up “It’s a manual right?”. Answer no to either (or God forbid both) and the quizzical looks start.

      Ha! That would exactly be my reaction! So I agree with @stuki that a manual, mated to the V6, would do exceedingly well, whereas an automatic needs a V8. But a very nice article reminding us that a modern muscle car is more than its cylinder count.

  • avatar
    suspekt

    One of the MAIN reasons for buying a pony car is the V8 soundtrack. Speed almost doesn’t matter.

    I would rather have a 2010 low mileage 4.6 GT manual over the 2011 3.7 ANYDAY even knowing the V6 might trap at the same speed.

    For me, the excitement comes from throwing the right exhaust components at a car to get the sound one desires.

    I love V6’s. I am always singing the praises of the under-appreciated Honda J series V6 which have wonderful aural characteristics at WOT at high revs (much much better then any VQ motor)….. but, a Ford Mustang needs a V8 to be a Mustang. Further, stock exhaust on V8 Mustang should be considered a mortal sin.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      @Suspekt
      I don’t necessarily agree with you. I think there are 3 types of muscle cars.

      The US V8 which has/had brilliant straight line speed.

      The US 6 cylinder ‘wanna be’ muscle car fan.

      The Australian muscle car which had brilliant straight line speed and handling to match.

      Our six cylinder muscle cars were always very good with overall performance, handling/speed. The reason for the difference between muscle cars between the US and Australia was our muscle cars were used for homolgation purposes in Group C racing (Touring Cars). The generally ran a US engine with great handling. The 6 cylinder muscle cars were in the same Group C racing.

      • 0 avatar
        NoGoYo

        Yeah, you’d have to be crazy to say a VH Charger wasn’t a muscle car.

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        A Mustang is not a muscle car it is a Pony car. A muscle car is an everyday ordinary car with a high HP engine. A Pony car is a smaller personal sporty car that can be anything from a secretary special to a bruiser and with in that bruiser category it can be a car that is set up for straight line speed, cornering ability or both. Note we had some homologation specials that varied depending on which racing series they were looking to homologate the package or pieces for. So you had the Z-28, Trans Am and Boss 302 to qualify the cars for Trans Am to cars like the Boss 429 which was to qualify the engine for NASCAR and the drag strip.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          @Scoutdude
          The Mustang is a muscle car. It is also a pony car. The description of a muscle vs pony car is contentious.

          Some who consider themselves a purist hot roder might not consider the Mustang a muscle car, but on the other hand many do.

          This link described the Mustang as both a muscle and pony car.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Mustang

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      I should have added, as our touring car racing evolved the GM/Ford link was maintained. Much development and design in muscle cars was done here.

    • 0 avatar
      Cubista

      “I would rather have a 2010 low mileage 4.6 GT manual over the 2011 3.7 ANYDAY even knowing the V6 might trap at the same speed.”

      Agreed…my favorite latter-day Mustang is the 4.6l Bullitt GT trim edition from 2008/09 for this same reason. In fact, I think I’d rather have that GT over the subsequent 5.0 GT’s despite the latter’s upgraded mill and extra cog in the gearbox.

  • avatar
    White Shadow

    Sorry, no such thing as a V6 muscle car. If it doesn’t have the V8, it just ain’t a muscle car. I don’t care if it’s modded to make 800 HP, it’s still not a muscle car.

  • avatar
    AoLetsGo

    I want to like the V6 Mustang I really really do.
    But I just can’t get the idea out of my mind that
    I should of had a V8
    I guess maybe I need to step up to the 8 or look at the Focus ST

    • 0 avatar
      greenhan1

      Agreed and that’s why I chose v6. Needed the sensibility for my 80 mile commutes, but the pure fun, power and excitement of a Mustang! I just can’t see myself in a “tuner”.

  • avatar
    Sgt Beavis

    I had an 06 GT and I thought it had more than enough power to get me into plenty of trouble. I drool at the prospect of a 400+hp GT but I would be very happy (and richer) with a V6.

    I can’t wait to see what Ford has in store for the 2015 model.

  • avatar
    jim brewer

    What is this infantile preoccupation with exhaust note? Do you like to drive or do you just like loud noises and the smell of gasoline? We like the sound of the old V-8s because we associate it with what the car did. Nothing more. Its not Mozart all by itself.

    You learn to like the muffled “angry hornet” sound just fine. My old car was a late 90’s V-12 BMW. It had a muffled “ripping fabric” sound. I liked that, but there were at least a half-dozen things about the car I liked better.

    Is the ‘Stang really speed limited, or merely rev limited? My F-150 3.7L is rev limited to 7K. I’ve heard that its speed limited to 110 or so.

    I don’t blame Ford for a rev limited car. They know their customers.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      Thanks for telling people what they should and shouldn’t like about a vehicle.

      Different strokes and all that.

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      An earlier reply seems to answer the question of the speed limiting. I understand the rev limiting is due to the fact that the 3.7’s power drops off fast enough above 7k that it doesn’t add anything.

      I agree on the sound. I didn’t grow up with V8s, so their sound means nothing to me. Valuing sound as much as some people do seems to me as ridiculous as the stereo playing artificial engine noises. Why not just appreciate each car’s sound for what it is? And for the self-consciousness of not having a V8 seems as silly as “I’d rather push a Ford than drive a Chevy” or “Pepsi tastes like battery acid–give me a Coke.”

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Pretty much every car today has both rev and speed limiters. The V6 Mustang has its speed limiter set at 113 mph due to the drive shaft critical speed. Bypass it at your own risk http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nAm59oe0RPU 113 mph also corresponds to the speed rating of the tires on the base model so I’m sure that factored into drive shaft design, no need to design a drive shaft for 150 mph if you are going to put 113 mph tires on it.

      The rev limiters are there since the mfg puts a warranty on the car and they don’t want to buy a lot of engines. Back in the day valves would typically float and limit the rpm. With the valve to piston clearances in modern engines valve float could end up causing bent valves.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Did US muscle cars have softened valve springs? I find that hard to believe.

        Most V8 muscle cars back in the 70s ran 6 000-6 500rpm, above 7 grand with the rev limiter cut. Look at the GTHO Ford Falcon it could be the best ever muscle car, it was even compared to Ferrari’s and Aston’s. The GTHO wasn’t the quickest, but it handled very well, probably the best (affordable) vehicle to come from Ford.

        Here’s a cut and paste

        The Ford Falcon GTHO Phase III was built for homologation, it looked almost identical to the GT. The modified version the Falcon GT built in 1971 with a heavily upgraded engine, a 4 speed top-loader gearbox and Detroit locker 9″ differential. It was also equipped with special brakes and handling package, plus a 36 imperial gallons (164 litres) fuel tank.
        Winner of the 1971 Bathurst 500, driven by Allan Moffat, the Phase III has been described as “…simply one of the best cars in the world, a true GT that could take on Ferraris and Astons on their own terms…” by Sports Car World.[3]
        The GTHO’s 351 Cleveland engine output was understated as 300 bhp (224 kW) to satisfy insurers. It is generally accepted to produce in the region of 350-380 bhp (265 kW -283 kW). Initial cars were equipped with an electrical rev limiter which came into effect at 6,150 rpm. With the rev limiter disabled, the engine was reputed to pull in excess of 7,000 rpm, even in 4th gear. The Phase III GTHO was Australia’s fastest four-door production car. In 1971 it won the Bathurst 500 motor race in the hands of Allan Moffat, however at the time the Chrysler Valiant E49 Charger held the Australian 1/4 mile record.

        Great car from Ford. The British even had the V6 Capri, another nice car. We had them in Australia, I don’t know if the US ever recieved the Capri. I know you never got our muscle cars.

        I don’t consider the Monaro (Pontiac) a muscle car, but the new Chev SS will be quite a nice car.

        • 0 avatar
          danio3834

          “Did US muscle cars have softened valve springs? I find that hard to believe.”

          In production cars, they typically run the lightest spring possible for the cam to have as little resistance on the engine as possible for fuel economy. Most stock springs have little in the way in margin for cam upgrades or over revs and are usually only good up until just over the tip of the power band, certain performance models excluded.

        • 0 avatar
          Cubista

          “I don’t consider the Monaro (Pontiac) a muscle car…”

          Thank you, GM Australia, for sending the Monaro Coupe (pronounced “coop”, fergodsakes) from 2004-06 with the 5.7 and 6.0 LS engines and allowing us dumb yanks to rebadge it as a GTO; I assure you it is a muscle car, albeit moreso in the traditional, “boy, this car sure looks boring and ordinary but GODD@MN, THIS THING IS FAST” kind of way.

      • 0 avatar
        shoshone

        Here is a video of a Gen 1 SHO accelerating from 0 to off-the dial. As I owned an identical car, it sounds pretty stock.

        Note that the car does not stop at 112 MPH, or toss it’s driveshafts at 120. The tires also do not lose their tread. Ford could do it 25 years ago with a DOHC V-6, even if it took Yamaha to help.

        The only reason to limit the Mustang to Tercel speed is cheapness and fraud. If they want to save on warranty costs, why not speed limit the GT? The Boss? The Shelby?

        The fraud is that this is sold as a performance car. So if you want to use it’s abilities, buy new tires and driveshafts. And whatever ECU mods you need.

        Or just wait for the 2015 model with the ECO Boost 1.8. It won’t need the limiter.

    • 0 avatar
      Compaq Deskpro

      To my ears, V8s sound wonderful and V6s sound gutless. However, I agree that louder than stock exhaust is obnoxious, and aftermarket exhaust (as well as most other modifications) completely screw up the perfect car that Ford designed. I’m alright with mods that make up for imperfections, such as adding Addco sway bars to a civvie Crown Vic. Doing this makes it a better floaty land yacht.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      jim brewer said: “What is this infantile preoccupation with exhaust note?”

      If you have to ask, you’ll never understand, so there’s really no sense in even trying to explain it to you.

  • avatar
    luvmyv8

    I can only imagine what a 3.7 in the Mustang could do. Granted I had an ’06 Mustang GT and it was fun and I used to be in the “why did you buy a V6?” camp.

    However, I rented a ’12 F150 crewcab XLT and initially I was disappointed to find a 3.7 under the hood rather then the 5.0 Coyote. That is, until I drove it.

    Now certainly it wasn’t a race car, but the 3.7 impressed me in that huge truck (really the whole truck was well thought out and I really did like it) but the V6 really left a good impression. It had the power to move when I needed it, it had more then reasonable fuel economy and it just worked well. It didn’t feel slow and had no trouble keeping pace with traffic… honestly it probably performs better then the ’06 Fusion I’m piloting with the 3.0 Duratech, which is slightly underpowered.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      I’m consistently impressed with modern V6 powered full size trucks. They aren’t the anemic mules they used to be. I’ve owned a pickup with a slant six, and still have a Ford with the 300 I6 and have driven many a 4.3L equipped half ton and they all consistently made me wish for two extra cylinders just to get out of the way.

      The new V6 powered F150 and Ram are actually more than adequate and somewhat spry, even compared to some previous generation V8s. I’m considering replacing our ’03 F150 with a Pentastar Ram, but only after I try it with a loaded open car trailer attached. I have a feeling in that case I’ll end up with the Hemi.

  • avatar
    TonyJZX

    in few years it’ll be “confessions of a turbo 4 muscle car owner”

    ford love ecoboost

    one might think that ford will release a v6 ecoboost turbo soon?

    they dont want to encroach on traditional v8 buyers i guess and they know a turbo six would slaughter a v8 in a straight line

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      Back in the day the turbo 4 Mustang SVO out everythinged the GT in every area except price.

      The turbo 4 muscle car has a provenance even if many aren’t aware.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        The SVO showed up at a perfect time. But there’s nothing a modern SVO can offer to outclass the GT and others in the muscle/pony class. First, an Ecoboost I4 would need to put out close to 400 HP and remember the current Mustang body is around 800 lbs heavier than mid ’80s, so a much lighter engine has less affect.

        I’d love to see them try though.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      The Mustang already came with a turbo 4. It was called the SVO and it competed for sales against the V8 Mustang GT in the late 80s. As as one would expect. the SVO died because the V8 Mustang was faster and costs less. Who in their right mind would pay more money for a slower Mustang? Apparently, not many people, as evident by the poor sales of the SVO Mustang.

      BTW, it’s really a shame because the SVO had some advantages over the GT. It came with 4-wheel disk brakes and it had better handling. But like most Mustang fans, the speed was really what mattered, and there is where the SVO fell short.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        Actually, the SVO could easily out accelerate the GT if you weren’t afraid to get the turbo spooled and sidestep the clutch. It was tough on my clutch, but the car could take it.

        But it’s more than worth it to give up a bit of straight line acceleration for a car that can embarrass its V8 sibling in the turns and stopping distance.

        The SVO was priced around 50% more than the GT so that’s pushing $50K in today’s money. It was doomed from the start.

        • 0 avatar
          White Shadow

          LOL…no, the SVO couldn’t ever out-accelerate a GT of the same year. Not even close. I owned both an 87 & 88 5.0 Mustang and I had six other friends that also had the same car. I also had two friends that decided that the SVO was the better Mustang, so they decided to go that route. We all used to street race constantly. We also raced every Friday night at Englishtown’s Raceway Park. The SVO never stood a chance, and believe me when I say that both of my friends knew how to drive/race their cars. The little turbo 4 just didn’t have the beans to keep up with a bone stock 5.0 V8 of the same era. That’s a fact. Even the magazines came to the same conclusions. The only way to make the SVO competitive was to raise the boost level by bleeding off the wastegate.

          • 0 avatar
            NoGoYo

            I’m sure turbo lag (which the 5.0 naturally didn’t have) made things more difficult. I bet modifying the engine in such a way as to reduce turbo lag would result in a significant improvement in 1/4 mile times.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            I don’t know, 1/4 mile times are tough to be sure about and there were different rear axle ratios, guys not knowing how to drive, esp turbo cars, etc. And the 87/88 GT had more power than the 84-86 GT, some say the 87+ V8 was underrated quite a bit too. I had a good friend with an 85.5 SVO which was the fastest one and it was untouchable on the street, but it was also heavily modded. I don’t think I knew anyone with a stock Mustang that ever raced so I can’t really speak to which was the fastest stock. Who keeps a Mustang stock anyway? The entire point is the easy mods. And raising the boost is a very easy and legit way to raise power. If that’s “all” it took to beat the GT then I’d give the nod to the SVO.

            But technically you are correct. The 50% increase in price was the reason the SVO flopped, it just was too expensive and the core buyer of Mustangs was the drag racing crowd, they knew they could make the 5.0 faster than the SVO for less money, and didn’t care about the handling/braking.

          • 0 avatar
            White Shadow

            Yes, the ’87 Mustang was the more powerful. It had 225 HP at the time, and was a bit faster than the ’86 Mustang. As for stock versus stock, I got my ’87 Mustang brand new in 1987 (I was 18 at the time) and raced it stock for about 6 months before I started modding it. So I had plenty of timing racing my stock GT versus both of my friends who had stock SVOs. I’ll admit that the SVO had an advantage in braking & handling, but it did not have an advantage in acceleration at all. I could walk away from them without much problem at all.

            BTW, too many people exaggerate the price of the SVO. It wasn’t 50% more than a GT. Hell, I remember paying $14,500 for my 87 GT, which was basically loaded with everything except t-tops (had a sunroof instead) and automatic trans (had a 5-speed manual, of course) and my buddy with an 86 SVO paid around $16,000 for his SVO.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            Your ’87 GT had a more powerful fuel injected engine and cost more than the GT from 84-86, it doesn’t really count. Every year from 84-86 had different specs and different options so its hard to really compare, but the tests at the time determined that the SVO and GT were pretty close… pretty much a drivers race. And it is easier to get max performance from a GT than from an SVO, so in the real world I am sure they lost more than won.

            As for the price, MSRP on the GT in 86 was about $11k, the SVO was about $16k… which is 50% more. But you are right, the SVO came pretty much loaded, while the GT had a lot of options to drive the price up. It was still a big spread. Your 87 was more expensive for base price too.

          • 0 avatar
            White Shadow

            The ’86 GT was fuel injected (that was the first year, ’85 was last of the carb cars) and was nearly as quick as the ’87. Both the ’86 & ’87 were significantly faster than the ’85 GT.

            BTW, the ’86 GT has a BASE price of $11,102 (yes, I looked it up) for a completely STRIPPED car. A loaded ’86 SVO was $15,272. Terrific if you don’t mind comparing a stripper GT to a fully loaded SVO. In reality, the price difference between equally optioned cars was less than $2000 at most, which is not that big of a deal. If the SVO was the faster car, I think lots of people would have been willing to pay the extra money for it.

          • 0 avatar
            mnm4ever

            Agreed on both counts, that exactly what I was trying to say!

            I have to admit, I am jealous that you got a brand new ’87 GT right out of high school. I graduated a year later and could barely afford my ’79 Scirocco.

  • avatar

    I really enjoyed reading this article and the following comments for a few reasons. I am a Canadian living for the moment in Europe and last year I was back home and test-drove an automatic V6 Mustang. I found the car quite comfortable and surprisingly fast. The downside was that visibility (except forwards) was so-so and the car really felt too big and heavy. At the price point the interior, which is the subject of lots of complaints in reviews, seemed okay as well. And I am aware that there is a vast vast aftermarket industry catering to anyone wanting to personalize a Mustang, whether V6 or V8.

    From my driving experience in Europe and the fact that most of my rental cars are manual I have learned to enjoy the shift-for-yourself thing although I grew up on automatics and have never owned a manual transmission car yet. Interestingly, the dealer told me that he could not remember the last time they sold a manual V6 Mustang; all of the ones on the lot were autos.

    When I return to Canada in the next year or so I am planning to get another car and which will not necessarily be a daily driver. I am currently thinking about the V6 or 5.0 Mustangs or the Focus ST and would probably buy used. Unfortunately a lot of the used Mustangs I see on-line in Ontario tend to be base models and there are a few options I would like–like that parking assist thing that beeps when you go backwards since you can’t see much behind you. My alternative is to wait a few years and get a 2015 Mustang. With the rumoured 400 lb weight reduction and 15″ shortening, along with IRS, it might be worth waiting for and still go with the V6, if it is offered, since performance should be really impressive. I would prefer to go normally-aspirated rather than with a turbo-4 and the rumoured Coyote with 475 hp is a bit much.

    The comments about the current V6 handling better than the V8 due to the reduced front-end weight is interesting. Shelby offered a very cool Terlingua-edition V6 car for a while but by the time they piled on the parts, including a supercharger, it would have made more sense to just pay for a GT.

    I hope TTAC runs more reports by owners. In the case of this one I would have liked to read more about the experience of living with the car, including reliability issues, rather than just an emphasis on performance figures.

  • avatar
    AMC_CJ

    Never though I would buy a V6 Mustang in my life, but have a 12′ myself. Automatic too.

    We were on a budget, but I didn’t feel penalized having to buy the V6. If fact, considering the great mileage (I’ve seen 33mpg out of mine) I actually prefer it. We use the car more for short trips, or going out; not drag racing. Made no sense to get the V8 really.

    Had they stuck with the old engine though, I wouldn’t have bought it.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    I’d still take an ’80s 5.0 under the hood of a new Mustang, over the current V6. And definitely a 4.6 V8 of recent years. Not to take anything away from new V6 Mustangs, but you can’t beat the sounds of a V8 or the instant throttle response.

    Keep in mind, past V8s were hampered by restrictive gearing. 3.73s were considered extreme until recent years. Past 5.0 Mustangs came with 2.73s, unless you knew to order one with 3.08s. And V8s respond much better to gear swaps.

  • avatar

    Great article. Your decision mirrors the one I made when I bought my 300M. I had to look at what I needed in the real world, in my case a road car with good manners and some efficiency vs what I dreamed about, high performance, crazy accelration and sliding out the back on corners. I had to look at myself, too, and understand that even if I got a car that did all the things I wanted I probably wouldn’t do that kind of thing anymore. That was the tough part.

    The V6 in the Mustang has tons of balls and great efficiency. It is a wonderful choice and, as much as I want a Cobra or even a GT, it’s the choice I think I would end up making because I live in the real world. Great article – suddenly TTAC has all these awesome writers. It’s humbling.

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    As far as exhausts notes go, my preference for the V8 has nothing to do with age (I’m 29), and isn’t a universal hatred for 6 cylinders. It’s just that some engine sounds are more in character with certain cars and become a part of the experience. I have a 6 cylinder car (BMW), and to me that straight six growl is an essential part of the BMW experience, hence my distaste for the latest 4 cylinders, as smooth and quiet an engine as that may be. Dare I say I think a V8 would sound out of place in my 3 series, and in that case, were it offered, I wouldn’t have opted for it. I remember years ago there were rumors going around of Porsche trying to squeeze a V8 into the 911, which I would have opposed. To me, a 911 without a flat six isn’t a 911, even if the V8 is a nice engine. However, when it comes to the Mustang, the retro look of the current generation just doesn’t feel right without that V8 rumble. Again, V6 owners need not apologize for their choice. It is a good engine and worthy of a warm welcome to any performance car clique. For me, though, a car that looks and feels like a Mustang just doesn’t feel right without a V8. Even if you put my BMW’s lovely amazing and wonderful straight six in it, I would opt for the V8. I felt the same way the first time I handled an XTS rental…I wanted to put my head down and cry as soon as I started the car and heard/felt that V6 instead of the old DTS Northstar. I hated the car from that moment – It just didn’t seem right.

  • avatar
    racebeer

    Being an old fart that came of age in the 60’s with the muscle car / pony car wars raging at full song, I have to say that the aura of a V8 is absolute music to my ears. Although I agree the V6 ‘Stang is a really good choice, to me there is just something guttural about the sounds a throbbing V8 makes (it’s my age, OK????).

    Example Number 1: I actually bought a Firebird V6 with the 5-speed as a daily driver. High 6, low 7 second 0-60 times. Handling fine, not great, but fine. The exhaust note was just, well, not in keeping with the looks of the car. A real quick fix for the sound deficit was the installation of a WS6 cat-back system take-off from SLP (along with a torsen diff to eliminate the one legged dog burnout….). This immediately transformed the exhaust note to a “deeper” tone that wasn’t too loud but still very satisfying. This was much more in keeping with the appearance of the ‘Bird, and most bystanders actually thought it had a V8. Great little car that I sold to my son, who still has it today.

    Example Number 2: Stepped up to a Trans Am with the LS1 and 6-speed. Driving this car back-to-back with the V6 version is interesting. It has the proper V8 rumble, and the torque really makes it scoot to illegal speeds before you get out of second gear. However, it’s really that V8 sound that makes me grin every time I drive it. Well, that along with the staggered wheel / tire setup, Strano springs, Bilstein HD shocks, larger swaybars and subframe connectors that really help the handling. My wife and I take it out on weekends and absolutely enjoy motoring along with the top down, wind in the hair, and George Thorogood just audible above the wondrous V8 exhaust note.

    So, to summarize, do whatever floats your boat. If you like a V6, go for it and don’t look back. If the V8 gets your juices flowing, that works too. It’s just really nice to have actual choices that you can match to your desires…..

  • avatar
    Pinzgauer

    The sound of my Boss revving over 7k rpm with the side pipes fully open is one of the greatest sounds you will ever hear. Its pure symphony to the ears.

    That being said, I’d totally roll a V6 stang as my DD.

  • avatar
    Mikemannn

    hmm.. I’d put my ’11 v6 6spd up against just about anything.

    though it is supercharged now :)

  • avatar
    jbreuckm

    I had a 2011 V6 Mustang with the performance package – GT suspension, sways from the GT500, strut tower brace, and 19 inch wheels with summer rubber. That car was truly excellent. The ride was a bit harsh, but the combination of power and agility was astounding at a price right around 25k.

    It did have many of the MT-82 transmission issues, which were livable but not great.

    Then a tree fell on it and I replaced it with a 2012 GT. Both are great cars.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      “then a tree fell on it…” — haha, nice.

      So since you have had the rare opportunity to own and drive both versions from nearly identical model years, care to comment on the differences/negatives/positives to each? Were both cars manual? Same suspension setup? If the V6 was so great, why the GT?

      • 0 avatar
        SouthernCyclone

        I own a 2013 Mustang V6 with performance pack. I paid $22k out the door for the car. I wanted a base auto (yes, auto) V6 performance pack model with the the whole idea of modding it. A cheap powerful platform to start with. I’ve got 3.73 gears, tune, CAI, shorty headers, catless mid x pipe and appearance mods. A base GT was $30k, for a base! I have $3k in mods. My car is currently faster then the 2010 GT, and as fast as a stock new 5.0 auto with the 3.15 gears. The new V6 model Camaro and Challengers aren’t even close. As a matter of fact the R/T models are a better match up against a 3.7 modded mustang. If a Camaro SS driver is caught napping at the wheel, it.s not gonna turn out good for them.
        So for $26k with mods I have my own personalized car that is as fast and faster then V8 cars. Yeah its not a V8, but nothing like seeing the expression of those V8 owners when they find out the car that actually beat them was a V6 model.

        • 0 avatar
          White Shadow

          Here’s the problem—most people who race (probably like 99% of them) don’t keep their cars completely stock. To compare your modded V6 Mustang to a Camaro SS is just silly. First off all, the Camaro is still faster, even bone stock. Secondly, you use the “if a Camaro SS driver is caught napping…” argument, which is just silly.

          Face it, you didn’t want to (or couldn’t) spend the extra money for the V8, so you have a V6 and now have to mod it just to hope to compete with the V8 cars. And BTW, your mods are basically gears and a tune. The exhaust and CAI do very little to increase the performance of your car. Honestly, I have a hard time believing that gears and a tune puts your car anywhere near any new 5.0 Mustang, even an automatic with the 3:15 axle ratio.

        • 0 avatar
          White Shadow

          BTW, if you’re such a big drag racer, why don’t you tell us your best time at the strip with your V6 Mustang. I’d be curious to hear what you’re claiming, considering that you really just have gears. The rest of your mods aren’t doing to do much. CAI? Probably little to no power gain. Exhaust work? Maybe a few HP at most. Tune? Well, on a N/A V6 engine, you’re not going to get much at all.

          Your car bone stock is slower than the last 4.6L GT bone stock. Not a LOT slower, but it is slower. With your mods, you’d probably run neck and neck with a bone stock 4.6L GT. But of course you could prove me wrong. Instead of just telling me your best time, how about pointing me to your Mustang forum where you can actually show me slips or even videos of your car burning up the drag strip. I’ll be waiting.

      • 0 avatar
        jbreuckm

        Two weeks later, I’ll respond. You may or may not see this, but I’ll feel better about my place in the universe for not having let you hang.

        Why the GT? Mostly because it was the end of the model year and they had $3k on the hood. I walked out the door with a premium GT for under $30k. Hard to argue with that. There was a bit of “been there done that” going on – the V6 was great, but the V8 was something new, y’know?

        Both cars were manuals. The performance package actually gives you a harder suspension setup than the GT, as the performance package suspension uses GT plus GT500 components.

        The GT with the regular suspension is a better around town car. It’s less harsh, and from stoplight to stoplight the 5.0 is intoxicating.

        When tossing it around the V6 was more fun. It was lighter and more nimble than the V8, and given that all that weight reduction came from the engine bay, it was more neutrally balanced. But there’s no substitute for the giddy giggles that the 5.0 creates.

        As far as MPG goes, I get around 20 in the GT vs. about 24.5 in the V6, so there’s a difference but not a huuuuge one.

        Oh, and after I’d had the GT for about a month, it got a ton of hail damage. So, yeah. Can’t win.

        • 0 avatar
          Jack Baruth

          “Two weeks later, I’ll respond. You may or may not see this, but I’ll feel better about my place in the universe for not having let you hang.”

          The B&B indeed!

  • avatar
    SouthernCyclone

    I love when the V8 crowd gets there pride hurt. It always show with the “just admit you couldn’t afford the V8″ statement. No one said it would beat every V8 car. But facts are facts, and all you have to do is search the web for proof. There’s a huge thread on one of the new Camaro SS forums of a V8 being whooped by a modified 3.7 V6 mustang if you search. It’s been well documented throughout the web the capability of the 3.7 V6 Mustang modded. From drag strip time slips, video’s of races on you tube on & off the track, to the forums. Now is it my fault that you are clueless about the capabilites of the 3.7 V6 mustang and which cars it will and won’t hang with? Nope. Its not my fault the Camaro is heavy and Challenger heavier. We have NA bolt on and tuned only 3.7 V6 mustang people running consistent 12.6’s – 12.9’s (depending on bolt on’s tune and experience), throw a 100 shot on and your running high 11’s to 12.0’s in the 1/4. I’m not going to include FI for the V6 because then your getting into the cost of a 5.0 stang.
    All those times above are available on the web with time slips to back them up. Do some research!
    My advice to you would be next time you call someone out, do a little research before hand and get some facts about all cars invovled.
    And finally when someone is caught napping its at the light at the drag strip. I don’t know what kind of racing you do on the street, but racing someone who isn’t trying to race isn’t racing.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      Your entire reply if full of misinformation and faulty reasoning. Case in point: I never said you (or anyone else for that matter) couldn’t afford a V8 Mustang. Did you miss the part where I said, “you didn’t want to” spend the money for a V8? Or did you just focus instead on the part where I said, “or couldn’t”?

      Case in point: I’m not a V8 guy, so I’m not sure where you’re trying to go with your “V8 crowd, pride hurt” silliness. Sure, I’ve owned plenty of V8 cars in the past, but today I don’t own anything with a V8 under the hood. In fact, I happen to own a 4-cylinder turbo car that would quite easily dispose of your lightly modded V6 Mustang. Yeah, it’s modded and it’s also 6MT & AWD. Trust me, you’d have no chance….which brings me to my third case in point: You obviously missed (or just failed to comprehend) anything I said in my comment about modding a car. If you want to compare stock versus stock, then that’s fine. If you want to compare stock versus modded, then you’re foolish. Why? Simple–ANY car can be modded to beat any stock car. That’s a fact. Just like my 4-cylinder car can beat a new V8 Mustang. So what? Big deal….LOL. I find it funny that you want to beat your chest about buying a V6 Mustang and modding it to be able to beat an automatic 5.0 with a highway gear ratio…and then you try to justify your position by talking about the price of your car added to the price of your mods still being less than the cost of a GT. LOL, and then you wonder why people sometimes comment about the “can’t afford a GT” theory. And in all honestly, as I said earlier, that wasn’t my argument at all.

      Anyway, have fun with your V6 Mustang and keep feeling like a champ every time you beat an unsuspecting V8 driver off the line. If that’s what makes you feel good, then so be it.

      • 0 avatar
        SouthernCyclone

        I also own a AWD turbo 4 cyl vehicle (small world), mine is a 5- spd and its my main drag vehicle. Its only putting down 400 awhp right now, but thats plenty in a vehicle that weighs 3078 lbs. Just because someone owns or modifies a NA V6 doesn’t mean they don’t know what they are talking about. I’ve owned everything from chevy and ford V8 muscle cars to a modified Buick Grand National to turbo 4 cylinders to daily commuters. Yes I do get enjoyment in beating higher priced cars, otherwise I would have bought a V8 myself and go around beating on my chest about how great my V8 is. Some people get off on that, I get off on knowing a cheaper car I built is faster and customized to my liking for half the cost.

        • 0 avatar
          White Shadow

          Lets just agree to disagree. You seem to be hell bent on putting words in my mouth. I never said a V6 owner (modded or not) doesn’t know what they are talking about. I also never said that they couldn’t own any other cars. Do you even read my comments before you reply to them? LOL

          You remind me of a guy I know who loves to “street race” against people who don’t even know they are in a street race in the first place.

  • avatar
    SouthernCyclone

    The difference in this conversation is I know wtf I’m talking about when it comes to the 3.7 V6 engine. To me you come in here spewing things you read in magazines to try and Difference is I’m not bench racing like you are, I speak of real results. Not bone stock magazine results.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      Don’t get your panties all twisted in a knot, Nancy. Lets look at the facts: 1- I never said that you don’t know anything about the V6 engine. In fact, like most people, I couldn’t give a shit about the V6 Mustang. 2- I made no claims about the V6 Mustang. However, I did say that your mildly modded V6 Mustang is not as fast as a stock Camaro SS, and you agreed with that by saying that an SS driver could be caught by surprise if he was asleep at the wheel. Terrific. LOL

      You’re the one who made the initial comment about your superfast V6 Mustang and that you only have $3K in mods on top of the $22K price. Great. Want a cookie? Fact of the matter is that your car is still slower than bone stock 5.0 6MT Mustang. Don’t get too butt hurt over that simple fact. Oh yeah, but you paid less. LOL, terrific kiddo. Whatever floats your boat.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      Give me just one example of something that I said that was read in a magazine. Or one thing I said that had anything to do with bench racing or magazine racing. Or one thing I said that wasn’t about “real” results. I’m starting to wonder if you’re arguing with someone else, because you’re really not making any sense.

  • avatar
    SouthernCyclone

    You are absolutely correct.
    I will just have to let the information available to everyone on the web back up my previous statements about the potential of the 3.7 V6 Mustang.
    Its not like anything I have said hasn’t already been proved in a video or drag slip times posted freely for all to see.
    Search people!!! Don’t be a sheep, be the wolf.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      Nobody is denying the potential of the V6 Mustang. In fact, I already said that ANY car can be modded to beat any stock (unmodded) car. Sorry, but there’s nothing special about the V6 Mustang. My four-banger is faster than a stock 5.0 6MT. That fact should illustrate to you that I agree that ANY car can be modded to be faster. This isn’t breaking news….everybody already knows about modding cars for more speed.


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