By on February 11, 2015

2015-ford-Mustang-coty-nominee

Driving a rear-drive, turbocharged car in the winter is usually an exercise in gentle throttle control coupled with self-restraint. And it’s tough when you lack both of those traits.

Past experiences with this kind of car tend to follow a typical pattern. Enter a turn, lift the throttle to unsettle the rear of the car, get back on the gas. Wait, wait, wait for the turbo to spool up (if you’re in something like a Volvo 700 or 900-Series wagon) and then *BAM*, get hit with a fist-full of boost. No wonder Gordon Murray always championed the naturally aspirated engine.

But it looks like things have changed.

This week, we’ve got a brand new 2015 Ford Mustang Ecoboost, in the exact same spec as the one pictured above. A spell of crappy weather and a lack of plowed side streets has let me explore the dynamics of a boosted RWD car without really trying. The 2.3L turbocharged four-cylinder is impossibly smooth. Too smooth in fact. There’s virtually zero perceptible turbo lag. Like most small-displacement four-cylinder turbo motors, it pulls strongly through the low end of the rev range, but runs out of breath towards the top. It feels quick, but not that quick, even though it would probably show its tail lights to a Mod Motor SN95. To me at least, it doesn’t really feel like a Mustang.

What it does feel like is the best Audi A5, BMW 228i, 428i, Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Nissan 370Z or 240SX you’ve ever driven. The seating position and sightlines no longer feel like the “large and in charge” Mustangs of yesterday, where you’re sitting bolt upright over a big, blocky hood, grasping a bent shifter and a yacht-like steering wheel.

The chassis is tighter than a yoga instructor’s glutes, the ride is *too* firm, the Brembo brakes are brilliant and the electric steering’s got plenty of feedback and feel even in “normal” mode. But when you mash the throttle, it sounds like a Focus SE. The automatic transmission in our car may be hampering some of the performance, but even sound clips where the car has an upgraded exhaust still sound…off. Like hearing Radu Marian sing an aria when you’re expecting a tenor. I’m sure that with the new Ford Racing ProCal and an uncorked exhaust system, this thing will be an absolute riot on the street at a significant discount to the five-point-oh.

But that’s not good enough for me. If I’m buying a pony car, I want the full pony car experience, and that means 8 cylinders of unholy torque and the soundtrack to match. As petty and vain as it may be, I would never be happy not having the “5.0” badge, the NASCAR soundtrack and not having to explain to everyone that “it’s a 4-cylinder, but it’s actually lighter and better balanced and Immakingexcusesfornotgettingthebigboymustang”.

Well, not quite. If I lived in Calgary or Denver or somewhere at altitude, I could see how a tuned-up Ecoboost would be a hell of a car on a brisk drive through the mountains. When the V8 would be huffing and puffing its way up the mountain, the 2.3L would be whistling a sweet turbo tune. A barely audible one at that.

The Speedhunters blog recently compared the Mustang EB to the never-produced S16 version of the Nissan Silvia, one of Japan’s most iconic cars. I’d have to agree. It’s got all the right elements to the successor to one of the best sport compacts of all time. The only problem is, it’s a pony car.

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138 Comments on “Generation Why: I Want My S16...”


  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Long live the V8, well at least for the next few years. Perhaps maybe a V8 soundtrack piped through your eight speaker stereo and maybe a couple of external speakers to impress pedestrians?

    No, huh?

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    Yeah, there is more than a bit of S14 in the profile. Too bad the Moose is such a barge.

    • 0 avatar
      racer-esq.

      Weight is an issue. In that respect the Hyundai Genesis 2.0T, which Hyundai unfortunately killed for the 2015 model year, was more of a 240SX sucessor. And I say that as someone that owned a 240SX. But the Mustang isn’t bad.

      Derek needs to get off his autistic repetition of the claim that an American RWD coupe needs to have a V8. Definitely, definitely, definitely, Mustang definitely has to have a V8.

      No, it doesn’t. That it is still RWD, and offers a manual, is pretty damn impressive. Some basement dwellers will claim that the only legitimate version of a car is the one with the biggest engine, but that applies to a Mustang no more than it does to a BMW or Audi.

      The Mustang is no more “pony car” than a 2-series. The Mustang and 2-series are in fact very similar in that their respective manufacturers could both not justify a RWD coupe if not for image buyers that probably do not even know the cars are RWD.

      “If I’m buying a pony car, I want the full pony car experience,” – I should have stopped reading there. This weak attempt to knock-off the facetious bluntness of Jeremy Carkson or Hunter S. Thompson is surely not the full experience.

      Some people are not buying a “pony car”. They are buying a high value RWD performance coupe. For those people the apt question is turbo-I4 or NA V6.

      • 0 avatar
        dtremit

        “Some people are not buying a ‘pony car’. They are buying a high value RWD performance coupe. For those people the apt question is turbo-I4 or NA V6.”

        Indeed. The Mustang has always been a different car to different people — and at least in recent memory, the sales of the V6 have made it possible for the V8 to exist. My guess is the turbo 4 is what makes it possible to sell the Mustang worldwide.

        If you want a V8, by all means buy a V8. There are a lot of places where larger engines are endangered, but the Mustang isn’t one of them.

      • 0 avatar
        greyjohn

        thank you for saying that, and i wish Ford marketing would cater to that.
        don’t look at the non-V8 has a “let-down”, the “little guy”, think of it as just a newer 240SX. you want fun, but with better mileage and cheaper insurance. its still FAST! and with the power both of them have, its not like you are just going all out on public roads anyway. if you want the V8, cool. if you don’t, you shouldnt feel like you are being penalized. if the Mustang had a straight six, versus a bent, i’d been all over it, but this new turbo-4 is calling out to me. and i don’t care if its quiet, its a turbo, kind of goes with the package.

  • avatar
    jrmason

    A quick story (that really has nothing to do with a mustang, so my apologies up front)

    A close friend who transports RVs and boats for a living went on vacation for a week a couple of years ago. It just so happened that his sister was moving that week and needed a truck. So like most brothers would do, he left the keys with her before he left town. Big mistake. It was a wet rainy day, and she had only made it a few miles from his house when she got an expensive education on the importance of a light foot when it comes to a turbo charged diesel engine capable of producing 800 lb ft at low rpm. She was maneuvering through a double set of “S” curves, the latter part transistioning into a steep grade. She got into the throttle to compensate for the grade, the truck downshifted and being light in the ass end as all empty diesel pick ups are and posi to boot, the rear broke traction and stepped out. She over corrected, more than likely completely got out of the gas, and went straight for the ditch and into a telephone pole. She was unhurt but totalled the truck. I got the call to go get the truck since he was out of town, and in her words “I only gave it as much gas as I would my Cruze going up that hill”. Oops.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @jrmason – odd since any newer turbo diesel pickup would have had traction/stability control kick in and control the situation.

      • 0 avatar
        jrmason

        The truck was an 06 or 07, can’t remember exactly but was before Ram went with the 6.7 engines.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          My spectrum disorder requires me to comment that the stock 5.9L Cummins Ram maxed out at 650lb-ft and if your friend had a 5.9L with no stability control chipped/tuned to 800+ and then handed it off to his Cruze-driving sister then I’m not shocked it ended up wrecked.

          • 0 avatar
            jrmason

            Then your spectrum disorder should also require you to relate how easy it is to gain an extra 150-200lb ft out of a diesel engine. With CR technology that is easily surpassed with a good tune and if your feeling sporty a turbo. Even my oldest truck, a 98.5 rated @ 420lb ft from the factory, is beyond that bench mark with a set of SAC 7x.010 injectors, a 62/70/12 turbo, and a Smarty. All bolt on mods without so much as disturbing the head gasket. Easy peasy.

            I never said it was a smart move in his part, simply relaying a story. I’m very particular about who drives my trucks, as in almost NOBODY, aside from my cousin, and the friend I mentioned above, you can forget it.
            Oh yeah, and my wife, who can back my 28 ft GN and 24 ft tilt trailer up better than most men are capable of.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “Then your spectrum disorder should also require you to relate how easy it is to gain an extra 150-200lb ft out of a diesel engine.”

            Well, I did bring up the possibility of tuning.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      Poor girl. Like handing her a high powered rifle as her first shooting experience, without any instruction or warning of the forces involved.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @jrmason – so in effect your story has nothing to do with turbo’s or turbo lag and everything to do with an inexperienced driver behind the wheel of a tuned tire burning monster!!!

  • avatar
    tresmonos

    TTAC is firing on all cylinders today. Good article.

  • avatar
    IHateCars

    It’s the best SVO Mustang that Ford hasn’t produced since 1986.

    Still….I’ll take the GT.

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    V8 all the way for me too! No replacement for displacement!

  • avatar
    John R

    That’s tough. If I were to get one I feel like I’d have a personal obligation to throw money at at and see if it could match the Lan Evo’s potential to make more power.

    But then I would start to think about the associated costs of modifiying it and come to the conclusion that I may have been more justified in just buying the GT.

    • 0 avatar
      duffman13

      I’m with you. Upping the boost would only go so far – if the turbo runs out of breath at high revs that’s just the way it is. Maybe a downpipe, bigger intercooler, and a tune could do that for about $1500 if you do the work, but to really do it properly you’re looking at a turbo swap.

      Now, ball bearing turbos like a twin scroll GT28 kits for the 2.3 in the Mazdaspeed 3 can be had under $2k, but when you add all that up you basically just bought a GT with less than factory reliability and warranty.

      That said, since turbos are modular if you want to make a big power drag car, the 2.3T might be the easier platform. but for a reliable trackable fun amount of horsepower, the GT will be the better deal every day of the week.

  • avatar
    Krynn

    Give me the v8 all day long, regardless of if you’re in the mountains or not.
    I did the math on it a while back. Comparing stock to stock, you’ve got to get to nearly 10,000 feet before the ecoboost makes more power than the coyote.

  • avatar
    bball40dtw

    I still think the right answer is the new 3.5TT with the boost turnt waaaay up. Or GTDI Coyote.

    • 0 avatar
      sproc

      Many have speculated that a 3.5TT GT is the car Ford wanted/still wants to build. It’s sure looking pretty impressive in the new Raptor.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      I’m positive that’s coming. I think it’ll wait until after the new-gen 3.5 has shaken out a bit in the lower-boost pickup application. And I’m sure they’ll sell the V6T and V8 Mustangs side by side, at least in the beginning. The trouble is that the V6T one will be faster and it won’t be close. The new 3.5 is looking like an absolute beast.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        The Ford GT and Raptor will be the test bed for the new TTDI 3.5 but as we have seen on this Mustang post and others, one of the reasons you buy a Mustang is to get a V8.
        I’d be more inclined to get the normally aspirated V6 since 40 kph over the speed limit gets you an automatic impound in my part of the world and I’m not into drag racing at the local strip.

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          The “You buy a Mustang to get a V8” argument is going to take a severe beating when the V6 Mustang is faster than the V8 one. So far that’s not true yet. It will be.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            I don’t know why people don’t understand this. If the F150 can go from 100% V8 to having a V6 as the premium engine, the Mustang will be alright with a TTV6.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            F-150s have never been 100% V8s, but it remains to be seen what backlash we’ll see against TTV6s. Right now, they’re all the rage. Pimped by OEMs like crazy.Turbo’s for everyone! TWIN TURBOS!!!

            Most have never owned boost cars. Only read about them. It’s not all that.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            Maybe if you only buy Fords.

            I think GM and ChryslerCo are going to keep the V8s around and those companies have already put forced induction on their 8 cylinders.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @dal – Not everything comes down to 0-60. 30 to 80? But I’d gladly take a hit in power, acceleration, with a slightly slower V8.

          • 0 avatar
            raph

            “The “You buy a Mustang to get a V8″ argument is going to take a severe beating when the V6 Mustang is faster than the V8 one.”

            I doubt that will be happening anytime soon (especially if the clickbait buffoons at Horsepower Kings said so)

            The V8 in the Mustang is part and parcel of the mystique. Like buying a Harley with its lumpy V-twin you buy a pony car for the V8 experience.

            The only thing I could see killing a V8 in the Mustang would be Ford’s complete abandonment of the V8 in the F150 making the coyote 5.0 essentially a niche engine for the Mustang while supplies last.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @DenverMike yes the F150 was 100% V8 for 2009-2010 between the discontinuation of the Essex 4.2 and the introduction of the Duratec 3.5 and 3.7

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            DenverMike-

            You might not want more power and acceleration, but since the EcoBoost V6 is expected to have the same take rate as the Coyote on the F150, despite being a more expensive option, it seems like many people do.

            raph-

            There is no mystique to owning a Mustang for my generation. The Mustangs of my youth are the New Edge Mustangs. There is no aura surrounding them. The Mustang has to stand on it’s own now, regardless of powertrain. Unless Ford is going to shell out cash for a DI Coyote with either more displacement or turbocharging, the TTV6 is going to be the engine to have.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @bbal – Consumers think they’re getting something much better than a “gas guzzling V8”, thanks to the heavily marketed Eco Boost and media hoopla.

            The Coyote is priced $500 more than last year’s and previous, btw.

          • 0 avatar
            DC Bruce

            The “Ecoboost 3.5L is a $400 upcharge from the Coyote V-8 in the F-150. In real world testing, especially towing, the V-8 actually uses less fuel. The V-8 engine is also lighter than the boosted V-6.
            That said, despite the fact that the V-8 has a bit more horsepower than the V-6, the fat torque curve of the V-6 makes it faster to 60, faster in the quarter mile and a better towing engine.

            Interestingly, GM’s 6.2 liter V-8 beats them both in unloaded fuel economy testing and beats the boosted 3.5 in loaded fuel economy testing. It’s also faster, despite the weight disadvantage.

            I’m leaning toward the 5.0 because it doesn’t have direct injection and doesn’t have turbos. The 5.0 is less “bleeding edge” technology.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            DenverMike-

            Yes the Coyote price went up a bit, but it’s still less than the 3.5EB. You are just going to have to accept the fact that people like that engine.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            I can live with it, no problem. But no doubt Eco Boost buyers are expecting better mpg and reliability than delivered/promised. This with the knowledge they paid a few hundred more than the Coyote?

            Maybe the Coyote will never beat the EB is sales, especially if Ford continues pushing the EB, but if you felt you got taken for a fool, would your next pickup be a Ford at all???

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            If the ecoboost V6 was a reason why people, in any sort of sizable number, were not selecting the F150 as a vehicle, or as repeat truck buyer, than Ford wouldn’t have introduced a 2.7TT or made the 3.5TT the top dog engine in its F150 fleet.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Ford says the EB is their premium F-150 engine. Ok. I know it’s the one they’d rather sell me, and it does happen to their most expensive.

            But the Coyote is still there for buyers that can make up their own mind. And maybe looking down the road for the most longevity, and over all cost of repairs, maintenance, etc.

            Still most consumers will follow the herd, advertising, advise from jourosaurs and OEMs/dealers preferences.

            Mostly, V8 stereotypes live on. Gas Guzzling monsters, etc.

  • avatar
    David Walton

    Money for nothin’ and chicks for free
    I want my, I want my, I want my MTV

  • avatar
    JMII

    I’ve been saying for years that turbo lag is over blown (sorry no pun intended). Modern turbos spool fast and rev very smoothly. I’ve LOVE a turbo V6 Mustang especially if they offered a hatchback again. A turbo 4 is a bit weak for such a large pony car. The advantage with turbo power is how easily it can be upgraded with just an ECU flash and some free-flowing bits (intake/exhaust). Just ask the VeeDub crowd about the joys of being able to punch your 200HP ride up to over 300HP for a grand without even getting greasy.

    Now when my brother rides in my Z he comments on how fast it feels compared to his Golf R. Even though his Golf IS faster. The linear power deliver on my NA V6 means it accelerates the same regardless of gear, RPM or throttle position. While his Golf’s torque HP and TQ are more peaky. Thus its a different FEELING, so I understand why some don’t like the way turbos move. However I actually like the boosted “shove” they generate. Plus if your easy on the throttle you can save some gas. My Eclipse GS-T was a really fun car to drive. Now my Z can kill it but the Z drives/accelerates almost too smooth, its like nothing is happening… until you glance down and see triple digits.

    • 0 avatar
      raph

      “I’ve been saying for years that turbo lag is over blown (sorry no pun intended).”

      Its manageable with the bag of tricks manufacturers use from a minimally sized intake path and turbos (small volume piping to small runners and small plenum volumes) to increased compression via direct injection to artificially low torque peaks in addition to in this case a twin scroll unit (I read that the Focus RS coming soon will have that in combination with low friction bearings).

      Ford’s EcoBoost engines in particular are designed for more plebian operation and if they had set the engine up for more mid to high end power lag would be more noticeable.

    • 0 avatar
      EAF

      I have a GS-T that I daily drive, wanna race for slips? Your brother’s VW, you can bring him too. Ohhh yea I’m stock btw. :)

      RWD + TURBO = HELL of a lot of FUN. I had a turbocharged SN95, although fast, it was only good on the straights. I’d love to see what this Mustang, balanced as described, feels like.

      At the end if the day, I have to be at work regarless of weather and RWD doesn’t seem to cut it in NYC winters.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    As I’ve said a few times I’ll take a Guard Green, Ecobost, 6 speed manual, track package Mustang any day of the week. Find me some “Bullitt” style wheels…

    I wouldn’t give up my 67 Mustang for one…

  • avatar

    As with every resource, the more you have, the less you get out of each additional unit. So I’ll pass on the V8.

    Nice article!

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    I tell people all the time that the Ecoboost Mustang is a terrific car, the best Mustang per dollar you can get, a performance bargain and a good value.

    But I bought a 2015 GT, because Mustangs are supposed to have a V8. I do love it… no regrets.

  • avatar
    raph

    Agreed on the brakes, Ford made some serious improvements in pedal feel from the S-197 to the S-550. That was the most profound difference between my car (even fitted with braided metal lines and after market pads) and the new car. Next was steering then overall ride comfort.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    “If I lived in Calgary or Denver or somewhere at altitude, I could see how a tuned-up Ecoboost would be a hell of a car on a brisk drive through the mountains.”

    Hell, I’m IN Denver, and I’ll take the V-8. Yes, the Ecoboost would probably be better at altitude, but there’s really no such thing as a “brisk drive through the mountains” anymore, what with all the gridlock on I-70. And I’m sure the V-8 would be plenty powerful for two lane work once you’re up there.

    Plus, that blown four won’t get you a second look at the Golden Car Cruise.

  • avatar
    omer333

    Split the difference and get a V6 and throw a Vortech on it.

    #soeasy

    • 0 avatar
      johnny_5.0

      That’s probably the worst option. You end up spending GT money for GT straight line performance without a warranty. You also can’t get the other factory go-fast bits on the V6, and it sounds like crap compared to the coyote. A stage 1 2.3 EB is a decently quick car for much less coin and you can get the performance pack on it. Personally I’d only look at the 5.0 with PP (in black, oxford white, or magnetic with the red line interior). Kudos to Ford for offering some decent colors at launch too. I also like the guard green and competition orange.

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        But why NOT put their fabulous 3.5 boosted motor into this car? The engine is fantastic. Besides…isn’t the “sound” thing really all manufactured sound these days? Much of the sound we are hearing from those hot cars might be all faked. Or much of it.

        But reading the review and what others have to ay confuse me.
        Not knowing the real data here, I wonder just what the ratio of V6 to V8 in sales is for the Mustang.
        I grew up with 6s and very few had the bigger powerful monsters.

        So I understand this is a “pony”, but IF the majority of buyers are girls in sunny California and the like, why the complaint?
        The smaller engine has always been there and perhaps the money car.

      • 0 avatar
        raph

        One advantage the V6 and the GT have over the EcoBoost is port injection and not suffering from coked cylinder heads down the road.

  • avatar
    319583076

    I saw my first street-driven new Mustang today. It was a red GT and it looked fantastic. Kudos to Ford.

  • avatar
    carguy

    The only easy choice with Mustang engines is not to buy the V6.

    • 0 avatar
      omer333

      The 3.7 has come a loooong way. It has the Matt Farah-TTAC seal of approval.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        V8s absolutely don’t NEED to be in passenger cars. That’s why when it’s an option, you by it and never look back.

        Boosted 4s and V6s may be fine engines, but it’s not just about power and sounds. Having the V8 means you have quality under the hood. They’re designed for commercial trucks and truly overbuilt passenger cars. V8s are simply the best thing to happen to automobiles.

        The SVO, GNX, Syclone and a few others had their day, but when talking 3,500+ lbs sports cars and specialty, there’s no question.

        • 0 avatar
          RobertRyan

          Well Ford is moving away from V8’s in their Pickups, but Chrysler and GM are not. V8’s are still used in sedans

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @RobertRyan – I do believe that the 5.0 in the F150 and Mustang exist ONLY because there are those that will only buy a V8.

            GM has been rumoured to be considering a V6 TTDI for their trucks. Aluminum is on its way since they started the planning for it before Ford. Bankruptsy killed that plan.

            FCA is going to TTDI the Pentastar. I bet that it will finds its way into trucks.

          • 0 avatar
            jrmason

            As long as Ford wishes to participate in NASCAR, they will have to build a production V8. They will also have to make them appealing enough that people will still continue to buy enough to be profitable. Don’t look for them to go anywhere anytime soon.

      • 0 avatar
        carguy

        No argument its a good engine but it has no performance, or economy advantages over the 2.3T but has none of the tuning overhead.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      Well, it’s not slow anymore, so there’s that. The V6 probably still the best choice for someone who isn’t buying the Mustang for speed. The performance buyer, the moddability of the V8 and Turbo 4 are definitely more appealing.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    Gimme a first-gen with no engine and I’ll drop in a 300 I6. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

  • avatar
    calsonicgtr

    I’ll be going with an Ecoboost. Sure, that V8 sound and power would be great, but where am I going to use it? This would be a daily driver, and all that extra power won’t make any difference on my commute. The gas costs and insurance would most likely be higher too. The Ecoboost I test drove was more than fast enough and I could put the $7k difference towards something else.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      If you care more about fuel costs than power, you’d probably be better off with the NA V6 that’s about as fast as the turbo 4, but runs on regular fuel. Cheaper entry price to boot.

  • avatar
    RS

    Given what the Mustang has become…Is the BRZ officially done now?

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I think if you gave the average backwards baseball cap wearer a choice between a BRZ/FR-S, a Genesis Coupe, or an ecobost Mustang…

      The Toyo-baru twins get left sitting in the parking lot.

  • avatar
    superchan7

    Getting a Mustang without the V8 is like getting a muscle car without the muscle, or a hamburger without the meat.

    I have nothing against people who buy base Mustangs–there is nothing wrong with wanting a stylish, “kind of fast” car.

    But the whole point of a muscle car is to experience a large, loud engine and a comfy ride, wrapped in a stylish body. Otherwise, allow me to introduce the Honda Accord Coupe. Also a great car, but with a very different personality.

  • avatar
    heavy handle

    I’ve said it before: people old enough to remember when the Mustang first came out (aka Baby Boomers) want a V8. Anybody younger doesn’t want a Mustang at all.

    • 0 avatar
      hubcap

      That’s amusing. For a different perspective, go to your nearest military base and take a look at who’s driving what.

    • 0 avatar
      johnny_5.0

      Your comment doesn’t hold water where I live (relatively affluent tech heavy city). Tons of young people driving both Mustangs and Camaros. I sold my IS 350 for a GT Premium and I didn’t exist until looooong after the Mustang debuted. My only regret is that I didn’t do it two years sooner when the coyote first came out. If it weren’t for a new baby I’d have a ’15 in my garage right now.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      The average age of Mustang buyers is 48

      http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2014/09/18/2015-mustang/15800057/

      NOT boomers

      The average age of new-vehicle buyers ended the year at 48 years old

      http://blogs.cars.com/kickingtires/2008/01/down-economy-mo.html

      So, the average age of Mustang buyers is the average age of new car buyers

      Stereotypebusters

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      The first Mustangs i.e. 64 1/2 as they were called came with 170 c.i. (2.8 litre) inline 6’s.
      The 289 V8 didn’t show up until ’65.

      So the whole “why buy a Mustang unless it’s a V8” mentality came on later in life.

      • 0 avatar
        mnm4ever

        So did the first Corvettes. Who cares?? The V8 defined the Mustang, and the people buying the 6 mostly still wanted the V8. Even today, if they offered all 3 engines for exactly the same price, how many would choose the 6? Or even the EB? I think you would see the take rate dramatically in the V8 camp.

        Don’t get me wrong, I said the EB is a great engine in a great car, I even like the V6 and I think its a bargain. Both cars are more than powerful enough and cheap to mod to whatever you want. But I love my GT, I love the immediate thrust, the sound, which isn’t computer generated either on the GT. I also love that the fuel economy is pretty much steady with most daily driving, I can use regular fuel and the fact that there is less technology to break to get the same power levels.

        A 3.5TT would be a great engine in the Mustang. But the V8 will always be able to make more power. Yes it will cost more to make it faster, but if you want the top dog you will start with a V8.

      • 0 avatar
        Maymar

        The 289 didn’t show up until later, but the 260 was available from the start (IIRC, the first production Mustang, the one Ford accidentally sold, then bought back a couple years later, and has on display at the Henry Ford Museum is V8-powered).

        Not that I expect Mustangs to be V8, and V8 only, mind you. Just a pedant.

    • 0 avatar
      raph

      You’d be wrong about that.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I had a 1986 SVO and just for laughs I got a “I could of had a V8” decal. I’d like to see shootout between the two.

  • avatar
    Tinn-Can

    Can these take advantage of E-85 and up the tune to make more power?

  • avatar
    harshciygar

    Funny how you wrote this, and the older version of you is getting ready to trade in his Boss for a Fiesta.

    Personally, I’d get the EcoBoost Mustang to save on gas. I could totally buy the GT, but I know $4 a gallon gas is going to make a comeback. It’s been a thrill of a different kind to top off my Chevy Sonic for less than an Andrew Jackson.

    I do get why some people would only buy a Mustang GT, and while I think it’s antiquated thinking, it’s these people that have kept the Mustang alive through multiple fuel crises and recessions. So I won’t knock ’em.

    Personally, I feel like the Mustang is a whole lot more than the sum of its exhaust note and displacement. I love the roar of a mighty V8, but I also recall that the Mustang was once a lightweight sports car more at home on a race track with twists and turns than at the drag strip.

    I guess as I get older, caring what people think about me and my car seems less and less important. Want a V8? Do it man. I still like the EcoBoost option myself.

    • 0 avatar
      brenschluss

      “Personally, I feel like the Mustang is a whole lot more than the sum of its exhaust note and displacement. I love the roar of a mighty V8, but I also recall that the Mustang was once a lightweight sports car more at home on a race track with twists and turns than at the drag strip.”

      Question, is the Ecoboost actually dynamically superior compared to the V8 in any meaningful way? Curb weights are close enough that I wouldn’t intuitively assume you’re gaining any significant cornering competence by going for this over the V8.

  • avatar

    Derek, which one is giving more smiles per mile- Ecoboost Mustang or Focus ST?

  • avatar
    krhodes1

    I test drove the EB Mustang. I REALLY wanted to like it. I have long had a soft spot for Mustangs. But it’s still a barge. I completely disagree with Derek on this one, it felt 50% bigger than it is. The interior is much improved but still kind of cheap. Commensurate with the price though – it IS a cheap car. I had zero complaints with the engine, suspension, brakes, or shifter, it just felt like a big hulking thing in a way the 2-series BMW simply doesn’t. At least it rides properly now. The 228i was simply in a different world driving feel wise, and the M235i takes that and turns it up to 11. Maybe 12. Worth every single penny of the extra $10K it is costing me.

    I completely fail to see the appeal of V8s other than as a nostalgia trip.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      @krhodes – I feel like you do, to me the Mustang feels huge compared to a BMW 2-series or even the 3-series, even though by dimensions I don’t think there is that big of a difference. But I am kind of short, 5’6″, and my tall friends find my Mustang to be almost small for them in comparison. I got used to it pretty quickly, but I really liked the car. If I wasn’t blown away with the rest of the car then I would have probably gone with a 2-series as well.

      • 0 avatar
        burgersandbeer

        The Mustang feels huge compared to the 2-series because it is. It is over a foot longer and about half a foot wider. Despite the notably smaller footprint, the 2-series actually has more passenger space and a larger trunk (at least on paper).

    • 0 avatar
      johnny_5.0

      While the M235i is really nice, I’m not sure why you were surprised you liked it a lot more than a 2.3 EB Mustang. IMHO you should have driven a GT Premium Performance Pack car as that’s the most equivalent. It will still feel bigger/heavier, but it’s going to be a hell of lot more fun to drive than a stock EB. The M235i is about $16K more than than an EB/Premium/PP and $10K more than a GT/Premium/PP (with leather and the LSD on the BMW). The Mustang is obviously easy to get for dealer invoice (minus low volume models) but I haven’t poked around to see what the BMW runs out the door.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        krhodes lives in Maine, which like the rest of New England, has lots of twisty and narrow roads. They’re a blast to drive, but much better suited to a smaller car – at least in my opinion. Larger vehicles frequently have their left wheels just left of center when there are no oncoming traffic, so if you’re engaged in any kind of spirited driving, it helps to have something that can squeeze past an oncoming truck with a reasonable safety margin.

        I just returned from an errand and most of the roads have three ruts rather than four in the snow. The center is “shared” space.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I will be paying ~$500 over European Delivery invoice for my M235i, call it ~$6K off US MSRP – just about $45K ex tax. At the time I looked at the Mustang, my local Ford dealer had an added markup on them. Probably not the case now, and no idea how negotiable that really was, as I was not interested in negotiating.

        The V8 would have LESS appeal to me, the EB 4 Mustang was already faster than I have any need of. As is a 228i. The ONLY reason I am getting an M235i is that I can get one with all the toys I want but without a sunroof. Can’t do that on a 228i. And by the time you add all the toys to an 228i, with the relatively lower ED price on the M235i it is less than $3K more expensive. So why not? All-in-all, the difference between the M235i and the configuration of Mustang I was interesting in ordering would have been ~$10K (assuming a decent discount on the Mustang as well). Then add in the bonus of European Delivery for a month (saving $2-3K in rental cars), and BMW’s free maintenance for 4 years and the gap narrows even more. If I were leasing, the gap would be even smaller as BMW’s lease rates are better than Fords. Insurance is cheaper on the BMW by a bit too. Way more than made up for by the annual excise tax hit here though – which is based on MSRP.

        I didn’t hate the Mustang, but I was disappointed in it a bit. It’s a MUCH nicer car than the previous one, but still felt too big and bargy for me. Would certainly be my pick of the three pony cars though. And I really do love the way the Mustang looks.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      “I completely fail to see appeal..”

      Wrong demo, cowboy. If BMW offered V8s in 2, 3, 4 series’, you’d understand perfectly. And I like everything about 3-series BMWs except for what’s going on under the hood. But my ultimate driving machine BMW would have an LSx FTW! conversion.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        I’ve driven plenty of V8 BMWs, 5’s, 8’s, and 7’s. In every one of them I would have preferred the inline 6. Or in the 8 and 7, the V12. The V8 in my Rover is just a gas sucking lump of a thing. I much preferred the I6 in my Jeep GC. It went just as well, sounded better, was smoother, and was significantly more economical. Shame about what it was stuck in though – everything else about the Rover is miles better, not surprising given the nearly 3X difference in original MSRP.

        The previous generation M3 was a V8, so yes, they did offer a V8 in a 3-series. I’ve only ridden in one of those, not driven, but by many accounts the six in the generation before that was better.

        I just don’t get the love for this particular arrangement of cylinders. It seems the only real advantage was that it was cheap.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          The e9x M3 had a boat anchor V8. Gas $ucking like an f-350 dually. No ballz until you revved the Pi$$ out of it. It had to die.

          And I like I6s. Very similar dynamics as V8s when in the 5 liter plus range. But they’re not nearly as efficient as V8s. Nor as clean emissions as V8s. I6s have to die.

          So it’s not about the cylinder arrangement necessarily . V8s just have the right stuff.

          But I can’t speak for Rover V8s though. I’m sure they’re boat anchors too. Half A$$’d attempt?

          It does make sense V8s have a better arrangement, shorter crank for more rods for more pop.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            The Rover engine is ex-GM. About as modern as pushrod V8 truck motors got circa turn of the century. 4.6l, all-aluminum, Bosch Motronic integrated fuel injection/ignition management. 250hp/300lb-ft of gas sucking V8.

            You seriously think cylinder arrangement has significant bearing on efficiency and emissions in modern engines? Hilarious. If anything, fewer cylinders is better due to reduced friction.

            But whatever, if you love those V8s you had best buy them now, they are a seriously endangered species.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            V8s are just 2 four-bangers sharing a crank. Similarly, V6s are taking over for I6s in the former ‘last holdouts’, BMWs, Jeeps, etc. Basically 2 I3s sharing a crank, you could say. Efficiency.

            We had inline 8s at one time. Went the way of the dodo, and no doubt for the same reasons as the I6s. Too thirsty with very dirty emissions. Couldn’t be fixed.

            But 8 cylinders seems to be the sweet spot, in a V configuration of course. Normally aspirated V6s like to eat head gaskets, but now need *boost* to move the kind of mass that’s currently expected of them. This will only compound inherent problems.

            I don’t see V8s going away anytime soon. OEMs will keep them on the back burner (on specialty cars, high end and pickups) until we know more about current and upcoming TTV6s. V8s are something to fall back on. I’m sure they’ll make a comeback in a big way. Plus whatever next gen V8 FE tech.

            Cars aren’t getting any lighter. And aluminum mainstream cars may never happen. V8s are just the commonsense solution to tomorrow’s dilemma.

          • 0 avatar
            DC Bruce

            Straight 8s were abandoned long before there were any emission controls. Their problem is the long crankshaft, which tends to “whip” at higher engine speeds. Like all engines of their era, the straight 8 was about torque and low engine speed — best for “wafting.” Inline 6s are inherently balanced, unlike V-6s. The only reason car manufacturers (e.g. Benz) went to V-6s was for packaging efficiency, especially in transverse mounted engines.
            The 3 liter BMW six is one of the best engines every made, in terms of smoothness, power delivery and, yes, reliability. That’s why BMW sticks with them, for anything up to 350 hp. Larger displacement inline 6’s create packaging problems, hence the shift to V-8s for higher outputs. Let’s remember that the famed DOHC 6 in the E-type was a 3.8 liter, then a 4.2 liter 6. The length of the engine and the designers’ wish to have it behind the front axle lead to the long hood that defines the appearance of the E-Type.

          • 0 avatar
            Fred

            The straight 8 in those old Buicks was smooth as silk. Could hardly tell it was running. Even in my high school buddies metal flake green hot rod.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            So what’s the real downside to V8s? Or the biggest issue with them, especially when talking today’s/tomorrow’s family, utility based vehicles pushing 5,000 wet lbs? I mean vs TTV6s?

            Keeping in mind the V8 autos and trucks we currently have, are geared/tuned for performance on the track or pulling monster, heavy loads.

            Even then, the normal 6.2 Corvette exceeds 30 mpg hwy. Political correctness aside, why not V8 minivans or midsize SUVs? Except not tune/geared for winning races or max towing.

          • 0 avatar
            bumpy ii

            Excess reciprocating mass at lower, urban speeds. Modern V6s have enough power and displacement to handle those duties, so the extra cylinders are just a parasitic load.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            It’d be a draining parasitic load if V8s it didn’t provide more pops. And more valves means better breathing. Or are the added valve more dead weight too?

            V6s are very limited without added boost. That boost adds stress to the already head-gasket munching tendencies of V6s.

            If you go beyond 4 liters, you might as well have a V8.

            V8s don’t require boost for today’s/tomorrow’s heavy A$$ family cars and utility.

            With cylinder deactivation, V8s are the best of both worlds.

            I’m not seeing a downside to V8s, other than the bad rap they got in previous decades and generations.

  • avatar
    omer333

    What’s amazing to me is that most of TTAC/B&B have called the Ecoboost lame, EXCEPT when it comes to the ST twins and are still on the fence with the EB Mustang.

    Does it have to with the engine getting Ecoboost, or is it the car?

    But in all seriousness, what you lack in OMGWTFBBQTOONERZ with the V6, you make up for in less money spent at the pump and a rather bulletproof design. Oh and you’re not spending close to $2000 more for ONLY 10 more horsepower.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      I enjoy the ecoboost engines when they are uprated, top trim engines with a performance spin. As volume engines, I don’t find the four cylinder ecoboost engines exciting. Flybrian and I said it on the Fusion review thread; many Ford vehicles have an ecoboost engine that is half a size too small (1.0T Focus, 1.5T Fusion, 2.0T Taurus, 2.0T Explorer, etc). That being said, I like the 3.5EB V6 in everything.

      • 0 avatar
        omer333

        I can definitely see where you’re coming from there. I went back and forth on a Fusion with the 1.5T, but decided the engine was too small, even with boost to move the Fusion in an acceptable manner.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          That’s wht the Fusion needs a 1.8T ecoboost with 210-220 HP. I think the additional 30 HP would make all the difference and get better real world MPG. Or they could just mess around with the 2.5L I4, give it DI, and other tech they put on the 2.0L Duratec in the Focus and call it a day.

      • 0 avatar
        johnny_5.0

        I’ll take a 3.5 with the Raptor tune in a Mustang. And I’m sure I’m in the minority, but I’d like to see a 7 speed manual in addition to the coming 10 speed auto. With the 3.73 rear end it would be really nice to have something steeper for bombing down a toll road.

        • 0 avatar
          TrailerTrash

          OMG! EXACTLY.
          This has always been my wish…and wonder why in hell it never happens.

          But then again, I wish it was put into the Fusion as well…it was the perfect SHO Ford. Not the Taurus.
          Or at least the this last Taurus.

    • 0 avatar
      johnny_5.0

      I see little point in the EB over the 3.7 if you are staying stock given the price difference, other than being able to get other goodies like the performance pack. That being said, you are only $600 away from another 50hp/80lb-ft in the EB. You aren’t getting big gains out of the 3.7 without going FI and $5K+.

      • 0 avatar
        omer333

        Actually, there’s some very good tuning shops out there that can get you around those same numbers with a new intake, tune, and exhaust. You’re dropping between $800-$1000 for that gear, but that could be considered a very small price to pay.

        Oh and with a lot of the handheld tuners out there, you can switch your computer’s tune to run on different setting with even regular gas.

  • avatar
    Vojta Dobeš

    I think the Ecoboost could make for a really nice GT car while the GT, ironically, is probably more of a muscle car.

    I’m torn between them. I love V8s, I love the sound, but when I think about buying one, especially buying one used in a few years, the differences in price and fuel costs are brutal. Also, I’m in Europe, with lots of backroads for really spirited driving. And I suspect that the Ecoboost will be great for that.

    I really hope in some a bit more hardcore version of the Ecoboost.

  • avatar
    jdmcomp

    I think that given that the car is designed and built to withstand the power of 500+ hp V8s it must be exceptionally heavy for a 2L engine. The car could be 500kg lighter with that engine without any loss of handling.

  • avatar
    bludragon

    “There’s virtually zero perceptible turbo lag”.

    I read the same thing about the BMW “N54” 335i. That had turbo lag.
    Test drove a mk7 GTI recently. That had turbo lag too. More than I was expecting actually.

    I’m willing to bet it takes somewhere between 1 and 2s for this mustang to reach full boost if you go from off throttle to on throttle anywhere below 3500 rpm. Above that, it will probably take less time, but it will still take time.

    Turbo lag is not necessarily a bad thing, but it does exist, and it is perfectly perceptible if you know what to look for.

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    After spending a little time looking around the new Mustang, I have just a couple thoughts.
    The first is it looks just fantastic.
    The second…I don’t get the reason for any of these Pony cars anymore.
    If you get them powered up and they become the power monsters they became famous for, then OK.
    But IF for a sports car…then why?
    They are just way to large to be considered sports cars…and their back seats really make them fakers. You DON’T HAVE A BACKSEAT…even it says so. If you try to sit I the back you realize you are in the perfect position to take a poop!! Your knees are up into your fast and you are really squatting.

    So if you want a 2 seater…get one.

    • 0 avatar
      mnm4ever

      There are a lot of buyers out there who have little kids. Taking away the back seat means they cannot even in a pinch put kids in the back. The Mustang back seat is pretty small, granted, but even my teenage kids can fit in back. They don’t like it but they can fit! And leaving the back seat in doesn’t hurt anything for those who don’t need it. Plus I am sure eventually you will be able to get a rear seat delete kit like the Laguna Seca Boss had.

  • avatar
    TMA1

    I was thinking about the pricing of these Mustangs on the Z-plan. It’s not always easy to see what the A/Z-plan price is without walking into a dealer and seeing the invoice. There are a couple dealers in the Detroit area who advertise those prices, and have the window stickers. 5.0 is at least $3-4,000 off sticker. Can’t wait to see what incentives will look like.

    • 0 avatar
      dtremit

      If you qualify for A/Z plan, log into http://www.myplan.ford.com, and it will stick a cookie in your browser that will give you net A/Z plan pricing pretty much everywhere on the Ford/Lincoln sites.

      (And no, you don’t have to be the employee/retiree — anyone who’s gotten a PIN generated in recent memory has access.)

      Looks like about $2k off for the base EcoBoost Fastback, $2800 off for the EcoBoost Premium Fastback, and $3400 on the EcoBoost Premium Convertible, with a $500 incentive right now.

  • avatar
    burgersandbeer

    I’m surprised the Mustang EB is so quiet and unremarkable sounding. Ford gave the ST siblings a decent soundtrack, why on earth not the Mustang?

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Derek,
    I really don’t see a problem having a car that actually steers like a Euro or Japanese car, not like a tractor.

    Ford has done their homework with the Mustang and it appears have produced a fantastic vehicle, that is a vehicle of Euro or Australian standard.

    Why would you want a lesser vehicle?

    How did the chassis perform? Can it handle hundreds of horsepower in your opinion or did the 2.3 fell like it was exploring the chassis limits?

  • avatar
    stanczyk

    Big-Ponny and little-EcoBoost .., mildly speaking, are not a perfect match ..
    Byby-boomers know that,.. how about Generation Why .. ?!? ..

    I belive that in real conditions(not on paper = Ford’s catalog..) this ‘Eco’Boost(hauling such a heavy car as Mustang) will seep almost as much gasoline as Mustang’s V8 variant .. ,
    .. and that engine is more complicated .. and it sounds rubbish .. and it’s less ‘iconic’ .. , so what’s the point .. ?!? ..

    This engine will be good for Focus RS, though , .. (.. and would be even better in .. Fiesta .. :)

  • avatar
    stanczyk

    Let Mustang be a Mustang .. People love Mustang because it is a Mustang .. big, simple, cheap, muscular , little bit ‘clumsy’ traditional amercian Pony-Muscle .. Why do we need another ‘Euro/Japanesse – inspired’ ‘sports car’ .. ? .. there’s place for variety ..
    They say that new Mustang only ‘goes global’ (and , yes indeed, this new version has just 2 signs of ‘pussy-fication’: more ‘sporty-european’ design and this 4-banger [that, BTW gets too much ‘attention &marketing’..]), .. but I’m affraid that with the next ‘global-product- generation’ Mustang , ‘One-Ford ‘ will try to compete directly with .. ‘Nissan Zet’ or ‘BMW Zet’…
    (.. Mustang ‘ll loose it’s character,, but ‘corporate’ Ford ‘ will name it ‘progress’ and ‘success’..)

    That’s the problem with ‘global-attitude’: car magazines , ‘corporate brainwashed’ PR people copying each others opinions , .. (and everywhere you’ve got hysteria about .. ‘track-numbers’ and .. ‘sharp-steering’.. ) ..
    This ‘unification’ is really should makes us .. tired .. and .. worried ..

  • avatar
    stanczyk

    Let Mustang be a Mustang .. People love Mustang because it is a Mustang .. big, simple, cheap, muscular , little bit ‘clumsy’ traditional amercian Pony-Muscle .. Why do we need another ‘Euro/Japanesse – inspired’ ‘sports car’ .. ? .. there’s place for variety ..

    They say that new Mustang only ‘goes global’ (and , yes indeed, this new version has just 2 signs of ‘pussy-fication’: more ‘sporty-european’ design and this 4-banger [that, BTW gets too much ‘attention & marketing’..]), .. but I’m affraid that with the next ‘global-product- generation’ Mustang , ‘One-Ford ‘ will try to compete directly with .. ‘Nissan Zet’ or ‘BMW Zet’…
    (.. Mustang ‘ll loose it’s character,, but ‘corporate’ Ford ‘ will name it ‘progress’ and ‘success’..)

    That’s the problem with ‘global-attitude’: car magazines / ‘corporate brainwashed’ PR people copying each others opinions , ..
    (and everywhere you’ve got hysteria about .. ‘track-numbers’ and .. ‘sharp-steering’.. ) ..

    This ‘unification’ should really make us .. tired .. and .. worried ..

  • avatar
    akatsuki

    So what you are saying is they should stretch the platform a little bit, slap a Lincoln badge and lots of leather along with a slightly softer suspension and call it a day?

  • avatar
    greyjohn

    when it comes to a car i want and what engines are available in that chassis, i will consistently pick the one that is easier to work on, i.e, can i reach stuff? thats why V6 F-bodies are a no-no. Boxer engine equipped cars, nope. and i love the V8 mustang, but have you seen that engine bay? the needed bulk buy of spark plugs? i say only buy what you are willing to work on if you are self-proclaimed “motorhead”.

    might also be why the newest car i ever owned is a 2007 Wrangler…


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