By on July 16, 2015

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (1 of 11)

I pull up next to a previous-generation Mustang — its 5-liter V8 rumbling as it sits at a stop light — and look over to the driver. There is no acknowledgement from him that I exist. Not a nod, glance, nor a typical, Mustang-owner two-finger wave.

That’s not surprising though — he probably couldn’t hear me.

The 2.3-liter EcoBoost inline four is but a whimper next to the eight cylinders of Detroit aluminum. I give the boosted four banger a slight tip of accelerator. Still nothing from the owner of the “five-point-oh.”


The Tester

2015 Ford Mustang Convertible EcoBoost Premium (Automatic)

Engine: 2.3-liter DOHC I-4, direct injection, twin independent variable camshaft timing (310 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm, 320 lbs-ft @ 2,500-4,500 rpm)
Transmission: 6-speed automatic with paddle shifters

Fuel Economy (Rating, MPG): 20 city/30 highway/24 combined
Fuel Economy (Observed, MPG): 23.3 mpg, approx. 70 percent highway

Options: 201A Equipment Group (Shaker Pro Audio System, Memory Driver’s Seat and Mirrors, Blind Spot Information System with cross-traffic alert), Triple Yellow paint, 50 Years Appearance Package, EcoBoost Performance Package, Enhanced Security Package Active Anti­, Theft System with Perimeter Alarm, HID Headlamps with Signature Lighting, Reverse Sensing System, Spoiler Delete, Wheel Locking Kit, 3.55 Limited-Slip Rear Axle, 19-inch-by-9-inch Gloss Black Premium Painted Aluminum Wheels, Raven Black interior, Adaptive Cruise Control with Collision Mitigation and Rain­ Sensing Wipers, SYNC with MyFord Touch, Voice­Activated Navigation System, Premium AM/FM Stereo with HD Radio.

As Tested (U.S.): $45,060 (sheet)
As Tested (Canada): $52,649 (sheet)


It isn’t until the light turns green that my newfound nemesis in the neighboring lane graces me with a single eyeball. Even with the EcoBoost’s bright yellow paint, a pass is required to command the 5-liter’s driver to look to his right and gaze upon my taillights.

Admittedly, this is a very specific scenario. During normal driving, when other Mustang owners are traveling in the opposite direction, any Mustang — no matter the vintage — is still due its two finger, steering-wheel salute. Unless you’re driving a Mustang II.

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (6 of 11)

Exterior
The front fascia of the Mustang is all modern. New headlights. New grille. This is the new look for Ford’s pony car going forward. While I don’t think this is a design Ford will look back on in 2050 and say, “Hey, we should make a retro-modern version of this,” it’s still a much more streamlined than the upright front with its recessed headlights that have graced the faces of Mustangs for the last two generations.

The headlights give the Mustang a purposeful, angry demeanor, while the long hood foretells of engines upwards of eight cylinders, though that hood is a bit of a lie in this case.

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (10 of 11)

On our convertible tester, the looks are greatly improved as soon as you drop the top. There is no cover for the folded roof, but it is neatly packed away behind the rear seats — unlike the Beetle Convertible — and doesn’t really require a covering. The belt line is rather high, but it works in this case. The Mustang is a big-bodied pony car and it should have as much sheet metal as is possible.

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (3 of 11)

The convertible, I’d argue, has a better silhouette than the new coupe. Instead of the awkward rear-window profile, the convertible offers a flatter and seemingly longer, deck lid. Our tester, with the EcoBoost Performance Package and 50 Years Appearance Package had its rear spoiler deleted, which made for one of the cleanest looking forms of the Mustang money can buy.

My only qualms with the Mustang’s design have to do with the rear. The designers at Ford had an opportunity to go all new with their latest creation, but the rear is still stuck in the past.

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (7 of 11)

Interior
Thank you Ford, for real, honest-to-goodness controls. What the Mustang offers up is incredibly user friendly and — save the outgoing version of SYNC with MyFord Touch — amazingly intuitive. The steering wheel controls are not as simple as those in the Dodge Charger I reviewed last week, though there’s definitely nothing wrong with the buttons festooned to the wheel in the Mustang. More options need more buttons.

Below the large MyFord Touch screen and HVAC controls sits a row of toggle switches to change driving mode, steering effort and a few other options. I would prefer these be closer to the driver and out of reach of any underage passengers trying to be clever by flipping between Comfort and Sport steering modes mid-corner.

Another pet peeve: Ford has decided to put the boost gauge right in the middle of the dash, far outside the peripheral vision of the driver. Please, Ford, put this in the instrument panel. At the very least, this could be one of the performance gauges offered up by the digital display between the speedometer and tachometer.

The seats are, well, just fair. I found myself constantly readjusting in order to be comfortable. Also, thanks to the speedometer and tachometer being fairly far apart from each other, the view through the steering wheel to the gauges can be compromised by the steering wheel itself.

The phrase “backseat comfort” in a car like this is an oxymoron, so I’m not even going to mention it.

2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible (8 of 11)Infotainment
As previously mentioned, the Mustang makes do with the outgoing version of SYNC and MyFord Touch. While other reviewers have called out Ford’s system for being a confusing, four-cornered mix mash, I’ve never had any serious usability problems with Ford’s infotainment system. If anything, my experience has been nothing but glowing — though not due to the screen itself.

SYNC’s voice-activation feature is one of the best systems for people like me who have horrible regional accents. Somehow, whether it be the folks at Ford or Microsoft (the company responsible for the software guts of SYNC) the system is able to figure out how to cut through all my weird ‘ar‘ combinations and other oddball dialectical artifacts.

Beyond that, the optional Shaker audio system might sound great in the coupe, but in the Mustang convertible it sounds like a tinny mess. If you can avoid the extra cost, do so.

Drivetrain
And now we get to the crux of this particular Mustang: its engine.

Ford’s new found love for turbocharging, combined with its “One Ford” plan to send Mustangs to Europe, has resulted in a four-cylinder Mustang with a twin-scroll turbocharger hanging off its side. On top of that, this engine is considered to be a premium choice over the 3.7-liter V6 engine.

Sitting them side by side, the EcoBoost four does, in fact, make more horsepower and torque. However, the quality of how it delivers that power and its attack on your senses is not something I would call premium.

For starters, the EcoBoost engine — even with faux exhaust note pumped through the Shaker audio system — sounds like any other four-cylinder engine on the market. Neither the engine nor exhaust notes are pleasing to the ear. Remember back when Hondas and Acuras would activate all the VTEC goodness at the top RPMs? Remember how great that sounded? The exact opposite is happening here.

That’s not to say the EcoBoost mill is a horrible engine. If your plan is to putt around town and stay out of the boost, the little four pot will return some pretty excellent fuel economy, even with the six-speed automatic. But, if you are looking for an experience pleasing to the ear, get a 6- or 8-cylinder engine.

Drive
I drove the Mustang the week following the Charger, and while I called the Dodge a “four-door pony car,” the two cars are definitely not in the same league.

For starters, the Mustang still sports a stiff ride, even with its new-fangled independent rear suspension. Handling might be improved, but the convertible still communicates a fair amount of chassis flex. With the top up, the Mustang isn’t even close to quiet; in truth, it even seemed quieter with the top down. It’s still a Mustang, foibles and all.

If the V6, automatic, convertible Mustang is the Cheerleader Edition of the Ford’s pony car, this EcoBoost-powered version is for the cheerleader that munches on Adderall from a Pez dispenser. It’s high-strung when pushed, but relaxed when it needs to be. The only time it sounds good is when you can’t hear it. And, to top it all off, this car is nearly $50,000. That’s fifty grand for a four cylinder.

Get the six. Save your money. Invest in the improved auditory experience for yourself and others. Turbocharging is not the answer — at least in this case.

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134 Comments on “2015 Ford Mustang EcoBoost Convertible Review – No Respect...”


  • avatar

    The softer ride of the Charger/Challenger are why I’d choose those over the Mustang.

    And then there’s the availability of BETTER engines.

    And then there’s the superior Infotainment/ seat comfort package.

    And then there’s the optional AWD V6 300HP

    And then there’s…

    • 0 avatar
      PRNDLOL

      Maude.

    • 0 avatar
      pbr

      The “One Ford” / Europe point is the key. If they’re making it for the Euro market anyway why not sell a few stateside to 4-bangerheads, turbo-fans, Euro-philes and to people who like to cut across the grain just becuz.

      The (choke, gag, cough) $50k pricetag for a four-banger will lead most folks elsewhere.

    • 0 avatar
      Senna1

      Better engines?

      I’d take the Coyote 5.0 over the Dodge 5.7l Hemi every day of the week.

      Actually, that’s exactly what I did.

      But yeah, the $45k 4-cyl vert is not exactly the Mustang to end all Mustangs, that’s for sure.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      I was looking for a Scat Pack Challenger. Pretty much given up. It would be great if there were more than two of them within 50 miles from the nation’s capital.

      I might have to go drive another Mustang this weekend.

      • 0 avatar
        nrd515

        Must be a regional thing, Scat Packs are everywhere around here. Not equipped correctly (For me anyway, I want an auto and no damn sunroof!), and the color choices are not for me either, but if I wanted a white, silver, or black Scat Pack, I could buy one at almost every dealer in Ohio/Michigan. I want a TorRed or, if I could get it for the right price, a B5 blue one, but I want yellow, orange, or Petty Blue. Any one of the three becoming available and I wouldn’t be able to resist ordering…Right now, I’m coming to the end of my payments and want to take off six months and then order exactly what I want, A Scat Pack auto Challenger in a good color, with leather, sound group II, and about half of the toys, and NO sun roof. I find perfect cars online constantly, except they almost always have a sun roof. Nope, not for any price.

        • 0 avatar
          TMA1

          I’m looking for a Scat Pack, B5 Blue with sunroof (incredibly rare around here), leather group, and sound group II. Nav and driver convenience group are a plus. I like the manual I test drove, but would consider an automatic, which I haven’t driven. I did get the wave from another Challenger driver on the test drive.

          Building the car this way on USAA’s car buying service, MSRP comes out to $44,970, and a selling price of $39,525. But that’s not helpful if the cars don’t exist.

          Of the two that Autotrader shows near DC, one is TorRed and the other black, both with the Shaker hoods. I prefer lighter colors – B5, maybe white, with no stripes or appearance packages.

          A dealer found a car like I wanted a few months ago, and when he said it was the only one in the country, I didn’t believe him. But he was right. I still have the window sticker printout: $44,570, and they offered it to me for $40,194. But I hadn’t driven the Mustang yet or talked to my credit union yet, so I let it slip away.

          The Mustang I did drive, a GT Performance Pack w/manual, has a Z-plan price of $32,378. Admittedly, that’s without leather, sunroof, or an upgraded stereo, but 8 grand is a pretty big spread between the Challenger I want and the Mustang I want.

          Well, financing is now in place, so it’s just a matter of test drives and finding something I want.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      You’d choose a sporty car because of a softer ride?

      If you want a softer ride, get a sedan or CUV and enjoy the extra practicality.

    • 0 avatar
      Giltibo

      The Charger/Challenger is a pig, Too heavy, too large, with the suspension of grampa’s 300… OK, it’s more comfy because of that.

      The best engine of this category is still the LS-series of the Camaro (Easy to modify, easy to maintain, easy to repair.

      That infotainment? It’s user the most user-friendly of the three.

      The Chally gets the comfort, the Stang GT gets straight line, the Camaro trumps the others in Handling.

      (For the straight line I’m comparing the GT, the 392, and the SS. I leave GT350, 1LE, ZL1, Z28 and Hellcat alone)

    • 0 avatar
      dantes_inferno

      > And then there’s…

      The perception of a Mustang convertible as the classic sorority girl/cheerleader/receptionist’s vehicle.

      Game, set, match. Sorry. Mustang convertible FTL.

  • avatar
    LS1Fan

    A recent trip I made to LA revealed this car’s true demographic- the kind of buyer who wants a Mustang and realizes they’ll spend most of their time idling in gridlock with it. An EcoBoost is just the ticket when the top speed on your 1 hour city commute is 5 MPH.

    Therein lies the problem for Ford, as anyone smart enough to consider an EcoBoost will be smart enough to buy this thing used.

  • avatar
    PRNDLOL

    This does look good in yellow with the droptop beltine. Usually I feel disdain for yellowmobiles, but this works.

  • avatar
    Rday

    Get to drive the Shelby to LA next week. Ought to be fun even with the 6 speed. Hate getting in/out and the heavy clutch but one trip a year is fun. Gets good mileage too…prox 24 on premium on the highway…and it sure has that super car rumble from the exhaust.

  • avatar
    mikedt

    Holy Crap! 50 grand. That opens up a pretty big shopping cart of cars I’d rather have. They must really be banking on customers that only want a mustang and only want a convertible.

    • 0 avatar

      $50,000

      You could have either a Manual Dodge Challenger SRT/ automatic

      Or a loaded dodge Charger SRT.

      Or a fully loaded Charger, 300, Challenger or Hyundai Genesis with AWD V6.

    • 0 avatar
      Opus

      Ummm…
      1) Read it again. It’s 45k sticker (unless you’re in Canada). NOT 50.
      2) None of those alternatives are CONVERTIBLES. That accounts for about $6000 more.

      Try again.

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        Exactly! Why do these replies keep missing major points???
        It is a convertible.
        Mark did it as well.
        “I drove the Mustang the week following the Charger, and while I called the Dodge a “four-door pony car,” the two cars are definitely not in the same league.”
        Well, yes. once again, ONE is a CONVERTIBLE!
        Mark was right about one thing…the end. Get the 6 if a fun, affordable convertible with (and this might seem funny) a back set is sort of needed.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          The 2.3T is better. It’s worth the $$$$ over the V6.

          • 0 avatar
            ponchoman49

            Is it? It costs more to purchase. It requires premium to get the advertised 310 HP otherwise power drops well below the V6. It’s more complex and will surely have a greater cost of ownership. It also sounds like an economy car and more stressed. I’ll take the V6. It times out nearly as fast on 87 octane vs premium for the 4 banger and is cheaper to boot. And judging by many owner responses and this test gas mileage is nearly the same too.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Yes. Drive them back to back. It is better and it isn’t even that close.

            That being said, the V8 is still the way to go. It’s a $7000 difference in price though.

          • 0 avatar
            WheelMcCoy

            @ponchoman49 – It requires premium to get the advertised 310 HP otherwise power drops well below the V6

            True, but the owner’s manual and interviewed engineers said the peak torque in the eco-boost 4 does not change between premium or regular. My guess is the turbo compensates.

            That said, the V6 offers an honest sound track whereas the eco-boost 4 has artificial engine noises. For some, this is an important distinction. For others, it doesn’t matter.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      In fairness…I just optioned up an Ecoboost convertible with the performance package, but without all the options on the tester…tab was $38,000, which is a LOT more reasonable.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        Yup. I also thought $50k was high and went to the Ford USA website. The GT Premium Convertible starts at $41,800, but I suppose it can be optioned up to $45k – $50k.

    • 0 avatar
      VenomV12

      Yeah, $50K+ for a 4 cylinder and a 4 cylinder Mustang to boot is downright hilarious.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    While the interior is better than last gen, this exterior design is unnecessarily busy, bordering on garish.

    Don’t get me started on the FI 4 banger under this long hood (thankfully, Mark fairly & fully covered that nonsense – we’ll have to wait for Norm & a trifecta “tune” along with a Klipsh engine soundtrack download to make this 4 banger – like any heretical 4 banger in a “pony or muscle car” – palatable).

    Then there’s the MSRP, driven up by needlessly by options in search of rational justification, and more things to break unnecessarily (give me the simple, durable, reliable life- I don’t want “Lane Guard Traffic Cross Hatch Radar Heat Active Detection, FLARE & CHAFF Aversion System).

    FFS – Give me a rumbling V8 with throaty exhaust, manual transmission, uncluttered exterior devoid of trapezoids and angry eyebrow LEDs, and a reasonable price!

    F#!k the fake (and apparently poor) pumped in motor soundtrack with the gritty FI 4 banger real world background noise, the MAW Catfish face, the circa-2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse Shaker Trunk Rattling Ghetto sound system, too.

    • 0 avatar
      BDT

      If they thought anyone would buy the car you described, they would build it. No one buys them. Remember when you could buy an LS1 powered F-Body with crank windows and a fixed roof? It was cool to be able to do that, but no one bothered. The market says this is what sells, so that’s what they build. You can get a GT with cloth seats and a stick for barely over thirty large, and that’s about the best you can hope for.

      • 0 avatar
        duffman13

        > You can get a GT with cloth seats and a stick for barely over thirty large, and that’s about the best you can hope for.

        And those are few and far between. I’ve done some shopping, and live in the DC/Baltimore region. With all of the dealerships in the area, there are maybe 10 cars optioned the way I would buy it: 5 Base GT Performance Packages with a stick, and 5 more with the Recaros too. There are no shortage of automatic premiums though in every color you can imagine.

        Likewise, because it’s also in my calculus, there are 3 370Z sport 6MTs within 100 miles from me. It’s also a consideration for my next car since I’d be coming from an S2000 and it’s over 500lbs lighter than the Mustang. And again, while it’s not the volume seller the stang is, there is still no shortage of upper trim models with automatics and leather.

        The “I want all the performance options and none of the weight-adding luxury features” cars do exist, but they’re few and far between.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    “nor a typical, Mustang-owner two-finger wave.” – OK somebody else who has owned or does own a Mustang comment on this. I drive a 67 convertible, loud dual exhausts barking from the 289 V8, it is Vintage Burgundy in color with a well worn patina. Other Mustang owners freaking ignore me – no wave, no nothing. Hell the last guy to wave at me was in a brand new Challenger, I’ve seen kids punching each other in minivans to get each other to “LOOK AT THAT CAR!” but Mustang drivers I could be invisible.

    Heck, motorcycle riders paid more attention to me, and gave more two finger waves, when I was riding a 150cc scooter. (Sorry rant over.)

    This is the new Mustang I want. Ecobost, 6-speed, Guard Green and only options I want are the performance enhancing ones like the limited slip rear axle. I could care less about the “Shaker Audio.”

    • 0 avatar
      chainyanker

      I never experienced this ritual in my Mustang days and that’s just fine with me. I know it’s a thing with Jeep guys and Harley riders. Seems dumb to me.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        On the scooter, everyone on two wheels smiled and acknowledged me – except Harley guys (with a small number of exceptions to the rule.)

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          PrincipalDan – it is the old joke, “what does sex with a fat chick and riding a scooter have in common?
          Both are fun until your friends find out” :)

          Mind you, I tend to see Harleys and fat chicks in the same light……. both have sluggish performance and limited appeal until you spend a ton of cash to take them where they should be.

      • 0 avatar
        bunkie

        Yeah, I’m getting tired of it. It was cool back when there weren’t that many motorcycles on the road but it’s kind of a pain on nice roads on a Sunday. Do I really have to wave at all 60 of the bikes in the oncoming lane? I’d love to see us all just forget the whole thing.

      • 0 avatar
        duffman13

        As an S2000 driver, I know we do it as well – I always get/give a wave when I see another one, but we’re few and far between compared to mustangs.

    • 0 avatar
      Willyam

      Ok Dan, I’m officially acknowledging your existence, and my jealousy.

      The only Mustang in my household is the stepdaughters 2005 V6 base model, though it looks pretty good in dark red with those neat throwback looking wheels. She, at 16, loves to drive ANYWHERE and ANYTIME, so when we run errands or hit the gas station we are frequently eyed by other young Mustang owners. Most are V6 models piloted by insecure kids, and it seems to be a “mine’s better than yours” glance rather than “welcome to the club”. Of course, I reside in middle America, and we have the opposite experience as Mark in his Charger review – pony and muscle cars are EVERYWHERE. New for the forty-somethings reliving high school, and JC Whitney-equipped used ones for their kids. I, being broke, drive a generic Honda.

      I spent my twenties as a Jeep fanatic, and even part of my thirties. The wave was real at the time (I remember one from a Katie-Holmes-looking girl in a red Wrangler in the middle of nowhere that almost made me veer into the weeds…). As I am to understand it, the Jeep wave is almost a thing of the past as well as Wranglers have gone mainstream.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        I guess I only rant because I like the “camaraderie” aspect or the acknowledgement that their might be some shared experience there. I thought it was neat that the guys on Suzuki cruisers and Kawasaki sport bikes and Indian Motorcycles (old and new) and Hondas would give the guy on a Chinese scooter a two finger salute.

        Heck when I had my accident on the scooter the first on the scene (and very helpful) was an old guy on an Indian.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          PrincipalDan – I was in my mid thirties travelling on my red and white Yamaha YZF1000. I noticed the same thing. All sorts of people would talk to me about my bike and the obvious fact that I was on the road. I’d get “the wave” from all sorts of riders except Harley guys.

          I used to drag race a Yamaha YZ490 MX bike. Same thing. I wasn’t too popular with a lot of the Harley dudes. Some were pretty good though.

          My brother and a ton of guys I know now have Harleys. It makes me laugh to see the “wannabe” group they’ve turned into. I can’t even sit and have coffee with them because if the conversation turns to bikes I get pushed to the edge so to speak since I don’t own one and will never buy one.

          A guy I met once who had a Harley always wore a full faced helmet and full leathers. He said he did this because he was deathly allergic to stings.
          He said he used to get harassed all of the time by the Harley crowd because he did not follow the “dress code” of leather vest, chaps, and beanie helmet.
          He got so sick and tired of it that his reply to them was, “I had a personality before I bought MY bike.”

          I think of that every time I get snubbed.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Lou, that guy you met cracked the code. It took me many years to learn that you get more respect by standing up for yourself and being unapologetic about it than you do by always being in sync with the crowd. Good for him.

        • 0 avatar

          Back when my parents owned a Suzuki Sidekick, other Sidekick owners would wave. Tracker owners were ignored.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      I’ve owned three different V8 Mustangs over the years (none now though) and to get any kind of acknowledgement from another Mustang driver has always been very rare. And that’s fine by me because it’s a Mustang—not a Jeep and not a Harley.

    • 0 avatar
      VenomV12

      Who on God’s earth would ignore your car, I would be halfway out the window to look at it. Guy down the road from me just came home with a green 1966 Mustang GT350-H and I am about losing my mind every time I see it.

    • 0 avatar
      pb35

      My first new car was a Scarlet Red Mustang GT back in 1987. I don’t recall ever getting a wave per se, but other Mustangs would flash their lights as I approached; that was pretty common.

    • 0 avatar
      Grant404

      Yeah, that was one of several things that jumped out at me in the article. I’m on my third Mustang going all the way back to the mid ’80s (’84 for five years, 93 for ten years, and my current ’03 owned since new) and one of my best friends in the ’70s had one in which we spent a lot of time cruising the strip (’69 Mach 1 428 CJ), and I have never noticed or heard of any secret club high sign from any other Mustang driver. Not that I’m so desperate for attention and validation that I pay attention to what other drivers are doing or if they’re acknowledging me (I’m generally watching where I’m going) but I think if it was at all common I would have noticed it in a 40 year span of driving or riding in Mustangs.

      On the other hand, I’ve also ridden (non HD) motorcycles since the ’80s and you can’t miss the cool dude down low wave thing from most of the other people on bikes, since being noticed and receiving validation is a very big part of it for some MC types. I also have a motorhome and many of those people are very big on waving at other RVs, and some get very upset if they don’t get their wave back. It’s an ongoing source of conversation and hurt feelings on the motorcycle and RV forums.

      I never understood the “Hey, there’s someone with a material possession similar to mine!” thought process, but whatever. People are tribal. To each their own. I never noticed it from other Mustang drivers, though.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    “There is no acknowledgement from him that I exist.”

    That used to be a common theme in unrequited-love songs back when the singers wore bouffant hairstyles.

  • avatar
    carlisimo

    Hood length? The 4 cylinder engine shouldn’t be any shorter than a v8, much less a V6, no?

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      True, 4 cyl doesn’t save space unless mounted in an east/west configuration not in the north/south required for a RWD vehicle.

      • 0 avatar
        Fordson

        True, guys…but in the effort to inject hyperbole, this claim is apparently permissible.

        So, Mark Stevenson…did you inadvertently publish an earlier version of this review, before you had added anything about the actual drivetrain performance, in addition to your opinion of the sound it makes?

        • 0 avatar
          WheelMcCoy

          This sounded like a draft — or at least incomplete — to me as well.

          As for body flex, it’s likely that the press car was abused. Some drivers are more sensitive, but I could not detect it in my rental which had 7000+ miles on it.

          Besides a finely tuned butt sensor, another way to check it is to look in the rear view mirror. If it vibrates, shakes, or wobbles, there’s too much body flex in the convertible. My rental was solid.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Press car abuse may result in clutch/transmission/driveline issues, brake problems, or interior/exterior wear. In a modern car it’s unlikely to make the structure weaker. I commend Mark for unapologetically pointing out the cowl shake — most convertible reviews just say “it’s almost nonexistent” and make you read between the lines that it’s the same as ever.

          • 0 avatar
            Grant404

            I agree. My recent ’15 (w/ 3k miles) convertible rental felt very solid, as did my ’14 (w/ 12k miles) convertible rental in March.

            Even my personal ’03 convertible with 30k gentle miles feels pretty non-flexy-for-a-convertible to me, but the ’14 and ’15 felt noticeably stiffer. I was impressed with both of them, but not enough to part with the still-like-new garage queen ’03 and plunk down $40+k, though.

        • 0 avatar

          I don’t think so?

    • 0 avatar

      IIRC, even when the V-8 is under the hood, there’s still a ton of room.

      • 0 avatar
        wmba

        My friend from Dartmouth got his Mustang GT early last month. Not much room left under his hood with that V8 in there! He hates the tires, Pirelli P Zeros, so has a new set of Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 on the way. Nice to be well-off.

        Paid several thousand less for his GT than your Ecoboost, and doesn’t seem to be missing much in the way of toys. I like the car and it seems very well-assembled.

        Having a warmed over Mazda MS3 engine as the Ecoboost four is a downer. It has the exact same bore/long stroke measurements as the old Mazda, but presumably a new head. You go on Pistonheads over in the UK and nobody wants the four either. V8 or why bother seems to be the feeling.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    The better option here is the V-6, which comes in a bit cheaper than the Ecoboost.

    Or to wait until these start being sold off by the rental companies…

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      I’d like to try the V6, even though car sites have derided that model as “rental class.”

      The eco-boost GT Premium convertible I rented was far from “rental class.” It was pretty classy inside.

      With the eco-boost, I got about 24 mph highway. The previous renter averaged 26 mpg. The convertible is a heavy car — about 3800 pounds — and with the top down, it’s not aerodynamically efficient. But the point of this car is fun over fuel efficiency. Anyway, I found the powerful brakes and powerful engine and sport+ mode made the extra weight quite manageable.

      The V6 also gives you a natural sound-track. The fake eco-boost sound-track… I’m on the fence. Fake leather can be better than real, especially Mercedes MB-TEX. Fake breast implants can be visually attractive too, but I prefer natural, even if proportioned on the smaller side. Fake sound in an automatic I can accept. Real sound in a manual, however, is required for me.

      • 0 avatar
        TMA1

        The V6 was “rental class” because the Premium trim is not available with that engine. Turbo-4s and V8s only.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        The V6 is the entry-level motor, so that will be the fleet car by default.

      • 0 avatar
        jim brewer

        The Ford 3.7L is a truly excellent engine.I wouldn’t buy one if I had a child nearing the age of 16. In an aluminum body independent suspension ‘Stang, it should an exceptionally good match. You get to like the angry hornet sound just fine once you see what it can do.

        That they have to withold the popular options to get you to choose something else is a tipoff.

  • avatar
    Willyam

    Great review, Mark! I enjoy reading the real world driving kind of perspective.

    By the way, there was some sort of internal thing for/against yellow Mustangs back in the early 2000’s. There was even dissention in Mustang owners as to bright yellow or “School Bus” yellow. A coworker of mine had the “School Bus” color, along with the required windshield pony sticker, and belonged to a yellow Mustang forum. So, maybe it was the yellow…

    I gotta admit, its one of the first cars I’ve seen in a while that wears those black wheels really well.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    As with the last 2.0t Mustang review, it returned the same fuel economy as my 5.7L Challenger does under those conditions. Eco/boost.

  • avatar
    MUSASHI66

    Hm, interesting article..

    reads the specs…pretty cool

    Gets to the MSRP….are you freaking serious???

    Rest of the article, all I could think of was the MSRP. I had to go to ford.com to look into this, as I always remember these being closer to 30k, and that is exactly what the V6 model is. Ecoboost starts at 35k, and you had 10k of options? Just crazy…for that price, V8 with less options seems like a no brainer.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      Classic review where the PR arm of the company gives him a LOADED or nearly loaded car.

      Everyone needs to get over it. If you don’t have to have a convertible you can knock quite a bit off the price right away.

  • avatar
    KrohmDohm

    $40,000-$50,000 for a Mustang!? That isn’t a high performance model. Ok I’m going back to bed and when I wake up and I expect to come back to the real world. Thank you.

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      That was my reaction too. Do people really pay that much for drop top fun? Yikes!

      I know someone who just got a ’15 Ecoboost ‘Stang (normal coupe, no convertible) and the engine was just fine – it motivates the car very well I though, seemed quicker then my V6 Z. The problem I had was the crease / character lines in the hood: the are right in smack in the middle of your sight line. Combine this with a LONG hood that is ruler flat and a high, thick dash results in forward visible was pretty bad Reminded me of the IROCs of old which made you feel like you were driving an aircraft carrier with .he expanse of dash and hood sticking out miles ahead of your seat location. Contrast this against my 350Z’s hood which drops which drops away from view smoothly and a dash that is low.

      I owed a Mustang back in 1983 and never considered getting another until the ’15 with Ecoboost came out. I think its decent car but I’d almost have to get an aftermarket hood because the stock one drove me nuts in just a short ride.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        The GT Premium comes with heated and cooled leather seats, SYNC, sport+ mode, track mode (where you can keep your 0-60 high scores), and horsey projection lights!

        For those more interested in driving, you can save money and skip the options.

        As for the character line on the hood, I know what you mean. I got used to it pretty quickly, but it bothered my wife a bit. Once I got familiar with the car, I found the Mustang easy to drive… easier than the Camaro convertible I rented back in 2012.

        The Camaro had very heavy steering at parking lot speeds. It took effort to learn where the 4 corners of the car were. With the top up, visibility was poor. With the top down, trunk space — already limited — was reduced.

        The Mustang offered the same amount of trunk space regardless of whether the top was up or down — around 13 cu feet, about the same as a Mazda3 sedan.

        • 0 avatar
          duffman13

          Interesting note on the Premium – don’t get it if you plan on getting the recaros – they make you lose out on the heated/cooled feature, as well as the electric adjustment IIRC.

  • avatar
    KOKing

    I was a big fan of the EcoBoost Mustang, and encouraged a couple folks who’ve been ‘Stang-shopping to try it. But then I started hearing some on the road. Ugh. Especially given how great and befitting the Coyote sounds, this thing is a major letdown.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      No kidding. I crossed in front of a ’15 Mustang at a stop light a few weeks ago and couldn’t hear a thing. Then I noticed it was a 5.0. It sucks that the first thing you have to do with a new Mustang GT is replace the exhaust. Might as well add that to the sticker price.

      The 5.0 is pretty quiet on the inside too. Downright Germanic, really. I haven’t been in the Ecoboost car yet.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I was interested in the Eco-boost when folks were talking like it was the new SVO, which I once owned. It turned out to be just a Mustang with a 4 cylinder turbo. I still checked out the V6 but all the performance options were gone with the new version. To top it off I kept hitting my head getting in and out of it. Oh well so much for buying a car from nostalgia.

    • 0 avatar
      White Shadow

      I purchased my first new Mustang in the late 80s and considered both the V8 (GT & LX models) as well as the SVO. I was just 18 years old at the time and I couldn’t wrap my head around where the value was in spending more money on the 4-cylinder SVO over the V8. What would I have gotten for my money? Well, a few nice things like a revised suspension and disk brakes in the rear. And lets not forget the minor styling differences. But as an 18-year-old kid in a “hot” car for the times, the only real difference to me was that I’d be spending a lot more money for a Mustang that couldn’t keep up with the less expensive V8 Mustangs.

      That’s the reason why the SVO died out while the V8 Mustangs continued on…

    • 0 avatar
      rudiger

      Yeah, all the naysayers claiming the Mustang EcoBoost four is going to sell as well as the last Mustang with a pricey, premium turbo four (the old, mid-eighties SVO) might be right, after all. I would imagine that as soon as the Premium Package becomes available on the V6 rental special, the EcoBoost will be discontinued (or heavily discounted) not long after. It just doesn’t seem like the rather limited benefits of the EcoBoost are worth the extra cost.

      Unless, of course, the price of gas goes ballistic. Then it will be a different story.

  • avatar
    White Shadow

    Until V8 engines go the way of the dinosaurs, no other engine configuration, at least in a Mustang, is going to get respect from the teeming millions. I understand that these ecoboost engines can really be made to run and that’s just fine. At the end of the day, it’s still a 4-banger and the majority of Mustang fans/owners/drivers just won’t care.

  • avatar
    carguy

    I can fully understand how the 2.3T makes for a more sensible everyday car but muscle cars are not supposed to be an expression of sensibility. If you want sensible, get a C-Max. If you want a Mustang get a V8.

    But I am clearly in the minority as the 2.3T is a runaway sales success.

  • avatar
    thornmark

    23 mpg? 70% Hway? EcoBusted.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      You just created a meme.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        Eco is the new marketing abuse word.

        Eco-diesel (Chrysler)

        Eco-Tec (GM SBC)

        Eco-boost (Ford)

        • 0 avatar
          Dan

          That it is, and I for one can’t stand it.

          Eco has two connotations. Ecology, as in the busybodied green activists who’d like $10 a gallon gas and I’d like to run over. Also Economy, which means stop and think about how terrifically poor an economic decision a new car is.

          Eco-market your buzzboxes all you want but putting it on a nice cars is awfully poor salesmanship to me.

        • 0 avatar
          dantes_inferno

          You can add Eco-fraud to the list – which pretty much sums up the Eco marketdroid speak.

  • avatar

    This whole acknowledgement/street-cred ritual that muscle car owners seem to feel the need to perform is ridiculous. You shouldn’t have to feel like you didn’t get a *real* Mustang just because you went for the EcoBoost. And to snobby GT owners who think they own the road, it’s not like you have the fastest thing out there anyway. If someone should roll up in a Challenger SRT8 or indeed one of the faster Mustangs, he’ll probably smoke you. Just drive what’s within your needs, wants and budget…and forget about what everyone else thinks.

    I feel like a lot of journalists—not necessarily you, Mark—have panned the EcoBoost just because it isn’t the GT and can’t deliver on the same level of performance or visceral excitement (surprise, surprise!). And that’s not fair.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Kyree S. Williams – that sort of attitude exists in various automotive or motorcycle groups.

      I don’t care for it either.

    • 0 avatar
      dantes_inferno

      > And to snobby GT owners who think they own the road, it’s not like you have the fastest thing out there anyway. If someone should roll up in a Challenger SRT8 or indeed one of the faster Mustangs, he’ll probably smoke you.

      Those types of drivers seem to be afflicted with what I call “Little Dick Johnson Syndrome”. I drove enough V-8s during my high-school days to last me a lifetime. I’m into turbocharged 4-cylinder engines these days – which points to the future.

  • avatar
    Sky_Render

    “There is no acknowledgement from him that I exist. Not a nod, glance, nor a typical, Mustang-owner two-finger wave.”

    Since you’re driving a stock, non-GT Mustang, we just assume you’re not an enthusiast. I’ve stopped waving at V6 Mustangs, for instance, because they invariably don’t wave back. The owners generally buy those cars because they want “something sporty” or “a convertible” and aren’t really into the whole car scene. Thus, they are usually oblivious to other sports cars on the road, even those of the same marque as the one they’re driving.

    • 0 avatar

      This is very, very interesting.

      • 0 avatar
        VolandoBajo

        very, very interesting…but shtoopid!
        — Artie Johnson

        (Probably before your time. In its original incarnation it was even before mine, and dirt was still new when I was born, and dinosaurs still roamed the earth. Check for “Laugh In” on sixties or seventies television.)

        PS Not intended in a personal sense.

    • 0 avatar

      I thought it was just being conceited. But that actually makes a whole lot of sense.

    • 0 avatar
      mikey

      I drive a base model 6cyl convert, during the non snow months. I keep it carefully detailed, and I get lots of compliments. I only give the two finger wave, when the top is down. Now that I think about it, I mostly drive, with the top down. Yeah so I do a lot of waving

      • 0 avatar
        BuzzDog

        Miley, you just described me to a “T.”

        Mine has the performance package, so aside from the badges it looks fairly similar to my co-worker’s (non-convertible) GT.

      • 0 avatar
        BuzzDog

        Mikey, you just described me to a “T.” It’s my fourth Mustang, and perhaps the one I’ve enjoyed the most.

        I feel sad for those who have a need to belittle others’ enjoyment of their rides…

  • avatar
    majo8

    Mark — the boost/vacuum gauge is available as one of the digital display performance gauges in the center stack.

  • avatar
    Geigs

    And then there’s Maude. If all you want is for people to wave at you, drive a Studebaker.

    • 0 avatar
      VolandoBajo

      Or a French car, perhaps?

      Or is it “We are French, and we do not need to acknowledge our superiority, which we take for granted”, complete with the appropriate accent, the likes of which, if it were done by an English speaker in French, would merit scorn and derision?

  • avatar
    Chan

    I’d argue that buyers of base Mustangs don’t know (or care) what a V8 sounds like.

    If they are willing to pay the extra for a [theoretically] more efficient engine, Ford offers a solid choice, cylinder count be damned.

    As most of us agree, the typical base Convertible buyer is not a car enthusiast–he or she wants something that looks sporty and sort of acts sporty when needed. At all other times, it needs to drive like a Fusion.

    That said, with an MSRP of $50k it had better have a V8.

  • avatar
    nrd515

    I get waves from almost all other male Challenger drivers and from about 50% of the female ones I pass and Challengers are pretty common around Toledo. With the female drivers, it seems to be much more likely if she’s driving an R/T. SRT, or Scat Pack than if they’re driving an SXT. I pass a silver SXT driven by a 40 or so year old woman about 3 days a week on the way home from work, and she has never responded to a wave from me, ever. About 10% of male Challenger drivers who pull up to me at a light talk to me, it’s rare when a woman does. Last time was about a year ago when a woman pulled up next to me in a 2010 Plum Crazy R/T, and asked me what catback exhaust I had. She had just bought the car and wanted it louder and liked the way my car sounded, so I guess I sold a Solo catback.

  • avatar
    BrunoT

    Typical superficial modern thinking:

    1. Big powerful engine = speed. Big powerful engine has big sound, therefore big sound = speed.

    2. Years later. Smaller engine has power and speed. But since it’s not loud it’s shrugged off.

    Form over substance. The smaller engine is fast, but doesn’t “sound” fast in the old way of thinking.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      Did you notice that he praised the sound of earlier 4-cylinder VTEC engines?

      It’s the quality of the sound, not the volume. But I suppose we all have different tastes in music.

      • 0 avatar
        dolorean

        Could it possibly be, and I’m just speculating, that the missing sporty four banger note and feel of a VTEC could possibly be because this car has a slushbox instead of the 6 spd bang gate that God intended? Totally disappointed when I saw this was an automatic.

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    See Mazda?? You coulda put that DISI in the RX8 body and beat Ford to the punch by years!

  • avatar
    dolorean

    I’m a Mustang purist. I love the original intention of the sporty affordable secretary’s car that with some factory options and home modifications, could be a real jewel. In the early 90’s you could buy at the bottom, the Mustang LX with 2.3L engine from the Pinto Malaise era in three forms including the convertible. For an additional $1k you could have the same car but with the 5.0L in it (as divined by providence) for about 14~15k out the door. With some mods to the suspension, exhaust and tuning you could have a really nice ride that would do serious street damage.

    This beautiful golden Stang is just not in this mold. It’s been pointed out several times already that for the money, you could get a slew of more interesting cars. To which I would also point out that for 20k less the price, I could walk away with a seriously sweet 2 year old Certified Used fully-loaded 5.0L convertible and still have money left over to mod it out. I just don’t get the point of this car at that price range.

  • avatar
    jimbob457

    Dazed and confused.

    Only a global car company run by committees would even think of taking a 3700 pound, 107 inch wheelbase RWD car and power it with a 2.3 liter four banger. Then. using the stereo system to fake an exhaust rumble was truly an engineering triumph.

    Evidently aimed at the European market, importing it back into the USA was yet another stroke of genius. I need one of them to park next to my Merkur and Contour.

    By the bye, how is this little mash up selling in the USA and in Europe?

    • 0 avatar
      VolandoBajo

      “…a fake exhaust rumble…”

      This was truly not the finest moment in FoMoCo’s history for either engineering, or integrity.

      However, the suits who want to continue to try to wean us off of the V8 habit will not be dissuaded. So they may as well go the next step, and beat the rest of the Internet to the punch.

      Downloadable custom exhaust notes, purchasable via a FoMoCo payment system integrated with the entertainment system. And marketed to include exhaust sounds completely alien to the EcoBoost, and even to the Mustang array of vehicles.

      Why not a lovely and sensuous sounding exhaust note, based on the sound of the Lamborghini Huracán, for just $4.99. Or for an additional $1.99, you can use it as your ringtone also.

      And optional external speaker panels on the rear fenders, or beneath the car, to make the origin of the sounds more “authentic”.

      Or perhaps you’d like your EcoBoost 4banger to sound like a 458 Speciale? That could be arranged. Or maybe you want to sound even more green…give it an electric car whooshing acceleration sound.

      No need to limit the fakeness to just those sounds that would come from another car that looks similar to it.

      Hell, you could even make it sound like a Raptor, a Hellcat, or if you are annoyed by the driving of those around you in the highway, perhaps a Peterbilt tractor-trailer complete with airhorns.

      And there is no reason to limit the cars to one fake exhaust sound per car. Why not let them have a premium exhaust sound pack as an option, for something like $899. Be ecologically conscientious while having all sorts of fun convincing other people, and perhaps yourself, if you are easily deceived, that you are driving something truly awesome.

      Personally, I’d like to have one that sounded like a fighter jet scrambling to altitude, just for those occasions when the driver in front of me falls asleep at the light. Nothing like the sound of a jet flyover at less than 200 ft to wake ’em up, I say.

      But there will also come a time when this concept will seem so quaint and dated that it will in a reverse kind of way become cool and collectible.

      And why not pair this exhaust sound package with a Mexican jumping bean hydraulic suspension system, so you can have fun one more way without having an engine that can actually move you down the road quickly.

      Personally, I hope to never own a car with a fake exhaust sound…but if I did, I’d rather have a car that sounded like a self-propelled lawnmower with a 6.5 HP Briggs and Stratton 4 cycle first. At least it would sound like something that was approximately within its range of capabilities, at least in terms of acceleration and speed.

      But would I be able to get some extra “joke” exhaust soundtracks, so that when the guy next to me at a light decides to go in for a little mutual hooning, I could wait til we got up to about 45, and then make it sound like his engine had just grenaded?

      Yeah, I know, not nice, but you’d have to do something to kill the time while waiting for the 4banger to get up to speed, in order to entertain yourself.

  • avatar
    El Hombre

    I looked at the build it yourself Ford webpage; a base V6 to a base V-8 is almost $10,000.00 more! It’s $6,000.00 to get the convertible over the coupe!

    Ford really did make a determined effort to penalize the base car; only black cloth upholstery. No sport suspension/brakes option. Plus all kinds of heated this and that, infotainment, that you can’t buy.

    BUT, it’s a 300 horsepower car with a 6 speed manual or auto, 4 wheel disc brakes with ABS, IRS, full power accessories, AC, decent radio/CD, airbags everywhere, just a nice car. 15 years ago this would have been the top of the line model and cost 25% more than this car in inflation adjusted values.

    435hp in the V-8 is squarely into ‘stupid fast’. When you can get your car impounded for a month for chirping the tires,(Cali exhibition of speed)it can total $10K when you get finished with the fines, court costs, tow and impound fees, and a 20% surcharge on all you vehicle insurance for the next 4 years. 300hp in the base car has more than enough power to loose your license!!

    Spend the money to get the GT badges for your base; no one will know.

    • 0 avatar
      Jacob

      I bet the sport package suspension parts and brakes are just bolt on parts that you can just buy from a Ford dealer. Of course, that’s a very expensive route (dealer parts normally come with a triple markup and you need to pay someone to install those). Mustang is the kind of car that attracts lots of tuner attention. I am sure that aftermarket will also come up with some alternative brake and suspension parts.

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    Ford has finally jumped the shark and pushed the Mustang as far as it can go. For the $45k USD (!!!) that this sucker costs, you could get a BMW 228i convertible sportline with leather, the tech package, premium sound and phone integration. It will be about a second quicker to 60 according to Car and Driver and get better fuel economy. Nevermind the free scheduled maintentance, premium badge, likely short term higher resale (or better lease rates), better warranty, and likely better/premium dealership experience. Can’t believe we’ve actually hit a point where a BMW is actually better value than a Ford.

  • avatar
    honda_lawn_art

    I guess I’ll point out that that’s 134hp/liter. Which is a lame way of measuring greatness in and of itself, but on that scale this cars up there.

  • avatar
    Elusivellama

    Where is the 2015 Mustang GT review on TTAC? I can’t seem to find it.

  • avatar
    EapenD

    This Mustang roadster is undoubtedly a snazzy looking beast. The interior styling is also classy. Hopefully, it also handles the draft well at high speeds. Well, for my kind of countryside weather, an additional wind deflector like a Windblox windblocker may be required to rein in the turbulence.


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