By on April 19, 2019

Ford celebrated its iconic sports coupe’s 55th birthday at the New York International Auto Show this week by proclaiming Wednesday as “Mustang Day.” But Mustang Day was overshadowed by other nostalgic celebrations taking place at the New York Auto Show, specifically Nissan’s 50th Anniversary Editions of the GT-R (which looked excellent) and 370Z (which one of our anal-retentive staffers criticized over technical inaccuracies). The Japanese manufacturer even had a multi-tiered display and brought in historic models, countering the building apathy many automakers seem to have developed for giant trade shows.

Despite Nissan winning the battle for eyes in New York, Ford still appears to have won the day — at least from its own perspective. Following the NY debut of the Mustang’s 2.3-liter High Performance Package, which brings up the base auto’s peak output to 330 horsepower just for starters, the company proudly announced that its pony car has remained the world’s top-selling sports coupe over the last four years. 

Available for purchase in 146 countries last year, the Mustang sold a claimed 113,066 units in 2018. Ford said that was good enough for a 15.6-percent share of the total sports car market.

“We broke the mold when Ford launched the Mustang 55 years ago,” said Jim Farley, Ford’s president of global markets. “Nothing says freedom, the wind in your hair and the joy of driving like Mustang; it’s an icon. The roar of its V8 on a spring day, there’s nothing better. No wonder it’s the most popular sports coupe in the world.”

While we can’t say that Ford’s birthday celebration encouraged Nissan’s nostalgia push in New York, as it was the Z’s 50th, we are certain that provided ammo for General Motors’ response. Tragically limited to Chevrolet Arabia’s YouTube channel online, GM posted a brief video called “Wouldn’t be a party without us. #Mustang55.”

The clip showcases a pony blowing out candles at a birthday party clearly intended for a little girl. However, rather than wishing for a Mustang, the undersized horse is given a Chevy Camaro. Accompanied by the text “some wishes do come true” the animal neighs with glee. Direct and a little mean, without being truly cruel, the spot is everything we could have hoped for.

 

As important as it is for manufacturers to cooperate during this period of surprisingly high development costs, we prefer them at each other’s throats whenever possible. It’s just more fun that way and it doesn’t have to get out of hand. Automotive advertising doesn’t always have to be about a business’ ethical or moral commitments, as if profit-seeking companies even have a conscience outside of its employees. Pushing environmentalism, safety, and peace of mind are fine marketing tactics. But they’re not going to grab you by the crotch like a little confrontation … and cockiness.

Dodge gets it.

It can also be about ribbing your rivals and telling the public you can offer better armed with nothing more than a little gusto.

It’s okay to be slightly braggadocios, even if the cars they are talking about have fallen slightly out of favor in their home market lately. Hell, it might even help turn things around. GM’s jab at Ford certainly made us eager to see the automaker’s response and we can’t be the only people in the world who feel that way.

[Images: Ford]

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40 Comments on “Ford’s Mustang Bragging Brings Out the Best in Rival Automakers...”


  • avatar
    cimarron typeR

    pretty funny, I hope both stick around. I fear the Chally may not be long for this world though except in current platform

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    The “2.3L High Performance Package” is nice, but as Jim Farley said, ” The roar of its V8 on a spring day, there’s nothing better.”

    … and give me any color as long as it’s NOT orange

    • 0 avatar
      nrd515

      When I had my Hemi Orange Challenger, people loved it or hated it, and it usually was men/boys loved it and women/girls hated it. I don’t remember a single guy who didn’t like it. Some of them said they wouldn’t buy a car that color because it was too “Cop attracting”. But a lot of women said it was a “stupid color”. Weird thing was, they had no objection to bright yellow or red.

      I had it for almost 8 years and never tired of it. My new one is TorRed, and it’s almost universally loved, except by people who like the(IMHO) truly awful Destroyer Gray and/or F8 Green. But for some, it’s too “flashy”.

      I don’t like “weak” colors, except for interiors, where I want nothing but black inside a car.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        So YOU’RE the guy! The one the automakers quote when all they offer is black, gray, or tan interiors. Fie! Fie! Give us back our eleven interior colors!

  • avatar
    EBFlex

    “Following the NY debut of the Mustang’s 2.3-liter High Performance Package”

    That is really nothing to crow about Ford. It took 5 so-called “engineers” 10 months to come up with a pathetic 20HP.

    A simple tune would have been far quicker and yielded MUCH better results. But why do something simple when you can reinvent the wheel?

    • 0 avatar
      LectroByte

      LOL, what? I’m sure that 20HP had a lot of constraints that you don’t consider, like meeting emissions standards, price points, no risk of warranty claims and more. What little bit of automotive related work I’ve done at that scale, you tend to have a bigger appreciation of the effort and tradeoffs involved before spouting off “only 20HP”.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        I agree. This is why I always roll my eyes when “VW_MAN93” brags about how his mad ‘Stage II’ tuneZZ let’s him run down Hellcats with no adverse side effects.

        • 0 avatar
          EBFlex

          “I agree. This is why I always roll my eyes when “VW_MAN93” brags about how his mad ‘Stage II’ tuneZZ let’s him run down Hellcats with no adverse side effects.”

          Sorry facts bother you so much:

          https://jalopnik.com/fords-warranty-preserving-ecoboost-mustang-tune-is-fina-1787660757

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            The FPP tune/parts has a 36/36K warranty compared to the 60/60K powertrain warranty on a factory car.

            the FPP package also requires 91 octane or higher “at all times” while this new version of the 2.3T can safely run on less (at reduced power).

            performanceparts.ford.com/warranty/include/pdf/Select_Parts_Warranty_Statement_2017v2.pdf

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            “The FPP tune/parts has a 36/36K warranty compared to the 60/60K powertrain warranty on a factory car.

            the FPP package also requires 91 octane or higher “at all times” while this new version of the 2.3T can safely run on less (at reduced power).”

            And? What’s your point? It still doesn’t diminish my point. Why don’t you go back and read what Lectro posted. I’ll help ya out:

            “I’m sure that 20HP had a lot of constraints that you don’t consider, like meeting emissions standards, price points, no risk of warranty claims and more.”

            Obviously the FPP tune meets that while not reinventing the wheel and providing more power than the 20HP the baboons came up with for the current car.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        Far as EBFlex is concerned, Ford could make a 1,000 hp engine that runs off nothing but room air, put it in a car that looks like an E-type Jag, and sell it for $7995, and that would be proof positive that Ford Can Do No Good.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          I’d like to put him in a Ford, Deadweight in a Cadillac and see who has a complete meltdown first

        • 0 avatar
          EBFlex

          “Far as EBFlex is concerned, Ford could make a 1,000 hp engine that runs off nothing but room air, put it in a car that looks like an E-type Jag, and sell it for $7995, and that would be proof positive that Ford Can Do No Good.”

          Flatly untrue but cute post.

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        “LOL, what? I’m sure that 20HP had a lot of constraints that you don’t consider, like meeting emissions standards, price points, no risk of warranty claims and more. What little bit of automotive related work I’ve done at that scale, you tend to have a bigger appreciation of the effort and tradeoffs involved before spouting off “only 20HP”.”

        You do realize Ford offered a tune for the 2.3L a couple years ago that raised HP to 335 and torque to 390 right?

        Two figures that blow this measly 20HP out of the water.

        https://jalopnik.com/fords-warranty-preserving-ecoboost-mustang-tune-is-fina-1787660757

    • 0 avatar
      Brumus

      EBFlex,

      Please see LectroByte’s comment above.

    • 0 avatar
      raph

      Yeah, just ignore the average power increases that actually make a car faster and more responsive and just focus on the peak numbers…

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        Compared to typical vehicle programs or even mid-cycle refreshes, 5 engineers for less than a year is a skeleton crew.

        This package is also a lot more than “20 hp” and had suspension, brake, tire, and wheel upgrades as well.

        If EBFlex thinks its so easy to add performance without considering cost, warranty, manufacturability, emissions, regulations, and corporate culture, I’d encourage him to become an automotive engineer himself and educate the rest of us.

        • 0 avatar
          EBFlex

          “If EBFlex thinks its so easy to add performance without considering cost, warranty, manufacturability, emissions, regulations, and corporate culture, I’d encourage him to become an automotive engineer himself and educate the rest of us.”

          You realize Ford offered a tune that retained the factory warranty for the 2.3 and torque went from 320 to 390 right?

          You people act like I am asking the world of Ford. I’m literally asking why they went to all that work for a pitiful 20HP when they offered so much more a few years ago (for only $699 too)

          And corporate culture? What is wrong with you people?

          • 0 avatar
            kjhkjlhkjhkljh kljhjkhjklhkjh

            As a AJPTurbo tuned car owner, and a Torrie tuned Car owner there is a *CRAPTON* of power left on the floor. Yes some of that is in the name of reliability.. but the COBB Tune that adds 50-60hp and 80+ Tqs is factory warrantied so i feel perfectly safe with my custom tune and agree with ebflex

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        “Yeah, just ignore the average power increases that actually make a car faster and more responsive and just focus on the peak numbers…”

        You think a Ford factory tune that increases torque by 70 foot pounds will somehow make the dyno graph look like the rocky mountains versus Nebraska with the standard tune?

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        “Yeah, just ignore the average power increases that actually make a car faster and more responsive and just focus on the peak numbers…”

        Also, maybe you should have read the article I linked BEFORE you let the ignorance flow from your fingers:

        “But those are just peak numbers. Ford says at 6,000 rpm, horsepower goes up by 100 ponies, and that between 2,500 and 5,000 rpm, average horsepower and torque go up by 40 HP and 60 lb-ft, respectively.”

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Is somebody a bit triggered or are they enjoying Friday not so happy hour?

    • 0 avatar
      The454General

      Like a teenager who found his first Zima. Someone is suuuuper triggered by Fords continuing success.

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        Yes nothing says success like recall after recall after recall. Hell even having to recall a recall because they didn’t fix it right the first time.

        Having a furniture expert run a car company that’s what successful companies do. Or how about killing off a large portion of the business? That’s the epitome of success. Oh don’t forget not having anything resembling a future vision. Only the most successful of companies just wing it.

      • 0 avatar
        EBFlex

        Yes nothing says success like recall after recall after recall. Hell even having to recall a recall because they didn’t fix it right the first time.

        Having a furniture expert run a car company that’s what successful companies do. Or how about killing off a large portion of the business? That’s the epitome of success. Oh don’t forget not having anything resembling a future vision. Only the most successful of companies just wing it.

        • 0 avatar
          Art Vandelay

          “Why? It’s ignorant and irrelevant”

          Just like you

          • 0 avatar
            EBFlex

            Oh boy! There getting serious now.

            You know they have a strong counter argument when the name calling starts.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Go have a drink with the Easter Bunny

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            I’ll call names…you are a worthless piece of $#!+ troll. The mods have done a great job on stymieing the a$$#@+$ such as yourself lately and the discussion has been enjoyable.

            But you come in here littering up the board with your $#!+bird posts when this is likely a car alot of posters are interested in. Take your sheite to Facebook

        • 0 avatar
          The454General

          Because nobody wants to argue with a tired Ford hating shill. And hey buddy, take a look at your own posts to see whos calling names and being nasty. Your opinions do not make fact, who wants to argue with an agenda?

  • avatar
    golden2husky

    Ads should trigger some kind of response other than just looking at the product. One of my favorites of the recent past was the Dodge “hybrid” ads for the Charger/Challenger. Showing smoke billowing out of the rear wheel wells, the tagline was “Burns both gas and rubber”…

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    330HP from a Pinto engine?? Wow!

    (Just kidding – I know this isn’t remotely related to a 2.3 Lima!)

    But just imagine dropping the 2.3 EB into an 1800lb. Pinto! Sounds like a fun ride to me!

  • avatar
    Eric the Red

    Wow egg salad you just had a great idea. I had a 78 Mustang with the 2.3 liter 4 cylinder Quite slow but honestly the style and handling were good. Same displacement engine with this output would have made that car the absolute best car on the road. Corvette/Ferrari killer level. What a difference 40 years make. What will we have in another 40 years? Will we still be steering or are we witnessing the end of driving as we know it today?

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      What I need is this drivetrain in a fox body Thunderbird Turbo Coupe. 87-88 preferred, 85-86 just as good. Just waiting for someone to make the K member

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        I don’t see the upside vs original T-Bird 2.3 turbos. Getting the Eco Boost 2.3 to work right, engine management and whatnot, is doable, but why not just upgrade the original 2.3?

        The aftermarket can easily take the original Turbo 2.3s to 450-500 hp with not much hardware on the factory long blocks. Turbo 2.3s were truly overbuilt with all forged internals and high-nickle blocks, even going back to the ’79 Mustang 2.3 Cobras. All are the same as SVO long blocks.

        For modern non V8 Ford Hot Rods, the Eco Boosts are the future. The aftermarket will sort them out, but they’re not always the best solution for old car retrofits, especially when the original hardware is very stout and respond extremely well to bolt-ons and tuning, as with Windsor V8s.

      • 0 avatar
        Thetruthaboutclutches

        Art, you may be interested in season 4 episode 5 of Junkyard Empire. (I normally hate the show but tuned in to see the 1985 Mustang SVO get an Ecoboost transplanted into it) You may be able to find the episode on Youtube or Velocity.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    Ford should put that drivetrain in a stripped down Ranger. Lightning reborn!

  • avatar

    It doesn’t get more American than the Ford Mustang. With a rich history and decades of success, the Ford Mustang has become a household name. Its tough V8 engine and beautiful aesthetics have become trademarks that we’ve learned to associate with this magnificent vehicle.

  • avatar
    stanczyk

    They should celebrate properly with new GT500 .. not some 2,3L – 4 – banger .. !?! .. >)


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