2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT Review - A New World Of Performance
2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT
In the beginning, God created the dinosaurs. He saw that they would eventually decompose into petroleum, and said this is good. And God said let there be bitchin’ V8 engines.
And God said Oh Crap, I didn’t kill off enough dinosaurs to feed these hungry V8 engines. So on the seventh day, he left it to someone else to create EV charging stations way too far apart in sketchy parts of everything that he had made, and he rested.
We are well beyond the book of Genesis when it comes to electric vehicles - we no longer look to an EV as simply an efficient urban runabout not suited to the open road. Witness the big two-letter badge on the decklid of this 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT - yes, there is a healthy dash of grand touring within Ford’s sporty EV. And, should you wish, a touch of sports car joy.
The title atop your screen - or your page if you’re one of the enlightened ones who print out each and every one of our reviews and file them lovingly for posterity - is indeed correct. Well into the eleventh month of the calendar year 2022, a number of 2023 models have made their way onto dealer lots, and yet Chris is reviewing a 2021 model? Blame, as I have so often over the past two years in my other career in industrial sales, the supply chain. This ‘21 model year Mach-E showed up at my office just a few weeks ago. There are few substantial changes from ‘21 to ‘22, so my impressions should remain valid.
Again, I implore you. Forget the badge. Calling this a Mustang seems primarily a ploy to get digital ink in a world where the Twitter Motor Corporation of Fremont dominates the EV conversation. While Ford has tried to inject a bunch of fun-to-drive personality into this car, it is still a five-door hatch/wagon/crossover that weighs a shade under five thousand pounds. If it’s a pony car, it’s a Clydesdale.
It’s a Clydesdale that can dance, however. For such a stout vehicle, the Mach-E turns in nicely when hustling into a corner. It’s not surprising, then, that it feels quite planted - gravity is useful that way. Powering out of the corner is effortless, as 600 lb-ft of torque will slingshot the orange beast with abandon. This is the first EV in which I’ve even considered venturing south to the Hocking Hills for a spirited drive.
Didn’t happen this time - my schedule didn’t allow for it - but I did seek out some twisties closer to home. The Mach-E can be a genuine thrill to drive. It’s a different thrill than one might get from a lightweight sportscar, but it still lights off a smile at times. An estimated range of 270 miles per charge is quite impressive - that number assumes that you’re gentle on that right pedal, of course.
However, you pay a price with the Mach-E GT - that’s on the commute. The suspension is unforgiving on worn pavement. You feel every rut, groove, bump, pothole, and squirrel on your backside. (Just kidding, PETA. I avoided the squirrels.) It’s a punishing ride on anything but smooth tarmac - very little of which we have here in Ohio.
It’s a shame, really, as the rest of the Mach-E GT is a pleasant place to be. The interior is roomy, with supportive seats and plenty of leg, shoulder, and headroom. Sound quality from the B&O-branded ten-speaker sound system is excellent - helped, no doubt, by the minimal drivetrain noise seeping into the cabin. The 15.5-inch touchscreen is clear and mostly intuitive to use - though I will continue to grumble about the multiple steps required on the infotainment screen to simply pop open the rear hatch. There should be a dedicated button NOT ON THE SCREEN for opening the hatch, something I do quite often from the driver’s seat when picking a kid up from some practice somewhere that requires them to toss a bag of sweaty and mud-covered crap somewhere other than the seats. After all, I can open the frunk (sadly, too small for a bag of softball gear) with two tugs on a handle down by my left foot - why not the hatch?
Too many electric cars, I’ve noticed, have been tossing out tried and true solutions for auxiliary functions seemingly in the name of change for the sake of change. Mercifully a volume knob remains here on the Mach-E, but “different” seems to be atop the page for every EV design brief. Whether that needs to be the case, I don’t know.
Heck, I even kinda dig how it looks. Especially in this GT trim with the dark panel where a grille might be on a gas-powered vehicle, it looks a bit menacing. The five reversed-spoke wheels are a bit funky, but they fit the overall style. It’s eye-catching, even when not painted a shade perhaps best described as Radioactive Creamsicle.
If you can handle the incredibly firm ride, the 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT is a fun way to go electric. If I were shopping, however, I’d likely eschew the extra power and gain back some daily comfort by choosing a Mach-E without the GT trim. While taking a bite from the forbidden fruit of more power might be appealing, my backside shall ever be grateful for a more compliant ride.
[Images: © 2022 Chris Tonn]
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John S. on Nov 03, 2022
Not true, Lou, that it takes millenia for substantial 'refills.' Russia became the world's largest producer of oil because they developed and follow the abiogenic approach. Oil and coal, like fresh water -- see 'Primary Water' -- is limitless and being continuously produced in the upper mantle from the limitless supplies of carbon-bearing rocks being crushed and heated and combined with hydrogen being supplied by bacteria whose mass is greater than that of life on the surface.
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