You can try, but you won’t find a current car model as iconic as the Ford Mustang. It made its debut at
the New York World’s Fair in 1964, sparking immediate love – the car was an instant classic. Now, after
60 years and six generations, Ford has redesigned the ‘stang, which stands apart from the automaker’s
SUV and truck models as the only remaining car in the stable. While there’s no mistaking the Mustang’s
beautiful form, this seventh-generation iteration shows off some modern touches (triple-bar LED
headlights, for instance) as it simultaneously pays homage to the Fox body Mustangs of the late
‘80s/early ‘90s. More importantly, it has increased horsepower, a fully restyled interior, and some
excellent performance options. Ford has also added two thrilling trim levels, Dark Horse and Dark Horse
Speaking of the interior, Ford’s designers took their cues from a fighter jet’s cockpit and put plenty of effort into making sure the person sitting behind the flat-bottomed steering wheel came first: the company says this is the most driver-centric Mustang ever. The gauge cluster is large (12.4 inches) and customizable, with a simplified setting where the driver can choose only to show necessary information to keep the screen from being too busy. As always, the Mustang’s back seat is built for two – not three – passengers.
The 2024 Mustang is offered in a half-dozen trim choices: EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT, GT Premium, and
the debuting Dark Horse and Dark Horse Premium. Tradition continues with rear-wheel-drive and four
seats; all trims come as a fastback coupe, but the EcoBoost Premium and GT Premium are also made as a
The base engine, a turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder making 315 horsepower (a 5-hp increase from model year 2023) and 350 lb.-ft. of torque, provides propulsion for the EcoBoost and EcoBoost Premium; a ten-speed automatic transmission (with paddle shifters) completes that powertrain. The GT and GT Premium move up to a 5.0-liter Coyote V8 that churns out 480 horsepower (30 more horses than last year) and 415 lb.-ft. of torque; it’s paired with a six-speed manual transmission. The Dark Horse editions also get the Coyote V8, although it’s tuned to make 500 horsepower and 418 lb.-ft. of torque. They also upgrade to the TREMEC TR-3160 six-speed manual gearbox with rev-matching, as found in the Mach 1 and Shelby GT350. Buyers of those four highest trims can opt for the ten-speed automatic with paddle shifters instead.
The EcoBoost trim has cloth seats, automatic LED headlights, automatic climate control (one zone), a
12.4-inch digital instrument display, a drive-mode selector, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and 17-inch
aluminum wheels. The EcoBoost Premium is improved with remote start, dual-zone automatic climate
control, a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel with a track-inspired flat bottom, approach detection
lighting, configurable ambient interior lighting, heated exterior mirrors with integrated turn-signal
indicators and special Pony-logo projection lights (puddle lamps), a spoiler painted in the body color,
and 18-inch wheels. The seating situation ramps up with ActiveX upholstery, heated and ventilated front
seats, and a power driver’s seat. The GT is nearly identical to the base EcoBoost, except that Ford
gives it a rear spoiler. Likewise, the GT Premium is equipped mostly the same as the EcoBoost Premium,
but the upholstery becomes leather and the front passenger’s seat is power-adjustable.
The brand-new Dark Horse trim gets plenty of performance-specific attributes: the aforementioned rev-matching TREMEC manual transmission plus Brembo brakes, a Torsen rear differential, performance-enhanced powertrain calibration, a unique intake manifold, an active-valve exhaust with black-tipped outlets, a MagneRide damping system, heavy-duty front springs, an enlarged rear sway bar, modified stability control, front tow hooks, a K-brace, a rear wing, an electronic hand brake, 19-inch aluminum wheels, and cooling for the differential, transmission, and engine oil. As far as its more general features, it’s essentially a GT Premium but with microsuede seating and door panels, a white cue-ball shift knob, and black painted mirror caps and roof.
The Dark Horse Premium is a Dark Horse with more convenience, luxury, and comfort features: the aforementioned automatic transmission, keyless entry and ignition, blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic alert, rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, a configurable 12.3-inch LCD instrument display, a nine-speaker audio system with HD Radio, a Wi-Fi hotspot, satellite radio, wireless phone charging, and heated rear seats. This trim also upgrades with leather and microsuede upholstery, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system with subwoofer.
The Ford Co-Pilot360 advanced driver-assist technology suite is installed on all trims of the redesigned Mustang. Its components are automatic high beams, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic alert, lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist, and rearview camera. Ford’s Co-Pilot360 Plus suite, available on higher trims, adds adaptive cruise control, evasive steering assist, voice-activated navigation, speed-sign recognition, and a front-facing camera.
A 13.2-inch touchscreen manages the SYNC 4 infotainment system on every trim. Among its features are voice recognition, smartphone integration (Android Auto and Apple CarPlay), a nine-speaker audio system, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and two USB ports. The SYNC 4A iteration of that system comes on the higher trims and also has a 12.3-inch LCD instrument display, a 12-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system, HD Radio, satellite radio, wireless phone charging, and navigation. Both versions of SYNC 4 permit wireless updates, and Ford equips them with FordPass Connect, which allows owners to control certain vehicle functions and access information through a smartphone app.