As much as we all love the sound of a burly V8 cracking and spitting to life after a cold start, not everyone in this world shares our sentiments. Even enthusiasts can be undone by a noisy car at the early hours of the morning. Ford has come up with a solution on the new 2018 Mustang GT. Its so-called “Good Neighbor Mode” allows owners to start their cars at a relatively sedate noise level. This should help prevent any noise complaint calls to local constabularies.
The optional mode works like any active exhaust system. When you select Quiet Mode or Quiet Start, a set of baffles in the exhaust system close, dropping the sound to about 72 decibels. Ford says that’s about 10 decibels less than the standard Mustang GT. A lot of cars offer similar systems, though the Mustang has a bit of a party trick: scheduled quiet hours. For example, an owner can set the exhaust to automatically switch to quiet mode from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m.
Switching to and scheduling Quiet Mode is just like changing to any of the other exhaust modes. Cars with the 4-inch screen can find the mode in the settings menu. Those that opt for the upgraded 12-inch digital instrument cluster find the setting in the pony menu. Once you’re out on the open road, you can simply switch it back to Sport mode like any blue-blooded American.
The Shelby GT350 is a wonderful automobile. The 5.2-liter naturally aspirated V8 makes 526 horsepower and revs to high heaven thanks to a flat plane crank, making the GT350 feel like no other American car on the road. In the days of electrification and turbocharging, it’s a breath of fresh air. The GT350 debuted roughly two years ago, and since then the standard Ford Mustang has undergone a full refresh. We new have a few photos of the refreshed Shelby. These spy shots don’t reveal much about the car, but we can see Ford is benchmarking one hell of a competitor.
The track battle between a Shelby GT350 and a Porsche 911 GT3 would be something to behold. More importantly, the fact that Ford has a GT3 running around Dearborn shows that it’s serious about making the GT350 a real world-class driver’s car. Like the refreshed GT3, expect the GT350 to carry on with a naturally aspirated engine. Expect a slight bump in power, but the current car has plenty of grunt already. Expect the six-speed manual to carry over, but don’t rule out a 10-speed automatic or a version of the seven-speed dual clutch from the Ford GT.
It’s likely the design will carry some traits from the refreshed Mustang, including sharper headlights and taillights. Don’t look for any pony badging, as Shelby prefers a coiled cobra. This model doesn’t have a spoiler, meaning this could may be the regular model, not the GT350R. The later should get a tasteful wing and carbon fiber wheels. It looks like there’s an aggressive chin spoiler, too.
We don’t have any official word on the next GT350, but look for a full debut sometime as soon as the LA Auto Show in November.
Ford’s 2018 Mustang online configuration tool is live, and because of that we now know the new Mustang’s pricing. The four-cylinder EcoBoost is $610 cheaper than it was in 2017, and $500 more than the discontinued V6 model, with a total of $26,485. V8-powered GT models see significant price increases for the new year, up $1,900 to $35,995. Choosing the convertible body style on the new Mustang costs $5,500 more than a comparable 2018 coupe.
As mentioned yesterday, the extra cost of the 2018 Mustang does net some impressive performance gains. The EcoBoost Mustang’s torque figures rise by 30 pound-feet to 350, while the horsepower remains at 310. Both power and torque rise in the Mustang GT. Power is up to 460 horsepower, and torque is up to 420. The former figure is also greater than the Mustang’s long-time rival, the Camaro SS.
The 2018 Mustang will begin arriving at dealers this fall. In the meantime, you can spec out your dream Mustang using the Ford configuration tool.
Ford has finally announced the power and torque figures for the 2018 Mustang lineup, and both the V8-powered GT and four-cylinder-powered EcoBoost models benefit from some big increases. Most impressive is the GT, which now produces an extra 25 horsepower and 20 pound-feet of torque to bring it to 460 horsepower and 420 pound-feet total. That puts the GT ahead of the Camaro SS by 5 horsepower, though it still trails the bow-tie-branded pony car by 35 pound-feet of torque.
Still, the Mustang GT isn’t slow. In fact, Ford claims that it will do a 0-60 mph sprint in under 4 seconds, which just beats the Camaro SS, for which Chevy claims a 4-second flat time to 60. There are a couple of prerequisites for the Mustang GT to hit that time, though. It has to be equipped with both the 10-speed automatic and the performance package. The automatic allows the Mustang to use the special “Drag Mode” driving mode for the fastest shifting and maximum torque delivery. The performance package provides the car with the stickier Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tires.
The Mustang EcoBoost also sees increased performance for 2018. Torque increases from 320 to 350 pound-feet, though horsepower remains the same at 310. That means the Mustang EcoBoost is down 25 horsepower to the V6 Camaro, but has a whopping 66 more pound-feet of torque. Just like with the GT, the Mustang EcoBoost manages its best 0-60 time with the 10-speed auto and the performance package. Equipped as such, it will get to 60 in less than 5 seconds, also just beating the Camaro V6’s best claimed time of 5.1 seconds.
Ford says the 2018 Mustang will be arriving at Portland Ford dealer, Mackenzie Ford in Hillsboro, this fall. The online configuration tool will also go live tomorrow, and will allow people to spec their perfect Mustang. It will also show pricing for the new pony car.
If you’ve always wanted line-lock in your EcoBoost Mustang so it could turn tread into smoke just like its V8-powered GT stablemates, we have great news: Ford’s made it happen. Well, for 2018 at least. Even better news is that it’ll be standard in all Mustangs, period. That means you don’t have to buy a higher trim or a special performance package to get it.
Neither will you be limited by transmission choice. Both the 10-speed auto and the 6-speed manual will come so equipped. The system is activated through the instrument cluster menu using steering wheel controls. After it locks up the front brakes, you’ve got 15 seconds to vaporize some rubber before the system deactivates.
Is this something that EcoBoost owners have been signing petitions about? We don’t have the data about customer preferences here, but our take is that this has more to do with normalizing the Ecoboost ‘Stang as a legitimate V8 alternative than to satisfy a hyper-vocal owner subset. Ford wants the EcoBoost to succeed quite badly. It’s a good standard-bearer for Ford’s EcoBoost program in general, it’s good for the company’s CAFE numbers, and it’s probably good for the younger buyers Ford wants to attract.
In other news, the available digital instrument cluster, which is a very cool piece of kit, now includes a little animation of a Mustang burning rubber when you activate the line-lock function. This may tip wafflers over the edge, right? Right.
You’ll see line-lock on new Mustangs at your Portland Ford dealer later this year. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like Ford will offer retrofit kits for older EcoBoost cars at this time.
While it’s not of the best quality, this photo shared by Mustang6G.com shows what appear to be four louver-style fender vents on a big-wing Mustang prototype. This is leading many to believe the car is a Mustang GT500 prototype equipped with a supercharged version of the GT350’s plat-plane-crank V8. And that engine needs to dissipate some heat.
These vents may have been present on a GT500 mule we saw earlier, but black cladding was covering them up. The photo was taken of a similar mule, or possibly the same one, in a garage or lab. You can see a few more shots of the prototype on Mustang6G’s forum, and we have spy video of a mule below. Previously spotted prototypes have been wearing Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires, which are more aggressive than the GT350’s Pilot Super Sports. And then there’s that big wing out back. Mustang6G notes that this is not likely to be a refreshed GT350, since dealers have been told that car will not get any substantive updates when the face-lifted regular-strength Mustangs go on sale for 2018.
Ford is introducing some interesting future technology for the 2018 F-150 and Mustang. A bumper-mounted radar and a windshield-mounted camera will scan the road ahead and convey information to a new Pedestrian Detection system. It will be able to alert the driver of pedestrians in the path of the vehicle both day and night, automatically applying brakes if the driver doesn’t heed the system warnings.
To separate between tree-shaped objects and people-shaped people, the system relies on a database of “pedestrian shapes”, against which it compares the shapes it detects ahead. Every second, the windshield camera takes more than 30 snapshots, so the system is continuously up-to-date. Ford says the viewing angle is wide enough to detect pedestrians even in low-light conditions where there are no streetlights, just the car’s own headlights. However, there’s no thermal camera involved for true night vision.
The system was tested first with dummies on test tracks, and later in busy cities such as Paris and Amsterdam. The first European implementation of the system will be on the new 2018 Ford Fiesta. In the United States, the detection system will become available on the F-150 in August and on the Mustang in November.