The sixth-generation pony car has only been with us since 2015, but already a facelifted and more powerful 2018 Ford Mustang has been revealed.
There are few surprises here, however: The new-look ‘Stang surfaced ahead of schedule yesterday, and details of its upgrades made their way online back in November.
On the styling front, the Mustang‘s design team have focused their fury up front, with a new stepped headlight design flanking a wider grille. Those new eyes are a full-LED arrangement, too.
Above, there’s a resculpted bonnet with new vents, and below you’ll find a new bumper design with triangular side ports and a long air dam along the bottom edge.
Although subtler, changes at the rear include a new C-shaped look to the tail lamps like an over-enthusiastic belting of the ((( ))) brackets keys, along with a blacked-out diffuser insert and a new wing on the GT model.
Inside, Ford has introduced the option of a fully digital instrument cluster, with a larger 12-inch screen replacing the conventional mechanical dials and gauges.
As with the European brands toting similar technology, the new display offers Normal, Sport and Track mode views.
Ford says it has improved the interior with new aluminium detailing, restyled seat trim and a range of new patterns. It seems, however, the Mustang’s shortcomings in interior material quality have not been addressed.
To the more important news: The Mustang’s V8 now features both port and direct fuel injection, promising greater efficiency and more power. Just how significant are the improvements? Ford isn’t saying yet, and we likely won’t know until closer to next year.
The Mustang’s six-speed manual picks up a twin-disc clutch and a dual-mass flywheel, derived from the GT350 model, but the big news for many will be the six-speed auto has been swapped out for a 10-speed unit that promises to deliver quicker shifts and more responsive launches.
Fuel economy is also claimed to be improved, although, again, no figures have been offered.
The V8 version will also be offered with a new active valve exhaust system, adding some adjustability to the eight-cylinder powerhouse’s note.
Handling is improved with new shock absorbers and a new cross-axis joint at the rear that Ford says will boost lateral stiffness, while new stabiliser bars are also in place. And, for the first time, MagneRide active dampers will be offered as an option.
News of no consequence for Australia is that Ford has dropped the V6 option from the range.
Locally, we were only ever offered the V8 and the EcoBoost turbo four, and Ford says the latter will pick up more torque for the new model year. Surprise: specific numbers are still to be handed down.
With a hefty 432Nm already on offer, the upgrade should be a nice one – and the giant 529Nm offered by Ford Performance’s power pack could be the magic number we’ll see.
On the safety front, the Mustang picks up Pre-Collision Assist, adding lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist, distance alert, pedestrian detection, and Driver Alert System.
Local timing for the updated Mustang is still to be confirmed, although Ford Australia has confirmed with CarAdvice today that we can expect a 2018 launch.
Listen to the CarAdvice team discuss the 2018 Ford Mustang below, and catch more like this at caradvice.com/podcast.