23 September 2016
Review: Ford Mustang
The guy in the office stared for several long moments. "OK," he said eventually. "I'll let you in if you take me for a spin." Though I knew that he didn't really expect me to say yes.
As I drove on with a grin, I figured it was the first time a bright yellow Ford Mustang had come into the facility. Especially rumbling through with the sound of a 419hp V8 wafting behind. He was waiting for me when I weighed out, though, wanting to talk about the car and see it close-up and personal.
The Mustang GT is that kind of car. Iconic, people-grabbing. Not a car to try and be discreet in. And even if you had the one in grey, the sound would turn any petrolhead towards it. Non petrolheads too. It all makes for lots of spontaneous conversations with strangers.
But there's something about a V8 and this particular American automotive icon. You have to drive the 5.0 at least once (I've done it three times since the first European launch of the car). Then you can get back to normality. In the meantime, enjoy.
I've said before that this generation Mustang, representing over 50 years since the original was launched in 1964, is the closest to the original in design and ethos. Which was pitched at giving the 'family man' something more sporty than the regular ordinary sedan. Or the wagon which his wife drove. The designers have been true to that original 'pony car' in shape, in detail cues, and in the cabin ambience which fairly successfully mixes the '60s and the current decade.
And, in case you don't know the heritage, there's a plate on the dash, 'Mustang, since 1964'.
Which really is the point. The Ford Mustang of this decade is not for now. It's for memorialising a period in automotive history that will never be repeated. It's a reminder of a time in American motoring when a car could be much more a definition of its owner than it is today. In this instance, sporty at an accessible price.
So at today's price, starting at €55,500 for the 2.3 and in the review car's sticker tag of €74,000 or so, plus road tax fir the V8 of €2,350, Mustang no longer fits in that last space.
It's still great fun, though.