After a private debut in January, the 2017 Chicago Auto Show is now a great opportunity for the public to see the 2018 Ford Mustang. With a more aggressive face and extra power under the hood, it’s sure to be a hit in the Windy City.
Ford’s designers give the ‘Stang’s front and rear a comprehensive styling overhaul. The hood edge sits nearly an inch (2.54 centimeters) lower than before, which gives the pony car a more menacing appearance, and the vents on it communicate a sporty demeanor. The new LED headlights also look quite modern. The tweaks make the Mustang’s face look less retro-inspired, which follows the way this styling trend is generally losing steam.
New bracket-shaped LED taillights dominate the view from the tail. The tweaks for the spoiler and bumper are more understated, though. The more complex shape for the rear diffuser adds to the performance-oriented look, too.
Ford slices the Mustang’s engine options down to just two choices by dropping the 3.7-liter V6 from the lineup. The 5.0-liter V8 has a higher compression ratio that reportedly allows for an increased redline and improved fuel economy. The 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder also has more torque. Both mills now hook up to a 10-speed automatic, which should also improve performance. However, the Blue Oval isn’t releasing specific outputs for either powerplant yet. An optional Performance Package adds MagneRide dampers for even better handling.
The changes are more minor inside, but buyers can now choose an optional digital instrument cluster. Plus, there are some nicer materials in the cabin.
The 2018 Mustang Convertible gets all the same upgrades for customers who prefer the open-air motoring.
The 2018 Mustang won’t arrive in dealers in the United States until the fall. Ford won’t discuss pricing yet, but so many upgrades will potentially cause an increase in the model’s cost.
Live photos: Nathan Leach-Proffer / Motor1.com
Gallery: 2018 Ford Mustang: Chicago 2017
Today, Ford introduces its new Mustang – the world’s best-selling sports coupe and the company’s most advanced Mustang ever.
A host of improvements including new technology and design changes give owners ways to customize Mustang to their preferences, even better performance from more powerful engines and new MagneRide™ suspension technology. Customers have more ways than ever to personalize Mustang to make it their own, with three new paint colors, 12 distinct wheel choices and a customizable digital instrument cluster.
“The new Mustang is our best ever, based on more than 50 years as one of the iconic sports car in America and now, the world,” said Joe Hinrichs, president of The Americas. “Tapping Mustang’s enormous fan base, we’re bringing the new Mustang straight to the people – and introducing the new car across multiple social media channels, reaching millions.”
Technology for greater personalization
Mustang makes available Ford’s first 12-inch all-digital LCD screen in the dashboard. This all-new customizable instrument cluster can be easily personalized, offering three separate views. Customers can personalize the displays for normal, sport and track mode. All-new Mustang MyMode with memory function allows customers to save their favorite drive settings, including suspension and steering preferences.
The new Mustang is so customizable that even its engine note can be adjusted. Delivering an audible experience like never before, an all-new active valve exhaust system is optional on Mustang GT, with a fully variable soundtrack to match the entire acceleration range.
For the first time, Mustang benefits from a vast array of Ford driver-assist technology. Customers can feel more confident than ever behind the wheel with new features like Pre-Collision Assist with pedestrian detection, distance alert, lane-departure warning, lane-keeping assist and Driver Alert System.
Ford SYNC® Connect with FordPass™ is available on Mustang for the first time. When using the FordPass® app for smartphones, drivers can start, lock, unlock and locate their car for ultimate convenience.
Performance is at the core of Mustang DNA, offering drivers a unique thrill of acceleration and cornering for the ultimate fun-to-drive experience. On all models, new shock absorbers make for better ride control, a new cross-axis joint in the rear suspension leads to increased lateral stiffness, and innovative stabilizer bars bring sharper response and handling.
MagneRide damper technology is a new option with the Mustang Performance Package to optimize ride and handling in all situations.
The proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine continues to offer outstanding performance advantages versus the outgoing 3.7-liter V6. Using Ford’s transient overboost technology uniquely calibrated for Mustang, torque is increased for wide-open throttle acceleration.
Ford’s legendary 5.0-liter V8 engine has been thoroughly reworked. It is more powerful and revs higher than any Mustang GT before. This power increase was achieved with the first application for Mustang of Ford’s new dual-fuel, high-pressure direct injection and low-pressure port fuel injection on a V8 engine – delivering robust low-end torque, high-rpm power, and improved fuel efficiency.
The manual transmission for both engine options has been upgraded for optimal torque. For the V8, the manual transmission has been totally redesigned to include a twin-disc clutch and dual-mass flywheel to increase torque capability and deliver more efficient clutch modulation.
A new 10-speed automatic transmission, available with both EcoBoost and V8 engines, is the best automatic Mustang has ever offered. With a wide-ratio span and optimized gear spacing, this all-new gearbox helps deliver higher average power for acceleration – improving responsiveness and performance.
Compared to the previous six-speed, the new 10-speed transmission has quicker shift times, better low-speed tip-in response and significantly reduced friction losses. The all-new electronic control system includes unique tunes for different drive modes and features real-time adaptive shift scheduling to ensure the right gear at the right time. Steering wheel-mounted shift paddles allow drivers maximum manual control.
Energy in the design
Overall, the car’s exterior design is now more athletic, with a lower, remodeled hood and grille that deliver a leaner look and refined aerodynamics, upper and lower front grilles, and a new position for hood vents. For the first time the entire Mustang line will feature all-LED front lights including signature lighting, low-beams, turn signals, efficient projector high-beams and available fog lamps.
The rear of the car gets revised LED taillamps for a more technical look, plus a new bumper, fascia and available performance spoiler. Dual-tip exhaust is standard for EcoBoost® Mustang, while V8-powered Mustang GT gets a standard quad-tip exhaust.
With a dozen available alloy wheel designs and fresh exterior color choices – including all-new signature Orange Fury – enthusiasts can order a Mustang with the look they’re after.
Improved touch points and visual cues with a more premium look and feel characterize the new cockpit. The center console adds a new hand-stitched wrap with contrast stitching and padded knee bolsters while door handles, rings and bezels are finished in aluminum. Restyled seating surfaces feature new patterns and color choices, the instrument panel sports an updated Mustang badge and there’s a new key fob design. A heated steering wheel is optional.
Ford’s most advanced Mustang ever goes on sale in North America this fall.