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I'm not concerned about the future of performance cars as the auto industry shifts to electrification. Humans have always liked to go fast, they'll continue to like going fast, and EVs are categorically speedier than their gas-powered counterparts. Case closed. What worries me, though, is how automakers will instill their new performance EVs with the spirit of their gas-powered performance cars.
The lack of a gas engine and its associating booms and pops and crackles, combined with the extremely linear performance of electric motors, robs performance cars of what makes them feel different from the competition. Case in point, the Ford Mustang Mach-E GT. This is a fun enough performance EV, but where there's a huge gulf between a gas-powered Mustang GT and its EcoBoost counterpart, the delta is far smaller when it comes to Mach-E variants.
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|Quick Stats||2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT|
|Motor:||Twin Permanent Magnet Synchronous|
|Output:||480 Horsepower / 634 Pound-Feet|
|0-60 MPH:||3.8 Seconds|
|EV Range:||270 Miles|
Gallery: 2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT: Review
- Exterior Color: Cyber Orange
- Interior Color: Black
- Wheel Size: 20 Inches
One area where Ford got the Mach-E GT right was with its styling. Like the gas-powered model, there are subtle, but tasteful, tweaks to separate the GT from its less powerful sibling. The Cyber Orange paint is no longer exclusive to the GT model, sadly, but it works best here, providing a sharp contrast with the black painted sills and the patterned black grille panel (which adds an uber-kitsch illuminated pony badge).
The standard alloys and their inverse five-spoke design are neat, but they lack the visual impact of the bird nest–style wheels you'll find on the Mach-E GT Performance. This is far from the last time the GT Performance will overshadow the “base” GT, though.
In the cabin, all Mach-E GTs go for a dark aesthetic, with a black dash, door panels, and faux leather/suede upholstery on the seats. Splashes of copper add a touch of brightwork to the all-business cabin, but considering some of the expressive hues on the standard Mustang GT – tan, red, and varieties of contrast stitching for the standard black – I wouldn’t mind more flair. This is a Mustang after all.
At least the Mach-E GT adopts a model-specific steering wheel. It's not Alcantara, like on the Mach-E GT prototypes and show cars Ford has shown, but the leather finish and copper contrast stitching, along with a thicker, better-padded rim, are an okay consolation and feel suitably sporty.
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- Seating Capacity: 5
- Seating Configuration: 2 / 3
- Cargo Capacity: 4.7 (Frunk) / 29.7 / 59.7 Cubic Feet
Ford's decision to split the Mach-E GT line into a standard model and a Performance trim isn't especially worrisome from the outside. But plop into the driver's seat and the first problem crops up. See, Ford gave the Mach-E GT Performance an amazing set of performance buckets. Well bolstered with a sizable bottom cushion and a substantial, purposeful shape, these are the seats Ford should be selling in every Mustang Mach-E, whether it wears the GT badge or not.
Instead, Ford is limiting those thrones to the Performance. The standard GT's seats barely feel different from the base Mach-E, with similar levels of bolstering and little change in the overall seating position. These are, by no means, sport seats. The move is doubly confusing because Ford makes no such separation on the gas-powered Mustang, which offers a set of Recaros as an independent option on all but the base EcoBoost model.
At the opposite end of the spectrum is the Mach-E GT's stiff, unyielding ride. Oversprung and underdamped, it suffers from too much vertical motion on rough roads that grows especially tiresome in a place like southeastern Michigan. The GT Performance adds magnetic dampers which should help matters in theory, and I’m eager to give them a try.
Beyond those GT-specific shortcomings, the hot Mach-E is broadly identical to the standard version. It's just as spacious and, surprisingly considering the larger 245/45/20 tires, similarly quiet on the road.
- Center Display: 15.5-inch Touchscreen
- Instrument Cluster Display: 10.2-inch
- Wireless Apple CarPlay or Android Auto: Yes
Similarities to the base Mach-E extend to the tech suite. All GTs come with the same infotainment setup on a 15.5-inch portrait-oriented touchscreen running Sync 4A. You'll still find wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as the identical response times and equally pretty graphics from the base Mach-E.
Unlike when my colleague Jeff Perez tested the Mach-E in April 2021, the infotainment rig on my Cyber Orange GT ran faultlessly, responding readily to inputs. Ford seems to have solved issues that bothered me in my original first drive, like a poorly designed wireless charge pad. A slightly modified design kept my iPhone better connected, and I noticed far fewer warnings on the infotainment screen that my device had stopped charging because it was misaligned.
But beyond those changes, this remains the same able tech suite Ford rolled out in 2021. You can take a deeper dive into the Mach-E's infotainment in our previous reviews.
- Motor: Twin Permanent Magnet Synchronous
- Output: 480 Horsepower / 600 Pound-Feet
- Battery: 91.0 Kilowatt-Hour Lithium-Ion
And here, friends, is where the problems really crop up. The Mach-E GT packs 480 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque, up 134 ponies and 172 lb-ft on a dual-motor Mach-E with the extended-range battery; the sprint to 60 drops from 4.8 seconds to 3.8. On paper, then, this car seems to do justice to the GT badge.
It translates to the real world, too, at least initially. The first dozen or so blasts off the line were exhilarating in the way that's unique to hot EVs. But then I started looking for something behind the crush of g forces and came up empty, because the artificial soundtrack in the Mach-E GT is the same as you'll find in the standard model. There's no unique tone or increased volume, even with the exclusive Unbridled Extended performance mode active. It felt like I was watching Star Wars without the hum of a lightsaber – an amazing thing with one deal-breaking flaw.
The good news is that this is within Ford's power to fix. A simple over-the-air update could up the volume or even attach an acceleration soundtrack that's unique to the GT. It's what the car deserves, and I sincerely hope the Mach-E's product team considers making a change.
Soundtrack aside, the small performance disparity between the GT and GT Performance doesn't bother me much. Yes, the latter will get to 60 in 3.5 seconds (matching the Tesla Model Y Performance) but arguing about a few tenths on vehicles that already do the deed in under four seconds feels like splitting hairs. The Mach-E GT, no matter the variant, is a blistering straight-line performer.
It's a pretty fair dancer, too, enhancing the already impressive agility of the standard model. Body motions are tighter and there's more grip through the bends owing to the tires' larger contact patch. Moreover, the Mach-E GT can and will get a bit silly if you apply enough accelerator and steering angle. That said, I'm not sure the handling improvements can overshadow the GT's inferior ride quality – customers are giving up more than they're receiving in this exchange, especially since the standard car gets similarly playful when you push it.
Beyond the stiffer suspension, the Mach-E GT is light on other changes. It retains the same brake setup (14.2-inch front rotors with four-pot calipers and 12.4-inch rears on single-piston stoppers – the GT Performance Edition's front discs are almost an inch larger) and an identical 14.6:1 steering ratio. Unsurprisingly, the behavior of both the brakes and steering match every other Mach-E.
- Driver Assistance Level: SAE Level 2 (Hands-Off)
- NHTSA Rating: Not Rated
- IIHS Rating: Top Safety Pick
Every Mach-E comes standard with Ford Co-Pilot 360 2.0 and Co-Pilot 360 Assist 2.0, which are actually different things despite the similar names. The former includes front and rear automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, and automatic high beams. The latter covers adaptive cruise control, lane-centering assist, and traffic sign recognition. Why these are listed as separate things… well, I got nothing.
The 2022 GT is available with the optional Ford Co-Pilot Active 2.0 pack, which is Blue Oval-ese for automatic parking and the BlueCruise hands-free driver aid. Aside from one small case where Blue Cruise refused to activate no matter what I did, the system worked brilliantly during testing. It maintained the lane well and managed speed and lane incursions happily. But it also impressed me with its foresight.
One tricky section of Interstate 75, about an hour north of Detroit, has an on-ramp where traffic merges into the left lane. It's a particularly dangerous spot that lives on the exit of a gentle (but blind) curve. I was Blue Cruising along when, half a mile from the merge point, a warning that I needed to take control flashed on the instrument display. I grabbed the wheel and was able to maintain my lane due to the lack of merging traffic. Once I cleared the ramp, BlueCruise reengaged. That's some impressive programming to know such a situation was coming and proactively inform that the driver needs to take over.
- EV Range: 270 Miles
- Charge Type: 110V / 240V / DC
- Charge Time: 95 Hours / 10.9 Hours @ 48A / 45 Minutes (10 to 80 Percent)
The Mach-E GT returns 270 miles on a single charge. Considering it shares its 91.0-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack with the standard Mach-E, which nets 277 miles when rocking two electric motors, that's not a big downgrade for the improved performance. Charge times are broadly similar, too.
In terms of home charging, my Grizzl-E Classic charger will add 28 miles of range per hour, juicing the battery to full in 10.9 hours. If you hit a DC fast charger, the 150-kW max charge rate will get the battery from 10 to 80 percent in 45 minutes. There's no gentle way to say this, but all of those figures lag behind the GT's chief (and only, at the moment) competitor, the Tesla Model Y Performance.
Tesla's compact crossover packs 303 miles per charge, will fill its battery at a 240-volt outlet and 48-amp circuit at a rate of 42 miles per charge hour, and can guzzle down electricity at a rate of 250 kilowatts at a Level 3 Supercharger. That's a tough package for this pony to beat.
- Base Price: $43,895 + $1,100
- Trim Base Price: $63,095
- As-Tested Price: $67,290
Prices for the 2022 Mach-E GT start at $63,095, including the $1,100 destination charge. From there, my tester adds the $1,900 Co-Pilot 360 Active 2.0 pack (BlueCruise), which requires a $1,500 glass roof. The $795 Cyber Orange paint rounds out the options sheet, leaving my Mach-E GT with an out-the-door price of $67,290.
To start, the base GT costs $6,000 less than a GT Performance but it's only about $3,000 more than a Mach-E Premium with the same battery pack and dual-motor layout. But due to the global supply chain crisis, Ford is only accepting orders on the GT/GT Performance and base Select (only available with the standard battery pack). In other words, this is the most reasonable way to get into a Mach-E with the largest battery and all-wheel drive, unless you can find a Mach-E Premium at your local dealer. And good luck with that – Ford’s consumer page shows just three Premiums available within 500 miles of Detroit.
Sure, you'll miss the GT Performance's neat wheels and the potential ride quality improvements of MagneRide, but I don't think either of those things is quite worth the $6,000 hike. At the same time, the GT is in an entirely different league than the base Mach-E Select, which is down on power and down on range. All things considered, if I had to buy a Mach-E tomorrow, I’d be driving home with a Cyber Orange GT like the one featured here.
Which EV I'd have is a trickier question. The only genuine rival to the GT at the moment is the Tesla Model Y Performance. Even with Elon's latest price hike, which bumps the Y Performance to $69,440 (including $1,200 destination charge and a $250 “ordering fee”), it's the vehicle to have if you plan on road-tripping thanks to the excellent Supercharger network, a 303-mile range, and a far superior DC charge rate. And it will outgun the standard Mach-E GT to boot. Deciding between the car featured here and a Model Y Performance is trickier than choosing between a GT Performance and a regular GT.
It ultimately comes down to subjective measures, like styling and use cases. If, like me, you have a home charging setup and do very little road tripping, the Mach-E's interior and exterior design and styling make a strong case. If you're constantly driving 200 miles from home, though, you want the Model Y. Be sure to know what you'll use your sporty electric crossover for before plopping your money down.
Mach-E GT Competitor Reviews:
2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E GT