Ford’s Mustang has just received it’s last major update.  I’ll give you a short (ish) list of all the major updates of this generation of the Mustang.

2003:  Two concept cars are shown at every major auto show across the country, with much hype.

2005:  The Fifth-generation Mustang is unveiled at the North American International Auto Show.  It has a 210-horsepower 4.0 liter V6 with 240 lb-ft of torque.  The other engine is a 4.6 liter, 300-horsepower, 320 lb-ft V8.  Either of these engines can be had in a convertible body style or a coupe body style.  The available transmissions are a Tremec five-speed manual, or a Ford-built five-speed automatic.

2006:  The Pony Package is available for the V6 Mustang only.  It includes:  an upgraded suspension derived from the GT, 17-inch wheels with wider, nicer tires (also from the GT), a rear deck spoiler, unique door striping and emblems, and a unique grille design with fog lamps.  The GT-based Shelby GT-H is tuned by Shelby North America to have 319 horsepower and almost 350 lb-ft of torque.  The GT-H is only available for rent through Hertz.  It is a nod to the 1966 “Rent-A-Racer” program, where one could rent a Shelby GT350H for the day.  500 are made in 2006.  Two years later, another run of 500 was tuned.

2007:  Ford Custom Accessories introduces a new model at the SEMA show in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The V6 Appearance Package has a lot going for it (it is now considered a collector’s car).  The equipment that comes with it is:  a chrome billet-style upper grille, body-color side scoops, a black satin front lip spoiler, GT hood scoop (not functional), bright rolled exhaust tips, black satin hood stripe, unique decklid spoiler applique, GT black satin decklid applique, upgraded black floor mats, and 18-inch premium polished aluminum wheels.  Ford introduces a GT California Special that hearkens back to the 1968 Mustang GT California Special.  The package is now considered a collector’s item.  The package adds non-functional side scoops, 18-inch polished aluminum wheels, and unique vinyl striping.

In 2008, Ford re-introduced the Bullitt model, after a seven-year hiatus.  It was available in Dark Highland Green or Midnight Black paint.  The Bullitt model was so reminiscent of the car used in the 1968 Steve McQueen movie, Bullitt, that the aging McQueen bought one.  Peter Egan of Car & Driver owned one until 2011.

The 2009 model year for the Mustang was certainly exciting.  The Mustang turned 45, so Ford came out with a special 45th Anniversary Edition.  It had the same functional equipment as the GT model but came with a lot more.  This model came with special badging of a Mustang colt.  It also had a hood scoop, rear spoiler, the Ambient Lighting Package and special 17 inch polished aluminum wheels.  Also, the Iacocca Silver 45th Edition was introduced.  45 custom units were built.  They have custom bodies built by Gaffaglio Family Metalcrafters of Southern California, but retain the stock running gear from the GT.  Lee Iacocca was given unit one of forty-five.  One unit was sold for $352,000 at a Barrett-Jackson auction.

The 2010 GT receives an update to it’s engine, bringing 15 much-needed horsepower and more torque.  The transmissions remain unchanged, but the AdvanceTrac stability control system is now standard.  It has a new Sport Mode that allows for more spirited driving.  Nothing new for the V6, except for the AdvanceTrac updates.  Also, there is a new Track Pack gives the car a sportier edge.  It includes larger brake pads (front and rear), Pirelli summer tires, stabilizer bars and rear control towers from the GT500, a recalibrated AdvanceTrac stability control system, and an aggressive 3.73:1 rear axle ratio with carbon fiber plates in the differential.

2011:  Desperately in need of a major update, the Mustang is taken into the stable for new guts.  It receives two new engines:  a 305-horsepower, 280 lb-ft of torque Duratec V6 engine.  The GT finally gets a true 5.0 liter engine.  The 4951 cc engine pumps out a hearty 412 horsepower and an impressive 390 lb-ft of torque.  The transmissions are now a Getrag six-speed manual, and a new six-speed automatic.  Badging on the new models is not as much as before.  One of the ways to tell a GT from a V6 model is to check just ahead of the doors.  If a V8, it will have a “5.0” badge.  V6 models have none.

2012:  Not much has happened yet for the Mustang, but there are some highlights:  The historic Boss 302 is back in action!  Built for road racing, the “base” Boss 302 is bloody fast.  It seats four, has a six-speed manual transmission, has 444 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque (down 10 lb-ft on the GT), and has Pirelli P-Zero summer tires.  The Boss 302 Laguna Seca Edition is truly THE car that Chevy and Mopar should be chasing.  It has the same amount of horsepower and torque as the “base” 302, but loses it’s rear seat.  IF you are wanting a fast car for SCCA racing, check out the Laguna Seca.  It is more expensive, but a lot more fun than a Mazda Miata…Initially, only 750 units were going to be built, but now it is in regular production.

2013 (model year):  All models have unique “blacked-out” taillights that blend in better to the car when not in use.  The GT models also get functional heat extractors and fog lamps in the grille.  Plus, GT models get an extra eight horsepower, bringing the total to 420 horsepower.  Torque remains the same.  The new GT Premium model is the last major update for the fifth-generation of the Mustang.  One can easily call it the “Boss for a Smaller Budget.”  Why?  HID (high-intensity-discharge) headlights, a new front look with those cool new heat extractors, Ford’s cool new Track Apps (tracking track times, fuel economy, stuff like that), scalloped taillights, and those eight more rearing-to-go horses.  Since this pony is truly the last of it’s breed, enjoy the powerful engine, cheaper price than the Boss 302 and GT500 while you can.  One can expect to see resale values of the 2013 GT Premium shoot up in the next few years.  You can see my idea of a perfect GT Premium with the attached link.  Please send in your idea of a perfect GT Premium – I’d like to see it!…8R3Z-63132A08-AC.~YZKAA.59G.44X.GT.COU.PRE.51S.55R.%5D

Oh, and the GT Premium comes in the convertible bodystyle!  Double VROOM!

4 thoughts on “The Last of It’s Breed.

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