Do you remember the 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 302? Well, fast forward 47 years and Ford has produced a classic variant in an updated, modern package. Enter the 2016 Mustang GT. It comes with a 5.0-liter V8 (302 cubic inches + a few) and 435 ponies under the hood for performance enthusiasts. The 1969 version only had 290 horsepower so this updated model ramps up the fun-to-drive meter for sure.
This week, we test drove the 2016 Ford Mustang GT Premium Coupe.
For 2016, the Ford Mustang remains relatively unchanged except for the technology area where significant updates have been made. The MyFord Touch infotainment system has been replaced by the all-new Sync 3 touchscreen. It now features a simplified interface and smartphone-like pinch and swipe finger commands. The GT coupe gets an available black-painted roof, and all GT models get standard secondary turn signals that are integrated into the hood vents.
Features & Options
The 2016 Ford Mustang GT Premium Coupe ($36,395) comes standard with heated exterior mirrors with horse lasers, a rear diffuser, ambient interior lighting, selectable drive modes, aluminum and chrome interior accents, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated and ventilated front seats, and leather upholstery (front seats only). There is a nine-speaker audio system, satellite radio, and the aforementioned Sync 3 infotainment system (including an 8-inch touchscreen and enhanced voice controls).
The Mustang GT gets the 5.0-liter V8 engine, upgraded brakes, and electronic line-lock and launch control (manual transmission only). The GT Premium offers the California Special package ($1,995) with 19-inch black alloy wheels, a more prominent rear spoiler, and special exterior and interior trim details. Other options included the Shaker premium audio ($1,795) and voice activated navigation ($795).
Total MSRP as tested including destination: $42,275.
The cabin in the Ford Mustang features high quality materials and it’s generally comfortable. The leather-trimmed seats, Shaker Pro audio system, and leather trimmed front seats add to the ambiance and luxury feel. We especially appreciated the tilt/telescoping steering wheel that allows any driver to find the perfect position. What we didn’t like was the sport seats. They offered good support for spirited driving this week, but on a long trip, the thigh support lacked because the power seat didn’t allow enough angle upward. The leather-trimmed seats are heated and cooled which we thoroughly enjoyed, however.
The new Sync 3 infotainment system is a significant upgrade compared to the old MyFord Touch predecessor. It offers a simplified interface with smartphone-style gestures. It’s a welcome addition.
While the front is comfortable, roomy, and modern, the back seat leaves a lot to be desired. It’s considered a four-seater, but only small children will be able to ride for any distances. If you need cargo room, the back seat works well. The trunk also offers 13.5 cubic feet of cargo space. Folding rear seatbacks on the coupe expand cargo capacity.
Engine & Fuel Mileage Specs
The Mustang GT trim packs a 5.0-liter V8 that cranks out 435 horsepower and 400 lb-ft. of torque. Fuel economy estimates are 19 mpg combined and 15/25 city/highway with the manual shifter – our tester came with the 6-speed manual gearbox. Independent tests say the Mustang GT will sprint from 0-60 mph in 4.7 seconds, and we would not argue with that.
Our 2016 Ford Mustang GT was quick between the lights.
When the new Ford Mustang GT tester arrived for our week-long drive, we noticed the rubber on the rear tires was almost gone. Now we didn’t smoke the tires this week, but the GT model with 435 horses is certainly capable of it. Someone before me had some fun! With that said, the GT’s V8 ponies coupled with the 6-speed manual rower is the best option for driving and performance enthusiasts.
I had more fun than any auto journalist should have.
The Ford Mustang is one of the true muscle cars that U.S. automakers are known for. In spite of all that power under the long hood, it’s still very well behaved and a joy to drive on the open road. The cabin is quiet, almost too quiet in fact. The dual exhaust needs an upgrade as it’s too muted for most performance enthusiasts. Isn’t that the reason to have a muscle car, so that everyone within earshot knows you have something special?
The GT model offers formidable acceleration and it will put a smile on your face for days. Looking over that long hood is an experience that brings back memories of the good old days when muscle cars ruled the road. Well, the Ford Mustang is back in an updated version of the classic performance car, with a superior modern package.
The 2016 Ford Mustang GT will smoke the rubber off the tires if you have the money for new ones every week. If not, you can still have a lot of fun. The 5.0-liter has enough power and torque to satisfy the most ardent performance fan. It’s a performance icon that continues to distinguish itself as a muscle car, especially coupled with the 6-speed gearbox. With the 6-speed manual rower, it absolutely pegs the top tier of the fun-to-drive meter.
Denis Flierl has invested over 25 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. Follow his work on Twitter: @CarReviewGuy