2022 Ford Mustang
2022 Ford Mustang
Nearly six decades on, today’s version of the first pony car still captures the magic of the original. The 2022 Ford Mustang is offered in coupe and convertible form, with plenty of turbo-4 or V-8 power, retro-modern styling, and more performance than ever before.
This year, Ford spices up the Mustang range with Stealth, Ice White, and Coast Limited packages that blend unique interior and exterior treatment.
The Mustang range starts with a 310-horsepower turbo-4 that’s plenty peppy and jumps from there through a 450-hp 5.0-liter V-8 in GT form before topping out at the ferociously powerful 760-hp supercharged 5.2-liter V-8 that makes the GT500 the most powerful car to ever wear the badge. Transmission choices include a 6-speed manual or a 10-speed automatic with paddle shifters, and power goes to the rear wheels.
Fuel economy isn’t the Mustang’s forte, but 4-cylinder versions can be frugal enough. The EPA estimates as high as 21 mpg city, 32 highway, 25 combined with the automatic and less with the manual or in convertible form. With the V-8, the Mustang checks in at 19 mpg in automatic transmission guise or as low as 17 mpg with the manual. The GT500 is as thirsty as you might expect at 14 mpg combined.
The NHTSA grants the Mustang a five-star overall rating, while most IIHS testing resulted in “Good” scores. Standard equipment includes automatic emergency braking, active lane control, blind-spot monitors, and automatic high-beam headlights. Adaptive cruise control is available.
Ford builds a Mustang for just about every taste and budget, starting with the $28,400 base coupe with cloth upholstery, manually adjustable front seats, a 4.2-inch audio display, and 17-inch alloy wheels. The convertible runs $5,000 more.
The cheapest way into a V-8 is with the base GT Fastback for about $37,500
An appealing High Performance package adds larger front brakes, heavy-duty front springs, active exhaust, a gauge package, a limited-slip rear differential, a strut tower brace, a larger rear sway bar, and 19-inch wheels on summer tires, while selecting the Handling package adds bigger front Brembo brakes and magnetic dampers.
The Premium trim level costs around $4,000 to $5,000, depending on the trim, bringing with it an 8.0-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, adaptive cruise control, power-adjustable front seats, 9-speaker audio, and navigation.
The $74,000 Shelby GT500 piles on just about everything from the Mustang’s playbook, though an $18,000 carbon fiber package is available.
The Mustang is inescapably retro, but not overwhelmingly so. Its long hood, low roof, angled rear window, and pert tail tie it closely to the original Mustang Fastback versions. A row of vertical sequential taillights, pronounced fender flares, and a grille with a galloping pony complete the look.
Modern details include LED lighting and wheel sizes that grow from 17 to 19 inches.
Convertibles have a more conventional coupe-like roofline with their cloth tops up.
The Mach 1 and GT500 go farther with aero-enhancing exterior trim and brash stripes.
The retro look carries inside with a twin-binnacle instrument panel and retro gauges, though a digital instrument cluster is optional. Metallic trim can be swapped out for carbon fiber bits on higher-end versions.
On all, the front seats are well-bolstered and offer good support. The GT’s available Recaro seats are an incredibly comfortable upgrade, though they can be too thin for larger drivers.
Rear-seat drivers will find limited space and head room, as you might expect from a coupe. Trunk space ranges from 11 to over 13 cubic feet for coupes.
It wouldn’t be a Mustang without offering thrilling performance, but there’s no slouch in this lineup.
Turbo-4 cars are plenty peppy, with a 0-60-mph sprint in the five-second range, and a 330-hp version slices a little time off of that. The V-8 in the Mustang GT ups the ante, both in terms of speed and sound. It’s downright fast, capable of hitting 60 mph in just 4.0 seconds. Mach 1 versions add 20 more hp, too.
On both 4-cylinder and GT versions of the Mustang, the optional Performance Package turns things up a notch without majorly impacting ride quality; opt for the magnetic dampers and ride quality actually improves. Mach 1 models ride a bit firmer but deliver handling more akin to a genuine sports car than a muscle car.
The line-topping GT500 is ridiculously powerful and stiff, making it a choice for the initiated only.
The latest Ford Mustang is a balanced sports car with classic styling, slick handling, and gobs of power – with the option for even more.
—by Andrew Ganz, with driving impressions from The Car Connection