DRIVEN: 2015 Ford Mustang GT

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MotoIQ: DRIVEN – 2015 Ford Mustang GT

by Billy Johnson

I’m a little late to the party since there are already plenty of reviews on the all-new 2015 S550 Mustang GT, but this review will take a slightly different angle written by a MotoIQer for MotoIQers.  Just the information you care about, how it compares to previous Mustangs, and how it stacks up as a sports car and not just a muscle car.

The Mustang has come a long way since 1964.  I would say the 4th generation “S197” chassis from 2005-2014 was probably the tipping point which saw a departure from the stereotypical drag-racing image to a car with a competent chassis that could handle well and give M3 owners a run for their money on both the drag strip and road course.  2011 marked the return of the “5.0” which produced 412 underrated ponies under the hood which turned the Mustang GT into a formidable competitor to the 6-speed M3 in a straight line, staying within a couple tenths of it to 60 and the ¼ mile.  The DTC-equipped M3 holds a noticeable advantage due to the shorter gears, extra gears, and faster shifting.

 

Gary YeomansGary Yeomans Ford Lincoln in Daytona Beach, FL was gracious enough to lend a 2015 Mustang GT Performance Package for us to test.

Despite having a solid axle, the S197 was a huge improvement in terms of torsional rigidity, handling, and refinement over the 4th gen “SN95” chassis (1994-2004) which is very similar to the 1979 3rd gen Foxbody under its skin.  Thanks to its all new chassis and 3-link rear suspension with a panhard bar, the S197 is one of the best handling solid axle production cars in history.  If you add a set of good tires and of coilovers (or in BOSS 302 trim) the Mustang could give M3s a really hard time in the corners.

 

Boss 302The S197 Ford Mustang BOSS 302 was not the most powerful, but it’s arguably the best performing Mustang of all time, with the ability to beat an E92 M3 on a track for a lot less money.
Front angle 2015 MustangOur test vehicle was a 2015 Ford Mustang GT Performance Package.  This package was touted to outperform a BOSS 302 on the track, which was faster than an E92 M3 on track.  That alone is a pretty cool accomplishment.

Now for 2015 the Mustang has finally caught up with the rest of the automotive world by ditching 50 years of solid axle history in favor of an all-new chassis designed from conception to use an integral link independent rear suspension.

 

Rear SuspensionThe integral link rear suspension is loosely borrowed from the design which debuted on the Ford Fusion/Mondeo in 2013.
 

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