Ford has admitted that it has serious issues with the upcoming Mustang that just don’t seem to be solvable.
With the next-generation S650-series Mustang set to appear globally in the next 12 months, Detroit-based product planners are rapidly approaching a decision that could make or break the legendary sports car to move on.
Speaking to Australian media in South Australia late last month, Ford Performance chief engineer Carl Widmann revealed that problems with the future Mustang are also at the heart of what has made the series so popular with sports car buyers around the world – its V8 engine. .
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More specifically, the issue is whether to continue developing the iconic V8 during and after the upcoming seventh-generation iteration in the face of ever-increasing emissions and fuel consumption targets in key markets, particularly in Western Europe, where sales of the existing S550 version have been strong in the country. -countries like Germany.
“The V8 isn’t going away anytime soon,” said Widmann. “Mustang buyers expect a V8, right?
“We knew we could make a twin-turbo V6 that would be faster and more powerful than any current V8, but is that what Mustang fans really want?”
Of course, it’s worth clarifying now that the new Mustang S650 will continue with the V8 option over the next few years.
Rumors suggest that some kind of hybridization technology will be introduced in some versions of the V8 which is a tremendous amount of Mustang sales in most countries including Australia, leading to further speculation that a future manual gearbox version might also be announced. .
The Ford Performance engineering veteran with a generation-dedicated Blue Oval belonging to his father and grandfather who has worked in Dearborn since the middle of the last century adds that it is a question that needs to be answered, as electrification is inevitably taking over in the performance vehicle sphere. .
When asked about the future of the 5.0-liter V8, Widmann admits he doesn’t want to see it discontinued, as it is closely linked to the Pony Car legend.
“What do we do with Mustang buyers who insist on a 5.0-liter V8?” she says. “That’s what buyers want.”
With the current Mustang Mach 1 spitting out 345kW of power and 556Nm of torque, as well as the 5.2-liter V8 version of the flagship Shelby GT500 in the US market producing 567kW and 847Nm, neither Ford nor the hardcore band of brand loyalists are far from done with the older model. ancient american muscle.
in the US auto week Last year’s magazine interview, Mr Widmann was very clear about Ford’s stance on the V8 in the Mustang.
“I don’t think gasoline engines will reach their time in the near future, there are still many enthusiasts,” he said in the article. “In other words, Ford will continue to build the Ford Mustang V8 model as long as customers keep buying it.”
Whatever the future holds, Ford is preparing a successor to the current version (from 2014) for today’s market.
The latest spy shots of the S650 Mustang have emerged showing the modern but still very careful evolution of the existing model’s styling, especially in the sharper nose-cone area.
Whether today’s foundations carry over to newcomers, albeit heavily modified if needed, or the 2024 version adopting variations from other Ford platforms, is yet to be confirmed. However, it seems that the much-speculated all-wheel-drive version will not materialize.
That said, the car’s interior and particularly the dashboard, are much more robust than the existing version, which is believed to have been originally laid out at Ford Australia’s design studio in Melbourne. New digital instrumentation and a large horizontal touchscreen are to be expected, and speak to the dramatically improved and vastly improved multimedia and safety technologies leading up to the new Mustang.
Reportedly, the S650 Mustang will debut sometime in March or April of next year – coinciding with the original model’s 59th anniversary, with production starting later this year.
It is also conceivable that Ford could set a sales or delivery date starting in March 2024, in line with the ’60 seriesth birthday.
Either way, there’s a lot more to come about the world’s favorite Pony Cars, so keep an eye out for this space.
Do you think the Mustang core can survive without a V8? Let us know in the comments section below.