Jun 19

Driven: 2013 Mustang GT

You might say that at Infinite-Garage.com we are a bit small time. It’s ok, we like it that way, our meetings usually occur over Xbox live while playing Forza and rarely involve any serious business. It kind of goes something like “what are you working on?” “an article” oh ok cool. Basically we are flying by the seat of our pants here and that includes test driving cars. You see Ferrari isn’t exactly sending us cars to drive (probably because of what I said about their new car) so we drive what we can when we can. That describes today to a tee. By chance I ran into someone I sort of know who literally just got a brand new shiny Mustang GT. After some sweet talking and maybe playing to her sympathetic side I got her to let me take it for an afternoon for a test drive.

To read the rest of the review please continue reading.

Full disclosure here I try my best to atleast in public put on my best GM fanboy face and not give the Mustang credit. However for the sake of this review I put all that aside and fooled around and fell in love. Like this could be my next car in love. Now that’s weird considering for the same price you can get a lightly used Vette with the end all be all LS3 engine and I’ve driven every year Mustang GT for the last decade and while I enjoyed them I was never bitten by them. I guess at this point Ford has it all figured out with the new Mustang and that shows.

The first thing I noticed when walking up to the car is gone are those god awful black plastic side skirts. It’s 2012 for christ sakes, what took so long? Couple that with the GT500 front end fascia, as well as the new hood and you have one nice looking car.

One complaint I’ve heard from the Mustang crowd is how they don’t like the rear end. While I do think there is something odd about it, I quite like it as a part of the whole car and the sequential turn signals are a cool flash back to the 60s. If I had a complaint and I really don’t it’s that the wheels look chunky and really big. That of course is because they are. The aftermarket can fix that for a grand or two. So with all of that said I think the 2013 Mustang is a stunner.

Heading inside and there is a nice refresh on the interior. Mainly softer materials on the dash and other places which are a big deal to some reviewers. Honestly I could care less if it’s hard or soft as long as it’s not ugly. It’s not ugly. The big change is the more then 4 inch LCD screen right between the two gauge pods. This screen houses the display for Ford’s “track apps” which are a whole ball of fun.

The track apps are nifty toys you can set up to tell you things like cornering Gs, zero-60, quartermile, and several other things. Basically Ford has given you another reason to get pulled over. “Sorry officer I was just trying to beat Ford’s advertised quartermile time.” Once you try one of these you are going to wish every car had one. Spoiler alert. IT HAS A CHRISTMAS TREE. YES! I NEED A CAR WITH A CHRISTMAS TREE IN THE DASH.

Under the hood is more pornography with the 5.0 now pumping out 420 raging horses at 6,500 rpm, up from last year’s 412. Peak torque goes to 390 lb-ft at 4,250 rpm. To my knowledge nothing has been changed but I swear the 2013 sounds meaner. There is a great snarl when leaving a light and at wide open throttle she screams. A knock I’ve always had on the Mustang is it’s sound. Admittedly it’s hard to compete with the LS motors that have an extra liter of displacement but I think this 5.0 is up to the task.

Ford’s manual gear box feels good but as with all the new Mustang’s I’ve driven the position and height of the shifter feels odd to me. I know I’m probably alone on that but the whole center console kind of annoys me. Not enough to spoil the experience and certainly not enough to turn me off on the car but there is just something about it I don’t like. I did have some issues finding 3rd cleanly, that’s not to say I couldn’t find it or that something was wrong it’s just different. I’m sure after some more miles behind the wheel I would have got it easily. Ford has included a new hill rollback assist feature which will not allow you to roll back to far when starting on a hill. I live in Illinois, we don’t have hills so sadly I couldn’t test that one out for you.

0-60 came in just 4.6 seconds according to the track app and due to the lack of a closed course I didn’t get to run through the quartermile. Ford seems to think this is a low 13 second car. Maybe if you’re blind, have no arms, legs, and have never driven before. For the rest of us this is a 12 second car for sure. I’ve had a lifetime of drag racing experience on many different levels and with countless different cars. There is no doubt the good drivers will be in the 12s and it won’t take much from the parts bin to make 11s.

Handling is good enough that you forget about the live rear end and the brakes are more then adequate. Around town the car is docile but feels pretty big. It’s got a comfortable driving position and everything is with in reach. You could easily drive the GT every day but I’m sure it’s a capable track goer too. While it feels big around town, it doesn’t when you push the car because the 5.0 revs freely and the handling is crisp.

I’ve probably gushed enough, my fellow GM enthusiast probably hate me and I’ve revealed my inner dark side to the Ford guys. The bottom line is the 2013 Mustang is very good, dare I say the king of the Muscle cars. Get to your Ford dealership and check one out for yourself. The V6 starts at 22k and the V8 GT at a hair over 31k. Ours with a few options was more like 35k. That’s a lot for a new car but that’s on par with what you’ll pay at the other Muscle car makers. If that is too steep for your budget give it a few years and pick one up used for 1/3 of that price. You won’t regret it, but the wait might be hard.

Photo source: Ford
Thanks to Jen for letting us take her baby out for a proper break in.