Convertible Review: Nine million owners and 45 years after its
auspicious debut at the New York World’s Fair in April of 1964, the
Mustang is still America’s favorite muscle car. The 2010 model, restyled
and upgraded, is true to the legend, and continues to offer “a steed for
Available as a coupe or
convertible, the new car takes inspiration from the classic 1970 model,
which was already the third generation of the enormously popular car.
You can see it in the one-piece headlamp unit and the reworked side
scoops that have been on nearly every Mustang in one form or another
since day one.
Retaining only the roof
of the ’09, the new car emits a pulsing energy and flaunts a tautness of
form. The hood features a powerdome bulge that conveys the look of
power, regardless of which engine lives below it.
My convertible tester
came in glistening Sunset Gold Metallic. You couldn’t get away with a
shade like that on, say, a Toyota Camry, but it works here.
Besides the muscular
new shape, Ford gives us sequential taillamps, a real throwback to the
‘60s. I didn’t get to enjoy them from the driver’s seat, though.
The new Mustang
features another of Ford’s amazing new interiors. The seamless
soft-touch TPO (Thermoplastic Olefin) surfaces look and feel rich and
the different panels all meet evenly. My tester had plenty of metal and
metallic surfaces all over the dash, console and leather-wrapped
The steering wheel
combines metallic and leather sections and has a varying thickness
around the rim. This looks great, but feels odd in turns when you’re
grabbing different handfuls of wheel.
It’s quiet inside,
thanks to some careful soundproofing. You can still enjoy the sporty
engine sounds when you accelerate, but in cruise mode it’s whisper
quiet. And of course, squeaks and rattles are history.
“That’s the difference
between good enough and exceptional,” says Gary Morales, Interior Design
manager. “We wouldn’t accept anything less than leadership design and
You can get a “regular”
Mustang or the GT model, either of them in two-door coupe or convertible
model, and standard or premium trim level. My convertible was the
regular car, but today, regular means a 210-horsepower V6 with 240
lb.-ft of torque driving a 3,450-lb. rear-wheel-drive car. Not too bad
in today’s auto world.
The GT gives you the
latest update of Ford’s now legendary 4.6-liter V8. This one provides
315 horsepower and 325 lb.-ft. of torque. Both cars come with a standard
five-speed manual transmission or you can order the optional five-speed
automatic for an extra $995. Both engines are tuned to sound macho and
manly out on the road. My V6 did a great job of pulling me along. As
with the interior, Ford engineers have sorted out and fine-tuned the
suspension and other mechanicals.
Surely aficionados of
classic Mustangs will savor the GT, which has many parts and settings
based on Mustang racing programs and the popular
For a sports car, the
Mustang does reasonably well in fuel economy and emissions ratings. The
V6 earns EPA fuel economy numbers of 16 City, 24 Highway. I averaged
19.6 mpg. The agency’s Green Vehicle Guide gives the V6 a 7 (out of 10)
for Air Pollution and a 4 on the Greenhouse Gas score (automatic) or 5
(manual). Those latter numbers are not surprising for an engine with
four liters of displacement.
Ford’s SYNC system
gives you voice control over your entertainment system. I liked the iPod
plug-in capability, but wasn’t so keen on the insistent female voice
that interrupted my music with, “Want to run a vehicle health report?
Press OK.” I found the button on the steering wheel and pushed it. I
heard and saw nothing further until a couple of days later when she
asked me again. This time, I ignored her, the Mustang seemed healthy
enough to me.
convertible top is nicely lined for a finished look and a quiet ride.
Just undo the two windshield latches and press the button and down it
goes in about 15 seconds. The latches are easy to use when you reattach
the top on the way up, too. There’s nothing better than a pleasant
cruise along a minimally trafficked back road with the top stowed down.
Prices start at
$21,845, including shipping, for the two-door coupe with the V6 and
manual transmission. The V8-powered GT Coupe starts $7,000 higher. My
Premium level V6 Convertible had a base price of $28,995, and with
automatic transmission and destination charges, came to a total MSRP
price of $31,235. By Steve Schaefer © AutoWire.Net - San Francisco
The Bottom Line:
The Mustang is still America’s favorite muscle car, plus any Mustang
Convertible is a kick to drive, and that’s the model I would buy. But if
you want to go lower in price, the used car market is loaded with good
Mustangs. I think that short of buying a classic 1960’s Mustang, the
2010 Mustang Convertible, is the one to buy and drive today.
Review provided by: Tony Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
“Tony the Car Guy”
is an automotive writer, editor and publisher in the San Francisco Bay
Area. If you have a question or comment for Tony send it to
TonyLeo@pacbell.net or visit AutoWire.Net at
And remember: “ You Are
what you Drive ”
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Column Name: Mustang is
still America’s favorite muscle car
Topic: The 2010 Ford
Word Count: 951
Photo Caption: The
2010 Ford Mustang Convertible
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Mustang Internet Media
Series #: 2010 - 04
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2010 Mustang Convertible