Monday, November 23, 2015

Used Car Review - Ford Mustang (2012-2015)

A pony car for less? For this day, Myk Belmonte discovers the appeal.

2012-2015 Ford Mustang

Among the pony cars available in the US, only the Mustang stood the test of time especially that its production run was uninterrupted. While rivals such as the Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger were killed but revived later, other contemporaries like the Plymouth Barracuda and Pontiac Firebird went to car heaven. Originally, this one was based on the North American version of the Ford Falcon (not to be confused with its Australian counterpart) with numerous generations that had the vehicle grow up in size and weight.

Debuted in 2004 (production started in September of that year) as a 2005 model, the fifth generation Mustang drew inspiration from its namesake concept car for both coupe and convertible models which was developed in 2002 and saw display in the 2003 North American International Auto Show. Revisions were done in late 2008 which saw numerous changes in the car debuted as a 2010 model while new engines saw usage in 2011, to replace the somewhat aging original ones.

Numerous fans of this pony car in the Philippines had to wait until 2012 for Ford Group Philippines to bring in this generation of Mustang. Prior to this, if one wanted this car sourcing Japan used units or personal imports (which are darn expensive to begin with) are the way to go. Initially, two variants were made available with either engine plus a special edition model months later came to the scene.

Value and Costs
Most American vehicles are plagued with low resale values; making the Mustang an exemption to the case. One can get a unit for as low as P2,000,000 (we are not kidding here) with later examples hovering to the P2,700,000 range. If there is one thing which makes residuals very high, it would be the heritage of the vehicle, which other compatriots including their SUVs lack.

As always, this vehicle would be expensive to maintain since high displacement engines are present plus with it being a niche model, parts are on the pricier side.

Exterior and Interior
If there is one highlight of this vehicle, it would be the exterior styling especially cues from the first generation model. Updated models like we have gain several changes including a revised grille, new headlight design with integrated turn signals, a slimmer side mirror design, among others. V8 models differentiate themselves through a glass roof, integrated blind spot mirrors, and pony projector lights while the special edition model adds vehicle stripes.

Going inside, touches of 1960s still continue but with the addition of modern touches. With ours being the revised model, Philippine market units have a higher interior quality, something that was criticized before, and the availability of a SYNC system (mounted in the center console) that's powered by Microsoft. The special edition model uses Recaro sport seats, while others make do with ordinary leather.

Fast and severely fast, these are the descriptive words that apply to the Mustang's available engines. First on the list would be the Duratec 3.7 V6 carrying 301hp at 6,500rpm and 380Nm at 4,250rpm in which power is decent enough for the size. The icing of the cake is the Coyote 5.0 V8 that has 414hp at 6,500rpm and 529Nm at 4,250rpm, in which it is very fast to the point fuel consumption is a weak point. Do take note these are the upgraded engines which were launched in 2011, replacing the 4.0 V6 and 4.6 V8 respectively.

Driving Impressions
Vehicles of this genre are known for their straight line acceleration, Ford took the effort on improving the suspension and chassis while adding driver's aids like the AdvanceTrac. Due to these efforts, driving feel when cornering is more secure especially when these aids are switched on. However, you should control the throttle since the power might kick in before you do.

While rivals come and go (and some getting that revival), the Mustang definitely had a reason on why it stayed for a long time. Locally, rivals went in first but with outrageous prices that were out of reach. This one had a price that made the pony car experience attainable for the average joe.

The Good:
  • Fast on its heels
  • Looks good
  • More controlled handling
The Bad:
  • High resale values, bad for the used car buyer
  • Expensive maintenance
  • Poor fuel economy
The Pick: Go high, get the V8

Engines: 3,721cc Duratec V6 and 4,951cc Coyote V8 gasoline
Power: 301hp @ 6,500rpm (3.7), 414hp @ 6,500rpm (5.0)
Torque: 380Nm @ 4,250rpm (3.7), 529Nm @ 4,250rpm (5.0)
Fuel Consumption: 3-6km/L (city), 6-9km/L (highway) (*estimated and varies)
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Suspension: Front McPherson strut, rear solid-axle 3 link

Price (New): P2,499,000-P2,899,000
Price (Now): P2,000,000-P2,700,000
Rivals: Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Challenger, Hyundai Genesis Coupe
On Sale: 2012-2015

Ford Libis - (02) 637-2044

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