Ford Mustang 2018 pricing and specs confirmed

The new 2018 Ford Mustang comes with improved technology and more firepower from the V8

The new 2018 Ford Mustang comes with improved technology and more firepower from the V8

A new 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission is available with both EcoBoost and V8 engines.

Given sales of sports cars nearly always decline as the life-cycle shadow lengthens, it seems clear that Ford is skewing the 'Stang a little upmarket.

The 2018 Ford Mustang (overseas model shown).

We'll have to find out for ourselves just how fast the new Mustang is in local trim when it arrives in Australian showrooms in the middle of this year.

There's a new 12-inch digital instrument cluster, apparently inspired by the Le Mans-winning Ford GT race auto, that's somewhat reminiscent of the Volkswagen/Audi, Active Info Display/Virtual Cockpit setups. This display allows users to choose between three views - Normal, Sport and Track - but also there is the function to customise the colour and gauge layout to suit their needs.

The centre console gets a new hand-stitched wrap with contrast stitching and padded knee bolsters while the door handles, rings and bezels are finished in aluminium.

Conversely, the EcoBoost has lost 9kW but added 9Nm, with its outputs now pegged at 224kW and 441Nm. Customers can feel more confident than ever behind the wheel with new features like Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection (AEB) as standard, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane-Departure Warning, and Lane-Keeping Assist as standard.

You can still buy 2.3-litre turbocharged "EcoBoost" four, or 5.0-litre "Coyote" naturally aspirated V8, engine options.

Restyled seating surfaces feature new patterns, while there's also six-way leather-upholstered Recaro sports seating as a factory-fitted option.

Ford has updated its popular Mustang for 2018 with more power, more tech and better safety across the range but it has been equally matched by higher prices.

The 339kW (about 450bhp in the old money) power ceiling has been achieved in part because of a new injection system: high-pressure direct injection, and low-pressure port injection.

On all models, new shock absorbers make for better ride control, while a new cross-axis joint in the rear suspension leads to increased lateral stiffness, and innovative stabiliser bars bring sharper response and handling. For the V8, the manual transmission has been totally redesigned to include a twin-disc clutch and dual-mass flywheel to increase torque capability and deliver more efficient clutch modulation. The 10-speed automatic with paddles also features.

For the first time, MagneRide damper technology is an option.

An all-new active valve exhaust system is standard on all GT models, with a fully variable soundtrack to match the entire acceleration range. Four modes are available: Normal, Quiet, Track and Sport, tailoring the exhaust note. Previously exclusive to the Mustang Shelby GT350, the system automatically (not manually) adjusts at each corner of the auto up to 1000 times per second depending on road conditions and vehicle position. A lower leading edge brings the grille closer to the deck, the headlamps shrink slightly and the bonnet contouring gives the Mustang a broader-chested look.

As previously reported, the Mustang facelift consists of a restyled front and rear - including LED lighting.

At the rear, there are revised LED tail-lamps for a more "technical look", plus a new bumper, fascia and available performance spoiler. The V8-powered Mustang GT boasts a quad-tip exhaust as standard, along with a black rear diffuser.

EcoBoost versions have a fresh alloy wheel design, while for a different look, the 19-inch Lustre Nickel alloy is available as a factory option. The GT carries over the mesh design from the current model, while also offering an optional five-spoke 19-inch forged alloy.

Bold exterior colour choices - including all-new signature Orange Fury as well as Kona Blue and Royal Crimson - combined with Over the Top (OTT) stripe packages mean that enthusiasts can order a Mustang with the look they're after.

"Most people have a Mustang memory, whether it be a favourite film moment, a childhood memory or, more recently, parking one in their own garage", said Graeme Whickman, Ford Australia president and CEO.

"The updated model offers customers a raft of new features for greater capability of Australia's best-selling sports vehicle, which has shown how much Mustang resonates with the Australian lifestyle".

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