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Mustang Convertible: You'll Giggle, Too

By Sue Mead, March 16th, 2019

I delighted in the engine's potent sound and the wind in my face behind the wheel of the Mustang GT convertible. A low giggle came from behind as the 460 horsepower pushed us up a hill. The laughter grew louder and was accompanied by whoops of unbridled joy from the back-seat passenger -- my 5-year-old granddaughter, Evie, with her hands raised to the air.

She fell in love with open-air motoring when I took her for a ride in the 2019 Ford Mustang GT convertible. Whether you're 5, 55, or 105, you're likely to giggle, too, when you go for this pony ride.

For 56 years, performance has been the core of Mustang DNA, bringing pony car enthusiasts one of the ultimate fun-to-drive experiences. Now, fresh-air-loving drivers and riders can rejoice at the release of an all-new 2019 Ford Mustang GT convertible that starts at $44,595.

Relaunched in 2018, the GT model continues Ford's performance tradition with a thoroughly reworked 5.0-liter V-8 engine with 460 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque that's more powerful and revs higher than any Mustang GT before it. The power increase is thanks to Ford's new dual-fuel, high-pressure direct injection and low-pressure port fuel injection that delivers robust low-end torque, high-rpm power, and improved fuel efficiency.

A six-speed manual transmission with rev matching is standard. The new available 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission has quicker shift times and better low-speed tip-in response than the outgoing six-speed. It's uniquely tuned for all five drive modes -- normal, sport, track, Drag Strip, and snow/wet. Steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles allow maximum manual control.

Making it more track-ready than ever is a long list of performance and technology upgrades, including a redesigned manual transmission and the new Drag Strip mode that brings straight-line acceleration from 0 to 60 mph in less than 4 seconds, making it faster than a $94,000 Porsche 911 Carrera and the fastest Mustang GT ever, says Ford. Controlled by the transmission, it delivers a significant acceleration boost eliminating the lost time usually associated with automatic shifting.

New shock absorbers improve ride control while a new cross-axis joint in the rear leads to increased lateral stiffness and innovative stabilizer bars bring sharper response and handling. Newly available custom-designed Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tires -- available as part of the Mustang Performance Package -- promise to deliver maximum acceleration and performance in straight-line driving.

Track drivers will also enjoy standard electronic line lock that lets racers pre-warm their tires before the start for better grip, as well as a launch control that integrates brakes, traction control, and powertrain control to help ensure smooth, consistent starts (manual transmission models only).

Inside, technology and design changes also add new options to personalize, highlighted by the available all-digital instrument cluster. Created with ex-video game developers, Ford's first 12-inch all-digital LCD instrument offers various screen layouts, 26 color options, and displays for up to eight gauges. An animation of a spinning alloy wheel kicking up a cloud of smoke displays when line lock is activated.

Premium trim level features on our test car gave the interior an enhanced look and feel, with a hand-stitched wrap for the center console armrest, a design element that is mirrored across the instrument panel and down the sides of the center stack. Restyled seating surfaces feature standard heated and cooled front seats in new patterns and color choices.

Outside is a more athletic and modern design incorporating a lower, remodeled hood and grille for a meaner, leaner look, and a new front splitter for improved handling and fuel economy. The front all-LED lighting package bundles signature Mustang lighting, low-beams, turn signals, efficient projector high-beams, and available fog lamps. The rear gets revised LED taillamps for a more technical look, plus a new bumper, revised styling, and a standard dual exhaust with quad-tips.

Driver-assist technologies include pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection with distance indication and automatic emergency braking, lane keeping, and a driver alert system; radar and cameras recognize objects in the road, and may take autonomous emergency action -- such as braking -- to mitigate or avoid a collision.

Specifications

Base price $44,595 (as tested: $53,755)
Curb weight 3,825 lbs.
Displacement 5.0-liter
Engine type V-8 TiVCT
Epa mileage rating 16 mpg city, 25 mpg highway
Fuel capacity 16 gal.
Horsepower (net) 460 at 7000 rpm
Overall length 188.5 in.
Torque (lb.-ft.) 420 at 4600 rpm
Transmission 10-speed automatic
Vehicle type 4-passenger RWD midsize convertible
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