|Gorgeous new Mustang looks even better with GT Performance package. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
It takes little coaxing for me to accept a week in any of its trims, the first of this type being a 2015 Mustang GT Premium Convertible, which was followed by the new 2.3-litre turbo four-cylinder 2016 Ecoboost Fastback and a 2016 GT Convertible,
|No wonder the Mustang is selling so well. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
Actually, this 2017 GT Convertible Premium is coated in the same Ruby Red exterior paintwork and its seats covered in identical Red Line leather as the 2015 example (the Ecoboost Fastback was finished in Oxford White on black, if you must know), these two cars appearing near identical if it weren’t for the same GT Performance Package as added to the Ecoboost Fastback, that upgrade beefing up the wheels to glossy black 19s, plus a whole lot more.
|Love all the GT Performance package details. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
It certainly didn’t put me off, especially when congestion subsides and an open stretch of tarmac reveals itself. Put your weight into the metal pedal farthest to the right and the drudgery of a workday’s routine immediately vaporizes as the next shift ensues, followed by a smooth release of the left foot and yet more power by the one on the opposite side. Everything has a purposeful weight to it; even
|Those are big Brembos peeking out from behind the 19-inch rims. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
The manual gearbox is Getrag’s MT-82, added to the lineup in 2011 yet enhanced for overall feel and durability since, but the most noticeable improvement dynamically is the independent rear suspension (IRS) that came two years ago, forcing Ford to strengthen its 8.8:1 rear diff to “Super 8.8” capability, or rather 9.75:1-why they call it a Super 8.8 is anyone’s guess.
No matter, the fat 19-inch Pirelli P-Zeros dig in with a whole new level of refined prowess in spite of the road surface beneath or direction pointed. Yes, the previous live axle forced a higher level of respect, but there’s less need for that now. The modern car’s integral-link IRS maintains un-Mustang-like control, even when
|Sequential taillights pay tribute to the ’67 Mercury Cougar. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
In case you’re wondering, there’s nothing new about the 2017 Mustang GT over its 2016 counterpart, other than a couple of exterior colours and the removal of the cool turn signal indicators from within the hood scoops -I didn’t even notice. For reasons I can’t ascertain the fuel economy has been adjusted to 16.7 L/100km city,
|A red on black interior to match the equally mesmerizing exterior. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
What matters more is the car’s new level of near-premium refinement, allowing those who lust after the GT Convertible’s sensational styling and outrageous performance to trade in their BMW cabriolets without feeling like they’re slumming it. It’s not quite up to the standards set by the 4 Series, but it gets more soft touch synthetic surfaces than any previous Mustang, with special attention paid to the dash top, instrument panel, and door uppers. Its padded door inserts are trimmed in perforated leatherette to match the sport seats, my tester’s in racy red,
|The GT’s cabin is brilliantly designed and well crafted. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
Additional cabin details worth noting include engine-turned aluminum dash trim with a sweet set of chrome-rimmed secondary gauges at centre. Chrome trims the dual-zone auto HVAC system’s circular vents as well as the even larger dials at each side of the primary cluster, plus elsewhere, while satin-silver is also used generously. I’m in love with the red and white ignition button next to the equally awesome chromed toggle switches on the centre stack, the latter including selectable steering and drive modes including Sport, with additional highlights being
|The small details are yet more reasons to fall for this car in a big way. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
I could go on, but will resist as there needs to be something left for you to discover on your own. In case you’re wondering, most everything noted comes with Premium trim that’s standard with the 2017 GT Convertible, with some items not yet mentioned including HID headlights, LED daytime running lights, sequential LED taillights, Pony projection LEDs under the side mirrors, illuminated sill plates, ambient interior lighting, powered seats, enhanced security, and of course Ford’s superb Sync 3 infotainment that was added last year. It’s excellent, and not just because it includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and plenty of downloadable apps,
|Fun in the sun for four. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
You can spend more, $2,000 buying blindspot monitoring, seat and mirror position memory, plus an incredibly potent Shaker audio system, whereas the $3,700 GT Performance package was how those menacing gloss black mesh rims on 255/40R19 front and 275/40R19 rear summer performance tires got onto my tester, plus the Brembo brakes, fabulous looking strut-tower brace under the hood, the engine-turned aluminum appliques inside, oil pressure and vacuum gauges, 3.73:1 TORSEN limited-slip rear axle, heavy-duty front springs, upgraded front
|An engine you can be proud of. (Photo: Karen Tuggay, Canadian Auto Press)
On top of all this Ford added rain-sensing wipers, adaptive cruise control and forward collision warning for $1,600, voice activated navigation for $800, the aforementioned Ruby Red paint for $450, while the Red Line interior upped the price by $500, the total coming to just $58,998.
I don’t know about you, but if you were to price out a BMW with similar performance and features you’d be well into $80k, and while I’m not comparing the all-round road and track capability of this Mustang GT Convertible to an M4 Cabriolet, you’ll likely have just as much fun in this one for tens of thousands less while enjoying a bit of modernized classic Americana in the process. No wonder the Mustang outsells every other performance car by a healthy margin.
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