Thumbing the red starter button, you can’t help but smile as the V8 woofles into life. There’s no doubt that it completes the Mustang experience, and it’s no surprise at all to hear that 68% of buyers - and there are plenty of those - have opted for the 5.0-litre engine option.
Although it’ll tickle along at a little over 1000rpm, it needs a few revs on the clock to feel properly quick. Keep the revs high, however, and the Mustang will push you back into the seat with a satisfying amount of force while emitting a brutish roar.
In a straight line it’s hard to feel short-changed even if it’s not quite as rapid as the coupé, but the V8 Convertible is still not as accomplished as the hard-top when it comes to cornering.
The open-topped version feels softer, both in suspension stiffness and structural integrity. Hit a few bumps and you see the rear view mirror jiggle in your peripheral vision and feel the car shudder slightly. Turn-in isn’t as sharp as that of the coupé either.
While the Mustang will understeer, it seems to spend far more time twitching its rear end. In the dry, you can deploy a lot of the V8’s power without too much drama, apart from some slight movement of the back axle.
Try the same when it’s wet or even slightly damp, and the rear of the car is prone to stepping out even with the traction control switched on. Thankfully it’s easy to catch, but it's still a surprise that isn't always welcome.
The manual gearbox is a pleasingly mechanical thing to use, although it does require a firm hand. The automatic slurs through ratios smoothly when pootling but isn't the quickest to shift when you start playing with the paddles. Arguably, though, the auto is better suited to the Convertible's laid-back demeanour.
This is especially true considering the size of the Mustang. Not only is it wide, but it’s a long old thing, too. It’s therefore disappointing to see parking sensors as an option and not bundled into the not inconsiderable purchase price.
It might be big on the outside, but there’s not much room for those in the back. You’ll need a short driver to fit anyone with legs behind them and the seats are mounted high too. Front seat passengers have plenty of space but may not be so impressed by the interior quality. It looks stylish enough but there’s an awful lot of hard, scratchy plastic.