What is it?
Ask anyone at Ford and they’ll tell you there’s plenty of life left in the Mustang yet - but given the firm has promised its entire European line-up will be available as a plug-in hybrid or full EV by 2026, you can’t help feeling time is running out for the naturally aspirated V8. Best make sure this latest pony car is a corker, then.
The Mach 1 effectively replaces the GT350 that went off sale in the US last year, and is no mere styling pack. A combination of transmission, suspension and bodywork upgrades make this the most track-friendly slice of American muscle Ford has ever officially sold on this side of the Atlantic.
A bespoke front splitter, underfloor chassis tray and rear diffuser deliver a combined 22% of extra downforce over the regular Mustang GT, while the new-look front end has been sculpted for optimum aerodynamic performance. The front and rear subframes have been uprated, and the MagneRide adaptive suspension has been given a unique Mach 1 calibration, with stiffer springs and tighter anti-roll bars.
Power isn’t the name of the game here, although the 5.0-litre engine has received a mild power hike. A new intake manifold, oil cooler and oil filter have helped liberate an additional 11bhp over the Mustang GT, for a total output of 454bhp and 390lb ft. Drive is sent to the rear wheels via a Shelby-sourced six-speed manual transmission, which now includes rev matching and a short-throw shifter for sharper gearchanges.