Is This Really the World’s Best Sports Coupe?
It’s not the most refined car, but our Automologist MAC is tempted to get one too.
Some 55 years ago, Ford unleashed its Mustang on the unsuspecting public and the world sort of like it, a lot. In fact, so much so that the model, albeit in its fifth incarnation, is still around today and is currently the global top-selling sports coupe.
Obviously, Ford broke the mould when it was first launched. Jim Farley, who is Ford’s head of global markets, believes that “nothing says freedom like the wind in your hair when you drive a Mustang, the roar of the V8 on a spring day, there is nothing better….” Of course, Ford still builds a few of the 5-litre V8s, but Mr Farley seems to be forgetting that most of the ‘Stangs sold are actually hard-topped and have a 2.3 Eco Boost engine. So, no wind in the hair and no V8 roar then. Still, let’s not let the facts get in the way of a good quote, eh?
In the early days, back in March of 1964 that is, the Mustang was only sold in the US of A and it was not really until 2015 that Ford decided to let the rest of the motoring world enjoy the American prancing horse when they launched the S550 (below). And the world said, “Yes, please!” Official figures from Ford say that some 113,066 were sold around the world last year, which is up slightly from 2017 even with falling sales in the US of A.
So, is it really the world’s best sports coupe? Well, it certainly is iconic, no doubting that, but it really is quite loutish with it. Just take a stroll through Google or YouTube and see how many Mustang behaving badly you can find—a lot, is the answer. The ‘Stang is not about refinement; it is about a slightly more forgotten time when the open road was there to be conquered. Oh, and of course the roads in the US tend to be long and straight, so cornering has always been slightly challenging for the Pony cars.
But here’s the thing: every morning on my way to work, I pass a car dealer where there are normally two or three brightly painted Mustangs sitting there awaiting their next rider. And I have to tell you, I am tempted every day to go in and see if I can afford one…