If you didn’t bite the Bullitt, this Mustang Mach 1 is what you need
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JOHANNESBURG: As the world’s best-selling sports car, the Ford Mustang range in South Africa will soon be bolstered by a very special and exclusive model – the Mach 1 Fastback coupé, which Ford says is the pinnacle of Mustang 5.0-litre V8 style and performance. The exclusivity of the Mustang Mach 1 will be guaranteed too, as only 90 units are being built for the South African market.
“The Mustang has achieved legendary status as a performance icon around the world, and in South Africa too,” says Doreen Mashinini, general manager for Marketing at Ford South Africa.
“The remarkable success of the Mustang Bullitt proved that South Africans have an appetite for exclusive, limited-edition models, and we are proud to extend the Mustang’s rich heritage with the launch of the Mach 1.
“Like the 1969 original, the Mustang Mach 1 bridges the gap between the standard Mustang GT and the high-performance Shelby models, delivering V8 power, unique functional aerodynamic enhancements, competition-capable suspension upgrades, and a driver-focused cockpit,” said Mashinini.
Accordingly, the limited-edition Mustang Mach 1 becomes the most track-capable 5.0-litre Mustang yet, courtesy of a newly designed front end, plus Ford Performance parts derived from the Mustang Shelby GT350 and Shelby GT500 models.
The performance of the specially calibrated 5.0-litre V8 engine matches that of the Mustang Bullitt, producing 338kW of power and 529Nm of torque. Mach 1 buyers, who desire the most engaging driving experience, can select the high-performance six-speed manual transmission, derived from the Shelby GT350, or there’s the option of Ford’s high-tech 10-speed automatic. Both transmissions receive numerous performance, cooling and calibration enhancements, that are specific to the Mach 1.
Visually, the Mach 1 is easily identifiable as a track-focused machine – most notably by the bold Mach 1 grille that pays tribute to the original, along with extensive use of low-gloss Magnetic dark grey and black accents.
This is complemented by a rear spoiler that helps the Mach 1 generate 22% more downforce than the Mustang GT with Performance Pack, which is standard in South Africa, as well as a rear axle cooling system and lower diffuser, sourced from the mighty Shelby GT500.
New 19-inch five-spoke Tarnished Dark-painted aluminium wheels are a modern interpretation of the classic Mach 1 Magnum 500 style wheels, fitted with 255/40 R19 tyres in front and 275/40 R19 versions at the rear, giving the Mach 1 a sportier, more aggressive demeanour and enhanced handling characteristics, they say.
To further improve ride and handling, the Mach 1 features the latest adaptive suspension technology that Ford has to offer, new performance-oriented electric power steering calibration, stiffer sway bars and front springs, an upgraded brake booster, a rear subframe with stiffer bushings and a rear toe-link from the Shelby GT500. And, as expected of a track-focused Mustang, the available Drive Modes includes a Track mode, and Track Apps with Launch Control.
All units destined for South Africa are painted in distinctive metallic Fighter Jet Grey. with the Appearance Package as standard, which will make the Mach 1 instantly recognisable. Other distinctive elements include satin black bonnet and side stripes with orange accents, and orange-painted brake callipers. Additionally, the front fenders feature the legendary “Mach 1” badging which reaffirms this model’s iconic lineage.
The same theme is carried through to the cabin, thanks to orange seatback accents, and a Dark Spindrift instrument panel, with aluminium accents. Other interior upgrades include new door sill plates, an updated splash screen on the 12.3-inch full LCD instrument cluster, Mach 1-branded door-sill scuff plates, and engraved badging on the instrument panel, that displays the vehicle’s unique chassis number, to reinforce its special, limited-edition status.
Timing and pricing for the Mustang Mach 1 in South Africa will be confirmed in the coming months and we’ll bring you insights from the launch, once we’ve locked the vehicle down for a test drive.