With the all-new Focus taking center stage for Ford at the Detroit Auto Show, the American automaker also showed its new Mustang GT model for the first time. A mid-cycle refresh of sorts, the 2011 GT model marks the return of the 5.0-liter V8 with it 412-hp at 6500 rpm and 390 ft-lbs of torque at 4250 rpm.
The new engine is an all aluminum unit with four valves per cylinder and dual overhead cams and gets Ti-VCT variable independent timing on both the intake and exhaust cams. Along with all that power, the 2011 GT model also (finally) gets a six-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic. This allows for both improved performance and fuel economy with Ford claiming a four to five percent increase in that department for an estimated 17 mpg city and 25 mpg highway, up from 17/23 mpg rating on the current GT automatic model. Manual transmission models will get 16/24 mpg rating (city/highway).
Additional vehicle highlights include electric power steering, 11.5-inch front and 11.8-inch rear brakes, as well as a grade-assist feature that will hold the car momentarily when accelerating away from a stop on a hill. Added improvements were made to the rear lower control arms for improved stiffness and more direct handling, a stiffer rear sway bar delivers better on-center steering, while the spring and shock rates have been adjusted for optimal performance.
A Performance Package will include 14-inch Brembo front brake disks from the Shelby GT500 as well as special 19-inch wheels and high performance summer tires.