With no pomp and circumstance, Ford chose the Detroit Auto Show as the first venue to show the new 2011 Mustang GT Coupe and Convertible. With the majority of the news on the 2011 Mustang GT already available, this is actually the first time the convertible model has been shown at all.
As with the coupe, the convertible is powered by Ford’s impressive new 5.0-liter V8, producing 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. Not only does this allow for improved performance, but also fuel economy. No specifics are available yet for the convertible, but the coupe model gets an estimated 25 mpg on the highway and 17 mpg in the city, up from 23/17 mpg on the current GT automatic model. Manual transmission models will get 24/16 mpg (highway/city).
Helping to achieve that improved fuel economy is an electric power steering setup. New 11.5-inch front and 11.8-inch rear brakes give added stopping power, while a grade-assist feature 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.