Ford Mustang Was the Most Popular Sports Car in the World Last Year


Discontent with being the top-selling sports car in the U.S. for the last half-century, the Ford Mustang became the most bought sports car across the globe in 2016.

For years the Mustang was an exclusively North American affair, with international enthusiasts forced to shell out significantly to get their hands on Ford’s affordable coupe. With the car’s ground-up redesign during 2014, Ford decided the Mustang would go global, expanding its reach to include 140 countries.

Dearborn’s decision was vindicated after registration data from IHS Automotive indicated 110,000 Mustang Coupes had found new homes during 2015 — plus a further 30,000 convertible sales — making it the globe’s best-selling sports coupe by a significant margin.

The success continued into 2016 as the Mustang upped the ante and took over the crown as world’s best-selling sports car thanks to a 6-percent increase in global sales, for a worldwide tally of 150,431 cars.

In fourth-quarter 2015, Mustang was the best-selling sports coupe in China as exports made their way to dealerships in volume, according to IHS registration data. Buyers in China favor EcoBoost versions.

Mustang sales in the United States actually trailed off by 13 percent last year, but big gains in both China and Germany fuelled the car’s 101-percent international growth and accounting for almost 45,000 cars sold beyond North America.

“The legacy of Mustang continues to grow, and in places it never reached before,” said Mark Schaller, Ford Mustang marketing manager. “We continue to make it available in new markets, and drivers in those markets continue to respond with resounding approval.”

Somewhat ironically, the Mustang GT’s quintessential American V8 burble appeals more to international shoppers than it does to those at home. North Americans chose the 5.0L V8 40 percent of the time, Europeans take the V8 65 percent of the time, while 59 percent of buyers in Asia Pacific opt for more bore.

Ford will be looking to continue the car’s global growth in 2017 as it plans to make the car available in six additional countries this year, before the updated 2018 model with new sheet metal, active exhaust, a 10-speed automatic and MagneRide suspension officially hits stores in the fall.

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Filed under: American Ford Sports Cars