To say that the arrival of the Ford Mustang Mach-E last year was controversial would be an understatement. Aside from adding the Mustang name to a crossover, it’s also fully electric. Since then, we’ve heard various stats thrown around, but no one had driven it. Thankfully, first, drive tests from sites such as Motor1 and Car and Driver give us a glimpse of what it’s like to drive. Today we’ll finally see if the Mach-E lives up to the hype.
What powers the 2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E?
Since the Ford Mustang Mach-E carries the name and badge of an iconic sports car, let’s begin with performance. For the time being, the first trim levels to hit the roads will be the Select, Premium, and California Route 1. The range-topping GT trim is set to arrive sometime in the summer of 2021.
The entry-level Mustang Mach-E Select starts at $42,895 and is powered by a single electric motor mounted in the rear axle. All-wheel drive is available via the addition of a second motor in the front axle for $2,700. According to Ford, the Select reportedly pumps out 266 hp and 317 lb-ft in terms of raw power. You’ll be hitting 60 mph with the single motor in 5.8 seconds and 5.2 seconds with all-wheel drive.
Opt for the higher Mustang Mach-E Premium for $47,000, and you can opt for a larger battery pack. The extended range battery boosts the RWD model’s power to 290 hp and the AWD model to 346 hp. More importantly, the 0-60 mph time of the AWD model drops to just 4.8 seconds. Oddly enough, the RWD model becomes slower with more power, reaching 60 mph in 6.1 seconds.
If you want the best the Mach-E can offer, you’ll want to wait for the GT. This range-topping trim is set to offer up to 480 hp and 634 lb-ft of torque. The result is a 0-60 run of around 3.5 seconds at best. According to Car and Driver, this is especially significant when you factor in the crossover’s 4650 to 5000 lb weight.
How does this Mustang drive?
Performance means almost nothing if it doesn’t translate into the real world. Thankfully, the Mustang Mach-E appears to excel in this department. According to Motor1, the model it tested with a long-range battery, and AWD exceeded expectations. Despite its considerable weight, Motor1 found that the AWD Mach-E performed excellently through twisty country roads. Despite having a stiff chassis resulting in great cornering behavior, the Mach-E reportedly remained relatively comfortable. However, it is worth noting that Motor1 found that even this powerful model can’t match the handling of the standard Mustang.
As you’d expect from an EV with instant torque, Motor1 reports that the Mach-E felt quick off the line. To spice things up, Ford even gave the Mach-E synthetic sounds that pump through the cabin and make the whole driving experience a bit more exciting. Thankfully the noise can be switched off if you don’t like it.
Set the Mach-E to one of its more tame daily-driver modes, and Motor1 reports that the crossover changes drastically. Aside from lessening the steering’s aggressiveness, you get a duller throttle and fewer propulsion sound effects. In fully silent mode, the Mach-E drove surprisingly silent according to Motor1. As a result, the electric crossover seems to live up to the hype of offering an engaging driving experience that’s enjoyable daily. Now we need to see how it stacks up to the current champ, the Tesla Model Y.
How efficient is the Mustang Mach-E?
Since the Mustang Mach-E is an EV, it is worth touching going over its claimed efficiency figures. In the base Select trim with the standard battery pack, you can expect to get a range of 230 miles with RWD and 211 miles with AWD. Opt for the extended battery, and you’ll get up to 300 miles with RWD and 270 miles with AWD. While these figures don’t automatically make this new crossover the segment leader, they certainly give it a fighting chance against the established Tesla. From now, only time will tell how that range performs when this new model begins to reach customers shortly.