The Ford Mustang has undergone some significant changes as of late. The end of 2020 sees Ford killing off the ultra-sporty GT350 and GT350R, as well as the movie-themed Bullit. Thankfully, however, the American carmaker has left us with the Mach 1 as a consolation prize. The Mach 1 makes fair use of its soon-to-be-dead siblings, inheriting crucial components such as engine tuning, a manual transmission, and Shelby-tuned suspension. The best things in life aren’t free, and neither is the Mach 1, starting at $52,915, as reported by Motor1.
Shelby-tuned technology doesn’t come cheap
The Ford Mustang Mach 1’s $52,915 base price is just the beginning. While the Mach 1 is already a special edition model, it comes in two distinct flavors. As standard, the Mach 1 includes the six-speed manual transmission out of the GT350, suspension out of the GT500, and the Bullit’s 480-hp engine tune. While these are significant upgrades over the Standard Mustang GT already, the Mach 1 can offer more.
An optional Handling Package is available, which adds significant aerodynamic improvements. The Mach 1’s Handling Package takes Shelby-inspired aerodynamic elements to generate over 150 percent more downforce than a standard GT. The Mach 1 also gets the GT350R’s sticky Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires. Significant performance improvements don’t often come cheap, so expect a decent price bump to get the track-star version of this particular Mustang.
A six-speed manual comes as standard, the auto is extra
When the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 made its official debut, enthusiasts made a huge fuss over its lack of an available manual transmission. The Mach 1 corrects that by offering a six-speed manual transmission as standard. Ford’s infamously-quick 10-speed automatic transmission is also available, although it will cost extra. The race-ready Handling Pack is only available with the manual transmission, meaning you’ll have to shift the fastest Mach 1 yourself.
Given that the Mach 1 is a fully loaded Mustang don’t expect there to be many optional extras. If the Bullit is anything to go by, there could be an available technology pack to accompany the performance gains. With all of the options, taxes, and destination charges added, the Mustang Mach 1 could end up sitting very close to $60,000.
Should I wait for the Ford Mustang Mach 1 or buy a GT350 now?
Given the Ford Mustang Mach 1’s price, buyers now have a difficult choice to make. With a starting price of $59,140, the Shelby GT350 is dangerously close to the cost of the Mach 1. Luckily for Ford, the GT350 won’t make a return for 2021, giving the Mach 1 space to succeed. However, the GT350 is currently available and offers most of the performance benefits of the Mach 1, except the GT500 suspension components. Unlike the Mach 1’s 480 hp 5.0-liter V8, the GT 350’s 5.2-liter V8 produces 526 hp.
In terms of availability, the GT350 will end production soon, with inventory availability carrying over into 2021. The Mach 1 is scheduled to arrive at the beginning of 2021, meaning these two will likely share dealership floors. If the Mach 1 has stolen your heart, Ford is officially taking orders for the new Mustang.