Ford is launching the sixth-generation Mustang by bringing it to tracks near you as a performance-oriented road car, a Le Mans-ready GT3 racer, and, eventually, a $300,000 supercar with an in-board suspension and a transaxle. All three are powered by big V-8s, and all three have outlasted the Dodge Challenger and Chevrolet Camaro as we know them. Market conditions might be changing fast, but Ford CEO Jim Farley says those V-8 Mustangs are here to stay.
In a conversation with Motor1 at the launch of the company's 2024 racing programs earlier this week, the Ford boss said the brand remains committed to internal combustion. That is possible thanks to an equal-and-opposite push to make EVs like the Mustang-badged Mach-E, which Farley claims "lets [Ford] sell ICE vehicles for a long time to come." For the Mustang line, that means the brand remains committed to the current Coyote 5.0 V-8 in the mass market GT, the GTD halo car, and everything else in between.
The double down on V-8 pony cars comes just weeks after the final Camaro and final Challenger of this era were built. While both Stellantis and GM once again reconsider their approach to affordable performance, Farley mentions that the Mustang has been built around the same idea of V-8s in the same basic segment and price range for the lineup's entire six-decade history.
"Mustang is going to celebrate its 60th anniversary coming up here," Farley said. "A lot of our competitors have left. They’ve come and gone. We never did that. We’ve always been there with Mustang. Sixty years, and it’s changed over time."
It is unclear how much longer Ford can get away with building V-8 Mustangs, but Farley's quotes suggest that the brand is committed for the foreseeable future. He also says the ambitions will continue from here.
"We have EcoBoost, we have the Dark Horse now, and we’re going to continue to invest. And if we’re the only one on the planet making a V-8 affordable sports car for everyone in the world, so be it."
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