If you’ve never driven a 2022 Ford Mustang GT before, and you jump in, sling it into Sport+ or Race mode, and stomp the gas, you’re going to think you’re driving a pig, and a very angry one at that.
You see, while you can drive the Mustang like you stole it from a train station car park in the dodgiest suburb nearest you, you really shouldn’t, not straight out of the box, and not until you’ve had time to become properly acquainted with this beast.
You need to learn its various drive modes and the behaviours in each one first, so that you’ll also discover that it’s mostly not a piggy wiggy, but rather a higher performance car that offers good on-road behaviour, and makes a great daily driver for sports car fans.
Under the hood is a 5.0-litre V8 delivering 339kW power and 556Nm of torque, which in the case of our test vehicle, was paired with a 10-speed automatic sports transmission. It’s a good combination, that when treated with respect, delivers smooth shifting.
But it’s also its worst enemy. It’s that very same gearbox that simply doesn’t cope in working its way through 10 gear choices when you thrash it like a race car. For anyone planning to track the Mustang, buy the manual, and get some driver training.
Thanks to the add-on MagneRide suspension package (an absolute must have) and the dampers that go with it though, it feels refined on the road, eats corners for breakfast, literally, and is significantly more refined than those models that have come before it.
It’s active exhaust, which features a quiet mode if you need it, adds to the glorious nature of its engine noise along the way too. Jumping inside, you’ll find Ford’s SYNC3 infotainment system, with enhanced voice control, and the FordPass Connect embedded modem.
The former delivers a decent user experience, while the latter lets you do cool things remotely, like find, and even start your car. The techy stuff translates to an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, with wired Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
There’s also satellite navigation, a 12.0-inch digital instrument cluster, keyless entry and push button start, and a B&O Play 12-speaker sound system. The Track Apps software has been updated too and includes the ability to line lock on the track.
Six-way heated and cooled front seats also feature, along with a leather wrapped steering wheel and shifter, adaptive cruise control, dual-zone climate control, illuminated sill plates, ambient lighting and tyre pressure monitoring.
The reversing camera is reasonable, and there’s about 408-litres of boot space on offer too. It’s pretty deep, which is nice if you need to hide a lot of gear, but while the rear seats do fold down, passenger leg and head room is quite frankly awful for adults in the back row.
Featuring some minor design tweaks on the outside, along with GT stripes and a rear spoiler in the case of our tester, you’ll also find auto headlights and high beam, which are full LED like the tail lights and front fog lights.
Rain-sensing wipers complete the package, while the safety suite includes autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, forward collision warning, lane departure warning and lane keep assist, and a host of airbags.
What’s missing is blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, which aren’t available. That means the reversing camera, and your mirrors, are your new best friends, and explains why the Ford Mustang has a 3-star ANCAP safety rating.
The rating is the result of having scored poorly on child passenger protection and safety assist systems. Hopefully the next generation (2024) Mustang, a wholesale redesign and significant upgrade in tech, driver assistance and performance, changes that.
For now though, the 2022 version is available in a range of colours, including Race Red, Oxford White, Carbonised Grey (as tested), Mischievous Purple, Eruption Green, Atlas Blue, Cyber Orange Grabber Blue, Dark Matter Grey, Rapid Red and Shadow Black.
Our test vehicle was fitted with the optional high performance rear wing and black badging, as well as appropriately placed over-the-top racing stripes (in black in our case), 19-inch forged alloy wheels, MagneRide suspension and Recaro seats.
In exactly the spec we drove, you’ll need to part with $87,873 drive away, which all things considered, isn’t that bad. It comes with a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty and roadside assist.
Our test vehicle was provided by Ford Australia. To find out more about the 2022 Ford Mustang GT Coupe, visit your local Ford dealer. Pictures courtesy of Mitch Zeinert Photography.