Translating a classic design for the modern world is no simple matter. But along with the Volkswagen Beetle and the MINI Cooper, the current generation of the Ford Mustang is remarkably cohesive.
With an unmistakable silhouette and that classic coupe stance, the 2013 Ford Mustang remains instantly recognizable. With a fundamental design that goes back to the 2005 model year—and extensively revamped for 2010—the current Mustang has been a little more lean and tidy, yet also a little more aggressive.
Retro cues are of course part of the Mustang's appeal. Through various personalization options, you'll find you can pretty easily recreate the look for the Mustang you might have driven in high school, or college—with things like side scoops, hood scoops, and spoilers—or even side louvers.
But for 2013, the Mustang gets a better-detailed look, plus some more contemporary details. The grille has been given a new, more forward look, while the lower airdam is a bit thinner and not so gaping, and GT models get functional heat extractors on the hood. GT models are also distinguished by their big, round foglamps in the grille.
Headlamps are a smaller, more closely detailed HID design (across the entire lineup), and two strips of LED lighting flank the headlights and are an especially distinctive note. Taillamps get a dark-tinted look, with LEDs surrounding the entire affair; there’s also a blacked-out (instead of body-color) panel between the taillamps. And from the side, rocker panels now are body-color. And a clever new night-lighting option, called the pony projection light, beams a pony emblem on the ground next to the doors.
There are a couple of new 2013 Mustang hues—Deep Impact Blue, and Gotta Have It Green—that really show off the facelift and draw a lot of attention in general.
The Mustang's interior follows a design that clearly nods to the past—although it has a surprisingly modern set of materials, and plenty of soft-touch materials on the dash. The cabin as a whole can be a little stark, and it looks at its best in one of the two-tone themes.
Otherwise, the deep-dish, classic-look gauges are big and beautiful (with a new font for 2013); the squared-off instrument panel and the wide center console just work, especially with the bright metallic touches and, where offered, the metallic shift knob.