Under the Hood: 2011 Mustang V6

When someone pictures a Ford Mustang, they picture a brawny V8, dual exhaust, and smoking tires.  In the background, the V6 quietly saves its owner on insurance and at the pump, and is actually Ford’s bread-and-butter Mustang.  For years, it’s had to make do with 6-cylinder engines that had neither the horsepower nor the refinement to truly compete in the sports coupe arena.  But that’s all about to change.

Enter the 2011 Mustang V6.  Powered by a new 3.7-liter V6 similar to the one found in the Lincoln MKS, it develops 305 horsepower and 280 foot-pounds of torque – enough to best the 2010 Camaro, its closest rival.  Not to mention its fuel efficiency, which Ford says is 30 MPG on the highway.  The fuel economy is partly due to the new automatic and manual transmissions on offer from Ford.  The new transmissions each have 6 gears, giving the new Mustang plenty of performance.  Once up to speed, it also offers quiet, fuel-efficient highway cruising.  Besides the performance and fuel economy, Ford’s new V6 engine will only require oil changes once every 10,000 miles, which is longer than Ford’s current 7,500 mile interval on its current vehicles.  If you’ve been following the engine options available in Ford vehicles, this “new” 3.7-liter V6 looks to be closely related to the base engine in the 2009-2010 Lincoln MKS, albeit tweaked for Mustang duty with a little extra performance.  Could we see this engine powering future Lincolns?  Email me with your thoughts.

In addition to the engine and transmissions, almost everything else under the skin of the new Mustang is changed, from the suspension to the power steering.  The suspension is retuned for comfortable highway cruising while maintaining the Mustang’s ability to hold its own in tight corners.  The power steering is no longer powered by a hydraulic pump, but instead is using an electronic system disconnected from the engine.  This allows for trick features that keep the driver in his or her lane and remove some of the shimmy of an out-of-balance wheel or warped brake rotors, as well as the automatic parallel-parking feature found on luxury cars.  There will also be a V6 Performance Package available, which consists of summer tires riding on 19″ wheels, the suspension setup from the Mustang GT complete with a Sport mode in its revised programming, a strut tower brace to add some rigidity to the car and a shorter axle gear ratio for faster acceleration.

Even though the 2010 Mustang received a major refreshing, we didn’t see much of an improvement in performance.  That was one of its biggest problems, considering the Camaro V6 puts out similar power figures to the 2010 Mustang GT, not to mention the myriad of engines offered in the 2010 Dodge Challenger.  Now that the V6 Mustang has similar horsepower figures to the 2010 Mustang GT, it’ll be interesting to see what Ford comes up with for the 2011 Mustang GT.  Rumor has it that a 5.0-liter V8 making 400 horsepower is in the running.

by John Suit

Source: Ford


2 Responses to “Under the Hood: 2011 Mustang V6”

  • I read they have a special resonator to pipe engine sounds into the cockpit. Since I am a fanatic about having a quiet cabin, could this resonator be removed or blocked?

  • I imagine you can, but honestly, it’s not really loud, and I have sensitive ears! Your best bet is to take the new Mustang out when it hits showrooms and see for yourself.

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