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Mustang V6  (Source: allfordmustangs.com)
Ford's Mustang V6 finally gets some balls

When it comes to increasing the fuel economy of vehicles to meet more strict CAFE regulations, automakers are looking at a variety of possible scenarios. Many like Toyota and Honda are pushing hybrid powertrains with vehicles like the Prius and Insight. Others, like VW and Audi, are heavily invested in diesel technology.

Ford is no stranger to relatively expensive hybrid powertrains or turbocharging, but it is using an off-the-shelf, normally aspirated V6 to boost fuel economy in its 2011 Mustang. Base Mustangs have long been the laughing stock of the sporty coupe market with drivers limping along with a "whopping" 210 hp (240 lb-ft of torque) from a 4.0-liter V6 engine. That engine is rated at 18 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway with a 5-speed manual transmission (16 mpg/24 mpg with a 5-speed automatic transmission).

Ford's base 2011 Mustang, however, should be able to give a little more dignity to those who choose not to go the GT route. The 2011 Mustang is now powered by a smaller, all-aluminum 3.7-liter V6 which pumps out an impressive 305 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque (at 6500 rpm and 4250 rpm respectively). The new engine is also 40 pounds lighter than the outgoing unit.

For the eco-conscious folks out there, fuel economy is up as well despite the 31 percent improvement in power. This time around, it's the automatic transmission (6-speed) that gets the best fuel economy at 19 mpg city/30 mpg highway. The 6-speed manual transmission is not far behind at 18 mpg city/29 mpg highway.

With the V6 Mustang now within 10 hp of its more expensive GT brother, Ford is expected to announce a new V8 engine for the vehicle that will be rated at around 400/400 (hp/lb-ft).

For comparison, the Mustang V6's arch enemy -- the Camaro V6 -- is rated at 17 mpg city/29 mpg highway. Considering that the new Mustang V6 now offers relatively the same punch as the Camaro V6 while weighing around 400 pounds less means that a whole new round of pony car wars is likely to begin.



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RE: Sad...
By mtcoder on 11/30/2009 10:39:49 AM , Rating: 0
Tell that to my 1970 oldsmobile 356 rocket with borded heads, that will stomp any new hot rod around in the dust, and its original from the factory minus parts that need continual replacement, IE seals, shocks etc. Oh did I mention it has 546,687 miles on it gets around 15 miles to the gallon if I don't open it up. Sure the newer cars can get a jump on me being much lighter, but I laugh when they try to beat me up a large mountain road nearby. They start going up hill and next thing you know their new car is going 60 and the valves are rattling hard. Me I just step down and watch the the speedometer keep going up. Old cars were built with quality and last forever, if you treat an old car right it will treat you right. New cars you hit a pot hole and the shock breaks, the rim bends, and the trunk latch stops working right. New car gets warm and the computer module breaks down and you have to buy a new one for 400 bucks, me something breaks down I pull out 1 of 10 tools needed to strip the whole car down throw a jack under it and fix it.

Now to the article I still find it funny that my 1970 olds still gets around 15 mpg town and 20mpg interstate, I had it tested not to long ago. Has 400+ hp and weighs so much more. Would think they would have been able to figure out how to improve fuel efficiency in 40 years, but guess not. Now granted if I dog my car around it goes to heck on fuel mileage, but if I just casually drive it as if it was an economy car then it does great fuel mileage cause well it never goes behind 2k rpm / idling. Then again I don't need to provide enough power to run 16 sub woofers and 34 speakers in the car either 4 speakers and 150 watt stereo are plenty, I don't have to deal with a billion computer components that need power either, so my alternator is really small. OH FYI I do have a/c and it barely affects the mpg. Maybe 1 day with all this new technology they will be able to make a "hotrod" that gets better gas mileage than the ones from 40 years ago, but I'm still waiting, and still driving my old car till then.


RE: Sad...
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 11/30/2009 11:49:12 AM , Rating: 3
Well jing blang and con sarn, pardner, I would say you make a convincin' argument, darn tootin' *spit*. Care to take that Olds (don't make those anymore, do they?) around a curve in that mountain road?


RE: Sad...
By robertisaar on 11/30/2009 1:37:22 PM , Rating: 2
interestingly enough: my father's 1970 Monte Carlo with the factory 350 is getting around 20MPG highway as well. as long as you can check timing, adjust the carb and not be a complete dumbass, it's amazing what almost 40 year old vehicles can do compared to how far we've come today.


RE: Sad...
By Jeffk464 on 11/30/2009 2:13:36 PM , Rating: 2
Probably has to do with it being a high compression engine. Leaded fuel was high octane so you could run higher compression without the dreaded pre-detination. If they start putting more ethenal in our fuel we might be able to go back to higher compressions as ethenol is higher octane that gasoline.


RE: Sad...
By robertisaar on 11/30/2009 2:39:25 PM , Rating: 2
according to GM documents, it is a 9.5:1 motor, which wasn't anything special back then considering what the BBCs were running, but it is respectable considering the ancient iron heads. he runs premium with some occasional lead substitute due to it having the original valve seats.

as a comparison: 95 Monte Carlo with the 3100 engine is also running 9.5:1 compression, but with aluminum heads. mileage is about 20 in the city, around 31-35 on the highway. but with about 1/2 of the torque and horsepower of the 350, it's a fair trade in my world.


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