There’s no doubt that a lot of hype is surrounding Ford’s latest rendition of America’s favorite pony car. The 2018 Mustang has been the talk of many news and media sites along with enthusiasts around the globe. And that’s for good reason! There are a lot of things to talk about when it comes to the 2018 Mustang, especially when stacking it up against the outgoing 2017 model year. Ford just didn’t simply throw a new front bumper on this car and call it a day - there are a lot of small engineering touches that really make the 2018 Mustang an entirely better driving car in almost every way.
2018 Mustang Steering Wheel
The first subtle change on the 2018 Mustang is the first thing you put your hands on when you’re sitting in the driver’s seat: the steering wheel. For the first time ever on a Mustang, Ford now offers the option for a heated steering wheel on the 2018 Mustang. This has been an option in many other more luxurious models like the F-150, Explorer, and other Super Duty pickups for a few years now, but now even those pony car enthusiasts can ensure their hands stay toasty warm throughout the winter months.
Another thing to mention for those who may be trading in their 2015-2017 Mustang to get into a 2018 Mustang would be the steering wheel controls. We’ve all heard about MyMode and how you can keep your car in Sport+ or Track Mode permanently by pushing the “Pony” button on the steering wheel. However, for the 2018 model year, Ford has switched the radio controls and Instrument Cluster controls from side-to-side. Meaning you’ll have to use your left hand to turn the volume up on your favorite jam. Nothing too major, but a small enough change that’ll have you pushing the wrong button for a couple weeks until you get used to the new layout.
2018 Mustang Interior Trim
Many who have owned or driven 2015-2017 Mustangs have noticed the lack of coordination of the trim throughout the interior - some satin, some chrome. This small detail would bother many owners not only for the reflections of the sun but also the fact that they simply just don’t match across the board. Any interior designer would probably pick up on this quite quickly.
With that in mind, Ford kicked it up a notch with the 2018 Mustang interior making all of the interior trim a nice, clean satin finish - with the exception of the speaker grilles. But hey, if they hit the mark on 98% of the interior trim, that’s still an “A” in our book!
2018 Mustang Interior Contrast Stitching
The third thing on our list is the contrast stitching in the interior. It’s one of those luxurious touches that takes this pony car to the next level and really helps the Mustang live up to its grand touring legacy. In the 2015-2017 models, the contrast stitching was limited to only a few areas unless you picked up the Red Line Interior Package. For 2018, Ford has now included beautiful matching contrast stitching on the seats, door panels, console, dashboard and even shifter.
2018 Mustang MT-82 Manual Transmission
For the 2018 model year, you’ve probably heard many people talking about the all-new 10R80 10-Speed Automatic Transmission. Rightfully so - it’s a quick-shifting trans that surely doesn’t mess around when it comes to efficiency and straight-line performance. However, Ford has made many upgrades to the MT-82 6-Speed Manual Transmission, this version dubbed “D4.”
For the latest revision of the MT-82 transmission - which has caught a lot of criticism among drag racers for its lack of durability - has borrowed a ton of tech from the TR6060 (used in the GT500) to improve the shifting experience across the board. The MT-82 D4 has better gear ratios, which 4th gear is now 1:1 instead of 5th, which makes for a much more pleasurable driving experience. Internally, the synchros have been upgraded along with the shift forks. No more plastic guides and the center support has been upgraded.
If you own a 2011-2017 Mustang GT with the MT-82 transmission, you’ve likely experienced the infamous third gear lockout. Thankfully, the shift box has been moved to help drastically with getting locked out of gear. Along with the addition of a dual-mass flywheel and twin-disc clutch, the MT-82 will withstand a lot more abuse than it’s earlier versions.
2018 Mustang Gen 3 Coyote Engine
The 2018 Mustang GT comes with the 5.0L we all know and love, except this year, there is a completely new revised Coyote under the hood. We all know about the impressive 460 horsepower and 420 ft-lb of torque numbers that Ford has been touting for a while now, but what about the meat and potatoes? What helps the Gen 3 Coyote get to those impressive bumps in power and torque?
First off, we’re proud to announce that this is the first time that the “5.0” is actually a 5.0L engine! Thanks to the addition of the same Plasma Transfer Wire Arc cylinder liners as the 5.2L in the GT350, resulting in 93mm cylinder bores over the outgoing 92.7mm in the 2015-2017 Gen 2 Coyotes. This results in exactly 5.035 liters of displacement. Cool, right?
On top of the obvious addition of direct injection to accompany the low-pressure port-side fuel injection, the Gen 3 Coyote has received new high-flow cylinder heads, new camshafts, a new crankshaft and a new balancer which all add up to an impressive 12.0:1 compression. And for those that are craving boost and are worried about the higher compression numbers - the addition direct injection should allow for some impressive forced induction setups!