Comparing The 2019 and 2020 Mustang

Comparing The 2019 and 2020 Mustang

Last Updated June 13, 2023 | Meghan Drummond

The 2020 Mustang brings one huge change that affects nearly everything: The introduction of a High Performance EcoBoost. Not only is this basically an entirely separate Mustang that falls right in-between the base model EcoBoost and the GT, but it affects the package offerings for the EcoBoost as well.

Otherwise, we have a few of the standard updates that Ford makes every year in order to keep the Mustang fresh, from new color options to new wheel offerings. Here are all of the returning packages and features as well as what you won’t be seeing for the 2020 year.

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Changes For All 2020 Mustangs

2020 vs 2019 Mustang Colors

A light green Mustang with black accentsNeed for Green is Retiring

Obviously, there are new colors for the new year, but that means that we also lose a few colors. For 2020, Rapid Red, Iconic Silver, Grabber Lime, and Twister Orange are all new, and Ingot Silver, Ruby Red, Orange Fury, and Need for Green are all retired, breaking a slew of hearts in their wake. Our complete lists of the 2020 Mustang colors and 2019 Mustang colors includes pictures of the new colors as well as the returning ones if you’re trying to decide which color to order yours in.

2019 vs 2020 Mustang Colors
Paint ColorPaint Code2019 Mustang2020 Mustang
Need For Green AJ
Dark Highland Green B5
Twister Orange CA
Rapid Red D4
Velocity Blue E7
Grabber Lime F9
Shadow Black G1
Magnetic J7
Iconic Silver JS
Kona Blue L6
Orange Fury NL
Race Red PQ
Ruby Red RR
Ingot Silver UX
Oxford White YZ

FordPass Connect

FordPass Connect is now standard on all models, which is a feature that’s underused by most drivers. Using an app on your smartphone, FordPass allows you to schedule remote starts in advance, lock and unlock doors remotely, locate your vehicle’s parking location, wherever that is, and check on everything from your fuel levels to how many miles you have till your next oil change. It’s a feature that offers a lot to some people, a little to a lot of people, and nothing at all to a few, but since it’s included it’s worth playing around with to see how it works for you.

Additional Changes

The biggest loss for this model year is that the passenger seats are now only four-way power as opposed to six-way power, and the only way to get a map pocket on the back of your seat is to purchase the Bullitt model. It’s unlikely that these features will be missed by many, but if you have a difficult-to-please passenger, it may be worth considering the 2019 instead of the 2020.

There will be two new wheel designs that have yet to be shared, and two-wheel designs that are being discontinued, keeping the total number of wheel options the same, and most of the beloved wheels are still being kept on the roster.

A black and silver wheel
2019 Retired Wheel Designs

The EcoBoost and EcoBoost Premium

Dark gray Mustang parked on street

The base EcoBoost will be getting a new wheel design that’s yet to be released, but which will also be 17” Sparkle Silver-painted and aluminum, which means that they’ll look very similar to 2019’s default wheel.

The packages that were left unchanged were the Safe and Smart, Black Accent, and Enhanced Security Options. The Wheel and Stripe package was mostly unchanged, except it appears to now include a hood stripe in addition to the improved wheels and side stripe.

If you opt for the EcoBoost Premium, you’ll still be able to get the ever-popular Pony Package or the Carbon Sport Package.

So, what’s missing?

The Performance Package is no more, having instead been rolled into the High-Performance EcoBoost Mustang. This also means that the MagneRide option has been eliminated, and rolled into the Handling Package, which requires the High-Performance EcoBoost as a prerequisite.

High Performance EcoBoost

Dark orange Mustang with Magnetic hood stripes
The High Performance EcoBoost Mustang

The High Performance EcoBoost is available in regular and premium trim levels and includes all of the features that made the performance package so popular, plus a host of others.

The regular EcoBoost is rated at 310 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. The High Performance EcoBoost adds twenty horsepower to the engine output and includes all of the highlights of the former Performance Package.

  • 19” x 9” Machined-Face Aluminum Wheels
  • 255/40R19 Summer Only Tires
  • Active Valve Performance Exhaust
  • Black Painted Strut Tower Brace
  • Engine Spun Aluminum Instrument Panel
  • Gauge Pack
  • Heavy-Duty Front Springs
  • Larger Brake Rotors
  • Larger Radiator
  • Unique Chassis Tuning
  • Unique EPAS, ABS, and Stability Control Tuning
  • Upsized Rear Sway Bar

Additionally, the new High Performance Package includes:

  • Magnetic Colored Exterior Mirrors
  • Magnetic Colored Spoiler
  • GT Performance Package Front Splitter and Belly Pan
  • Hood Accent Stripe (Metallic Gray, Silver on Magnetic)

Perhaps even better, if ordered with the optional Handling Package, the wheels are upgraded again to a 19” x 9.5” aluminum wheel that comes with 265/40R19 Pirelli Corsa4 summer-only tires, the MagneRide Damping System, premium brakes, and a 3.55 Torsen limited-slip rear axle. Only Fastback Mustangs with the EcoBoost High Performance Package can add the Handling Package, but we still see it being a popular option depending on the yet-to-be-released price.

Getting the High Performance Package does mean that you won’t be able to get the Over-the-Top Racing Stripe, Black Accent Package, Pony Package, or Wheel and Stripe Package.

GT and GT Premium Changes

The GT is wholly unchanged, with the exception of a couple of minor changes to the packages.

The California Special Mustang will no longer be available in Kona Blue and will instead be available in Velocity Blue, a fairly minor change that probably won’t be a dealbreaker to anyone. It will continue to be available in Shadow Black, Race Red, and Oxford White, and will be newly available in the new-for-2020-color Iconic Silver.

The Wheel and Stripe Package will also include a hood stripe, the same as it now does in the EcoBoost version.

2020 Mustang Packages

Though most of these are unchanged, here’s a rundown of what comes with each package, as well as which trims it’s available on. Features that are new for 2020 are in bold.

Wheel and Stripe Package

The Wheel and Stripe package is available for EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT, and GT Premium Mustangs. It’s not available for the High Performance EcoBoost Mustang.

  • 19” Machined Face Aluminum Wheels with Dark Tarnish Painted Pockets
  • Side Stripe (Ebony or White)
  • Hood Stripe

Black Accent Package

The Black Accent Package is available for EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT, and GT Premium Mustangs. It is not available for the High Performance EcoBoost Mustang. On Mustangs that are painted Shadow Black, the painted roof will not be included.

  • 19” x 8.5” Ebony Black Painted Aluminum Wheels
  • Black Front and Rear Pony Badges
  • Black Spoiler
  • Painted Black Roof

Light orange Mustang in front of CJ’s logo
The Black Accent Package is Returning

Safe and Smart Package

The Safe and Smart Package is available on all Mustangs. Though this is the only way to get a comprehensive suite of driver-assist features, all Mustangs come with a reverse sensing system and 911 assist. Premium trim models also come with blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alerts as standard equipment.

  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Auto High Beam
  • Lane Keeping System
  • Pre Collision Assist
  • Rain Sensing Windshield Wipers

Pony Package

The Pony Package is only available on EcoBoost Premium Mustangs that do not have the High Performance Package installed.

  • 19” Polished Aluminum Wheels
  • Bright Beltline and Window Surround
  • Premium Floor Mats with Embroidered Pony Logo
  • Side Stripe (Ebony or White)
  • Tri-bar Pony Badge
  • Bright Upper Grille

Carbon Sport Interior Package

The Carbon Sport Package is available for all Mustangs with Premium trim, including the High Performance Package.

  • Alcantara Door Inserts
  • Alcantara Seat Inserts
  • Carbon Fiber Instrument Panel
  • Carbon Fiber Shift Knob

Performance Package

Because the EcoBoost Mustangs' Premium package was replaced with the High Performance Package, only GT Mustangs can get the Performance Package.

  • 19” x 9” Front and 19” x 9.5” Rear Ebony Black-Painted Aluminum Wheels
  • 255/40R19 Front and 275/40R19 Rear Summer-Only Tires
  • Brembo Six-Piston Front Brake Calipers
  • Engine Spun Aluminum Instrument Panel
  • Gauge Pack
  • Heavy-Duty Front Springs
  • K-Brace
  • Larger Radiator
  • Performance Rear Wing
  • Silver Painted Strut-Tower Brace
  • Torsen Differential with 3.73(Manual) or 3.55 (Automatic) Axle Ratio
  • Unique Chassis Tuning
  • Unique Stability Control, EPAS, and ABS Tuning
  • Upsized Rear Sway Bar

Performance Package II

Because the EcoBoost Mustang no longer has a Performance Package, it also no longer has Performance Package II. The closest equivalent package combination would be the High Performance Package Mustang with the Handling Package. For GT Mustangs, the Performance Package II is largely unchanged. It can be added to both the GT and the GT Premium Mustang and includes everything from Package I and also:

  • 19” x 10.5” Front and 19” x 11” Rear Dark Tarnish Painted Aluminum Wheels
  • 305/30R19 Pilot Sport Cup 2 Tires
  • High Performance Front Splitter
  • MagneRide Damping System
  • Unique Rear Spoiler
  • Unique Track-Inspired Springs and Sway Bar

California Special Package

The California Special is one of the classic packages that people look forward to seeing, but it can only be added to Premium GTs. The history of the California Special Package is part of what makes this so popular, but also it’s a great list of features.

  • 19” x 8.5” Machined-Face Aluminum with High-Gloss Ebony Black-Painted Pockets
  • California Special Badge on Strut Tower Brace
  • California Special Instrument Panel Badge
  • California Special Rear Badging
  • Carbon Hex Aluminum Instrument Panel
  • Floor Mats with California Special Script and Red Contrast Stitching
  • Miko Suede Door Inserts
  • Miko Suede Seat Inserts
  • Pedestal Rear Spoiler
  • Performance Package Front Splitter
  • Side Scoops
  • Side Stripe (Black, Silver on Shadow Black)
  • Unique Front Grilles

Silver Convertible
The California Special Mustang


Though in promotional materials the 2020 Bullitt’s wheels are described using different terminology than was used in 2019, it doesn’t seem that they’re in any way different. Likewise, information for the 2020 Mustang only says that the Ebony leather interior will have a “green” trim, but from context, we can assume it will be the same “Dark Highland Green” as the 2019 Bullitt.

The 2019 and 2020 Bullitt Specs and special features are numerous, but the brief version is that it’s essentially a Performance Pack II Premium GT, with a whole bunch of extra special features that you can only get with the Bullitt edition and it can be ordered in either Dark Highland Green or Black.

Bullitt Mustang
Bullitt in Dark Highland Green

GT350 and GT350R

Why mess with perfection? The GT350 and GT350R are some of the most acclaimed performance vehicles at their respective price points, and Ford just improved the tires in 2019.

The GT350’s tires are the ultra-sticky Pilot Sport Cup 2s, arguably as close to a street-legal slick as you’re going to find on a production vehicle. These particular tires are different from the ones you can buy in stores and are specially formulated to work with the GT350 by Ford Performance, who has lovingly stamped FP onto every “true” set of these tires.

To accommodate the tires, Ford altered the suspension and tuning of the GT350, and so far it’s getting nothing but rave reviews. Ford’s already opened dealer ordering for these vehicles, so it looks like a sure thing that the GT350 and GT350R will be continuing to be produced through 2020. Considering this was only supposed to be a two to three-year special edition, it’s great to see Ford responding to market demand. Many people have been patiently waiting for their GT350, and it would be a shame if it stopped being produced now.

Of course, the GT350’s claim to fame still continues to be its Voodoo engine, a flat-plane V8 noted for its unique sound and ridiculous power output. This engine has been unchanged since the GT350’s debut. We’d complain about everything staying the same, but really, it’s hard to complain about either of these two vehicles. They continue to only be offered in a manual transmission. The flat-plane V8 and transmission are perhaps the biggest differences between the GT350 and the GT500, but there are quite a few more differences as well. We detailed the differences between the GT350 and GT500, which of course is new for 2020.


We can’t compare the GT500 to a 2019 model, because this is the first year that a GT500 has been manufactured in the entire S550 generation. It’s been a long wait, but it seems that Ford’s created a vehicle that was well worth that wait.

The GT500 uses a cross-plane crankshaft variant of the Voodoo engine called the Predator, and though it doesn’t have as distinct a sound as the flat-plane, it’s a rumble that many associate with muscle cars and are happy to hear again.

The GT500 is Ford’s most horsepower-intense production Mustang in history coming in at a roaring record-setting 760hp. It’s a beast. Especially when equipped with the much-discussed Carbon Fiber Track Pack.

There’s a lot to discuss with regards to the 2020 GT500’s specs, but perhaps the most discussed attribute was Ford’s decision to use a dual-clutch transmission instead of a traditional manual. Though drivers can change the gears using paddle shifters, and though DCT transmissions are different than traditional automatics, many enthusiasts have lamented how much they’re going to miss the third pedal and the feel of the shift knob.

Out of all the changes for the 2020 Mustang, the addition of the GT500 is the most exciting and just feels right. Many have missed this performance-oriented Mustang, and it’s good to see it in the roster again.

a dark red Mustang with a wing in the desert
2020 GT500

Overview of the 2020 Mustang

We already knew that the biggest news for the 2020 Mustang was going to be the GT500, but adding the HPP is a great bonus. As more news is released about the 2020 Mustang we’ll keep this article updated, but if you need to know Mustang news before anyone else, be sure to sign up for our free newsletter as well.

This article was researched, written, edited, and reviewed following the steps outlined in our editorial process. Learn more about CJ's editorial standards and guidelines.