The 2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1 will fill the gap between the GT and GT350. It adds a little more style, performance, and exclusivity over a regular Mustang GT. As a replacement for the departing Mustang Bullitt, the Mach 1 will serve as a relatively affordable special trim.
Update: 2021 Mustang Mach 1 Official Ford Debut (06/16/2020)
Ford’s official press debut of the 2021 Mustang Mach 1 reveals lots of interesting info about this new performance-focused pony. Ford has confirmed that the Mach 1 “bridges the gap between GT and Shelby models.” It borrows parts from the GT350 and GT500. There’s also going to be an optional Handling Package (manual transmission only).
The Mach 1’s power levels are identical to the outgoing Bullitt at 480 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. However, the Mach 1 is looking more track-ready by borrowing parts from the Shelby GT350 and GT500. It's even more enticing than the PP2 GT Mustang due to the inclusion of the rear axle cooling system from the GT500, Mustang-first brake-cooling ramps, and two side heat exchangers. These upgrades should give the Mach 1 more endurance and reliability on the track.
The standard transmission is a six-speed manual. It’s worth noting that the transmission will also be from the GT350: The Tremec 3160 6-speed. Reception for this decision has been positive considering the negative press over Ford's recent Getrag MT-82 lawsuit.
The 10-speed automatic transmission will be an option. It will come with an upgraded torque converter and unique calibration.
As for style, the Mach 1 will get a unique front end and new 19-inch Tarnished Dark-painted aluminum wheels. There are rally light-style circles on the grille, evoking the “fog light delete” look of the 2012-2013 Boss 302. The appearance package features a satin black hood and side stripes with a reflective accent stripe in red, white, or orange. Fighter Jet Gray is likely the signature paint color, as it's prominently featured in Ford's press release media. This color is available only with the Mach 1 Appearance Package.
The Handling Package also adds a unique high-downforce front splitter, new front wheel lip moldings, and a low-gloss Magnetic spoiler with Gurney flap (borrowed from the GT500).
Exterior colors are as follows:
- Fighter Jet Gray (Appearance Package Exclusive)
- Iconic Silver
- Shadow Black
- Oxford White
- Velocity Blue
- Twister Orange
- Race Red
- Grabber Yellow
Inside, there are optional unique leather sport seats with an accent stripe. Other visual elements include a Dark Spindrift instrument panel with aluminum accents and an engraved badge with the unique chassis number. There’s also the white cue ball shifter from the Bullitt, another fan favorite.
If there’s a downside here, it’s that power numbers are no higher than the outgoing Bullitt. The rumored 525 hp number has not come to fruition. Instead, the new Mach 1 is more in line with original theories.
Overall, response has been very positive. Mustang enthusiasts see the Mach 1 as the best of all worlds, a dailyable car that’s also at home on the track. It combines the beloved Coyote 5.0 engine with the heavily-favored Tremec 6-speed. It may be the perfect happy medium between the Mustang GT and GT350.
Update: 2021 Mustang Mach 1 Rumored Horsepower and Torque Levels (06/08/2020)
In a surprising revelation, the upcoming 2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1 has been reported to have more power than expected. According to Ford Authority’s sources, engineers are aiming for output of 525 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. That’s very comparable to the outgoing GT350’s 526 hp and 429 lb-ft of torque. This would make the Mach 1 more of a replacement for the GT350 than the Bullitt.
For those concerned that the new Mach 1 will dilute the GT350’s legacy, don’t worry. The Mach 1 will use a modified version of the 5.0 Coyote engine. Though it might match the GT350 in power, it won’t be able to replicate the sound of its 5.2 Voodoo flat-plane crank motor. What remains to be seen is if the Mach 1 will be as track-focused as the GT350. Either way, it’s going to appeal to hardcore Mustang enthusiasts.
Update: Official 2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1 Press Release (05/29/2020)
A press release has confirmed long-held speculations: The new Mustang trim for 2021 will be the Mach 1! Little else is known, but some new photos of a camouflaged test car have been released.
Director of Ford Icons, Dave Pericak, said the new Mach 1 will "...reward our most hardcore Mustang enthusiasts who demand that next level of power, precision, and collectability." He also called it "the most track-capable 5.0-liter Mustang ever."
It's been all but confirmed that the GT350, GT350R, and Bullitt Mustangs will be discontinued for 2021. This will leave just the GT500 as the top-tier performance trim. The new Mach 1 should fill out the sweet spot in the middle.
Mustang Mach 1 Heritage
The previous generation Mach 1 Mustangs have been popular with die-hards since debuting in 1969. So far, there have only been rumors and spy shots of the new Mustang Mach 1. But there is already palpable excitement with Ford reviving this heralded name.
The most recent Mach 1 Ford produced was the 2003-2004 SN95 Mach 1. It offered a power bump over the GT, though not up to the level of the Cobra. If the 2021 Mach 1 follows suit, it should have a near-perfect amount of horsepower for the street. But it won’t be quite as track-focused as the GT350, GT350R, or GT500.
The Mach 1 name was first linked to the Mustang Mach-E. Since the Mach-E is a four-door electric crossover, this sparked fierce backlash from enthusiasts. This is likely what spurred Ford to instead save the moniker for their next "upper-middle" pony. Sadly, this means the Bullitt will no longer be around. But Mustang Bullitts have always had short runs in past generations.
With the S650 generation rumored to release in the 2023 model year, the Mach 1 should keep the public excited and interested. We’re hoping to see an initial debut by summer 2020.
2021 Mustang Mach 1 Exterior
Unfortunately, we’ve only seen well-camouflaged spyshots of a prototype Mach 1 so far. Courtesy of a Mustang6G forum post, we know that Ford has been testing a Mustang that fits the bill.
It’s almost certainly a Mach 1. Though it has some rear features from the GT500, it looks most like a Bullitt.
For the current Bullitt, subtlety is the name of the game. It comes only in Shadow Black and Dark Highland Green. There are no badges except for a unique Bullitt emblem on the trunk. The design is smooth and sleek, with a minimalist grille and black wheels.
The exterior of the Mach 1 will likely have a bit more going on than the Bullitt. Expect somewhat more aggressive badging and bodywork. There may even be some unique wheels. The prototype also features a rear spoiler, which the Bullitt doesn’t have.
The mule in the photographs actually shows large, 5-inch exhaust tips from the GT500. These may not make it to the final production Mach 1, but they certainly make a statement.
We’d love to see even more retro throwbacks to the first-generation Mustang Mach 1s. A racing stripe, hood scoop, and rear window louvers would really set it apart.
2021 Mustang Mach 1 Colors
If history tells us anything about the future, most paint colors for the 2021 Mach 1 will probably be the same as the regular 2021 Mustang colors.
Yet, there may be an exclusive shade or two. The Bullitt features its gorgeous Dark Highland Green color. The SN95 Mach 1 offered a unique Azure Blue color, which could see a return. Ford likes to set their special models apart from the rest of the line-up. We’re betting on at least one exclusive Mach 1 paint color.
2021 Mustang Mach 1 Interior
We don’t expect many changes to the interior for the Mach 1. It will probably be like the cabin of the GT or Bullitt. Since the Mach 1 is launching at the end of a generation, don’t expect any new tech features or luxurious touches. There will probably be some unique badging and Mach 1 headrest stitching. There could even be a serialized number plate.
The Mach 1 is almost sure to have the 12-inch digital gauge cluster. This means less opportunity for the retro-themed gauges featured in the SN95 Mach 1. There may be some other small nostalgic touches by way of the materials or trim.
2021 Mustang Mach 1 Performance
As for performance, the 2021 Mach 1 should fall somewhere between the Mustang GT and GT350.
In the spy images, the Mach 1 is wearing what appear to be the wheels from the Performance Package Level 2. The brakes are also the red Brembos from the Bullitt. Having upgraded wheels, tires, and brakes is almost certain to be part of the new Mach 1 package.
2021 Mach 1 Horsepower
The Mach 1 will feature a naturally-aspirated 5.0-liter Coyote V8 engine, as the GT and Bullitt do. The Bullitt gets a tune and the intake manifold from the GT350 to increase its power. We expect the Mach 1 to have something similar.
It’s likely the Mach 1 will have a bit more horsepower than the Bullitt, which already has 480 hp. Since Ford may want to avoid encroaching on the GT350 (526 hp), we think the Mach 1 will have less than 500 hp. But you never know! It may just tip the scales and join the club.
Regardless of output, it should edge out the current Bullitt in terms of performance. That means we can expect 0-60 mph in around 4.2 seconds.
2021 Mach 1 Transmission
Like the Bullitt, it’s very possible that the Mach 1 will only come with a manual transmission. This adds exclusivity and appeals to enthusiasts. However, previous Mach 1 models have had an automatic transmission option. Ford’s current 10-speed automatic is quicker than the manual and could be an option as well.
2021 Mach 1 Price
Ford has announced that the starting price of the 2021 Mustang Mach 1 will be $52,915. This is logical, as it will slot between the Bullitt’s MSRP of $47,705 and the GT350’s starting price of $60,440.
2021 Mustang Mach 1 Release
With things in flux, we don’t know when the Mach 1 will debut to the public. We’re not even sure if the car is still on track for a 2021 model year release. The Mustang has been on a roll, and hopefully new information about the Mach 1 will come out soon.
We’ll continue to update this article as news comes out. In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter. to learn about the latest deals for your Mustang.
Sources: Ford | AutoBlog