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Four-cylinder won’t damage Mustang brand: Ford

310 horses: Purists say a Mustang has to be V8 powered, but Ford says the 2.3-litre turbocharged EcoBoost four-cylinder variant will remind true pony-car fans of the model’s rich history.

Mustang to get an eco-boost with four-cylinder “repeating history”

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Ford logo30 Sep 2014

By DANIEL GARDNER in LOS ANGELES

FORD says the introduction of a four-cylinder version of its iconic Mustang muscle car will not damage the 50-year-old pony-badge reputation, and instead will bolster its worldwide appeal by “repeating history”.

For the first time in half a century the Mustang is going global, branching out to 120 countries worldwide, and Ford says the 2.3-litre EcoBoost variant will appeal to a more efficiency conscious audience without softening its image.

But while some purists believe a bent-eight is the only engine a Mustang deserves, Ford points out that by offering a 2.3-litre turbo alongside 5.0-litre V8 variants it is resurrecting a piece of its heritage.

Speaking at the global launch of the 2015 Mustang, Ford’s global powertrain technology communications manager Paul Seredynski told GoAuto true Mustang fans would fondly remember previous 2.3-litre four-cylinder versions of the past.

“We are exactly repeating history here. In 1986 you could get the 5.0-litre V8 or you could get the 2.3 litre turbocharged SVO. It had better suspension than the GT, it had better fuel economy and it was rated the same power, but the car was 50 per cent more expensive,” he said.

“Ford Mustang has had a number of four-cylinder engines in the past... The SVO was very popular – it’s considered iconic and one of the most popular Mustangs.”

While countries like the United States and Australia have relatively low fuel prices, Mr Seredynski said high fuel-taxed countries like the United Kingdom would find greater appeal in the EcoBoost Mustang.

In US trim the four-cylinder Mustang can return fuel economy of between 10.6 litres per 100km and 7.5L/100km depending on the type of driving.

Despite having a loyal following of V8 aficionados around the world, Ford predicts the four-cylinder will be the global volume seller by offering a combination of rewarding drive and fuel economy.

“Mustang is a performance brand so there is no lack of performance with the 2.3-litre, but it broadens the appeal,” he said.

“Mostly because it has the power and performance but it is significantly more efficient. We have to acknowledge the current climate and some people want better fuel economy.

“We think it will be the most popular engine everywhere.”

Both four-cylinder and V8 variants of the 2015 Mustang will be arriving on Australian shores by the middle of next year, and exact Australian details including prices and performance figures are expected closer to the date.

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