2003 Ford Mustang Mach 1 Automatic Transmission Retro Review


Perhaps you’d somewhat not cop to the retro craze that is so scorching proper now, however understanding the significance of the 2003 Ford Mustang Mach 1 requires an appreciation of historical past. Assume again some 30 years in the past, when big-blocks dominated the strip, lengthy earlier than road racing included nitrous-injected sport compacts. We have examined the Mach earlier than, nevertheless it’s now out there with an computerized transmission. We felt it was price a run down the 1320.

All time-machine cues are current: Entrance and rear spoilers? Test. Magnum-style wheels? Test. Shaker hood scoop? Oh, yeah. Open the hood to see the wall-to-wall 4.6-liter, four-valve per cylinder, DOHC Ford V-8 (assume Boss 429). Output is 305 horsepower at 5800 rpm and 320 lb-ft of torque at 4200 rpm. There is a selection of transmissions: A five-speed handbook or four-speed computerized, every linked to a 3.55:1 Traction Lock rear axle.

The engine breathes via a useful ram-air shaker hood scoop and a modified higher consumption. Different go-fast {hardware} contains specifically calibrated cams, high-flow cylinder heads, a solid crank (forged with the automated transmission), and efficiency exhaust manifolds. Suspension modifications are a half-inch drop in experience top (as in comparison with a GT), new entrance and rear coil springs, revalved Tokico struts and shocks, Mach-specific anti-roll bars, and body rail connectors to reinforce rigidity. ABS and traction management are commonplace.

The Mach I cleared our 600-foot slalom at 63.6 mph, only a tick slower than the IRS-equipped Cobra (64.3) and solid-axle Bullitt (66.0). Ford engineers defined why the Mach 1 was slower via the cones: The Bullitt’s engine (cast-iron block and two-valve aluminum heads) has a decrease middle of gravity than the Mach 1 (or Cobra) engine, with its aluminum block however heavier four-valve heads. This Mach 1’s acceleration off the road is difficult however resulted in a big-block-humbling 13.88-second quarter-mile run at 101.91 mph. We just lately examined a Mach 1 five-speed and ran a 13.2-second quarter at 106.7 mph. This automatic-equipped automobile confirmed a slight energy dip simply after the second-to-third-gear shift, which felt like timing advance being dialed again or a transmission ratio selection just a bit off. The Mach 1 will nonetheless rip ’em into second. Shifts are torquey-firm at half throttle, kicking in at full throttle with downshifts only a toe-squeeze away.

The brand new model of the Mach 1 makes all the suitable muscle automobile strikes and can fulfill anybody who’s lusted after, however did not purchase, the unique.

2003 Ford Mustang Mach 1
Base worth $28,680 / $30,465
Car structure Entrance engine, rwd, 2-door, 4-pass coupe
Engine 4.6L/305-hp V-8, DOHC, Four valves/cyl
0-60 mph, sec 5.6
1/Four mile, sec@mph 13.88 @ 101.91
Braking, 60-Zero ft 120
600-ft slalom, mph 63.6
Skidpad, g 0.82
On sale in U.S. At present

This text was initially printed on October 29, 2003.



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