Will the next Ford Mustang look like a 2013 Fusion?

Ford-Evos-ConceptPeople say not to mess with perfection, but Ford might be doing just that when the next Mustang rolls into showrooms in 2015. For its past two generations, the Mustang has been a retro ride, designed to look like classic ‘Stangs from the 1960s. That classic shape has been the key to the Mustang’s popularity, but Ford will be going a different route with the 2015 model. The next Mustang will have modern styling similar to what we’ve already seen on the 2013 Fusion sedan.

Ford insiders say the 2015 Mustang will be almost identical to last year’s Evos concept car. The Evos was supposed to be preview of the Fusion, but its combination of coupe-like styling and sedan interior volume mean its design cues could be applied to a Mustang as well. The overall proportions, not to mention the Aston Martin-like grille, would look great on a sporty coupe like the Mustang, the only question is whether it will appeal to fans of the current, retro design.

Retro cars like the Mustang, Volkswagen Beatle, and Mini Cooper are popular for a reason. They attract nostalgic Baby Boomers, who will spend any amount of money to relive their youth. Retro cars also stand out: their unique styling separates them from everything else on the road, while still maintaining brand identity through classic design cues. A 2012 Mustang isn’t just a cool looking car; because it looks the same as a 1968 Mustang, it is instantly recognizable as one.

When Steve McQueen’s Mustang GT was just a used car, not a classic, Ford began experimenting with different designs. Through the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s, the Mustang evolved, but it also lost a lot of its appeal. In 2005, Ford launched its first retro Mustang, bringing the car out of a sales slump. That 2005 model shared many parts with its predecessor, but the styling made it a winner.

So why would Ford mess with its winning formula? Apparently, it’s no longer winning. Ford sold 166,350 Mustangs in 2006, but only 70,438 in 2011. Last year, Ford introduced vastly improved engines (a 5.0-liter V8 and a 3.7-liter V6), but that wasn’t enough to reinvigorate sales.

Instead of catering to nostalgic Baby Boomers, Ford hopes to entice younger buyers with the Evos-derived styling. The retro Mustang’s sales may be declining, but that could still be a big risk. The American “pony cars” (Mustang, Chevy Camaro, Dodge Challenger) use their classic styling and history to set themselves apart from other sporty coupes, so Ford will be creating a whole new paradigm with the 2015 Mustang. It is also unclear whether the current car’s styling is what keeps young buyers away.

If Ford wants to keep its shareholders happy, it needs to do something about the Mustang’s sales. However, that something could alienate the car’s traditional fans. No one wants to anger their devoted followers, but it might be time to try something new. The Mustang just celebrated its 48th birthday; it has the staying power to weather some experimentation. Who knows, maybe today’s 20-somethings will be pining after a retro Mustang based on the 2015 model when they reach middle age.


Mercedes wants to turn your car into a comfortable shopping mall on wheels

Mercedes-Benz designed its MBUX infotainment system with e-commerce in mind. Motorists can upgrade compatible cars via an over-the-air software updating system, but the brand wants to take this technology to the next level.

Here are 20 portable tech gadgets you’ll want to use every day

If you're looking for portable tech to keep you charged up while on the go (or for some great small gift ideas), we've rounded up 20 must-have gadgets. You'll find everything from a mini gaming controller to a folding Bluetooth keyboard.

The best of the last generation: Our 50 favorite Xbox 360 games

The Xbox 360 thrived during a generation where games were plentiful. Here's our list of the best Xbox 360 games of all time, including all game genres and even a few special indie hits.

Mustang-like and electrified. What did Ford just show a preview of?

Ford posted an enigmatic picture of a blue Mustang emblem on a black background right as Tesla prepared to introduce the Model Y. Is the Blue Oval teasing a hybrid Mustang, or is it previewing a Mustang-inspired, battery-powered crossover?

Can electric cars be S3XY? Tesla says yes with the new Model Y crossover

Tesla introduced a crossover named Model Y at its design studio in Los Angeles. It's a more spacious alternative to the Model 3 it shares 75 percent of its parts with, and is a smaller sibling to the Model X.

Nvidia’s new simulator brings virtual learning to autonomous vehicle developers

Nvidia introduced a simulator for testing autonomous vehicle technologies. Drive Constellation is a cloud-based platform technology vendors can use to validate systems efficiently, safely, and much faster than with vehicles on real roads.
Product Review

Who needs a Range Rover? BMW’s X7 has better tech and just as much luxury

The 2019 BMW X7 is the German automaker’s long-overdue entry into the full-size luxury SUV segment. Packing three rows of seats and plenty of tech, can the new BMW take on Mercedes-Benz and Land Rover?

Tesla wirelessly gives the Model 3 a 5-percent increase in power

Tesla again showed the potential of its innovative over-the-air software updating system by making the Model 3 five percent more powerful via a firmware update. The Performance model gained 23 horsepower.

Fiat wants to transform the cheeky 500 city car into an urban Tesla

Fiat is finally preparing a new 500. Scheduled to make its debut in early 2020, the retro-chic city car will go electric in part to comply with looming emissions regulations.

Say goodbye to Uber for good: Here's how to cut ties with the ridesharing service

If you thought that deleting the Uber app would also delete your account, think again. You'll have to deactivate your account, then wait 30 days in order to do so. Here, we outlined how to delete your Uber account once and for all.

FWD vs. RWD vs. AWD: How the wheels that turn change the way you drive

Let's face it, you've likely heard front-, rear-, and all-wheel drive mentioned before in some context or another. But what do these terms mean, especially in terms of performance? We’ve got the answers.

Shift it yourself: How to drive stick in a manual transmission car

Driving a manual transmission car might seem intimidating at first, but it's not as difficult as you might think. Knowing how to operate this type of gearbox will serve you well. Here's everything you need to know to learn how to drive…

Waymo boosts robo-taxi plans with new service center in Arizona

Waymo has announced plans for a facility in Phoenix, Arizona, that will help to service, maintain, and grow its fleet of autonomous Waymo One cars. The vehicles operate as part of the company's robo-taxi ridesharing service.

Vivint’s Car Guard keeps tabs on your vehicle when you’re not in it

A simple plug-in that you can place in just about any vehicle, Vivint's new Car Guard will automatically detect if your car is bumped, towed, or stolen and will alert you about it.