Ford is turning up its marketing machine for the 2013 Mustang, which gets a mild refresh and comes to showrooms this spring.
2013 MUSTANG | SLIDESHOW
We'll start with the part we can all enjoy, the Customizer. It's a Web and app based game that encourages users to customize their Mustangs and then battle one another via social media. It also highlights one of the core strengths of the Mustang: it's one of the most customizable automobiles out there.
CUSTOMIZER APP: Android | iPhone | PC
For muscle car fans one of the key additions for 2013 is Track Apps, which provides a wealth of performance data. It's positioned between the speedometer and tachometer and adds a variety of enthusiast options to the usual list of driver information.
INFO GRAPHIC: ALL ABOUT MUSTANG'S TRACK APPS
The display looks as though it came straight out of a raceway with an animation of a Christmas tree. No, we're not talking about the holiday, but rather the column of lights made famous at drag strips around the country, which are also known as performance trees. The app uses the steering wheel mounted five-way buttons to view six customizable menu options that include acceleration times, brake performance and g-forces.
"Mustang stays fresh by keeping pace with everything going on in the tech world," said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. "We are taking all the technology people are used to using and finding ways to integrate it into Mustang."
The 4.2-inch screen also includes a gauge mode that displays such things as cylinder head temperature, transmission temperature and air-to-fuel-ratio.
Anyone that's ever complained about the Mustang's blind spots will also be glad to know a rear view camera has made the list of available technology in 2013.
Ford knows night cruising and Mustangs go hand-in-hand so engineers worked overtime to make sure there were plenty of after-dark visual treats.
It starts before the driver even gets inside. Ford is fitting a tiny projector lamp into the side mirror that casts the shape of the galloping horse logo onto the ground when the driver unlocks the door.
Once inside, there's the MyColor lighting system, which lets you select one of 125 custom colors for the instrument gauge cluster or match one of seven available ambient lighting colors for plenty of nighttime eye candy.
If you opt for the 2013 Shelby GT500, it helps celebrate Ford's SVT performance division with special 20th Anniversary SVT illuminated doorsills.
Outside, the front and rear ends feature more aggressive styling with LED accents in the headlights. High-intensity discharge headlights become standard , producing two-and-a-half times higher output while consuming 20 percent less power than conventional halogen bulbs, according to Ford. The sequential tail lamps also adopt LED technology for 2013.
On the performance front, the Shelby GT500 is the big news for 2013, raising horsepower to 650 with a top speed just north of 200 mph possible with the 5.8 liter supercharged V8. The Boss 302 is up to 444 horsepower while the base V6 checks in with 305 horsepower and a 31 highway mpg. All engines can be had with a six-speed manual.
First Coast News