• Jul 3, 2008

The original Fox body Mustang SVO was an odd-looking chap with an impressive 205 hp turbo four cylinder and more amenities than the standard pony car. While the light little 'Stang had a decent following, it was expensive and somewhat unreliable in comparison to the cheaper V8 model. The demise of the SVO was cheap gas, which is likely two words we'll never use again when discussing the price of petrol.

The crew over at Garage419 have gotten a tip that the stratospheric climb in fuel prices may spawn another SVO Mustang, but this one could pack 300 ponies. The engine of choice could be the tried and true 2.3-liter four banger with the Ecoboost treatment, and weight could drop by 500 pounds by dropping the massive 4.6L V8 and using higher strength steel. The resulting turbo Mustang would blow away its naturally aspirated V8 brother on the track, while giving back at the pump to the tune of a 20-30 percent fuel economy improvement.

Lets see, a 30 mpg Mustang that weighs less and goes faster than its throaty V8 sibling. This sounds like an absolute no-brainer for the Blue Oval, and something that we wouldn't mind having in the Autoblog Garage for a very long time.

[Source: Garage 419]



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 83 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      The 4.6 they have now weighs about 500 pounds. Swapping in a turbo four isn't going to save 500 pounds. It may save 200 pounds. Getting another 300 pounds off through better body metal either means the current version is made of pot metal or else the finished product is going to cost as much as a Corvette.

      5-7 mpg out of a different engine and 200 pounds of weight savings isn't realistic.

      Other vehicles that offer 4 cylinder turbo trims typically pick up about 2 mpg on the treadmill test.
      • 6 Years Ago
      That's my car in the picture!

      It does sound like unsubstantiated fanboi stuff, but I guess that 's the luxury of being a fanboi blogger. You can type what you want and file it in the "Rumormill".
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is a good idea. There is definitely room for this in the lineup. I love, and will continue to drive the V-8 cars, but for those who want the economy and are happy with the 4 cylinder sound, this would be a great option.

      Note to Ford: Put normal sized tires on it this time. The weird metric sizes on the original were impossible to replace and people had to change wheels when they needed tires. (Note the aftermarket wheels on the car in the pic.)
      • 6 Years Ago
      500lbs is alot of weight savings, but "blowing away" the V8? C'mon, turbo lag hasn't been completely eliminated folks. And wouldn't other trim levels be recipients of the high strength steel?

      I think Audi has it right on with the supercharged engine: high efficiency supercharger with taller gearing. Better driveability, fuel economy and it crushed their twin-turbo development mule in acceleration.
        • 6 Years Ago
        you apparently haven't driven a Mazdaspeed6 or other cars with those big hitachi turbos. Yes, Turbo lag is gone.
      • 6 Years Ago
      i wanna buy this now.. i hope i don't have to wait long
      • 6 Years Ago
      I love the idea of multiple engine options, offer the base Mustang GT's engine as the SVO Turbo( give it some cool styling cues to remind people what the SVO was all about) and then to kind of shy people away from it...Offer the 5.0 at a much higher price ; )

      But next...MUSTANG II!!!!
      • 6 Years Ago
      I want to know how they're going to possibly save 500 lbs. Is the thing going to ship sans doors and trunk?
        • 6 Years Ago
        They're not going to shave 500 lbs, it's as simple as that. This article doesn't have rock solid sources. The mustang will never be under 3000lbs again, in fact it hasn't in a damn long time, and even when the first generation was, it had to have no power brakes, steering, and the 6 banger to be that light. The lightest I can picture the new mustang in 2010 is 3250, and that's with a turbo four.

        And I can't see them replacing the 6 with a turbo 4, just too expensive for the lower model.
      • 6 Years Ago
      the idea of a turbo 2.3 to replace a 4.6 is interesting... but consider it thusly.
      for the 4cyl engine to do the work of the v8, it will have to work twice as hard, we all know this. Well if you take half of a 4.6 you have a 2.3. now slap forced induction on it, run a full atmo of boost and you have roughly a 4.6 v8... in reality more like a 4.6 4 cylinder. no it's not an exact replacement, but look at some numbers... the ms3 2.3disi turbo puts out a v8 like torque of 285 ft lbs, and at a relatively low 3k rpm.
      this seems a lot like the porsche 928/s...

      so all things being equal, the small turbo 4 should use approx the same, minor gains for turbo efficiency, minor losses due to heat soak, etc.

      but most turbo applications run a richer a/f ratio than on a na motor, which creates IN-efficiency.

      the great advantage to a turbo is really being able to ram more air into the engine than an engine of larger swept volume without a pump. this means power when you need it, much greater than the engine could develop on it's own. this allows the engine to easily make more and less power based on the situation. can a larger engine of greater displacement do the same? of course, but it will have an upper limit where as most turbo engines are not maxed out and can easily be modulated by electronics. also forced induction cars (where the air pump is not at limit) can benefit from less power loss at higher altitudes since they are typically still regulated based on the compressed air side and the wastegate will allow a predetermined boost level (either mechanically or electronically)

      how about a company that manufactures a turbo charged 4 or 6 cylinder engine (any size/configuration really), that offers different driving maps via boost controller. maybe a performance map, an economy map, a highway map, etc. we have tons of these devices in the aftermarket, why not from the manufacturer instead?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Makes lots of sense....
      The Mazdaspeed 3 currently uses the turbo 2.3 (w/o Ecoboost).

      MS3 produces 263 hp, curb weight 3153 lbs, EPA 18/26 city/hwy
      Mustang GT: 300 hp, 3356 lbs, EPA 15/23

      Less weight on the nose = better handling, better fuel economy

      What's not to like?
        • 6 Years Ago
        3,336 lbs w/o the 500 lbs lost so in reality it more like 2,836!!!! even better
      • 6 Years Ago
      time to be really radical

      what about a 3.0 turbo 6 with 280 bhp and 420 ibs ft that can do well over 30 mpg ! not far off the future cafe standards which the manufacturer says it cant meet

      hint its already made a germany and the only drawback is the unfortunate increase in the cost of the fuel it uses.

      hint - tons of torque and revs to 5000 rpm
      • 6 Years Ago
      Fanyboy much? I didn't know the 2.3T weighed -40 lb. It will probably still weigh 250-300 lbs with the turbo system installed, which I admit would still be pretty good. But I still kind of doubt that there's going 6-7 mpg more because you're going to have to get in the boost at least a little to move something weighing 3200-3300 lbs. Although I'm sure there would be a few mpg difference. Also, does nobody care about the sound of an engine? Because hardly anybody has even mentioned it. There's a reason mustang/car commercials use V8 sound clips and 4 cylinder sounds.
      • 6 Years Ago
      And for the record, stuffing a Turbo Four into the Mustang WILL NOT save 500lbs off the curb weight!
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