2004 Mustang New Car Test Drive
It's time to celebrate! The Ford Mustang turns 40 next year. On April 17, 1964, the first Mustang rolled onto the streets. Performance and style were its hallmarks and folks loved its long hood, short rear deck, and low profile.
Anticipating next year’s milestone, every 2004 Mustang will have 40th Anniversary badges on the front fenders. They also get special exterior and interior upgrades. Wind noise has been reduced on 2004 models through the use of improved sealing, and both the V6 and V8 engines benefit from some minor refinements.
After all these years, the Mustang still represents affordable performance and style. A base coupe, for example, retails for just $17,720 and cash incentives can knock a big chunk off of that. Mustang convertibles are popular and attractively priced.
Mustang GT models are a hoot to drive with their 260-horsepower V8 engines. The Mustang offers good grip when cornering hard, and you can really feel what the car is doing. Just don't expect sophisticated ride and handling. The Mach 1 returns for 2004, boasting a 310-horsepower twin-cam V8, a sports suspension, and a shaker hood designed to remind us of the famous 1969 fastback. Production of the 2004 Mach 1 will be limited, however.
An all-new 2005 Ford Mustang is expected to go on sale in mid-2004.
Base models come with a V6 engine. High-performance GT models are powered by a V8. Each is available in coupe and convertible body styles. Convertibles feature a power top with a scratch-resistant glass rear window. A black semi-hard boot protects the top and gives the Mustang a clean look with the top down.
Every 2004 Mustang will have 40th Anniversary badges on the front fenders. In addition, a new 40th Anniversary Package, a no-cost option, adds exterior and interior upgrades to V-6 and GT models. Convertibles are available with an upgraded Medium Parchment soft retractable top that’s more durable and sound resistant.
The Mustang coupe ($17,720) and Mustang convertible ($23,455) come standard with a 3.8-liter V6, an overhead-valve engine rated 190 horsepower at 5250 rpm and 220 foot-pounds of torque at 2750 rpm. A five-speed manual is standard, a four-speed automatic ($815) is optional. ABS and traction control ($730) are optional, but we highly recommend them to help avoid accidents.
Reclining cloth front bucket seats come standard. Leather-trimmed front bucket seats ($595) are optional. Mustang coupes get 50/50 split-folding rear seatbacks. Standard equipment on all Mustangs includes air conditioning, power windows and door locks, tilt-steering column, a floor console, remote keyless entry system and interval windshield wipers. Mustangs come with Standard, Deluxe, and Premium trim packages. Deluxe ($730) adds a rear spoiler, color-keyed floor mats, six-way power driver's seat, and speed control. Premium ($1,385) comes with all that plus a six-way power driver's seat and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.
The Mustang GT coupe ($23,245) and Mustang GT convertible ($27,585) come with a 4.6-liter V8 with single overhead cams and two-valves per cylinder rated at 260 hp at 5250 rpm and 302 lbs.-ft. of torque at 4000 rpm. To manage all that power, GT models are equipped with gas-pressure shocks with unique model calibrations, P245/45R17 performance tires on 17-inch alloy painted wheels, a Traction Loc rear axle, ABS and traction control. GTs come with sport bucket seats and fog lamps. The V8 mates with a Tremec five-speed manual gearbox with a tall fifth gear for improved fuel economy. A four-speed automatic ($815) is optional. Optional audio systems include the MACH 460 ($550) with in-dash 6-CD changer and the MACH 1000 ($1,295).
The Mach 1 boasts a high-performance 310-hp 4.6-liter V8 with dual overhead-cams and four valves per cylinder. Mach 1 gets a sports suspension (stiffer springs, special shocks and struts, lower ride height). Distinguished by its black shaker hood, the Mach 1 ($5,575) is treated as a package. It also comes with special 17-inch wheels, special leather-trimmed seats, special interior trim, in-dash six-disc CD stereo, and special exterior graphics.
The Cobra is powered by the supercharged SVT 4.6-liter V8 from Ford's Special Vehicle Team. The SVT V8 produces 390 horsepower at 6000 rpm, with 390 pounds-feet of torque at 3500 rpm. It comes mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. Cobra comes shod with P275/40R17 tires and loaded with special interior and exterior trim.
Standard safety equipment includes safety belts with pretensioners to tighten the lap belt and shoulder belts in the first moments of a crash. Energy-management retractors gradually slacken the safety belt if necessary to help reduce the force of the belt on the occupant's chest. Mustangs come with anchors in the rear to implement the LATCH child safety-seat system.