When the Mustang was last revised for the 2015 model-year, Ford broke with 50 years of tradition by removing the fixed rear suspension. The thinking was that an independent suspension, shocking as it was to die-hard purists, would vastly improve the car’s behaviour on the road.
It was a move that had to be made.
In 2021, when the next generation of the iconic muscle car is set to launch, another longstanding tradition may fall by wayside, that of an architecture exclusive to the model. In an interview with Automotive News, Darrel Behmer, head of design for the Mustang, declared that the company is considering building its next-gen Mustang on one of its five current modular platforms, perhaps the one underpinning the Explorer SUV.
The change would allow Ford to offer all-wheel drive as an option; the Mustang’s direct rival, the Dodge Challenger, already makes this available to buyers. Behmer sought to reassure fans of the model, affirming that "the modular architectures will still give us flexibility; it's not going to bastardize Mustang."
As has been widely reported this year, Ford will no longer offer cars in North America, with the exception of the Mustang. There was never any question regarding the model’s survival, of course. The manufacturer remains solidly dedicated to the model, and its popularity is undiminished.
Ford is in fact planning an electric SUV for the turn of the next decade that would incorporate numerous design elements of the Mustang. And around the same time, the market will welcome a hybrid version of the Mustang itself.
The times they are a-changin’, of that there is no doubt. But the Mustang is not going anywhere and Ford will spare no effort to maintain its hold at the top of the American sales chart.