Lately I’ve been reading up on the latest muscle-car wars. For those of you who don’t give a shit and would rather drive your Toyota Corollas or Honda Civics for the next 150,000 miles than deal with a real All-American car that requires major repairs every five feet (less in snowy climates) I should mention that this may not be a big deal for you, but it is a big deal for me.
Because I like the Ford Mustang.
I’ve been reading about Ford Mustangs for around five years, and from what you hear in car books you’d think that the Mustang was designed by angels and built by God himself. These car books wax rhapsodic about how the Mustang just kept beating the shit out of all of those no-good Japanese cars built by the tiny yellow men to take all our fine All-American women with blonde hair the color of an incandescent lightbulb and bodies the shape of a Coke bottle only with less room for bodily organs. The car books had might as well have come right out and said the way they really felt:
************* FORD MUSTANG HELL YEAH BITCH*************
*************The Car built for men that beats the shit out of pussies and children*************
When Lee Iacocca devised the perfect car, in 1964 1/2, he did so with a sense of duty. For he, using his incredible psychic abilities, realized the need for a car that could beat the Asians that were about to try to destroy ************* THE AMERICAN WAY ************* with their well-built, fuel-efficient, and fun-to-drive compact cars. Thus, taking only a compact Ford Falcon chassis that was about as sporting as a bison, Iacocca created the impossible: A fuel-efficient, V-6 powered compact car that possessed the quintessential American car traits: Beauty, brawn, usefulness, and handling that resembled driving a tiny bison. It was a great, ************* ALL-AMERICAN ************* moment in American history.
Whenever I read this, I thought, “HELLS YEAH MUSTANG MUSTANG MUSTANG GO AMERICA GO”, which is just what you are expected to do when you read about a car like the Mustang. Unfortunately, I stopped there. Because had I read further, I might have reconsidered, as the following passage demonstrates:
…Except Ford realized that the decent fuel-economy of the V-6 engine made the car useful and purposeful, and thus UN-AMERICAN, so they remade it into a big pig-like gas-guzzler with a big honking V-8.
Ford has a full supply of engines that can undo this. They have a 3.5 liter V-6 engine that produces more horsepower, torque, and 3 mpg more fuel economy than the Mustang’s 4.0 liter V-6. They have bigger, more powerful V-8s for those who want them. They have special suspension systems that could make it handle much better than it does. I thought they would use these engines, in spite of Motor Trend saying “Don’t expect any changes in today’s, base 4.0-liter V-6 offering, as its prime purpose is motivating low-end and rental-fleet Mustangs.”
But I still held out hope. On the optimism that things can always change, wrongs can be righted and the Big Three would acknowledge fuel prices that are currently approaching plutonium-level pricing, I kept up hope that the new Mustang would get a brand-new V-6 that did not suck ass.
Fast forward. Today I finally got to see the new Mustang. My horse in the Kentucky Derby, #5 (I always choose number five) won–twice– so I figure, hey, things be goin’ my way, time to checks out that new Stang.
This is how it looks, according to Car and Driver:
Well, OK, so a Jpeg from The Mustang Source Forums. But still.
I had visions, I was going to call my car the WolfStang and have a huge growling wolf painted on the hood, with wolves running along the sides and a huge honking V-8 or fuel-efficient V-6 engine underneath it. I thought I was going to have a car that could not only run with, but eat smaller cars and their drivers and passengers.
Along with the pretty pictures of the car, they had a small blurb talking about the engines Ford’s Mustang is going to get. Long story short, I found out that Ford had decided to surprise me. I can only imagine the way this went out at Ford headquarters.
Alan Mulally (CEO): Huh, I guess we have a really good V-6 engine here.
Assistant: Yeah, it’s pretty good.
Mulally: I guess.
Assistant: We could put it into the Mustang, and make it more fuel efficient and powerful and the same time.
Mulally: Yeah, no harm in that.
Assistant: But it would be what people expected.
Assistant: And who likes their expectations to come true?
Mulally: Not me, that’s for sure.
Assistant: Why don’t we surprise everybody?
Mulally: Yeah! I like that idea!
Assistant: We’ll leave that shit alone, and just put a big ugly droopy face on the car!
Mulally: HELL YEAH!
Assistant: Well, I’m gonna go home now
Mulally: Yeah, I’m gonna get in my Toyota Camry and drive home now.
So apparently, that’s it for the Mustang. Its specs will be as impressive as they have ever been, as follows: A rear seat that can hold two quadruple-amputees, assuming they scrunch their leg stumps the right way; a trunk that can fit as many as three average-sized postage stamps; an engine that is not fuel efficient with the added benefit of not being very powerful; and a “retro” interior with fire-engine red leather for top-of-the-line models and cloth seats made from the clothing of deceased Iraqi suicide bombers and filled with packing peanuts for lesser models. Meanwhile, the Chevy and Dodges will be the exact same, but with backseats that can hold small children in a pinch. And Toyota will continue to build fuel-efficient, useful and more agile, un-American small cars.
And thus begin the Muscle-Car Wars. Again. Because the Three Detroit Stooges can’t resist one last poke-in-the-eyes. Nyuk nyuk nyuk.