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C4 vs Mustang GT

Rogue

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2003
Messages
312
Location
Orange County, CA
Corvette
1991 Turquoise Metallic Coupe
Just wanted to share this confession with the Corvette enthusiasts in this board. About a month ago, I bought a Mustang GT. I know, I know….it’s a Ford! The model is an S197, which is the model BEFORE the current cosmetic redesign. The current Mustang is really just a mid-life makeover of the S197, kind of like going from the 1990 to 1991 C4—the body and interior got a make over, power train carries over.

The Mustang is my current daily driver. It has the 300 bhp 4.6L V8 w/3-valves per, 5-speed automatic gearbox, GT suspension, etc. It is completely stock. By all means it is a very nice, refined muscle car. When driven by a sane person, it acts almost like a garden variety sport scar. It is quiet on the highway and rolls along smoothly around town. But at any moment, the car becomes a tiger depending on the position of your left foot! It is capable of 0-60 times of 5 seconds and a top speed of 145+ mph. The motor is a gem. If you are like me who is used to the low revving L98, the 4.6L 3-Valve V8 will feel almost like a race engine. This motor has variable valve timing and when it gets on the cam it just spins to redline with alarming speed and catapults the Mustang forward. The 5-speed auto box is also a willing partner as it bangs off shifts like it was a manual being driven by an expert driver. It shifts like a *****cat while cruising yet shifts hard at WOT! The 5-speeds also keeps the high revving motor on the boil in every gear! All this time the 4.6L sings a beautiful song not unlike that from the 1968 movie Bullitt! With all its Fast and Furious action, the Mustang is also quite comfortable inside—it has nice, wide seats, a roomy foot well, and plenty of headroom. All its controls fall easily to hand while driving, and all of the switchgear and buttons operate with a smoothness that belies its price point. In comparison, the C4’s interior bits are simply cheap!

Having said all that, after a month of driving I am finding kinks in the Mustang GT’s armor. First thing that absolutely annoys me is the delay in the throttle response off idle. The current GT’s have a throttle by wire. Now I have had two other vehicles with throttle-by-wire and all of them have been smooth operators. The Mustang however, has an algorithm in the computer that delays the throttle slightly when taking off from a standing start. The result is that the first inch of travel in the throttle pedal results in a weak response from the engine, then it almost jumps off the line as the TBW catches up. It makes driving it around town a little jerky at times unless you try real hard to be smooth. In my opinion, this is contrary to what TBW control is suppose to do! WTF Ford? Another kink I have noticed is the suspension and handling. The Mustang GT is stiffly sprung to give it sporty handling. Although it handles well enough, at times it feels bouncy, and when compared to the C4 it feels almost tippy going around corners. The Corvette feels a lot more responsive, yet it has a smoother ride. Oh yeah. If there are medium to big bumps or potholes on the pavement of the corner the rear of the Mustang skips a bit (live axle—I know).

So this week, my wife has been driving the Mustang GT. Meanwhile I have been driving my 1991 C4. One would think that the Mustang is going to be way better, more fun, etc., after all, it is newer by 16+ years, has less miles, etc. For sure the Mustang’s power train wins out over the L98 C4 right? Well I hate to admit this but what appears on paper is not necessarily true in actual driving. My C4 is actually MORE fun to drive! It’s not really because of one or two things, but it is due to a whole variety of things. The biggest thing is that ride and handling. It is superior in every way. Also, the L98, while many will say it is antiquated, slow, etc., has some real nice virtues. That low end torque is a nice thing to have. The Mustang is quick off the line but it feels more frenetic while going fast. The 4.6L also has a nice top end rush that the L98 can never match. On the contrary, the L98 has that easygoing feel to it as it catapults the C4 down the road that few cars today can replicate. It feels relaxed yet you are accelerating hard! Coming out of corners in 2nd gear, the L98 has plenty of twist to move the C4 quickly down that straight to the next corner without needing to rev above 3,000 RPM. The C4’s 4L60E auto box also does not bang shifts at WOT the way the Mustangs 5-speed does. Finally, the C4’s throttle is a lot smoother to modulate around town. The overall experience of driving the Mustang GT versus the older ’91 C4 is that the C4 is MORE refined, smoother, and more relaxed while still moving at the same speed. Go figure! Just don’t tell my wife I spent all this money on the Mustang GT while the C4 is actually still more fun!
 
M

Mike G

Guest
Interesting write-up. My pal here picked up a new Chevy 1500 Silverado truck, it also has the drive-by-wire and he describes the exact same thing as you do with the initial delay. He doesn't like it either.
The beam-axle and massive wieght really hold the Mustang back. I really hope the new Z/28 sheds weight!
 

93Rubie

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2009
Messages
777
Location
PA
Corvette
1993 Ruby Red 40th Anniversary Coupe
First, of all, ALL throttle by wire systems are going to stink when it comes to feel and response compared to an actual cable. Some are worse than others.

I am actually a technician at a Ford dealer and what you say of the Mustang is spot on. The new ones with the Track Pack are remarkable to say the least in what Ford can do with a live axle. The thing can pull .93g's on the skidpad and run the slalom approaching 70mph. Better than the Camaro SS and Challenger R/T or SRT8 can manage. The 4.6L is a gem, cannot wait for the new 5.0L with 400+hp due out next year. The sound is the best part. Now the for the record the Mustang is a great car in its own right, however it is a sophisicated and heavy (3600lbs) muscle car. (The Camaro SS and Challenger SRT8 are even heavier at 3900 and 4200lbs, respectively.) The Corvette is a sports car they two are apples and oranges as far as I am concerned. The Corvette will always be the better total performance package becuase it is a sports car. The Mustang will be a great performance package but as a pony/muscle car only.

IF you want to compare the Camaro Vs Mustang well to be honest I like the Mustang better, why, lighter, better looking to me, handles better,etc...
Ford would have a real winner if they stuck the 6 speed out of the GT500 into the regular GT with the 5.0L V8 with 400+hp. But won't be around till 2011.

For 2010 buy a Mustang GT with the track pack then stick the Camaro SS drivetrain with the LS3 and the 6 speed in it. :thumb

Nothing beats my 1993 Ruby Red Corvette!!! Still even stock can run toe and toe with the Best Mustang GT Ford can make in 2010. A FULL 17 years later...took them long enough.
 

KANE

Moderator
Joined
Mar 2, 2002
Messages
3,244
Location
KY
Corvette
Dark Blue 1982 Trans Am(s): Polo Green 1995 MN6
Just wanted to share this confession with the Corvette enthusiasts in this board. About a month ago, I bought a Mustang GT. I know, I know….it’s a Ford! The model is an S197, which is the model BEFORE the current cosmetic redesign. The current Mustang is really just a mid-life makeover of the S197, kind of like going from the 1990 to 1991 C4—the body and interior got a make over, power train carries over...

The Mustang is a solid car. Congrats!

:thumb

I had a '98 5spd GT as a daily driver from 1999-2003 and racked up almost 100k miles on it. It was a really nice car. Not every day was a suitable day for my '78 in those days. Kansas was tough with weather in the winter.

Enjoy it and congrats.
 

Rogue

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2003
Messages
312
Location
Orange County, CA
Corvette
1991 Turquoise Metallic Coupe
For 2010 buy a Mustang GT with the track pack then stick the Camaro SS drivetrain with the LS3 and the 6 speed in it. :thumb

I plan to install the Steeda springs, Koni shocks, and Steeda up strut tie bar on the Mustang to at least get it to corner close to the Corvette.

I actually was ready to buy the 2010 Mustang GT. But when I looked at it and read about all the changes, I realized it is a make over of the S197. Same powertrain, similar suspension, even the interior is very similar and many parts carried over. Thank god I didn't pull the trigger on the 2010 because now Ford will put the new 5.0 in it! I feel bad for the 2010 buyers! :D Anyway, I switched to plan B: buy a Certified Pre-Owned S197, mod it and play with it for a few years, then in 2013, give that car to my daughter then get the 2013 GT with the 5.0 after Ford has had a few years of producing it and figuring out all the bugs.

Or there is always Plan C: Get a C6 Corvette. :thumb
 

Edmond

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 1, 2001
Messages
5,218
Location
Louisiana
Corvette
2003 Z06
I think that should be plan A. :L

That was my plan A but plan B was a C5 Z06 so I didn't end up too bad.:rotfl
 

92BlackVette

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
Messages
211
Location
Austin, TX
Corvette
1976 Black, 1992 Black coupe , 2003 Black Z06
I severely dislike the mustang with a passion. I dislike the culture behind the mustang, and I feel it would be absurd for me personally to own one. My cousin has one in a field and he and I both took turns kicking the front fender over the weekend. This message is a personal opinion, and reflects nothing on my thoughts for you personally. I just feel the car is overproduced, and lacks any real appear to me. I use to drive a Ford F-150 so this isn't specfic to the Ford brand either.
 

Rex S

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
270
Location
Bastrop, Texas
Corvette
1974, 1990 ZR1, 1992 ZR1, 1996 CE Roadster
OK, if it's confession time, I too have a Mustang. 2007 Shelby GT that has about 10K, 2 Big Bends and 2 Sandhill ORCs. My ZR1s are semi retired due to finding parts for them although we still take one to the Texas Mile. GM really pi$$ed me off with their OnStar BS and I'll not buy another GM until it's an option. The Mustang is nowhere near as quick as a Z but overall it is a very nice, comfortable, long haul car that I've driven over 1,000 miles in in one day and not hurt when I got there. The Shelby doesn't have the throttle lag you mention so it may be in the program. The Shelby tune requires 93 oct. so not everyone wants it. Fit and finish is first class but then so is my Chevy PU's, one of the last of the non-OnStars.
 

Rogue

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2003
Messages
312
Location
Orange County, CA
Corvette
1991 Turquoise Metallic Coupe
OK, if it's confession time, I too have a Mustang. 2007 Shelby GT....The Shelby doesn't have the throttle lag you mention so it may be in the program. The Shelby tune requires 93 oct. so not everyone wants it. Fit and finish is first class but then so is my Chevy PU's, one of the last of the non-OnStars.

Rex, your Shelby GT has the Ford Racing Cold Air Intake, Cat-Back Exhaust, and the 93 Octane tune. So what is it? 335 bhp? I plan to do this same exact mod myself and everyone who has done it says it fixes the throttle lag. I'm good with that.

Very nice car BTW.
 

Rogue

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2003
Messages
312
Location
Orange County, CA
Corvette
1991 Turquoise Metallic Coupe
I severely dislike the mustang with a passion. I dislike the culture behind the mustang.....

How come? What part of the Mustang culture don't you agree with?

It isn't any different from the Corvette culture, or the Camaro, 911, Miata, etc. They are all very similar except the vehicles are different.

It may interest you to know that although many Corvette owners poke fun at and look down on the Mustang, many Mustang owners respect and like the Corvette. There is no hatred or dislike for it, in fact it is the complete opposite. Most Mustang owners are younger people and many of them someday aspire to own Corvettes. It's just an overall love for high performance American Cars.
 

Rogue

Well-known member
Joined
May 18, 2003
Messages
312
Location
Orange County, CA
Corvette
1991 Turquoise Metallic Coupe
The one car culture I don't like is the Porsche culture. They are very elitist and hate Corvettes in general. That's because the Corvette ALWAYS beats their beloved 911. Anytime Porsche releases a faster, more expensive 911, a new Corvette comes out that is half the price yet still faster and sleeker looking.

The other day I took my Corvette to the local coffee house. Well, there were several Porsche guys in there having a meeting. They brought their vintage 911's and 914's in. They were nice cars that got a lot of TLC's given to them. But I could hear them dissing my C4 (because it was parked amongst their beloved Porsches and they couldn't ignore it). I so wanted to challenge them because I knew my C4 would simply kill all their 1980's vintage 911 Carrera's and SC's, both in a straightline and in the corners!

I like Porsche but generally dislike their ownership groups.
 

Rex S

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
270
Location
Bastrop, Texas
Corvette
1974, 1990 ZR1, 1992 ZR1, 1996 CE Roadster
Rogue, yep it's at 335hp. Suspension is lower and stiffer too and some think to stiff, kinda like the 84 C4 but at speed it feels just right. Car needs a 6spd trany like the C4s as 5th is way out of the power band, high beam blue light is way to bright, why do we suddenly need a green light if the cruse is on? and the "Average Speed" readout shows 25mph if you run over 100 so it's kinda worthless for ORRing.
 

93Rubie

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2009
Messages
777
Location
PA
Corvette
1993 Ruby Red 40th Anniversary Coupe
How come? What part of the Mustang culture don't you agree with?

It isn't any different from the Corvette culture, or the Camaro, 911, Miata, etc. They are all very similar except the vehicles are different.

It may interest you to know that although many Corvette owners poke fun at and look down on the Mustang, many Mustang owners respect and like the Corvette. There is no hatred or dislike for it, in fact it is the complete opposite. Most Mustang owners are younger people and many of them someday aspire to own Corvettes. It's just an overall love for high
performance American Cars.

Can attest to that. One guy at work is a HUGE Mustang guy, has two of them a 90 Fox that is very nice and quick. A 95 GT he uses as a driver.
His buddies most of them got some nice Mustang Fox Gen metal. The one guy has got a 331 that is nasty. The other Jeff has his setup for track use. BIG BRAKES for a Fox read 14inchers all the way around, we where all at a big cruise-in near Irwin, PA, and we where BSing about stuff, Jeff made the comment as a C6 Z06 went by that, "Its hard to compete with Corvettes, we can modify our Mustangs to be just as fast, but the Vette is the complete package. It does everything so well and is purpose built." That is coming from a Mustang guy.

Best part is that we are all CAR people, and all enjoy our hobby, besides lets face it if everybody had Corvettes the world would be less interesting. Heck, we gotta have 911's and wanna be's to lay waste too.
:beer

Not that I'm totally dissing the 911 its a great sports car in its own right.
 

nelson84

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 28, 2006
Messages
829
Location
Canada
Corvette
84 Z51 two tone bronze coupe 85 black on black
I severely dislike the mustang with a passion. I dislike the culture behind the mustang, and I feel it would be absurd for me personally to own one. My cousin has one in a field and he and I both took turns kicking the front fender over the weekend. This message is a personal opinion, and reflects nothing on my thoughts for you personally. I just feel the car is overproduced, and lacks any real appear to me. I use to drive a Ford F-150 so this isn't specfic to the Ford brand either.

Just curious what is the culture of the mustang.
 

Edmond

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 1, 2001
Messages
5,218
Location
Louisiana
Corvette
2003 Z06
I'd like to know as well. Or is it the stereotype?

Most cars have some sort of stereotype about them. You know, people say Corvette guys have a mid-life crisis.

If you drive a Japanese car, you're a ricer.

If you drive an F-body, you have a mullet.

Etc...
 

93Rubie

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 19, 2009
Messages
777
Location
PA
Corvette
1993 Ruby Red 40th Anniversary Coupe
I'd like to know as well. Or is it the stereotype?

Most cars have some sort of stereotype about them. You know, people say Corvette guys have a mid-life crisis.

If you drive a Japanese car, you're a ricer.

If you drive an F-body, you have a mullet.

Etc...

While that is a stereotype, I have yet to find a trailer park in America has doesn't have a IROC-Z or Fox Body Mustang sitting somewhere, usually on blocks.:boogie Seriously, look sometime is amazing. Not that it is ALL a bad thing mind you. :cool
 

KANE

Moderator
Joined
Mar 2, 2002
Messages
3,244
Location
KY
Corvette
Dark Blue 1982 Trans Am(s): Polo Green 1995 MN6
Just curious what is the culture of the mustang.

While that is a stereotype, I have yet to find a trailer park in America has doesn't have a IROC-Z or Fox Body Mustang sitting somewhere, usually on blocks.:boogie Seriously, look sometime is amazing. Not that it is ALL a bad thing mind you. :cool

I think Rubie has a point- albeit about socioeconomic levels and disposable income. Most folks want a nice car- the nicest they can afford. :thumb



As for attitude... well, that comes with the company that folks keep.:chuckle

Like minded folks congregate together- and you always hear from the most vocal people- and the less secure, the more of this you'll see at a stoplight anyway... :lou
 

Edmond

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 1, 2001
Messages
5,218
Location
Louisiana
Corvette
2003 Z06
While that is a stereotype, I have yet to find a trailer park in America has doesn't have a IROC-Z or Fox Body Mustang sitting somewhere, usually on blocks.:boogie Seriously, look sometime is amazing. Not that it is ALL a bad thing mind you. :cool

;LOL

I have managed to stay out of trailer parks so far in 30 years on earth. But I am in Lawton, the armpit of OK so my record might be short lived. :chuckle
 

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