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Next-generation Ford Mustang to use EcoBoost engines?

by Drew Johnson

Ford is considering offering its next-generation Mustang with a twin-turbo EcoBoost V6, a new report finds. While no decision is said to have been made yet, several Ford executives are supporting an EcoBoost-powered Mustang in the face of newly passed CAFE regulation.

EcoBoost

Ford's EcoBoost family of engines will first bow in the Lincoln MKS sedan, but the turbocharged range of engines could ultimately replace the Mustang's traditional range-topping V8. The advantage of the EcoBoost line is that it offers greater performance with less fuel consumption.

But muscle car enthusiasts don't need to worry quite yet as Ford has no plans to kill the V8 in the immediate future. In fact, when the 2010 Mustang makes its debut, it will be available with a new 5.0L V8. Although the new engine is essentially an evolution of the current Mustang GT's 4.6L V8, the added displacement, along with some mechanical upgrades, should see output grow from 300 horsepower to somewhere between 325 and 350. Also look for the new powerplant to use the same engine management technology found in the Mustang Bullitt, which allows the engine to run different timing curves based on what octane fuel is in the car's tank.

But even if Ford does decide to offer an EcoBoost engine, it will likely be sold along side of the V8 -- at least initially -- allowing the customer to make their own choice.

Shelby model

Motor Trend has also reported that there will be a Mustang GT500 for the 2010 model year, however, the car's powertrain is still up in the air. The current GT500 uses a supercharged 5.4L V8, but Ford engineers are considering using a supercharged version of the new 5.0L. Whatever the case, look for the new next-generation GT500 to produce more than 500 horsepower.

Design

Motor Trend also claims to have the goodies on the Mustang's new design, which, according to the publication, with bow in the spring of 2009.

Many of the design cues found on the Mustang Giugiaro concept are said to be making their way onto the prodction Mustang, including the show car's wide rear haunches, shoulder hump just aft of the doors and triangular shaped windows between the B and C pillars. The concepts panoramic will make production -- although not as entire roof section -- and will likely resemble the one offered on the 2009 Mustang. The taillights will be revised -- although they will still use the Mustang's trademark vertical theme -- and the rear bumper is said to more angular than the one found on the current car.

The 2010 Mustang's interior will be modified from the current models, and will rely less on the retro feel. Look for the new interior to be more driver focused, with more space on the center stack for a larger nav screen.

Ford hopes that the upgrades to the new Mustang will help fight off new competition from the Dodge Challenger and Chevrolet Camaro. One thing the Mustang does have going for it is that convertible versions of the Challenger and Camaro will not be available at launch.

No word on when we will see the production 2010, but with a spring 2009 launch date, the 2008 Los Angeles Auto Show seems like a likely candidate.