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Kind of a short run for the current model, as stated in the article. I hope they change the snout, it drags down the rest of the car and looks out of place. A more retro look might help US sales, but might detract from foreign markets. I wonder which direction they'll end up going.
 
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Hopefully it will save costs and allow for improvements in drivetrain, body materials, etc. The F150 has an aluminum bed; it would be good to see alternative materials, whether aluminum or carbon fiber, migrate to muscle cars. Certainly the next generation Challenger needs weight reduction; the strategy of this generation has been, as Kuniskis said to Jay Leno, horsepower cures everything. But the next step clearly is to reduce weight, whether or not the next generation challenger handles much better. I like its overall proportions now and think of it primarily as a comfortable and quick grand touring car.
 

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Kind of a short run for the current model, as stated in the article. I hope they change the snout, it drags down the rest of the car and looks out of place. A more retro look might help US sales, but might detract from foreign markets. I wonder which direction they'll end up going.
I don't think mustangs sells are really hurting, camaro on the other hand needs something. Mustang already had the retro styling done 10 years ago. I'm guessing they want to get away from that stigma/look that it's a straight line only car
 

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Kind of a short run for the current model, as stated in the article. I hope they change the snout, it drags down the rest of the car and looks out of place. A more retro look might help US sales, but might detract from foreign markets. I wonder which direction they'll end up going.
I think it is an error to assume that non US markets would not want an iconic American car precisely for its traditional attributes, albeit with improvements in handling and the like. Why do people outside the US want Harleys? Clearly because of their unique Americanness--there are few if any non US motorcycle makers that make anything remotely like a Harley. If Japanese automakers made something like the Nissan Nismo concept that harkened back to some of the retro looks of boxy Japanese cars from the 70s and after, I as an American would want to buy them for their unique Japanese retro look. Instead, most of what I see looks like dull and drab general internationalism with some continuity of styling to 90s cars like the Celica, which I think are ugly.

The worst possible thing to do is try to design a new mustang or challenger to meet the imagined desires of people from other countries, especially if these desires are thought to involve making the mustang or challenger more like the cars already in those places.

The 2015 mustang was ok but could've been much, much better. It was a car designed by committee to "flow with" the "Kinetic" "design language" of the rest of their sedan line up--Tauruses and the like, which have traditionally looked like fish in the front. The point was marketing and money--the mustang's appeal beyond actual potential customers was supposed to make people buy other Ford vehicles. Customers for whom a mustang was not practical would like its look, the thought went, and be happy that their Taurus or Fusion was styled similarly in the same "design language." This has carried on to the 2018 mustang refresh, which is even worse in appearance to my judgment than 2015 styling and makes the car look more fishlike. The GT350 and other models relieve the fishlike appearance with additional elements that give it a much better look, but it is putting lipstick on the 2015 marketing team's pig.

All of this is to say that the mustang or challenger should be designed for its own sake, in all the boldness and uniqueness of American styling, which becomes more apparent as the car is located in a non-US context. Non US customers should want to buy it precisely for that, as they do Harleys, with some concession to things like more fuel efficient vehicles in areas where gasoline is so expensive. I say this noting that a Youtube video reports that in the German market Ford expected most people to want the turbocharged 4, but instead the vast majority go for the V8. Why? Apparently the Europeans wanted a quintessentially American car with its most iconic and inimitable engine, albeit in Ford's case a DOHC which is more like the advanced engines Europeans are used to seeing in sporty cars than the Chevy pushrod or Hemi.
 

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Although discussed very well in the next gen Charger thread, how well will sharing a platform with the upcoming cuv’s work? Would the fixed or hard points be able create a low slung coupe? I seem to recall that the A pillar anchor points in the charger/300/challenger dictated how the car was designed, and the inherent high cowl kept the challenger from being a much lower appearing car. I’m not jumping the gun or condemning, just trying to wrap my head around how this will pan out.
 

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Although discussed very well in the next gen Charger thread, how well will sharing a platform with the upcoming cuv’s work? Would the fixed or hard points be able create a low slung coupe? I seem to recall that the A pillar anchor points in the charger/300/challenger dictated how the car was designed, and the inherent high cowl kept the challenger from being a much lower appearing car. I’m not jumping the gun or condemning, just trying to wrap my head around how this will pan out.
From what little I gather the new platforms are far more flexible--presumably they would have to be for Explorer and Mustang to be on the same platform. Doubtless the experts will enlighten us.

Making a Challenger from the 300 platform is one of the greatest lucky achievements of modern automobile history, I think. I didn't come at it is someone who knew anything about previous generation mopar and at first didn't even like the Challenger especially, but in time I grew to love its styling, especially in bolder colors originally and the side panel stripes as in the R/T (which, incidentally, I wish they would offer on Hellcat and Demon). It was only after growing to love the new Challenger's styling that I became interested in older Mopar. Anyway, I digress...
 

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I don't think mustangs sells are really hurting, camaro on the other hand needs something. Mustang already had the retro styling done 10 years ago. I'm guessing they want to get away from that stigma/look that it's a straight line only car
I don't think sales are necessarily hurting either, just that I've read that the current styling catered more towards European tastes vs the more retro look that was more popular with Americans. The current vehicle has been well regarded in Europe, especially in Germany from what I've read. I thought it was interesting though, that styling was more "European" and then we hear that Ford is considering selling off it's presence in Europe. Perhaps how that all plays out will determine future styling decisions...no sense catering towards a market where you sell off your interests.

I think it is an error to assume that non US markets would not want an iconic American car precisely for its traditional attributes, albeit with improvements in handling and the like. Why do people outside the US want Harleys? Clearly because of their unique Americanness--there are few if any non US motorcycle makers that make anything remotely like a Harley. If Japanese automakers made something like the Nissan Nismo concept that harkened back to some of the retro looks of boxy Japanese cars from the 70s and after, I as an American would want to buy them for their unique Japanese retro look. Instead, most of what I see looks like dull and drab general internationalism with some continuity of styling to 90s cars like the Celica, which I think are ugly.

The worst possible thing to do is try to design a new mustang or challenger to meet the imagined desires of people from other countries, especially if these desires are thought to involve making the mustang or challenger more like the cars already in those places.

The 2015 mustang was ok but could've been much, much better. It was a car designed by committee to "flow with" the "Kinetic" "design language" of the rest of their sedan line up--Tauruses and the like, which have traditionally looked like fish in the front. The point was marketing and money--the mustang's appeal beyond actual potential customers was supposed to make people buy other Ford vehicles. Customers for whom a mustang was not practical would like its look, the thought went, and be happy that their Taurus or Fusion was styled similarly in the same "design language." This has carried on to the 2018 mustang refresh, which is even worse in appearance to my judgment than 2015 styling and makes the car look more fishlike. The GT350 and other models relieve the fishlike appearance with additional elements that give it a much better look, but it is putting lipstick on the 2015 marketing team's pig.

All of this is to say that the mustang or challenger should be designed for its own sake, in all the boldness and uniqueness of American styling, which becomes more apparent as the car is located in a non-US context. Non US customers should want to buy it precisely for that, as they do Harleys, with some concession to things like more fuel efficient vehicles in areas where gasoline is so expensive. I say this noting that a Youtube video reports that in the German market Ford expected most people to want the turbocharged 4, but instead the vast majority go for the V8. Why? Apparently the Europeans wanted a quintessentially American car with its most iconic and inimitable engine, albeit in Ford's case a DOHC which is more like the advanced engines Europeans are used to seeing in sporty cars than the Chevy pushrod or Hemi.
Agreed, well said.

I have not been a big fan of current Mustang styling, especially the front end. The recent refresh gives the front end a more flattened appearance, which may be worse in my eyes. I do like the upcoming Bullitt edition though, though it may have more to do with the color.

Ford has tried to improve the overall performance of Mustang to make it more of a sports car, as opposed to a straight line performer as mentioned by Mopar22 above, and I think it's been well received. As far as styling though, I agree that a more retro look would work well in markets other than North America as well for exactly the reasons you mentioned. The Porsche 911 comes to mind as an iconic vehicle that maintains it's styling through it's refreshes and redesigns. Wrangler is another one, although it has not been a big seller outside of North America. However, it's styling is easily recognized and may fuel sales of other Jeeps (along with its reputation).

I am very curious to see where they go with it with the redesign. However, I'm also curious to see where FCA goes with the redesign of Challenger. I think a major reason why Challenger is gaining in sales is that they've really nailed the retro styling, in addition to really upping the performance of the vehicle as well. For the size of the vehicle, they've really done wonders.
 
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I don't think sales are necessarily hurting either, just that I've read that the current styling catered more towards European tastes vs the more retro look that was more popular with Americans. The current vehicle has been well regarded in Europe, especially in Germany from what I've read. I thought it was interesting though, that styling was more "European" and then we hear that Ford is considering selling off it's presence in Europe. Perhaps how that all plays out will determine future styling decisions...no sense catering towards a market where you sell off your interests.



Agreed, well said.

I have not been a big fan of current Mustang styling, especially the front end. The recent refresh gives the front end a more flattened appearance, which may be worse in my eyes. I do like the upcoming Bullitt edition though, though it may have more to do with the color.

Ford has tried to improve the overall performance of Mustang to make it more of a sports car, as opposed to a straight line performer as mentioned by Mopar22 above, and I think it's been well received. As far as styling though, I agree that a more retro look would work well in markets other than North America as well for exactly the reasons you mentioned. The Porsche 911 comes to mind as an iconic vehicle that maintains it's styling through it's refreshes and redesigns. Wrangler is another one, although it has not been a big seller outside of North America. However, it's styling is easily recognized and may fuel sales of other Jeeps (along with its reputation).

I am very curious to see where they go with it with the redesign. However, I'm also curious to see where FCA goes with the redesign of Challenger. I think a major reason why Challenger is gaining in sales is that they've really nailed the retro styling, in addition to really upping the performance of the vehicle as well. For the size of the vehicle, they've really done wonders.
Agreed. The improvements of the 2015+ Mustang were mostly in suspension, etc., not styling. And of course the engine improvements were extensions of the Coyote, which has been produced since 2011, though I hear some 350R owners are having trouble with the reliability if not performance of their engines.

The 911 and Wrangler are good examples of continuity of styling. I would like to see a Mustang or Challenger that is even more modernized over previous versions than the new Wrangler, which was a bit too conservative for me, but still recognizably similar and improved.

I know much has been said about the 2015+ mustang looking more European, and Ford even intending for it to be so, but I think it might be an injustice to the Europeans to regard especially the 2018 front end as European in styling. The sides and rear of the car are indeed better but not nearly as good as they ought to have been for the 50th anniversary. The car would've looked much better if its front end looked more like the Jaguar F type, which shares its overall proportions and is a similar but better looking car in almost every styling respect, except perhaps for the GT350/R, although I can see how some people might say it too looks a bit fishlike.
 

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The Jag F type in grey and 2018 Mustang in yellow. It is nice, btw, to be able to have a conversation about an upcoming mustang on a mopar forum, where you can have a more honest discussion about it than if it were dominated by blind partisans.
Very true.

The front of the Jaguar is much more refined than the Mustang...but it’s also a more expensive vehicle. The nose on the Mustang just doesn’t fit IMO. It looks like there were competing design teams, and mom or dad made them combine the two to keep everybody happy. :)
 
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Very true.

The front of the Jaguar is much more refined than the Mustang...but it’s also a more expensive vehicle. The nose on the Mustang just doesn’t fit IMO. It looks like there were competing design teams, and mom or dad made them combine the two to keep everybody happy. :)
Well I am not a designer, engineer, or bean counter, but I don't see why shaping sheet metal and a molding a bumper in one shape or another should cost more than another design. The best explanation is that Jag, as it has on many cars for many decades, has superior styling to most vehicles in any market. Certainly the old D and XKSS and other iconic cars testify to this. Jags have often been beautiful even when they haven't been reliable or electrically sound.
 

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Well I am not a designer, engineer, or bean counter, but I don't see why shaping sheet metal and a molding a bumper in one shape or another should cost more than another design. The best explanation is that Jag, as it has on many cars for many decades, has superior styling to most vehicles in any market. Certainly the old D and XKSS and other iconic cars testify to this. Jags have often been beautiful even when they haven't been reliable or electrically sound.
I don’t think it would have to be more expensive to shape metal, but I do think less expensive vehicles may get less attention for styling than a more expensive vehicle...you want to give those with money the incentive to spend it and more flashy styling is one way to do it I suppose. The exterior styling for Jaguars is well done IMO. I haven’t sat in one in several years, but our real estate agents had one back when we bought our first house. I was not impressed with the interior...though I don’t know which trim level it was...I believe it was an x-type which didn’t have the best reputation either IIRC. I imagine they’re much nicer than that now.
 

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I don’t think it would have to be more expensive to shape metal, but I do think less expensive vehicles may get less attention for styling than a more expensive vehicle...you want to give those with money the incentive to spend it and more flashy styling is one way to do it I suppose. The exterior styling for Jaguars is well done IMO. I haven’t sat in one in several years, but our real estate agents had one back when we bought our first house. I was not impressed with the interior...though I don’t know which trim level it was...I believe it was an x-type which didn’t have the best reputation either IIRC. I imagine they’re much nicer than that now.
I agree the F type interior is sub-par. I've sat in one briefly at an auto show. I don't mind a spartan interior in a muscle car, and even dislike any attempt to make it look 'luxurious' or if it is superfluously decorated (e.g., 'ground speed' on gauges, computer screens out the wazoo, etc.). But the F type Jag is marketed as a mid level luxury car, and its interior is far inferior to its exterior. I certainly hope the new mustang and challenger don't lose analog gauges completely like the new Ford GT. It will be good to hear more about it as news develops, although i expect not soon.
 

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I think it has less to do with not spending on the design of the mustang, or that inexpensive designs are made intentionally more ugly than the expensive ones. Instead perhaps the designers were trying to evoke agression and its blue-collar heritage with an intentionally thick-hewed, “brutal” design. That formula has proven popular in the past.
 

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I think it has less to do with not spending on the design of the mustang, or that inexpensive designs are made intentionally more ugly than the expensive ones. Instead perhaps the designers were trying to evoke agression and its blue-collar heritage with an intentionally thick-hewed, “brutal” design. That formula has proven popular in the past.
Well, I seriously suspect they design the car in such a way that to get a better look you have to spend more to go beyond the base model. Mustangs have long been like this. They don't want to make the base model too attractive. In the grand scheme of things, it would cost relatively little to make the whole lineup look like the GT350 in the front, which would be a world of difference. Challenger has been better about this. Like all cars, the base model gets wheels and big tires that don't look nearly as good, but the basic look of the car is the same to a much greater extent than Mustang, where the dollars for the company have been in the addition of options since 1965.
 

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Well, I seriously suspect they design the car in such a way that to get a better look you have to spend more to go beyond the base model. Mustangs have long been like this. They don't want to make the base model too attractive. In the grand scheme of things, it would cost relatively little to make the whole lineup look like the GT350 in the front, which would be a world of difference. Challenger has been better about this. Like all cars, the base model gets wheels and big tires that don't look nearly as good, but the basic look of the car is the same to a much greater extent than Mustang, where the dollars for the company have been in the addition of options since 1965.
I see, you mean within a single model: base vs top trim. Yeah, of course. I just don’t think they make inexpensive models intentionally ugly to force you to more expensive ones. Are Compasses intentionally made uglier then Grand Cherokee? Are Cayman intentionally made ugly to force people to buy 911?
 

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On sheet-metal, I think that some bodywork features do require longer pressing time, or multiple pressings, to achieve. That increases the amount of plant needed, or reduces the throughput of the pressing stage - both of which would add to the cost of the vehicle.

The front of a vehicle, however, is always injection-molded plastic, and if my own limited experience in getting plastic parts made is anything to go by, there is definitely a higher cost involved in designs with sharper corners, multiple openings, and complex, tight, folds.

It's true that there's also the length of time that's been spent on a design, but I don't think the Mustang is under-designed compared to the F-Type; it's just that Ford's designers had to work to a tighter production cost, and higher volume, requirement than Jaguar did.


Just to add to @99426 's excellent post above, the Mustang has been popular in Europe precisely because it calls to mind its predecessor of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Making it "more European" would rob it of its appeal, which is "American sports car". Steve McQueen's hunt through San Francsico in Bullitt has probably sold more Mustangs over here than any advertising by Ford. Even Ford of Europe itself used the connection back in 1997 for this cleverly-edited advert for the (actually quite good) Puma model:
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuxAjyGJBZ8
Ford Motor Co (US) would later hire the same director to use the same footage to launch the 2005 Mustang in the USA.
 
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