Ford Mustang Dark Horse Review | 2024 Model Overview

Introducing the Ford Mustang Dark Horse 2024

Today, I’m going to drive in the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse. With 500 horsepower and 418 lb-ft of torque from a 5.0L naturally aspirated V8, this car is a beast. We’ve driven the EcoBoost and the regular V8 GT, but now we have this animal, the Dark Horse. For the first time, the Mustang logo on the front is facing forward, not from the side. This is pretty much the updated version of the Mach 1, and it looks fantastic with a more aggressive front end and menacing design. We’re going to talk about performance, design changes, and the new features that make the Dark Horse stand out. With flat foot shifting, launch control, and a Tremec 6-speed manual transmission, this Mustang is built for driving enthusiasts.

The Model History of Ford Mustang Dark Horse

During the 1960s, the American automotive industry was amid a revolution, with a growing demand for small, sporty cars that were both affordable and stylish. This new type of vehicle was dubbed the pony car, and Ford was determined to get into the action. Lee Iacocca, a visionary Ford executive, saw an opportunity to create a car that was not only practical but also exciting, and he set out to make it a reality.

Iacocca and his team worked tirelessly to design a car that would capture the attention of drivers of all ages. They wanted it to be sleek and sporty yet affordable. After a short development period of only 18 months, in 1964, the Mustang was born. Named after a World War II fighter plane, the Mustang was unveiled by Henry Ford II at the 1964 World’s Fair. It was essentially a Falcon with a new body, even built in the same plant in Dearborn, Michigan, but that didn’t matter to car buyers who lined the streets at their local dealerships just to catch a glimpse. It was marketed as an entirely new concept: a moderately priced personal car with room for four. While some dismissed it as a secretary’s car, it had a sporty profile aimed at the emerging baby boomer market, and they loved it. The Mustang was an instant success; they thought they would sell a hundred thousand in a year, but they sold 22,000 in just the first day.

This first generation, known as the 1964 and a half Mustang, was available as a coupe or convertible and was powered by a range of engines, including a six-cylinder and two V8 options. The Mustang quickly became an icon of American car culture with its distinctive design and powerful performance. Because the car had been rushed into production and had to borrow so much from the Ford Falcon, there were some unusual quirks, like the horn ring bearing the Falcon logo covered by a Mustang logo. Mechanics were also able to use existing Fairlane and Falcon parts for repairs since they shared so many traits.


Despite the Mustang’s popularity, it faced some challenges in the early 1970s. Rising gas prices and changing customer tastes decreased demand for the Mustang, and it struggled to compete with smaller, more fuel-efficient cars. However, Ford was determined to keep the Mustang alive, and in 1971, they introduced The Mach 1 model, which was a nod to the car’s racing heritage.
By the end of the first generation in 1973, the Mustang had cemented its place in automotive history. It had survived the challenges of the early 1970s and remained a symbol of American muscle and style. The Mustang had become more than just a car; it was a legend, and this was just the beginning of its story.

Technical details of the Dark Horse 2024

 
 

The technical specifications of the Ford Mustang Dark Horse:

  • Engine: 5.0-liter V8, naturally aspirated
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline
  • Displacement: 5,000 cc
  • Compression Ratio: 12.0:1
  • Engine Power: 500 hp at 7,250 rpm
  • Torque: 418 lb-ft at 4,900 rpm
  • Drive Type: Rear-wheel drive (RWD)
  • Transmission: 6-speed manual transmission (Tremec)
  • Emissions Standard: Meets current emission standards
 

Body of Ford Mustang Dark Horse:

  • Vehicle Type: Coupe
  • Seats: 4 people
  • Dimensions: Length 4788mm x Width 1916mm x Height 1381mm
  • Wheelbase: 2720mm
  • Track Width: 1616mm front / 1650mm rear
  • Ground Clearance: 130mm
  • Boot Capacity: 382 litres
  • Curb Weight: 1760kg
  • Weight Distribution: Approximately 54% front / 46% rear
  • Permissible Total Weight: Approx. 2100kg
  • Payload: Approx. 340kg
  • Chassis: High-strength steel with independent rear suspension
  • Steering Ratio: 16.1:1
  • Rim Size: 9.5J x 19″ front / 10J x 19″ rear
  • Tyres: Michelin Pilot Sport 4S
  • Tyre Size: 255/40-ZR19 front / 275/40-ZR19 rear

Performance of the Ford Mustang Dark Horse:

  • Top Speed: 250 km/h (estimated)
  • Acceleration 0 to 100 km/h: 4.5 seconds (estimated)
  • Acceleration 0 to 200 km/h: 13.0 seconds (estimated)
  • Braking Distance 100 to 0 km/h: 36.1m (estimated)
  • Braking Distance 200 to 0 km/h: Approximately 12.5 seconds (estimated)

Reviews of the Ford Mustang Dark Horse 2024

Here are some highlights from reviews of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse from three different sources:

 

 

The Drive’s review calls the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse the next best American track car, highlighting its aggressive design and performance capabilities. The review appreciates the manual transmission’s direct shifts and the engine’s entertaining and addictive sound. On-road performance is also noted, with the car handling various driving conditions well thanks to its adaptive dampers. The review also discusses the pricing, indicating that while the Dark Horse is more expensive than a base GT, it offers significant performance upgrades and features that justify the cost

-> to the test report

The renowned British automotive magazine TopGear has similarly praised the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse for its exceptional performance in all aspects of driving. The Dark Horse is heralded as a “road-legal racing car,” mirroring its reputation for blending high-speed, track-worthy dynamics with the amenities and design of a modern vehicle, making it a pinnacle of American automotive engineering. The review emphasizes the car’s powerful 500-horsepower Coyote V8 engine, precise Tremec manual transmission, and advanced handling capabilities, solidifying its status as a top contender in the performance car market.

Hagerty emphasizes the technological advancements in the Dark Horse’s interior, moving from retro designs to a more modern approach. The review highlights the 500-horsepower Coyote V8 engine and the robust cooling systems that support its high-performance capabilities. The Dark Horse’s chassis is described as willing and communicative, making it approachable for most drivers. The Handling Package is recommended for those planning track use, as it significantly enhances the car’s performance. The review appreciates the car’s balance between aggressive performance.

> To the driving report

The 2024 Ford Mustang GT, priced around $43,900, is powered by a 5.0L V8 Coyote engine delivering 480 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque, with a 0-60 mph acceleration time of 4.3 seconds. It features standard amenities like air conditioning, cruise control, and keyless entry, and comes with 18-inch aluminum wheels available in various colors. The Dark Horse, starting at approximately $59,230, uses a tuned version of the same engine, producing 500 horsepower and 418 lb-ft of torque, achieving 0-60 mph faster. The Dark Horse boasts a sportier design with 19-inch wheels, exclusive Blue Ember metallic color, and advanced performance features including a TREMEC 6-speed manual transmission, Magne Ride suspension, upgraded strut towers, and Brembo brakes. Interior upgrades in the Dark Horse include leather Recaro seats, HD radio, a premium sound system, and a heated steering wheel, which are not standard in the GT. The Dark Horse also offers better handling due to stiffer suspension and wider tires, making it ideal for track use and high-performance driving, whereas the GT provides a classic muscle car experience with modern updates suitable for everyday use.

Competitors of the Ford Mustang Dark Horse

While the Ford Mustang Dark Horse receives considerable acclaim, it does not stand alone in its league. Among established manufacturers of high-performance sports cars, there are formidable contenders eager to challenge its supremacy.

BMW M2

The BMW M2 combines luxury and high-performance in a compact package. It features a 3.0L twin-turbocharged inline-6 engine that produces 453 horsepower and 406 lb-ft of torque. The M2 is praised for its sharp handling, thanks to its rear-wheel-drive layout, adaptive M suspension, and precise steering. Inside, the M2 offers a premium experience with high-quality materials and advanced infotainment systems. Its blend of performance, refinement, and everyday usability makes it a standout in its class.

Dodge Challenger R/T

The Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack stands out with its retro muscle car design and robust performance. Powered by a 6.4L HEMI V8 engine, it delivers 485 horsepower and 475 lb-ft of torque. The Challenger emphasizes straight-line speed and offers a comfortable ride with its spacious interior. Key features include performance suspension, Brembo brakes, and an active exhaust system. Its iconic styling and powerful engine make it a popular choice for those who appreciate classic American muscle.

Chevrolet Camaro SS

The Chevrolet Camaro SS is a formidable competitor to the Mustang Dark Horse, boasting a powerful 6.2L V8 engine that produces 455 horsepower and 455 lb-ft of torque. Known for its sharp handling and aggressive styling, the Camaro SS offers a thrilling driving experience with options for a 6-speed manual or a 10-speed automatic transmission. Its advanced performance features, including Magnetic Ride Control and a dual-mode exhaust system, make it a favorite among enthusiasts seeking both power and precision.

How can you drive the Ford Mustang Dark Horse 2024?

 

Option 1: Purchase a Ford Mustang Dark Horse

If your budget allows, you can directly buy a Ford Mustang Dark Horse from a dealer. This option lets you own and drive the Dark Horse anytime and customize it to your liking. The price of the Mustang Dark Horse starts at $62,000.

 
 

Option 2: Ford Mustang Dark Horse Test Drive

Another option is to arrange a test drive of the Ford Mustang Dark Horse at a Ford dealership of your choice—this is a cost-effective way to personally experience this high-performance car. Most dealerships have demo vehicles available for test drives, making it easier to get a feel for the Dark Horse’s capabilities and features. This option allows you to experience the car’s performance without the commitment of purchasing it immediately.

Option 3: Rent a Ford Mustang Dark Horse through DRIVAR

If purchasing a Ford Mustang Dark Horse outright or securing a test drive through a dealership isn’t feasible, you can still experience driving a Dark Horse by renting one from DRIVAR. This gives you the opportunity to drive the Dark Horse without the long-term financial commitment, whether you choose it for a special occasion or simply to fulfill a dream of driving this high-performance vehicle. Renting through DRIVAR provides flexibility and access to the car’s impressive performance and features without the need for ownership.

How Much is the Ford Mustang Dark Horse?

The Ford Mustang Dark Horse starts at $62,000, and the price varies based on the additions.