- The Washington Times - Friday, February 28, 2003

Mustang's Mach 1 steps up to the plate, providing a taste of the legendary pony car's spirit and passion of the past. The Mach 1 first appeared in 1969 as one of three new Mustang models. It was geared toward performance enthusiasts then, as it is now.
The latest Mach 1 is essentially a special upgrade package to the GT Coupe, featuring several desirable appointments that contribute significantly not only to the car's visual appeal, but to its performance capability as well.
The strongest visuals are the legendary "shaker" hood scoop, extended front air dam and rockers, rear quarter side scoops, larger retro-style five-spoke alloy wheels (17-inch) with performance-rated tires and a single-wing deck lid spoiler finished in low-gloss black to match the shaker scoop graphics, front air dam and side stripes and blacked out "C" pillar. Beneath the surface are new high-flow, four-valve cylinder heads housing a 5.4-liter four-valve intake cam and a high-performance exhaust cam. Exhaust manifolds are port matched to the new cylinder heads. The crankshaft is forged in manual transmission models and cast in those with automatic transmissions. Mufflers are tuned to emit a seriously pleasing tone through the twin chrome-tipped outlets. The suspension is specially sport-tuned to deliver superlative road-holding characteristics and control, not to mention a firmer ride.
Inside, the gray-backed instrument panel displays gauges that satisfy one's sense of nostalgia, though they are on a somewhat diminutive scale. The front bucket seats provide beefed-up lateral support to assist in keeping the driver comfortably in place during spirited maneuvers. The accelerator, clutch, brake and dead pedal are fabricated in polished aluminum with rubber dot inserts. The shift pattern of the five-speed manual transmission is offset toward the driver (makes sense), and topped off by a chrome knob in just the right size. A Mach 460 six-disc CD changer is ideal for cranking out one's favorite tunes.
The base price was set at $28,370, while the final sticker came to $29,290. after adding an interior upgrade package and the obligatory destination and delivery charge.
The Mustang Mach 1 is a pleasant way to revisit the late 1960s. It is offered in the same spirit as the original, but with more ponies.


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