They show the sixth-generation Mustang, or the S550 as it’s referred to internally, hitting a race track alongside a current-generation model. The latest prototype is devoid of the heavy camouflage seen on earlier prototypes and shows us the face of the 2015 Mustang for the first time.
Also See: Search for a Used Ford Mustang
The prototype is far from complete, so many of the details may change before production. However, we can clearly see a family resemblance with other Ford Motor Company [NYSE:F] products. The shape of the headlights and grille, in particular, are very similar to those found on the latest Ford Taurus.
The look is aggressive and shares traits with both the modern Evos concept of 2011 and the current car. Though the rest of the prototype remains camouflaged, the shots confirm, at least, that the 2015 Mustang will feature familiar pony car proportions. The prototype has a sleeker and more planted stance, however, and both its roof and shoulder line appear to sit lower than they do on the current car.
As has been reported in the past, the car's styling should maintain distinct Mustang cues but with some influences from the Evos. Losing the retro flavor is a key strategy in widening the car’s global appeal. Yes, Ford has confirmed the 2015 Mustang will be sold globally in accordance with its 'One Ford' policy.
Under the sheet metal lies a brand new platform with an independent suspension setup in the rear instead of the live axle that’s been traditionally fitted to the Mustang. Combine this with an expected lighter curb weight, possibly to the tune of 400 pounds less, and the 2015 Mustang promises to improve on the current model’s performance and handling substantially.
As for the 2015 Mustang’s model lineup, we expect the Mustang GT to remain, still with a 5.0-liter V-8 under the hood, while the base Mustang with a V-6 should also carry over. A new turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder model is also expected, possibly to fill the gap between the base Mustang and Mustang GT and provide an option for buyers in markets (read Europe) where fuel prices are significantly higher than here in the U.S.
A range-topping SVT model to succeed the Shelby GT500 is a given, but it may no longer carry the Shelby name or even come with a supercharger. Reports claim Ford will dig into its long list of storied nameplates for the new top dog, with Cobra looking most likely at the moment.
Dates for the 2015 Mustang, like the details, are still far from certain. We expect it to hit dealerships sometime between spring and summer, 2014, with a reveal most likely taking place in the lead up to the Mustang nameplate's 50th anniversary on April 17 of that year. The 2014 Detroit Auto Show in January looks like a prime setting.
For more on the 2015 Ford Mustang, hit this link for a previous spy video.