Ford Spreads Gearhead Cheer with 500-HP Mustang Dark Horse

Plus power upgrades for the regular GT and EcoBoost variants.

2024 ford mustang dark horse
  • With the S600 generation Ford Mustang incoming, the company is spreading some car enthusiast cheer by revealing the power figures for the entire lineup.
  • The horsepower hierarchy starts with the Dark Horse model, putting down 500 hp and 418 lb-ft of torque, while the GT model has a peak of 486 hp and 418 lb-ft, both using the 5.0-liter Coyote V8.
  • EcoBoost Mustangs receive a modest 5 hp gain despite using a significantly upgraded 2.3-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder, though Ford says the main goal was improving fuel efficiency for the EcoBoost models.

    With rumors of the Gen VII Mustang being the last gas-powered version of America's iconic sports coupe, it seems only right to finish with a bang. Or at least a lot of horsepower. The folks at Ford seem to agree, as the newly revealed output figures for the 2024 Ford Mustang show an across-the-lineup power bump.

    50 liter v8 performance and track capability from the mustang dark horse
    Ford's beloved 5.0-liter Coyote V8, in holiday garb.

    Powered by the 5.0-liter Coyote V8, both the GT and Dark Horse models are the recipients of a notable increase. With 500 hp and 418 lb-ft of torque, the Mustang Dark Horse is the most potent non-Shelby model yet as well as the most powerful naturally aspirated Coyote V8 to date. Ford Performance says a uniquely balanced crankshaft, forged connecting rods, and strengthened camshafts were all that was needed to safely achieve these thresholds all the way up to its 7500 rpm redline.

    2024 ford mustang
    The 2024 Ford Mustang lineup.

    The S600 generation Mustang GT benefits from enhancements as well, with a standard 480 hp and 415 lb-ft of torque. That's an addition of 30 hp and 5 lb-ft as compared to the previous generation of Coyote-powered GTs. However, Ford is offering another increase in power for the 2024 Mustang GT, thanks to an optional active-valve performance exhaust. Power figures step up to 486 hp and 418 lb-ft of torque with the modified exhaust.

    In a nod to old-school engine building methodology, the main changes to the 5.0-liter V8 involve higher airflow rates, with dual intakes and a dual throttle body induction system. An upgraded oil pan is also standard across Coyote-equipped models for 2024. Additionally, Ford says power figures are identical for manual transmission and automatic GT models.

    2024 ford mustang dark horse
    Ford calls the Dark Horse Mustang a sinister-looking model, an assessment we'd tend to agree with.

    It's not just V8 Mustangs that are getting some extra ponies for this coming model year. In keeping the Mustang EcoBoost for the 2024 model year, the company axed the manual transmission but now offers a consolation prize in the form of a small, 5-hp bump. That brings output to 315 hp and 350 lb-ft from the revised turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine. That's the identical torque figure from the previous-generation EcoBoost, while the more powerful EcoBoost High-Performance model is discontinued for now.

    In fairness, the EcoBoost Mustang is meant to be a more affordable option, traditionally sitting well below the GT in price. Ford says the goal with this generation of EcoBoost was to improve fuel economy, using a new bore to stroke ratio and a revised fueling system. To this end, the model targets fuel economy ratings of 22 mpg city/34 mpg highway/26 mpg combined. Compared to the 2023 EcoBoost Mustang, that's a gain of 1 mpg combined and 2 mpg on the highway.

    The 2024 Mustang won't go on sale until the summer of 2023. The company has yet to announce specific pricing, but overall revisions to the car could signal the inevitable price hike. We'll find out when the models begin rolling off the Flat Rock, Michigan, assembly line. Regardless of price, we're looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the new Mustang.

    Will you be an eager Mustang shopper when the S600 generation arrives in summer? Please comment below?

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