Mark Houlahan
Tech Editor, Mustang Monthly
April 1, 2009
Photos By: Drew Phillips

Comfort And Style Inside
Once you get over the jaw-dropping new looks on the outside, listen to the great exhaust note, and hear how well it handles, you'll move on to the interior. That's when you realize that Ford listened to all of us and our gripes about the Mustang's cheap feeling interior. The new interior looks like it came straight out of a concept car, except in this case everything works. Upon ingress, the first thing you'll notice is the dash. The dash is now formed into one piece using Thermoplastic Olefin (TPO) skin over a foam base. The new one-piece dash wraps around the center stack and down the sides, giving the driver comfort not felt in the previous interior (your right knee will thank you).

Situated in the new dash is a revised instrument cluster with flush gauge rings, revised heritage graphics behind heritage conical lenses, and flush A/C registers. The two center registers are now rectangular instead of circular, just like a '67-'68 with in-dash A/C. The dash aluminum and steering wheel spokes on Premium models are now fashioned from real aluminum, as is the freshly stylized running horse emblem in the center of the steering wheel, which now contains audio controls for easy fingertip audio changes. "Gaps between parts--the chrome-ringed air registers, for example--are accurate to within fractions of millimeters," said Robert Gelardi, interior design manager. "This attention to detail is the bedrock of the new interior and what sets Mustang miles apart from the competition. Our goal was a product that goes above and beyond perceived quality to offer premium experience. We were absolute maniacs about the selection of materials and executing every detail."

The center stack contains all-new HVAC controls and audio system for 2010. The base audio uses a two-line display, while the optional electronics package utilizes an easy to read 8-inch display, which also houses the navigation, HVAC controls, Sirius Travel Link, outside temperature, compass, and more. Ford's Sync with 911-assist and Vehicle Health Report is standard in Premium models. Dual-zone electronic HVAC controls, voice activated nav, and six-way power-heated seats are options through various packages (Electronics Package and Comfort Package, respectively). The 2010 Mustang also features another first for the Mustang--a rearview camera system--available as an option on Premium models that also have the Electronics Package. The Shaker audio systems remain with 500 and 1000-watt systems available.

The center stack moves easily into the new flush console. The console features a locking storage bin, covered drink holders, and a flow-through design. Even the traction control and trunk-release button (a first for the S197 Mustang) are fashioned after the 2010 Mustang's appearance versus some standard ISO symbol. Just like your favorite recliner at home, the center console's slope matches that of the door panels so that your left and right arms are resting at the same angles for comfort behind the wheel on those long trips.

Speaking of those door panels, all-new materials here, too, give the Mustang a much more refined look, including a running horse medallion on Premium interiors, bright trim around the door speaker grille (instead of the previous blocky industrial look), and color-coordinated stitching that matches the new seat sew styling. The door panel's map pockets are now illuminated. On Premium models with My Color and ambient lighting, the illumination of the map pockets, as well as the cup holders, foot wells, and even the Mustang script door sill plates, can be adjusted via My Color to over 120 different colors.