- Impressive range, choice of battery sizes and well-priced
- Eye-catching SUV styling with ‘Pony’ badging
- Smart interior with plenty of on-board technology
- Not a Mustang as we have come to know them
- The ride can be a little unsettled at times
- Boot space is not as good as some rivals
Mustang by name, but not necessarily by nature – that’s the all-new Mach-E. Whereas Mustangs of old were two-door muscle cars powered by gas-guzzling V8 engines, the Mach-E is a five-door SUV and is Ford’s first all-electric production car.
It boasts an impressive range of up two 335 miles depending on the battery size selected and the interior is beautifully crafted with a mega upright touchscreen being the main focal point.
It may be slightly more mature than its siblings, but it still possesses plenty of the Mustang magic that has made the marque such a firm favourite over the years - it’s just a lot quieter.
A high-performance GT model will join the line-up at the end of 2021 to early 2022.
On The Road
The Ford Mustang Mach-E is a family SUV that’s available with a 68kWh battery for standard range of up to 273 miles or powered by an 88kWh battery for an extended range of 335 miles. Both are on sale with either rear or all-wheel drive.
We tested the range-topping Mach-E Extended Range AWD version that certainly looked the business in Absolute Black, which gave it quite a menacing on-road presence.
With a power output of 294PS (269PS in Standard Range versions) our test car could sprint from 0-62mph in 5.8 seconds and all models max out at 111mph.
The Mach-E has a one-speed automatic transmission and, with instant torque, the acceleration from the off is impressive. There is a constant supply of power on tap for quick bursts of pace to overtake and this car cruises with ease at motorway speeds.
Although there are no steering wheel-mounted paddles, there are drive modes called Whisper, Active and Untamed (that’s more imaginative than Eco, Normal and Sport) and these alter the reactions of the car and how it behaves. Active is ideal for day-to-day driving, Whisper is best suited for busier city centres and the Untamed setting is fairly self-explanatory as it delivers more aggressive acceleration, sharper steering and, if the Propulsion Sound system is on, a louder cabin noise.
The Mach-E is nicely balanced out on the fast moving country lanes with minimal body sway into bends. In fact, for a vehicle of SUV proportions it is impressively controlled into and out of corners.
On the downside, the ride quality is a little too harsh for our pitted UK roads so expect to feel bumps and dips as you go about your day-to-day business. Our car was riding on 19-inch alloys, but we also took a spin in another model fitted with 18-inch wheels and that seemed a little smoother over the rougher surfaces.
The steering, for the most part, feels nicely weighted, but at times it seemed a little too aggressive and the car’s two-tonne-plus weight becomes more noticeable at those times.
That aside though, the ride and handling was pretty accomplished with occupants treated to a nicely hushed cabin.
There is a one-pedal feature that is definitely worth exploring as it increases the regenerative braking as you lift your foot off the accelerator. This is great for busy town centres with lots of stop start driving and it can bring the car to a complete standstill without touching the brake pedal while recouping energy along the way. Following drivers are warned as the brake lights are activated when the car slows dramatically.
When it comes to styling, there is one factor you need to come to terms with very quickly. Despite carrying the Mustang name and Pony badging, the Mach-E is not like any other Mustang we have seen before.
Whereas the name is associated with powerful muscle cars, the Mach-E is a five-door family SUV. But it does still possess a number of Mustang styling traits such as signature lighting, a long bonnet and the ‘MUSTANG’ name on the door sills, plus the traditional badging.
The door handles are flush to the bodywork and pop out when you press a button and our high-end model boasted plenty of eye-catching design cues, including black bumpers, a black front grille, 19-inch black alloy wheels with red brake calipers and privacy glass. It also featured powered mirrors with a puddle light Mustang logo.
The interior is thoroughly modern and clutter-free with nice quality black upholstery and red contrast stitching. There are plenty of soft-touch surfaces throughout the cabin, along with a chunky gear lever, but there are also some hard-plastic trims that rather let the quality down a little, in an otherwise elegantly designed car.
A little wind noise can be heard at higher motorway speeds which is the norm inside SUV-styled cars and the cabin is eerily quiet due to the silent running of the vehicle. This can be changed via a Propulsion Sound feature that is activated via the touchscreen. This offers an engine acceleration noise within the car that corresponds to throttle pressure.
In The Car
Behind the Wheel
Step inside the Mustang Mach-E and the first thing you notice is the 15.5-inch upright touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard. It’s very similar to the one on the latest Tesla Model 3 cars and acts as the nerve centre to almost all the onboard kit.
But unlike the Tesla, and credit to Ford for this, there is an additional 10.2-inch digital cluster screen behind the steering wheel that delivers vital information such as driving speed and range without having to take your eyes off the road ahead.
The infotainment set-up features the latest Ford Sync system that enables more than 80 vehicle settings to be customised from the lighting within the cabin to seating positions. And this system will learn to understand the driver’s habits over time too making appropriate communication and navigation suggestions etc. It will also get better with age as the system automatically receives over-the-air updates with the latest software improvements.
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are both standard and our test car featured a Technology Pack at no extra cost that added a 10-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system with dashboard soundbar, advanced active park assist, a full panoramic roof and a number of extra safety features.
Getting a comfortable driving position is a simple process with a fully power-adjustable seat complete with memory settings and plenty of movement on the steering wheel too. The huge touchscreen is simple enough to operate on the move once you have familiarized yourself with it and the driver visibility is good.
Space & Practicality
The Mustang Mach-E is a practical five-door, five-seat SUV with room for all the family. With the impressive mileage offered by the Extended Range model, family holidays in Europe could be achievable with comfort breaks proving the ideal opportunity to top up the battery.
Storage options are good too, although some rivals have a bigger boot capacity. The Mach-E can swallow up to 519 litres of luggage, increased to 1,420 litres with the 60:40 split-folding rear seats dropped flat. There is also room for a further 81 litres of kit beneath the bonnet. Throughout the cabin, there are front and rear cupholders, a decent-sized glovebox, a central cubby compartment, deep door bins, seatback pockets, a wireless charging pad and a drop-down sunglasses holder.
The boot on our high-end model was powered and that’s useful if approaching the vehicle laden down with shopping.
The entry level rear-wheel-drive Mach-E with the smaller 68kWh battery is very reasonably priced for an all-electric vehicle with the size and practicality of the Mustang. It costs from £41,330 and is generously equipped as standard too. The only downside would be the shorter range of up to 273 miles, but that’s still better than some rivals.
Our range-topping Extended Range model with the larger 88kWh battery and AWD, which can cover up to 335 miles, was priced at £57,030. That is quite a leap in cost, but there are other versions in-between such as the Standard Range with AWD priced at £46,650 or the Extended Range with RWD costing £49,980.
All models are well equipped so there are no hidden costs for options and day-to-day running costs also impress. Charging a Standard Range Mach-E from a 7.4kW home wall box takes approximately eight hours to boost from 10-80 percent or 10 hours for the Extended Range. It is always worth checking with electricity suppliers as tariffs may prove cheaper at night.
There is a decent network of faster chargers where the 10-80 percent charge can take as little as 45 minutes.
With zero carbon emissions, there will be no Vehicle Excise Duty costs and the insurance rating for the Mustang Mach-E Extended Range AWD model is Group 40. Other models start from Group 37.
Quality & Reliability
The Mustang Mach-E is Ford’s first production model built entirely from the ground up to deliver zero emissions, pure electric driving. With that in mind, it is impossible to predict with any real certainty just how reliable the battery-driven technology will be. But generally, Ford engineers and technicians tend to be spot on with new developments and this model should be a durable and reliable vehicle.
The high-performance batteries have been tested at temperatures as extreme as minus 40 degrees Celsius and are contained in a waterproof case protected by crash absorption surrounds.
The interior of the car looks and feels upmarket in its layout and design with the main portrait touchscreen being the most dominant feature. This worked quickly throughout the test drive and was easily wiped clean of any fingerprint smudges.
The upholstery feels well-made and should also survive the test of time with little problems along the way.
As a sign of Ford’s confidence in the Mach-E, it comes with a very impressive eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty.
Safety & Security
Although the Mustang Mach-E has not been tested for a Euro NCAP safety rating yet, it boasts a comprehensive list of features to protect occupants and other road users alike.
On-board technology includes a pre-collision assist system with collision mitigation and forward collision warning. There is dynamic brake support, automated emergency braking, distance alert with distance indication and evasive steer assist.
The intelligent adaptive cruise control system has stop and go and lane centering and there are front and rear parking sensors, blind spot monitoring with cross traffic alert, a rear-view camera and a full suite of airbags.
A Technology Pack, that is standard on the Extended Range AWD models, adds lane-keeping aid and lane departure warning, a 360-degree camera, a quick-clear heated windscreen, advanced active park assist and a Thatcham Category One alarm system.