Okay, pony car lovers, you drivers who crave an engine that roars so loud it shakes the earth beneath you and makes you a menace to your neighborhood but the secret envy of half those looky-loos. Yeah, we’re talking to you. You know you anticipate the release of the new Ford Mustang every year. The whispers fill the forums––whispers like “Will it be the fastest car to date?” and “Will it appear in the next Fast and Furious movie?” You know about these rumors because you’re on those forums. You probably already know that the 2024 Ford Mustang is here, and you might already know that one of its defining trims is the Dark Horse.
If you’ve looked it up, then you know that the Dark Horse has a sleek, sexy, and intimidating aesthetic that makes it look truly racetrack-ready. It has this dramatic, mysterious dark blue color scheme that just makes you want to find some underground street to rev the engine and see what it can do. What you might not know about are all of the treats that Ford has put inside this new model that will seriously make you feel like you’re in one of those Fast and Furious movies. Here’s a peek at why the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse will ignite something deep inside you that you didn’t even know was there.
The Engine That Cracked the Earth’s Surface
Once you have sat inside a Mustang and felt––like really felt, in your bones–that roar of a V8 engine, there’s no going back. You chase that thrill. You love it so much you’re willing to take on the frustrated notes from neighbors asking you to quiet your car. But it cannot be quieted. It cannot be calmed. It’s a Ford Mustang. The 2024 Dark Horse continues the legacy beautifully with the most powerful naturally-aspirated engine ever placed in a Mustang. Blowing out your eardrums never sounded so good. With 500 hp, 418 lb-ft of torque, a reported top speed of 168 mph, and the ability to go from zero to 60 in a hair over four seconds, this engine will truly have you wondering if you left your heart or lungs back in the driveway––it’s just that fast.
The Right Stuff to Match That V8
Naturally, once you’re working with an engine this powerful and a vehicle this fast, you need some other systems in place to help you maintain control––and to help you have a hell of a good time. As expected, the Dark Horse has them. All the performance elements of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse come together beautifully––almost like a symphony––to let you push the vehicle to the limits while always feeling in control.
For starters, it has the MagneRide damping system, meaning its magnetically controlled dampers adjust to changing conditions at nearly the speed of light (okay, not really, but they still adjust in a matter of milliseconds). The available Handling Package adds aero upgrades, including a rear wing with a large Gurney Flap, to produce the most downforce of any Mustang. These features come together to let you attack the corners without feeling tossed around and out of control.
By the way, that V8 comes standard with a six-speed Tremec manual transmission. This gearbox includes auto rev-matching to help you smooth out shifts without feeling jerked around. The unique hollow shift knob is 3D printed from titanium, which helps it remain cool in warm weather. You can also opt for a 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission if you prefer. It’s going to deliver paddle shifters that are highly responsive and have a nice tactile sensation.
When you’re sitting in the cabin, you’ll feel like you’re in your own world. It’s really designed to envelop you and create a truly visceral experience with its stunning displays showing you what’s happening in your vehicle. Angled screens for the infotainment center and instrument cluster are placed side-by-side for over two feet of digital displays. But there are some details that really make you feel ready for a race.
We’ll start with the flat bottom steering wheel. If you’re not familiar with genuine race track driving, a flat bottom wheel is great for this competitive environment for two reasons. First, it lets you know exactly when the wheels are straight (the flat bottom will be parallel to your thighs). Second, this shape lets the steering wheel sit closer to the driver’s legs for a better driving position.
The steering wheel also gets a nice suede wrap that isn’t only elegant but also gives you a better grip than, say, some faux leather. Additionally, it has helpful buttons built into it that let you do things like select your drive mode or change the music without taking your hands off the wheel. If you are going to really test the Dark Horse, you know there will be critical moments when your hands must be one with the steering wheel.
Get Your Tokyo Drift On
Alright, try not to get so excited that you wake your neighbors with your scream (you can do that later with the rev of your V8). The Dark Horse is going to have a class-first electronic drift brake. This will let you lock up those rear wheels and get sideways so you can have your very own Tokyo Drift moment. Call your friend with the 4K camera and tell them you’re ready to make that music video––you know the one. You want to come screeching around the corner, lock those rear wheels, and drift sideways toward the camera before you stop and emerge like Vin Diesel.
Seats That Are Ready for Action
Finally, if you opt for the Dark Horse Appearance Package, you’re going to get bolstered Recaro performance seats. These are reinforced with tough material in those high-wear areas and provide your body extra support during spirited movements. They even get suede inserts in the center of the seats for added body-on-seat grip (you know––for your Tokyo drifts). The seats are even trimmed with unique Bright Indigo Blue accent stitching and come with matching Deep Indigo Blue seatbelts for a truly special look.
It’s Time to Place Your Reservation
If you weren’t already, you’re probably now calling your local Ford dealer to put in that Dark Horse pre-order. Ford has truly spoiled its loyal Mustang fans with this one––but, hey, you also deserve it. If you’ve been chasing that dragon of having your own movie-worthy race track moments, maybe it was never a dragon after all. Maybe it was a Dark Horse.
The minds at Ford just designed every part of this vehicle to go so seamlessly with the next, giving you a sense of being one with the vehicle and with the road. This engine is going to leave you speechless (and probably breathless if you aim for its top speed). It creates the most satisfying roar that Mustang drivers yearn for and kicks out power that will make you tremble in a good way. Add that MagneRide damping system, auto rev-matching, and an available 10-speed transmission, and you can really experience those Nirvana driving moments only a Mustang can deliver.