Let's start the day off honestly: the new-for-'10 Ford Mustang looks like it was facelifted. That's not a bad thing; facelifts can work wonders. As for a completely refreshing take, this new Mustang evolved from the previous-generation about as slowly as the Porsche 911 moved from 996 to 997 and about as swiftly as the Jaguar XJ8 of the early 2000s moved on to the completely new-for-'03.

In other words, the new Mustang doesn't look all that different. Face the facts, the Mustang is 50% looks and 50% muscle, creating a situation where, um... looks matter. In profile, the Mustang still rides too high at the rear. As a new Mustang drives away from you, the rear end won't look too terribly new at all even if it is a cooler design. Stand in your upstairs window looking down at the 2010 Mustang in your driveway and you'll start to believe it's a tidier, tightened, tenser, and tauter design. There's something about that angle that reveals an almost European influence; slightly delicate and assuredly tenacious at the same time.

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Certainly the front end is where the revitilization was most successful and most noticeable. Appearing lower and meaner, the grille is far and away the most telling feature that proves this is the 2010 Mustang.

Ford had been making lots of noise about improving the interior. At first glance, that was just a bunch of noise. The cockpit still looks like a mish-mash of cheap and expensive. Not to worry, underhood, a V8 is still available. Are you not paying pennies for fuel again?

Ford's 4.6L is now a 315-horsepower mill. Wheels start at 17-inches in diameter and creep up to 19-inches at the max. Front-end lift for the V8 GT was reduced 23%, which, when teamed with a 7% slipperier body, should significantly aid steering and handling.

Does the Mustang have the Challenger's presence or the Camaro's eye-catching allure? Nope. Actually, it's not even close. On the other hand, the Mustang will almost certainly be less expensive across the board and doesn't scream mid-life crisis like the two competitors. The full gallery of 72 pictures is below. Click here for the convertible gallery.


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