Ford retiring track darling Performance Pack 2 for 2021 Mustang
The sleuths over at the Blue Oval Forums have dug up next year’s ordering guide for the 2021 Ford Mustang, and for lovers of the sleepy Performance Pack 2 track kit, they’ll have to pony up for the Mach 1 if they want the most bang for their buck.
The move comes on the heels of Ford discontinuing the GT350 as well, slimming down the crowd of middle-siblings in the performance line-up ahead of the Mach 1’s release. Ford will continue to offer the essential Performance Pack 1, which equips the GT with staggered 19-inch wheels (9- and 9.5-inches wide front and rear, respectively) with a sure-footed 255mm/275mm-wide tire combo, Brembo brakes, Torsen diff, and other accoutrements, but the razor-focused Performance Pack 2 (with its steamroller 305mm Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2s wrapped around 10.5- and 11-inch-wide wheels—still 19 inches in diameter), additional aero package, and beefier cooling system were a favorite for drivers who were pumped to have an alternative to the Camaro SS 1LE or Corvette for various classes in road racing and autocross. The result was a machine that even we would hesitate to change, a balanced pony car that punched outside of its reputation.
All is not lost for those who are looking for a high-performance Mustang but don’t need the lunatic acceleration of the GT350R or especially the GT500: the upcoming Mach 1. It culminates many of the finer points of the Performance Pack 2 and GT350 packages, starting with bringing the Shelby’s more capable cooling system down to the lower-priced Mach 1, including the much-needed rear differential cooling system in extended track use. The Tremec 3160 from the GT350 is another welcome upgrade over the Getrac MT-82 found in the Mustang GT, and the rapid-firing 10r80 automatic is available unlike the manual-only Performance Pack. The GT350’s bones were further extracted, trickling down the beefier K-member with stiffer bushings for less deflection from the cornering loads sustained by the optional 20-inch wheels, which are just a half-inch narrower (10.5 inches front/11 inches rear) than the GT500’s, and MagneRide returns to keep everything smooth. To take advantage of all this new-found grip, the Mach 1 will also take the Bullitt’s finessed 480hp 5.0L Coyote.
While some could stress over the higher entry fee, the value is certainly there. The 2021 Mach 1’s MSRP of $51,720 rests a few ticks over the 2020 GT Performance Pack 2’s current base MSRP of $45,575, but has additional hardware, much of which Performance Pack 2 owners would’ve looked to upgrade eventually.