Ford’s biggest reveal since the Bronco is about to happen later this year, but it appears the internet couldn’t wait any longer. Leaked photos have appeared today of the 2024 Ford Mustang, codenamed S650, fully exposing the front fascia to a detail we have yet to see before, and it’s got the Mustang community in a frenzy.
If the images prove to be true, it appears the internet isn’t entirely on board. Some of you seem to love it. Some of you appear militant. Understandably, being one of the most historic and iconic vehicle nameplates in automotive history, enthusiasts are looking at every given S650 Mustang detail under a microscope. To me, this leaked 2024 Mustang front end design reminds of the late-model-year SN95 generation, and a bit of Fox Body. Why? Because it appears that Ford designers are looking back towards the retrolicious shapes of the 1980s and 1990s, which are growing in popularity.
The creased angles, wedges, and boxy details seen in both the Fox Body and SN95 Mustang represent a unique era in automotive design. And with Millennials becoming the largest automotive consumer base, the design language of the new Mustang is bound to speak to them the most. Considering that Mustang customers are getting older, and sales in the segment are evaporating, Ford’s gotta try something new.
S650 Ford Mustang: What You Can Expect
The S650 Mustang isn’t riding on a new platform. Rather, it’s an evolution of the S550, so think of it as a major product lifecycle refresh, more than something that’s completely new from the ground up. That means it will have a rethought exterior and interior design, and a new electrical architecture to go with it.
The timetable for the S650 Mustang reveal continues to be a fluid situation, but right now, you can expect at least one more model year of the S550 Mustang, as the next-gen model will debut as a 2024 model year product.
The interior of the 2024 Ford Mustang will maintain similar hard points as the S550 Mustang, but incorporates a more digital approach that seems to discard the design inspiration of Mustangs from the 1960s and 1970s. A flat bottom steering wheel will also make its debut.
No AWD Expected, A Hybrid Could Come Later
While all-wheel-drive has been extensively rumored, perhaps misreported by other outlets, MC&T sources that intimately understand the S650 Ford Mustang have told us that AWD is not immediately on the table. Spy photos that have been speculated to be testing with all-wheel-drive are simply S550 shells masking an S650 chassis, say sources.
Speculation of a hybrid model is a little scattered. Rumors originally floated that the Ford Mustang was going to go hybrid as early as 2020. That didn’t happen. Instead we got the Mustang Mach-E to help balance out CAFE regulations, and probably for the better. Recently, our friends at Automotive News stated that a S650 Ford Mustang hybrid could arrive by 2025, likely during a refresh of the model. We’re inclined to believe them.
S650 Mustang Engines: The Last ICE Muscle Car Standing
Out of the gate, the 2023 Ford Mustang will have a familiar stable of powertrains, before a refresh in a few years that will add hybrid electrification. This means that a 2.3L EcoBoost turbo four and 5.0L Coyote V8 at the start, with the 755 hp 5.2L supercharged Predator V8 to follow. We don’t expect the 5.2L flat-plane crank Voodoo V8 to re-emerge after the discontinuation of the Mustang Shelby GT350 and GT350R.
Our sources more or less debunked the 6.8L V8 rumor for the 2024 Ford Mustang, saying Unifor leaders don’t have the right information. Perhaps maybe later.
The S650 Mustang will have have a long lifecycle; eight years, in fact. Just like the S550, which entered the fray in 2014. Some analysts pin the electric Ford Mustang to emerge by 2028, but 2030 seems like the more likely outcome. The end of the decade feels far enough away, but the clock is ticking in what feels like a speed run mode. When that time approaches, the last of the internal combustion engine muscle cars will have rolled off the assembly line. Unless hydrogen combustion pans out. Which, if Ford Motor Company, General Motors, and Stellantis have anything to say about it, might actually happen.