Ford started their newest lineup, the Ford Mustang, in the April of 1964 and modeled it as a sporty and lavish car built based on the Ford Falcon, which was a compact.
By 1969, the Mustangs were nearing NASCAR level power, which helped its popularity. The lineup proved to be a massive success and has seen yearly models to this day.
The Ford Mustang has been following the original pattern set by the original, which includes a long-hooded short deck, a small backseat, and rear-wheel drive.
Following the same pattern can make figuring out the best and worst years for Ford Mustang challenging to say the least, but this article should help reduce this challenge.
Best Years for Ford Mustang:
Worst Years for Ford Mustang:
Let’s explore the models on these lists in detail and see why they are set as they are.
List Of The Best Years For The Ford Mustang: What Years To Buy
Ford has produced some great Mustangs over many years. However, some year models stood out.
These are a few of those years:
#1 Best Year: 2019 Ford Mustang
By far, the best model of the Ford Mustang ever released was released in 2019. The number of recalls for this model was one of the smallest compared to other models of the Ford Mustang. This model is great in terms of its values, considering its cost.
The powerful V8 engine in this model is much stronger than the older models. With its 460 horsepower and an exhaust that sounds like a thunderous roar, it is sure to make many of the competing vehicles embarrassed.
And as if this was not enough, Ford went ahead and made two more variants with more options, one of which comes with an even more powerful engine, topping out at about 480 horsepower.
#2 Best Year: 1964 Ford Mustang
Old models may have been outdated in terms of specs and performance. However, there are some models that some models still stack is the one released in the year 1964. This model’s design makes it the perfect antique vehicle.
It was designed by the man who has since been responsible for all the Mustang’s iconic style. However, that is not the only thing that makes it great. This model had a really strong V8 engine with a horsepower of 260, which was well ahead of its time.
#3 Best Year: 1965 Ford Mustang
1965’s Ford Mustang followed in the footsteps of its predecessor, the 1964 model.
There was a little change in terms of the vehicle’s overall design, but it did not cause any controversy. This was because pretty much everyone agreed that the vehicle’s design did make it look attractive.
Along with that, the vehicle still retained the powerful engines that the Mustangs are known for. Even though there were some compromises made to the vehicle’s interior to make it more affordable, it still was a strong candidate.
#4 Best Year: 1967 Ford Mustang
The 1967’s Ford Mustang GT Automatic model surprised everyone with the upgraded engine and the changes made to accommodate this newer and larger engine.
Many critics thought that the change in the design and a heavier engine would hold back the vehicle’s performance. However, this model proved everyone wrong.
With its new water-cooled V8 engine, capable of producing 390 horsepower, the vehicle was able to go from 0 to 60 mph in just 7.3 seconds. Other than that, the improved design added to the vehicle’s stability.
#5 Best Year: 2011 Ford Mustang
Moving on to some relatively newer models, the 2011’s model of the Ford Mustang was quite an interesting one. The major selling point about this one is the different variants that this model provides.
You have the V8 and the V6 engines. Along with that, there are the GT and the GT premium models as well. The engine’s really interesting thing is the early shifting, which gives some good fuel consumption.
This gives the users more options, making the car a real bang for the buck.
#6 Best Year: 2012 Ford Mustang
The 2012 model of the Ford Mustang introduces a slew of new features in the vehicles and the standardization of some very good ones across all the variants of the model.
In terms of new features, the most notable one was the introduction of adjustability in the settings for the power steering. This was standard across the board.
And speaking of standardizing features, all models of the Ford Mustang now featured antilock brakes, thus increasing the safety of the vehicle. This model is also known to have revived the high-performance Boss 302 Mustang model.
#7 Best Year: 2014 Ford Mustang
The 2014 model does not bring a lot new to the table regarding vehicle specs. However, this model does have a completely new convertible design. This design looks incredible as it still keeps the signature Mustang look intact.
Other than the design, this model does come in multiple variants. It is sad to see that the Boss 302 series was discontinued this year. However, the variants that are still available still have a lot of options in terms of horsepower and interior designs to choose from.
#8 Best Year: 2020 Ford Mustang
The 2020 Ford Mustang goes head to head against competitors like Dodge and Chevrolet and delivers another great product in 5 different trims, each more exciting and powerful than the last.
Running on a powerful V8 engine, the 2020 Fords are more known for their trims, where each trim has distinct features. The EcoBoost and EcoBoost Premium also have powerful engines, while the Shelby GT350 has an incredibly powerful one.
The 2020 model offers a variety of options and performance features that hit all the right marks for muscle car enthusiasts.
List Of The Worst Years For The Ford Mustang: What Years To Avoid
A Ford that does not offer enough power or is riddled with problems is generally one you will want to avoid.
Here are those models:
#1 Worst Year: 2006 Ford Mustang
The 20006 Ford Mustang is undoubtedly one of the most problem-heavy and overall the worst model the company has put out on the Mustang lineup.
This year’s model had issues in almost everything, from electrical problems to body issues to transmission errors. This model had everything you should avoid. (Check the article: What Are The Ford Mustang Transmission Problems?).
The car’s body had a tendency to rust, and the paint would bubble and peel off. Alternator failure was common, and the battery would drain almost continuously.
The engine was horrible; it would stall when driving, shake when idle, and sometimes give unintended acceleration. Transmission failure was also common, along with it being clunky in general. The fuel system was also bugged as the tank would not fill all the way.
#2 Worst Year: 2005 Ford Mustang
Many of the problems found in the 2006 Mustang can be blamed on its predecessor, the 2005 Ford Mustang, which was the first of the 5th generation of the lineup. While having fewer problems than the 2006 model, it paved the way for it.
It sent many of the problems it had to it: the engine not turning over, battery not holding a charge, dashboard gauges being erratic, and alternator dying is just the electrical problems!
The car’s body was also weird in that the car would start to rust under the paint, and water would leak onto the passenger floor.
#3 Worst Year: 2010 Ford Mustang
I’ve mentioned body problems in the last two models, but the worst offender of this issue is the 2010 Ford Mustang which has been heavily complained about. The paint was prone to peeling, and the hood had a horrible tendency to rust.
The body design was also flawed as the water would build up inside the door during rain and leak into the floorboards. Other issues related to this model were slight electrical and interior problems such as the door panel peeling off or seat control not functioning.
#4 Worst Year: 1969 Ford Mustang
People who buy Ford Mustangs do so for the power they offer, along with the joy of using it.
They were not able to experience the 1969 Ford Mustang, which despite not having many problems, were underpowered and did not stand a chance against its competition.
The 4.1-liter inline-six engine could only push out a mere 155 horsepower. This problem is more related to the economy version of the model, which shows how much fuel an average Ford Mustang can also gobble up.
#5 Worst Year: 1974 Ford Mustang
The Ford Mustang was still in its infancy back when this model was released. Being the first of many inadequate models of the second generation, the 1974 Ford Mustang did not have inherently have any major problems.
However, it was just an underwhelming model, to say the least, especially when compared to other Mustang models before its competitors.
The 2.8-liter V6 engine was weak and only outputted a meager 105 horsepower, which is insufficient. Ford would later apologize, leaving buyers a car that would go 0 to 60 in more than 13 seconds.
#6 Worst Year: 1999 Ford Mustang
The 1999 Ford Mustang came into the market with a well-designed and received a facelift and offered decent horsepower compared to the 1974 model.
However, the model’s major issue was related to the spark plugs. The vehicle’s sparkplugs would pop off because Ford didn’t drill the threads deep enough.
The manual transmission also suffered various issues where the gear would slip in and out. The exhaust would make a rattling sound when accelerating, and the catalytic converter would also easily break. This was all on top of a loose exhaust manifold.
#7 Worst Year: 2015 Ford Mustang
The 2015 Ford Mustang looked to be an upgraded version of the previous. However, it was soon evident that it contained many more problems than the 2014 Mustang.
The model received multiple NHSTA complaints across the body, engine, and brakes and suffered a total of 7 recalls due to doors opening while driving and oil leaks from the engine cooler.
The paint would bubble up and peel off, the brakes squealed when applied, and were prone to premature brake wear while the engine would shake and not even start.
#8 Worst Year: 2016 Ford Mustang
Following the tragic release of the 2015 Mustang, Ford had to recover the loss of reputation they received and had to do it by releasing a better model the next year.
While it was able to make a better model, it still came with many different problems. Most of these problems were related to the drivetrain, which would vibrate while driving, which became very annoying for the passengers.
The engine was also lackluster, losing power & stalling while driving and making a tapping noise while idling.
What Are The Most Common Problems With The Ford Mustang?
I’ve listed the worst years of the Ford Mustang; however, you should have no doubt seen the trend of various problems repeating between models.
I will highlight all these common problems here so you know the major issues usually in every Ford Mustang.
1. Vibration While Driving
There could be numerous causes while driving a Ford Mustang. These are usually linked to bad quality engines and transmissions that rattle and vibrate during idling, acceleration, and when shifting gears.
Drivetrains are also a common culprit of vibration. Suspension and steering components can also get loose, leading to the steering wheel vibrating. Vibration during braking was also common, and sometimes the fix would be the replacement of your entire braking system.
2. Body Issues
There are also many body issues in various Ford Mustangs, which stem from lack of quality paint or design flaws. Many models of the Mustang are prone to rust or corrosion, specifically the hood.
Sometimes this rust can occur underneath the paint. The paint itself is not that great either, as it often bubbles up and peels itself off. Design flaws allowed water to build up and leak inside the simply disappointing car.
While the Ford Mustang is capable of protecting you from outside noise and reducing the noise from outside traffic, to some extent, it, unfortunately, fails to save you from the noise it generated due to the faulty equipment used to make it.
The engine and transmission are known to make a rattling noise when accelerating or when idle. Certain models also had very noisy breaks, which would make a hard, squealing sound when applied. This type of problem can become annoying fairly quickly.
Related: Why Won’t My Ford Mustang Start?
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Which Mustang Engine Is Best?
If you want unrivaled power and unmatched speed, then the Ford Mustang’s 5.2 Liter V8 Predator engine is exactly what you are looking for. This monster of an engine can produce a staggering 526 horsepower and a 429-pound torque.
This engine can either come with a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 10-speed automatic transmission. This beefy engine is available in the 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, which many consider as the ultimate muscle car and with specs like that, rightfully so.
Q2. What Is The Average Lifespan Of A Mustang?
The usual Ford Mustang will last you about 200,000 miles. This is assuming you do not care for your vehicle and do not do regular maintenance.
Responsible owners of the Ford Mustang will make sure that their car is well maintained and use the car with respect concerning that is usually the deciding factor for the lifespan of the car.
Proper maintenance and usage of the Ford Mustang can have it easily push above 300,000 miles and last a couple of decades.
Related: How Long Do Ford Mustangs Last?
Q3. Why Are Used Mustangs So Cheap?
The Ford Mustang is classified as a Pony car which means that it is a sports car that is meant to be cheap and affordable which is why used Ford Mustangs are even cheaper as otherwise, people would just buy a new Mustang.
The amount of Mustangs manufactured by the company also helps contribute to the cheapness of the lineup, which in turn makes used models even cheaper as newer models are more readily available, which is a huge plus.
Q4. Is A Mustang A Good Investment?
The Ford Mustang lineup of cars has been made to be serious, durable, and long-lasting cars which make up for a recipe for a great car and a good investment. Classic Ford Mustangs are easy and cheap to maintain and fix.
Despite depreciating more than the average sports car, the ford Mustang does well to hold its value, ranking in the top 25% of popular models. Overall it makes for a solid investment that will last you decades.
Q5. What Is The All-Time Best-Selling Mustang Color?
Whenever you think of a Ford Mustang, the thing that comes into most people’s minds is a greatly designed blue-colored car. The blue color is iconic with the brand, and every Ford which has appeared on TV or the movies has been blue.
You will be shocked to know that the best-selling color of the Ford Mustang, in actuality, is the color red. Looking at it now, the Ford Mustang is a great-looking car and looks great in either red or blue.
Ford Mustangs are known for their power and speed.
A good Ford will always prioritize a great quality engine that can provide massive horsepower and torque, all while maintaining a good and comfortable environment for the passengers. Ford Mustangs, being pony cars, must also be affordable.
All of this is visible in the 2019 Mustang, which pushes both power and comfortability. These requirements are, however, missing in the 2006 Mustang, which is replaced with a variety of different problems.
Hopefully, you can get the car of your liking now that you are aware of the best and worst years for Ford Mustang.
Hi there! I am Tahir Azam, and this is my blog. WVDOT Automotive is a website dedicated to creating high-quality content for car enthusiasts. I am also an avid car driver. I own and drive a Porsche for my daily tasks. It is the perfect vehicle for my family. I am a proud father of two boys. I spend my mornings and evenings catering to clients at my very own software hub. After getting home, I dedicate a few hours of my time to creating an article every day. Well, this is a short introduction about me and I am also a publisher on Amazon. I hope you enjoy reading through my articles, and I also hope that I may have helped you choose an upgrade for your vehicle.