Road Trip: 2015 Mustang GT Premium

0 2015 Mustang Road Trip

Headed for Hotlanta

Blasting down the highway in a Triple Yellow S550 bound for the NMRA

By Steve Turner

It had been a hot minute since yours truly was behind the wheel of a 2015 Mustang GT. In fact, it had been far too long. Sadly, I don’t have one of these machines in the driveway just yet, so snagging the keys to one for a week was a treat. Scheduling the car for the week around the NMRA Ford Nationals race outside Atlanta, Georgia, was part of the plan. The 7-plus-hour drive would provide plenty of opportunity to get a feel for what the car would be like as a daily driver.

Before leaving for Georgia, we stopped by Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland, Florida, to snap a few shots of this Triple Yellow beauty before it got too dirty. I definitely prefer the black Performance Pack wheels to the anniversary package’s Luster Nickel 19s with the yellow paint, but the car still looks great.
Before leaving for Georgia, we stopped by Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland, Florida, to snap a few shots of this Triple Yellow beauty before it got too dirty. I definitely prefer the black Performance Pack wheels to the anniversary package’s Luster Nickel 19s with the yellow paint, but the car still looks great.

The first thing you notice about driving a Triple Yellow S550 is that it gets looks. This shouldn’t really be a surprise, though. It’s fresh styling and bright paint make for a fetching combo, and the cars still aren’t commonplace enough that people are bored by seeing them. The first stop after acquiring the car was a local college with a really unique building on campus, and the people still on hand didn’t bat an eye as I set up and shot the car on the campus. It was as if a car like this deserves some special treatment.

Most of my S550 experience was in Performance Pack-equipped cars with Recaro seating. Certainly this is a good problem to have, but it was great to spend some time in a car with a standard suspension and seats. The seats are relatively supportive in the turns, and the suspension does pretty well too. Neither the suspension nor the seats are as grippy as their Performance Pack cousins, but they might just be a bit more livable for daily use.

Not only was our tester a GT Premium but it was optioned with a litany of upgrades, including the 50 Years package, which celebrates the Pony car’s significant birthday.
Not only was our tester a GT Premium but it was optioned with a litany of upgrades, including the 50 Years package, which celebrates the Pony car’s significant birthday.

The day after snapping the photos you see here we had a trip to SCT Performance on the schedule. This meant traveling through Orlando, Florida, during Spring Break time, so the traffic was even denser than usual. Being a manual-trans car, this meant having the opportunity to see how lots of clutch work treated a calf muscle. It actually wasn’t too bad. With a forgiving clutch, hill assist, and V-8 torque, the 2015 Mustang is a lot more livable in traffic than its predecessors.

In the midst of our other testing at SCT, our friend Matt Alderman was kind enough to strap down the GT to one of the company’s in-house Dynojets to see what kind of power it was putting down to the pavement. After the second pull, we couldn’t believe our eyes. It pumped out 400 horsepower and 379 lb-ft of torque in stock form. Neither of us had ever seen those kind of numbers from a stock 2015 Mustang, so the new engines must really like being broken in. This example had over 9,500 hard miles from unforgiving auto scribes on the clock and it liked it!

The new-school Coyote’s 420 horsepower is more than enough to keep you entertained behind the wheel of the latest Mustang. To my jaded hindquarters, the stock power is adequate but we all know how well this engine responds to the inevitable modifications.
The new-school Coyote’s 420 horsepower is more than enough to keep you entertained behind the wheel of the latest Mustang. To my jaded hindquarters, the stock power is adequate but we all know how well this engine responds to the inevitable modifications.

On the way back I made a point of leaning on the car to enjoy those 400 horses, and it felt good. Don’t get me wrong. The latest Mustang GT is a fun car. However, it reminded me how power-jaded I’ve become over the years. There was a time when a car with 400 horsepower was serious business. Now it just feels pretty good. My how times have changed.

What has also changed is the Mustang is all grown up these days. The new suspension with its double-ball-joint front and IRS rear is definitely an upgrade in the turns. It puts down the power quite well, and the base brakes are essentially what Cobras used to run and they work well to reel things in as well. Even the remote-shifting MT-82 has gotten a bit more precise over the years. It still doesn’t offer the precision most of us would like, but it’s not bad.

This trip allowed for spending some quality time in a new GT without Recaros. Being a fan of gadgetry, this is pretty close to how I would order a new Mustang if I had the wherewithal. The interior of the latest Mustang is still its most charismatic aspect. When you spend a lot of time in the car, you appreciate its styling and quality all the more. It was a bummer that the SiriusXM trial subscription timed out right before I headed to Georgia.
This trip allowed for spending some quality time in a new GT without Recaros. Being a fan of gadgetry, this is pretty close to how I would order a new Mustang if I had the wherewithal. The interior of the latest Mustang is still its most charismatic aspect. When you spend a lot of time in the car, you appreciate its styling and quality all the more. It was a bummer that the SiriusXM trial subscription timed out right before I headed to Georgia, however.

It was a true pleasure wheeling the car up to the NMRA race and back, and I felt right at home in the latest Mustang. When I arrived at the event, one of the staff complemented me on the car and tried to direct me to the car show to show it off. That’s not something you often get when driving a stock Mustang.

All told, a week with the new Mustang was too short. The car pulled down around 23 mpg in mixed driving. It looked and felt great doing it, as well. In short, the time put me in a better headspace for what kind of 2015 Mustang I’d want for a project. If I could, I would definitely start with a Premium GT and level up the performance from the aftermarket, but I like all the toys.

Of course, those toys don’t cheap. This Premium GT carried an additional $6,565 in options, including navigation, adaptive cruise control, reverse park assist, Triple Yellow paint, and, of course, the one-year-only anniversary package. The grand total on the window sticker was $42,665, which is about what my loaded GT500 stickered at back in 2008. Granted you are getting a lot of car these days, and you don’t have to check all those boxes. The base sticker price was $36,100, so choose those options wisely.

Probably the coolest part of a GT Premium is the Ford GT-inspired switchgear for the driving modes and more. Whenever we are in a car with the basic buttons, it just seems wrong. It was a bummer that the SiriusXM trial subscription timed out right before I headed to Georgia. Of course, my favorite interior option for long drives is the air-conditioned seats. I’m so happy the Mustang finally has this option.
Probably the coolest part of a GT Premium is the Ford GT-inspired switchgear for the driving modes and more. Whenever we are in a car with the basic buttons, it just seems wrong. It was a bummer that the SiriusXM trial subscription timed out right before I headed to Georgia. Of course, my favorite interior option for long drives is the air-conditioned seats. I’m so happy the Mustang finally has this option.
It will be interesting to see if the 50 Years package adds value to these cars down the road, but there’s no doubt that it will help us pick out 2015 Mustangs from the later S550s in the years to come.
It will be interesting to see if the 50 Years package adds value to these cars down the road, but there’s no doubt that it will help us pick out 2015 Mustangs from the later S550s in the years to come.
We took to calling our Triple Yellow tester that 400-horsepower Freak. While it was in our possession, we happened to be at SCT Performance for some other testing, so they were nice enough to run it across the rollers on the company’s in-house Dynojet. On the second pull it put down 400.75 horsepower and 379.69 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels. Clearly these Coyote engines like being broken in, as ours had over 9,500 miles on the clock when we dyno’d it.
We took to calling our Triple Yellow tester the 400-horsepower Freak. While it was in my possession, I happened to be at SCT Performance for some other testing, so they were nice enough to run it across the rollers on the company’s in-house Dynojet. On the second pull it put down 400.75 horsepower and 379.69 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels. Clearly these Coyote engines like being broken in, as ours had over 9,500 miles on the clock when we dyno’d it.

2015 Mustang GT Premium Gallery

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