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What a pillbug-shaped electric Mustang says about Ford

The old saying about there being no such thing as bad publicity is receiving a thorough crash-testing with the debut of Ford’s electric pillbug, disrespectfully yclept “Mustang Mach-E” and bearing a strong resemblance to the BMW X-whatevers and various Mercedes “coupe” trucks. It’s a two-edged sword. The mass media is talking about the thing because it uses the well-known Mustang name, but the existing population of Mustang owners and fans are furious at what they rightly see as a deliberate devaluation of a nameplate that means quite a bit to quite a few people.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2019/11/19/pillbug-shaped-electric-mustang-says-about-ford

There’s optimism and then there’s living in denial. The people behind EVs aren’t misguided. They’re in the closing stages of winning their war against the bourgeoisie that the left spoke of publicly until someone asked who the bourgeoisie are. Now they tell us we’ll still be middle class without our single family homes, families, diverse diets, freedom, ability to defend ourselves, privacy, or cars. A new dark age is what comes next, not a renaissance of common sense.

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Hahaha, Pillbug.

In fact, I love pillbug-shaped CARS. The Beetle was pillbug-shaped, so is the 911, the Cayman and the TT. What looks horrible are pillbugs on stilts. Apparently car manufacturers finally realized that box-shaped SUVs look dated and ugly, and the “best” they could come up with was using the beautiful “fastback” profile for crossovers… well, that was a swing and a miss.

I won’t buy a crossover, I don’t want to die in a rollover and I won’t drive a car without a third pedal (so, no electrics for me unless it’s a Tesla Roadster). And the current Mustang is nice, I’d just wish the current Mustang’s fastback rear had a real hatch instead of a mail-slot trunk opening. Have used Caymans become affordable already?

I had more than my share of time behind the wheel of the Mustang II, a Pinto in drag. Unfortunately, I’ve failed to eradicate that bad mem over the last 4+ decades. What you need Jack is a dose of instant torque and the smell of the Mach E’s rear tires burning under your right foot.

The old pony’s getting a little chubby…

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Mr. Baruth, you are fast becoming my favourite journalist. Not automotive journalist: journalist, period. Keep spreading your clever incisive outlook on our society and its automotive nexus. I mean, where else will you find a word like bibelot?

Also, that’s a great picture of the new appropriate Mustang emblem, thank you kq6ea.

I agree wholeheartedly with your interpretation of the new (un) 'stang and the electric auto market Mr. Baruth. It appears fear is driving the manufactures more than the drive of what makes sense well into the future. We have plenty of oil for years to come (some say well over 100 yrs).

In my opinion, Ford missed the mark on the name - Mach E is missing a couple of letters. A more fitting name is the Mustang Mach-Ery. Of course the marketplace will decide and as long as both Ford and Chevy can sell $50K+ pickup trucks day-in and day-out, I guess anything is possible.

I don’t really care about sticking the Mustang name on this blobby SUV-ish thing but what puzzles me is the economics of this. The US Ford website claims that you could “potentially” save US$285 in maintenance and US$893 in fuel costs annually over a six year period–I am not including the potential $7,500 government rebate since here in Canada only BC and Quebec will help subsidize the car and to a much lower amount than the US–for a vehicle that would probably compare to Ford’s own Edge, newly revised this year, in terms of utility. The Edge actually offers more space… Assuming that you bought the fanciest Edge, the Titanium, it would cost you C$44,000, while the Premium Mustang Mach-E (nobody will buy the base one) will be C$60,000. You are getting some nice technology in the Mach-E but is the difference really worth more than $16,000? You will of course pay more in sales tax plus you need that home charger which will probably be C$1,000 installed. Most of the time the range anxiety problem is probably not an issue and over a six year period the batteries should not deteriorate much but looking at the numbers it is not surprising that EVs only make up less than 3% of the car market but then the only choice has essentially been Tesla.

Show me one lowered in Grabber Blue or a bright yellow and maybe I can squint and see Mustang a little more… still think the door proportions & rear deck look kind of goofy (as per usual crossovers).

However, they have dabbled with Mustang wagon concepts in the past. I own a Fusion and really the front end of it is a bit Mustang too, and probably why I bought it (tiny bit of style I liked vs. the bland comparables).

I enjoy Jack’s articles and takes on things.

Whether correct or not, the scientific community seems to be enjoying feeding governments a climate change crisis (look back to the Vikings… within the last 1000 years Greenland wasn’t mostly ice and the now-inland a bit settlement in Newfoundland was on the ocean shore that was 3 feet (iirc) higher —in other words climate change is not new). You are either moving into an ice age or out of it.

Waste an afternoon reading up on stuff… and the same scientific community basically agrees that 50% of the current warming is human influenced. So it’s not a crisis about ocean going up by 1m or 3m or whatever but half of that because nature is going to be nature. Not that the human influenced half isn’t worth addressing assuming the scientific community that sort of agrees on that is correct.

EVs… have gotten a lot better in the last few years. Still way too costly. Still totally unproven as viable in the secondary market --right now it looks like battery replacement costs will make otherwise useable cars scrap. Still produce more carbon in their inception than ICE vehicles —compounded by every bit that is made in China [since China produces the most carbon emissions and follows the least rules]. But… build them in USA or Germany (countries with some rules they actually follow) and some further tech improvements that can likely be solved.

Electric supply it would be nice to see the math. How much draw on the US grid if 50% of the daily vehicle fleet was 100% EV and needing recharging? How much new infrastructure needed? How clean will this infrastructure be? --that’s the rub of it, EVs charged up with dirty power is just sending your pollution to another neighbourhood.

The rub is… suppose the clamor of crisis turns out false… it will be at least 10 years of static or declining global temperature data for scientists with those views to be heard in the current noise. In the meantime… we may not have a choice of what to buy in many locations 5 years from now. I live in a cold winter climate area with long distances between destinations… and cannot afford a 100K + luxury long range EV.

But I am happy driving old cars, so as long as I am allowed to I will get by just fine.

like Timone told Puumba, i can see where this is going;

first the PC namby-pambies destroyed the Corvette, now they’re after the pony cars (please don’t tell me the Mustang is or ever was a sports car…i’ve owned Vettes and E-types);

all that’s keeping the reciprocating fossil fuel powered conveyances afloat is the technology for battery-powered RC cars remains primitive;

as proven by Tesla and now this amalgamated contrivance the General is trying to foist off as the new Corvette, which is akin to rolling New Coke, the driver is a virtually unnecessary accessory and vehicles are turning into computer-driven private taxis;

sports cars are dead—you can take manual transmissions out of sports cars (at which point they cease to be, turning into tourers under the GT moniker) but you CANNOT make a sports car without a MANUAL transmission;

the horribly inefficient fossil fuel powered vehicle is next…its last bastion will be the public and military aircraft industry;

and we’ll all be Jetsons of a sort;

or Blade Runners;

What? Political correct has nothing to do with the Corvette transitioning to a rear mid-engine layout. That change is certainly attributed to the performance and sales goals of the model. Zora Arkus-Duntov wanted the 'Vette to go mid-engine decades ago. Does that make him a “PC namby-pamby?”

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Horse hockey, friend;

GM could’ve and should’ve moved to a mid-engine layout in the 1980s just from what they learned from the GTP prototype;

by that time they already had over 20 years experience with the layout from clandestinely racing Chapparals, both in world prototype class and CanAm—the latter where they were supplying McLaren with engines;

so why the delay?

the front engine rear drive layout is still viable for supercar production, as proven by Ferrari, Aston-Martin and TVR, so there was no pressing need to change it;

no, it was the public relations hacks and bean-counters who convinced management to make a K-Mart version of today’s cookie-cutter alike iterations from Europe and have it come out looking half of one car from the doors forward and an entirely different thing from the doors back, replete with Camaro taillights, and precisely NONE OF IT looking like a Corvette or even something distinctive;

and since you want to justify your rationalisation by tossing in Duntov’s name, you and i both know he wouldn’t have tolerated a Vette without a manual transmission despite the fact that development for the slushbox goes all the way back to at least the Chapparal 2C of 1964;

no, Duntov would’ve roundly condemned it just like he did Bill Mitchell’s BS Bugatti Atalantic-imitation totally impractical eyesore split-window and mills larger than 5.7 litres;

Duntov would NEVER have allowed Corvettes to be driven by computers—a Stingray is not a Tesla or even a Volvo, but with all the superfluous gizmos on this amalgamated atrocity being foisted off as a C8 (blind spot warning lights? seriously?) it might as well be a taxi because driver input is almost unnecessary;

i’ve said this before but it bears repeating the difference between bona fide (C5-7) Corvettes and this blue light special is much the same as between a wife and a streetwalker;

both can accomplish pretty much the same thing, but one does all the work for you, whereas with the other, you have to EARN IT;

and that is why this New Coke on Wheels will NEVER be a Corvette or even a sports car, any more than a Veyron or Gallardo or any of dozens of cookie-cutter peers, all RC ballistic cafe racers that can almost be programmed by mobile phone like some video game;

say goodbye to the Corvette and welcome to the GM Tesla Stingray;