When the Ford driver pulled up with a gorgeous bright red 2008 Ford Mustang GT Coupe last Monday and handed me the keys, I jumped up and down and yelled with delight, almost frightening the poor man into dropping the keys. But he admitted most women—even those of us old enough to know better—react in a similar fashion to the sight of this beautifully designed sports car.
My son, being far more sedate at 22, pronounced it both “sweet” and “tight” but did admit to feelings of envy when I drove off. It might be miserably hot here in North Texas, but I knew this was going to be a great week!
The Mustang GT puts the thrill back into driving, but I did notice the local police force seemed to be paying more attention to me than usual. When you’re driving a sporty red car like the Mustang GT, you have to be extra careful not to exceed speed limits and to stop on yellow lights, don’t wait for red. Someone is “seeing red” and just waiting to pull you over.
But driving the Mustang makes even the most mundane chores fun, so I did burn up a little more in-town gas than I usually would just for the joy of driving. Luckily, gasoline has gone down to $3.69 per gallon at my nearby QT, so I felt justified in driving a little more.
The car I drove was a dazzling Dark Candy Apple Red Clearcoat 4-passenger sports car with the patented GT rear deck spoiler, 18-inch premium aluminum wheels and the inviting interior black with parchment accent leather trim. The GT springs to instant life thanks to its 4.6-liter engine, 3-valve fuel injection, V8 engine and 5-speed manual transmission.
I have always liked shifting gears, for some reason it makes me feel more in control even though it’s impossible to drink coffee, fiddle with the radio, put on makeup, or answer the phone (I simply must get a blue tooth) while shifting gears. I’ll admit that giving up multi-tasking does seem to make me a better driver, since all I am focusing on is the adventure of driving.
The Mustang features anti-lock brakes, traction control, power 6-way driver’s seat, driver and passenger air bags, and a great trim package. The GT averages 15 miles per gallon in town and 23 on the highway for an estimated annual fuel cost of $2,335 (back when gas was $2.80 a gallon, so obviously it would be more now). The starting price is $27,020, but extra options like 18-inch premium aluminum wheels, heated seats and Sirius Satellite Radio brought the test model to $30,540. To steal a phrase from those ubiquitous credit card commercials, driving experience: priceless.