2026 Ford Mustang: Model Preview & Release Date

Sean Kaufman
Automotive Contributor - September 19, 2022

Model Preview

Ford announced a slew of high-performance Mustangs when unveiling the 2024 model at the Detroit Auto Show. On top of the new models, another variant will soon be joining the redesigned Mustang’s stable. A recent report suggests that Ford may be planning to introduce a redesigned Shelby GT500, though this has not yet been officially confirmed.

According to Ford Authority, the seventh-generation pony car will be available as a Shelby GT500 model in 2025 for the 2026 model year. Shelby fans should be pleasantly surprised at this development. Ford didn’t roll out the current model GT500 until five years after the start of the latest Mustang generation, so we’ll be getting our big-power Shelby fix sooner this time around. It appears the Big Three automaker is emphasizing a stronger commitment to performance with this upcoming Mustang generation, as the GT500 will be joining the all-new Dark Horse model. The Dark Horse marks a significant shift in the Mustang lineup, as it is the first all-new performance model in 21 years, and will even be offered in track-only variants.

Ford hasn’t announced powertrain details for the upcoming GT500. We do know that they’re not shying away from the current Predator variant of the Coyote V8 that powers the current GT500, as the aforementioned Dark Horse is reportedly making use of some of its forged internals. Regardless of whether or not the 2026 Shelby will receive an updated version of the Predator or a new Coyote variant, we should expect an increase in the power department. Not that the current GT500 is any slouch, as its 760 hp and 625 lb-ft of torque make it the most powerful production Mustang ever made.

We don’t know a whole lot about the upcoming GT500, but it will be exciting to see the historic Shelby nameplate back when it hits dealers sometime in 2025. While the current Shelby competes with the Dodge Challenger Hellcat and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, those models will be axed by 2025. As of now, competitors for the seventh-gen GT500 appear to be the electric Dodge Daytona SRT, and the Chevrolet Corvette, which will be available in hybrid form by then.

Pictured: 2024 Mustang Dark Horse

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