Performance Pack Level 2 Raises 2018 Ford Mustang GT To Another Level

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Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

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, Automotive Editor - October 25, 2017

The Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro have been going head-to-head for almost 48 years now, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise to see one automaker respond to the other with a similar package. Chevrolet’s on a tear with the SS 1LE Track Performance Package, and while Ford offers the 2018 Mustang GT with the GT Performance Package, it’s not as hardcore as Chevy’s offering. Well, things are going to heat up, as Ford has introduced a sportier package for the Mustang.

A set of die-hard enthusiasts over at Ford worked after-hours to release the Performance Pack Level 2 for the Mustang GT, which is aimed at making the pony car stick to the ground like glue. Built off of the current GT Performance Package, the new one has all the same goodies, including a bespoke chassis and antilock brake tuning, Brembo six-piston brakes at the front, unique stability control and electronic power-assisted steering, a larger radiator, a Torsen rear differential with a 3.73 axle ratio, and a silver-painted strut tower brace.

The Performance Pack Level 2 adds a few more features aimed at making the Mustang GT even more enjoyable to drive. Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires measuring in at 305/30-19s at all four corners are standard. When compared side-by-side to the Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires on the GT Performance Package, the grippier Cup 2 rubber is approximately 1.5 inches wider and drops the pony car’s height by about half an inch. The Cup 2 tires are wrapped around special wheels, which measure 19 by 10.5 inches at the front and 19 by 11 inches at the back.

Ford Mustang

In addition to new tires and wheels, the Performance Pack Level 2 adds MageRide dampers with a custom tune and much stiffer suspension components. Compared to the GT Performance Package, the new pack’s rear stabilizer bar is 67 percent stiffer, while the one at the front is 12 percent stiffer. The springs have also been upgraded with the front and rear becoming 20 and 13 percent stiffer, respectively. Ford says the more rigid suspension components make the Mustang GT more stable.

Aerodynamics also played a large role in the new Performance Pack Level 2, with the automaker’s engineers looking back to the Mustang Boss 302 Laguna Seca for inspiration. Ford added a three-inch front splitter to the new Mustang GT that produces roughly 24 pounds of downforce at 80 miles per hour. At the back, there’s an understated rear spoiler that adds 40 pounds of downforce at the same speed.

All the new components help give the new performance pack 40 percent more grip than the GT Performance Package, aiding the pony car in being able to pull 1.05 gs in a corner compared to the regular pack’s 0.97 gs. Ford’s engineers believe the vehicle’s braking performance should be improved as well, but don’t have any real-world numbers on hand.

In terms of power, the Performance Pack Level 2 retains the Mustang GT’s engine, which generates 460 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. As an enthusiast-inspired pack, only a six-speed manual transmission will be offered – no 10-speed automatic gearbox here. On the inside, the new performance pack will be available as a stripper model with cloth seats. Drivers wanting to really be held in place can opt for leather or cloth Recaros for an additional $1,595.

Ford Mustang

While the new Performance Pack Level 2 sounds like an optimal addition for enthusiasts looking to spend a lot of time on the track, Ford’s engineers claim it’s aimed toward drivers looking to enjoy a winding road to the fullest. Plus, as they point out, the Shelby GT350 and GT350R are around for those looking to really put down quick lap times. The Performance Pack Level 2, then, is for those looking for a middle ground between the track-focused Shelby GT350 and road-oriented GT Performance Package.

The new package costs $6,500, which is $2,505 more than the GT Performance Package. From our perspective, the package is a worthy upgrade – for those willing to make the trade-off in daily usability – as it adds the MagneRide Damping System, which is a $1,695 option on the GT Performance Pack.

Dealerships are taking orders for the Performance Pack Level 2 now, with deliveries set to start next spring. Interested consumers better act fast, though, as Ford plans to limit availability of the package to just 1,500 units per model year. With grippier tires, a high-end suspension system, and cloth seats, we’re sure the new package will be a hit with enthusiasts.

, Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

Follow On: Twitter | Website

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