For 2011 Ford made some monumental changes under the hood of the venerable Mustang and what we got was a lot more performance. Back is the 5.0 liter V8 engine but this time around, it has been completely redesigned and Ford has crammed extra muscle under the valve covers. And, not just a little more either. There is even a new 3.7 liter V6 that is a big leap up from the previous V6 lump.
In an era where the Camaro was easily outselling Mustangs, the team at Ford knew they had to do something. The Mustang still looked great and the prior year design update kept it modern and competitive on that front, the reality was that the engine and powertrain were a problem. The Camaro was a better performer and it wasn’t accidental either. The Camaro has more power, a more modern powertrain and better handling characteristics. Ford’s new engine and powertrain solutions couldn’t come soon enough for the Mustang.
Exterior & Interior
The exterior sported an optional glass roof. I am not too wild about this having had the old T-tops and convertibles. In the summertime, it is kind of like sitting inside a slow cooker. The A/C works full time to cool off the heated skin. However, there are some people who will flock to this option.
Again this year it is equipped with an Easy Fuel capless fuel filler. It has Standard MyKey tm and standard outside power mirrors with integrated spotter mirrors. The 5.0 badge replaces the GT emblem on the front fender.
Ford Sync is a voice activated communications and entertainment system that uses Bluetooth and can communicated with most current cell phones and other portable media digital devices.
Engine & Chassis
The base engine offered in 2011 was the new 3.7 liter DOHC V6 engine. It was rated at 305 hp @ 6,500 RPM and /280 lb/ft of torque @ 4,250 RPM. The ultra modern, 3.7 liter V6 was a big upgrade in every way, replacing the aging 4.0 liter Cologne overhead-cam V6. The engine had all-aluminum construction, dual-overhead cams with twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT), 4-valves per cylinder and a tuned X-pipe dual exhaust. Not only where the power numbers comparable to V8 powered GT Mustangs but the engine was also much more fuel efficient, good for 30 miles per gallon on the highway. The numbers are one thing of course, but most drivers would notice the engine was much smoother and more refined and the power delivery was more linear.
A pair of all-new transmissions options were available. Standard was a solid Getrag MT82 six-speed manual that replaced the old five-cog unit. You could also choose a 6R60 six-speed automatic from the option list. At the rear the V-6 Mustang was given a limited-slip differential with a 2.73:1 ring and pinion ratio as standard or an optional performance 3.31:1 gear ratio with limited-slip. The brakes were upgraded to 11.5-inch rotors up front and 11.8-inch rotors at the rear. The steering was revised with the hydraulic power steering system being trashed in favor of a new electric power steering rack. Suspension tuning and optimization was also a focus. The result was a way sportier drive and a base Mustang that was truly fun car in the twisties for the first time ever. Add the V6 Performance Package and you could do without the 5.0 GT altogether.
The V8 was also all-new for the 2011 model year Mustang. The aluminum 5.0L DOHC V8 was rated at 412 hp and 390 lb/ft. of torque @ 4,250 RPM. Incorporated into the design of the engine was a Twin-independent Variable Cam Timing configuration. The only thing that the all-new Coyote 5.0-litre V8 shared with the famed 5.0 liter engine of the past was its designation. In fact the Coyote V8 had more in common with the 4.6 liter Modular V8. Lets start with the fact that the Coyote V8 used an aluminum cylinder block with optimized bay-to-bay breathing, and shared its bore spacing and deck height with the 4.6-litre. For added strength the block casting featured extensive webbing. Hiding inside the block was fully counterweighted forged-steel crankshaft that was held in place with nodular iron, cross-bolted main caps containing upsized bolts. For better cooling under high load conditions, the new V-8 incorporated oil cooling jets for the pistons to increase durability. The compression ratio leaped up to a stratospheric 11.0:1; a number not seen since the early 1970’s.
For the first time in a Mustang GT a four-valve per-cylinder, dual-overhead-cam cylinder head was installed and that was a big deal. These all-new hi-flow aluminum heads incorporated a revised design that shifted the camshafts outboard which allowed for the use of compact roller-finger followers configured for very aggressive cam-lift rates and improved intake port geometry. As a result the intake ports of these heads actually out-flowed the cylinder heads from the Ford GT supercar. Just like the Cyclone V-6, intake and exhaust cam timing was fine tuned by Ford’s torque-actuated twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT) that could make valvetrain adjustments in microseconds. These new cylinder heads along with the upgraded internals in the engine block allowed the new 5-litre to spin up to an exciting 7,000 rpm redline.
The engine also has an 8 quart aluminum deep sump oil pan that requires an oil change every 10,000 miles. The engine is mated to a 6 speed transmission automatic or manual transmission. Remember in late 196o’s when you had to get a 428 CI engine to get horsepower in the low 400’s. Now, they are squeezing almost the same amount of energy out of a 302 CI engine. Not to mention the 428 got about 10-12 miles per gallon and with the Autolite carburetor, was not nearly as dependable or maintenance free.
Crowning the new 5.0-litre was a gorgeous low profile intake plenum that wore a plastic cowl with a large 5.0 emblem finished in chrome. The rest of the air-intake system was optimized for maximum air-flow in order to fill the heavy-breathing V-8 with the copious amounts of cool air. The system is so efficient that effects of the addition of an aftermarket cold-air intake system would be negligible. The Coyote exhaled through a pair of unique tubular exhaust headers that maximized pulse separation allowing more efficient exhaust savaging out of the cylinders.
The other big benefit of having a 5.0L Dual Overhead Cam V8 and variable cam timing coupled with an aluminum block and heads is that you reduce overall front end weight and that helps make the handling more responsive, not to mention the acceleration gets a boost as well compliments of the weight loss. Just as had been done on the V6 Mustang the suspension was retuned with revised spring rates, shock valving and larger stabilizer bars giving the GT a more aggressive suspension profile. The package was a huge upgrade versus the prior year.
“5.0” Fender Badge Returns
The “5.0” fender badge returns for the 2011 Ford Mustang GT. Introduced in 1979 the “5.0” fender badge was used to emphasize the 5-liter 302 cubic-inch Ford small block V-8 under the hood. The “5.0” badge was a mainstay on fox-body Mustangs until 1993. The fender badge will be reborn for the 2011 Ford Mustang GT in some sort of capacity which is not know at this time.
New for 2011 model year
Side mirrors with integrated spotter mirror
Dual Exhaust – V6
New Exterior Colors
Race Red (PQ)
Ingot Silver Metallic (UX)
New Functional Equipment Changes
5.0L 4V Ti-VCT V8 engine (412 hp with 390 ft/lbs torque)
3.7L 4V Ti-VCT V6 engine (305 hp with 280 ft/lbs torque)
2.73:1 limited slip rear axle standard on V6
6-speed automatic transmission available for V6 & GT
6-speed manual transmission standard V6 & GT
Electronic Power Assist Steering (EPAS)
Message Center Standard
Integrated spotter mirror for side view mirror
Tire Mobility Kit Standard on V6
New Option Changes
Optional 3.31:1 Limited Slip Rear Axle available on V6 coupe with automatic or manual transmission
Shaker 500 and Shaker 1000 now single CD
Electronic Package (58N) now includes HD Radio
Finally, Mustang had a V6 model we loved to drive. The 3.7-litre V6 engine completely transformed the base Mustang from a boring rental car to a real performer (especially if you ticked the Performance Package when ordering). Straight-line performance was better than the prior year V8 and steering was lightyears better than any V6 Mustang before it. Some people have told me they love driving the V6 Mustang more than the GT for the 2011 model year and I can honestly see why. It is the better handling car, it is lighter and its acceleration is close enough to its V8 brother. 0 to 60 mph in about 5.5 seconds is no joke and if you owned a 2010 GT you got beaten at the lights for sure.
By now you are wondering why you would even want to opt for the 2011 Mustang GT and the answer is simple. After a 16 year hiatus the legendary 5.0-litre V8 was back and it was radically updated. Mustang buyers had a chance to own an exquisite aluminum constructed, four-cam, 32-valve high powered V8 that could out perform and out class just about any other V8 powered vehicle on the road. Electric power rack and pinion steering was now standard and allowed engineers more freedom in tuning the steering more precisely for varying driving conditions. With this system less assist can be dialed in during high road speeds for better feel and then boosted up during parking maneuvers, something that could never be achieved fully with a hydraulically boosted system.
With its sensational new engine the Mustang GT was a much better performance car. The 5.0 GT could get from standstill to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds which easily beat the more powerful Camaro and Challenger competition behind. With its lighter weight and better dynamics, it wasn’t just straight line performance either. The GT was sharp and full of steering feel, with a level of composure when driven fast that no other Mustang before it could hold a candle to. When equipped with the optional Brembo Brake Package with its sticky tires the Mustang GT could pull and astonishing 0.94g on a skidpad. This car could accelerate, handle and brake with the best sports coupes and convertibles on the market.
Special Edition Models & Variants
There was lots of special edition love for Mustang fans in 2011. If you wanted something collectible and really special the special edition V6 Mustang Club of America Edition (MCA) was made available in both coupe and convertible body styles. Ford brought back the California Special Edition for 2011 and once again the California Special was full of style and luxurious touches. The Shelby GT500 was also back and there was even a very limited edition Pace Car run of cars.
The 2011 Ford Mustang GT arrived with an all-new 5.0-liter V-8 engine delivering more than 400 horsepower along great fuel economy and driving fun. Like the V6 Mustangs the basic body style is the coupe (P8A) but you can get the convertible upgrade (P8E). The basic transmission level it the 6 speed manual (44X) but can be upgraded to a 6 speed automatic (443) again for a considerable amount of money. The basic GT has only one Spec level and that is 300A. If you buy the GT Premium by default, you will get all the base GT features plus a cloth convertible top and a boot if you buy the convertible. The GT Premium has three Spec levels. The basic GT premium 400A, then the 401A and the 402A levels.
In place of previous years’ cast-iron V-8 was an all-new aluminum-block 5.4-liter that pushed output to 550 supercharged horsepower. Also new for 2011 was the “SVT Performance Package,” which offered stiffer springs and damper rates, a 3.73:1 rear axle ratio and suspension upgrades for sharper handling.
The 402A Spec level is the California Special Package was back after a one year break. It included a unique chrome billet grille with body color surround and Tri-Bar Pony Badge (w/o Fog lamps), unique side stripes, unique lower fascia with fog lamps, unique 19″x8.5″ Machined Painted Wheels, unique decklid badge with name in faux gas cap, unique instrument panel appliqué finish, unique door panel “Carbon” Inserts, unique front and fear leather seats with “Carbon” inserts, premium carpeted front floor mats with embroidered logo, rear “Diffuser-Style Lower Fascia, pedestal spoiler, decklid tape appliqué, side scoops.
50 special Mustang GT Pace Cars were built. One of which was used to pace the 2010 Daytona 500 race. They are painted Race Red with race decals and special red, white and blue stripes. Modifications from the stock GT include: special Ford Racing suspension kit, strut tower brace, and mufflers; special 19-inch wheels with an Brembo brakes; and a modified front valance.
Ford wanted to pay homage to the many devoted members of the Mustang Club of America and the Mustang MCA Edition was the result. This special edition V6 Mustang consisted of a painted dark stainless billet-style grille with the tri-bar running pony emblem; lower fascia mounted fog lamps; a unique “hockey-stick” style bodyside satin-black tape stripe with “Mustang” and a host of other customizations.
In honor of the 40th anniversary of Parnelli Jones’ 1970 Trans-Am championship in a Mustang BOSS 302 prepared by Bud Moore Engineering, Ford Racing is introducing the BOSS 302R, a factory-built race car ready for track days and road racing in a number of Grand-Am, SCCA and NASA classes. The 2011 Boss 302R Mustang is a non-street legal or track only car, limited to 50 units, a Ford racing option available for $79K, roll cage, safety harness, data acquisition system, race suspension, special tires, and side stripes.
The GT350 was a post-title upgrade available from Shelby. It’s based on the 2011 Mustang GT, the one with the 5.0-liter 32-valve V8. Add to that a Whipple supercharger, Borla exhaust, adjustable Ford Racing dampers, adjustable camber plates, a serious set of Baer 6-piston brakes up front, and you’ve got yourself a very serious Shelby performance machine.
2011 saw a decline in Mustang sales as consumer sentiment started to shirt away from the brand. Total sales came in at 70,438 units. A total of eleven variants were offered in 2011. To dive into the model and body splits as well as see charts and percentages, check out our 2011 Ford Mustang Production & Sales Numbers deep dive.
% of Total
2 Door - Hardtop V6
2 Door - Hardtop Mustang Club of America
2 Door - Hardtop GT
2 Door - Hardtop GT California Special
2 Door - Convertible V6
2 Door - Convertible Mustang Club of America
2 Door - Convertible GT
2 Door - Convertible GT California Special
2 Door - Hardtop Shelby GT350
2 Door - Hardtop Shelby GT500
2 Door - Convertible Shelby GT500
Options and Pricing
For the V6 Basic Mustang style, there are two Spec packages. there is the most basic of the basic spec’s and that is the 100A Mustang body style. This is the most basic Mustang you can get. It has no options and is really stripped down. You can however purchase options and build your Mustang. Now this is not meant to be offensive to anyone, because my first Mustang I bought in 1968 was the most stripped down Mustang they built. It’s what I could afford. As I got money, I added options and sometimes it was at the expense of eating better. The basic Mustang comes as a coupe with a V6 315HP engine and a six speed manual transmission.
The next Spec going up the list is the 101A Spec. This is the 100A package equipped with an Exterior Appearance Package. The Exterior Appearance Package adds a decklid spoiler and a lower tape stripe to the sides of the Mustang.
Now you can add options to the 100A and 101A mustangs. Available options are; Change from a coupe (P8A) to a convertible (P8E). Additionally you can upgrade transmissions from the 6 speed manual (44X) to a six speed automatic transmission (443). A premium paint option that costs money is the Red Candy Metallic with Tinted clearcoat paint (U6). Mechanically if you have the coupe (not the convertible) you can upgrade to a 3.31:1 limited slip differential ((453). Another option is Security Package which includes the Active Anti-Theft function and Wheel Locking Kit (43S). The only other option is that you can delete the lower stripe on your Mustang if you got the Exterior Appearance Package.
Climbing up the Mustang ladder, the next step is the Mustang V6 Premium models; like the V6 Basic Mustang the basic body style is the coupe (P8A) but you can get the convertible upgrade ((P8E). The basic transmission level it the 6 speed manual (44X) but can be upgraded to a 6 speed automatic (443) for a considerable amount of money. The 2011 Mustang comes in 4 Spec levels they are 200A, 201A, 202A and 203A. The 200A is the basic V6 Premium Mustang. The 201A spec level is the basic V6 Premium model upgraded with the Exterior Appearance Package. The Exterior Appearance Package adds a decklid spoiler and a lower tape stripe to the sides of the Mustang.
The 202A Spec level is the basic V6 Premium Mustang with the V6 Pony Package which includes 18″ polished wheels, body color exterior Mirrors, a unique grille, fog Lamps, a Pony fender badge, Auto dimming headlamps, embroidered Pony floor mats, a decklid spoiler and unique lower tape stripe .
The 203A Spec level is the basic V6 Premium Mustang with the Mustang Club Of America Special Edition options which includes quite a few added options. Options in this Spec include; a unique painted (Dark Stainless) billet grille with Tri-Bar Pony Badge (w/o Fog lamps), front lower fascia mounted fog lamps, a unique side tape stripe, a unique decklid tape applique (between tail lamps), 18″x8″ Sterling Gray Metallic painted aluminum wheels, P235/50WRx18 BSW A/S tires, premium carpeted front floor mats with embroidered pony logo , automatic dimming headlamps and a rear decklid spoiler.
The V6 Performance Package was back for the V6 Mustang and it was popular and effective. It turned the base Mustang into a real great handling car. The package included upgraded shocks, springs, and stabilizer-bars from the GT coupe; GT spec brake calipers with upgraded pads; the 3.31:1 limited slip differential; a strut tower brace; a gorgeous set of 19-inch painted machined-aluminum wheels outfitted with a super sticky set of summer only P255/40ZR19 Pirelli P Zero tires; and unique tuning of the electronic stability control system with a more liberal sport mode. There was also the V6 Pony Package which returned virtually unchanged, and those people seeking just a little exterior flair an Exterior Appearance Package could be had that included lower bodyside tape stripes and a rear spoiler.
Just in case you felt that the standard Mustang GT wasn’t hot enough for you, Ford made available some performance enhancing options. For those who get their thrills living their life from one stop light Grand Prix to the next a pair of limited-slip axles were available in either a 3.55:1 gear ratio or a 3.73:1 ratio for down right frightening acceleration. But for the ultimate performance one need to specify the outrageous Brembo Brake Package. More than just a brake upgrade; this package was a comprehensive brake and suspension combination that would take the Mustang GT capabilities to a higher level. This was a no none-sense performance package that could only be ordered on coupes equipped with a manual transmission.
The Brembo Brake Package included a gargantuan set of 14-inch Brembo front rotors with Brembo 4-piston calipers; a pair of 11.8-inch vented rear rotors with 2-piston calipers; more aggressive suspension tuning; a set of 19-inch dark stainless painted-aluminum wheels shod with gummy P255/40R19 Pirelli P Zero Nero ultra high-performance summer tires; and a recalibrated electronic stability control system that would allow the driver higher levels of exuberance before activating. This package combined with one of the optional axle ratios made the Mustang GT into a giant killer that could out handle and out accelerate the best Camaro or Challenger available from the factory.
Base V6 powered Mustangs received the most radical personality adjustment with the installation of Ford’s new, ultra modern, 3.7 liter V6 which was good for 305 hp @ 6,500 RPM and 280 lb/ft of torque @ 4,250 RPM. For reference, that is more than the 225 horsepower offered in V8 GT engines used for decades so this was a big update. The V8 Mustang GT got a solid 412 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque from the all-new 5.0L DOHC V8. With its aluminum block and heads reducing overall front end weight and improving handling, the engine was even gets 16/17 MPG City and 25 MPG on the highway. 2011 was a great year in terms of the engines. For more information on engines for 2011, you can find the information here.
Engine Name & Year
Power (hp @ RPM)
Torque (lb/ft @ RPM)
2011 – 330 Modular V8 (5.4 L) (Shelby GT-500)
550 hp @ 6200 RPM
510 lb/ft @ 4500RPM
2011 - 302 Coyote V8 (5.0 L) (Shelby GT-350)
2011 - 302 Coyote V8 (5.0 L) (GT)
412 hp @ 6500 RPM
390 lb/ft @ 4250 RPM
2011 - 227 Duratec V6 Engine (3.7L)
305 hp @ 6500 RPM
280 lb/ft @ 4250 RPM
Dimensions & Weight
There were no major changes to the dimension and weight of the main models despite the cosmetic changes across the board. This was still the S197 Body Mustang so that was to be expected.
55.6 / 56.1 inches
Width excluding mirrors
Width including mirrors
Interior front Head room
38.5 / 38.8 inches
Interior front Shoulder room
Interior front Hip room
Interior front Leg room
Interior rear Head room
Interior rear Shoulder room
51.6 / 45.0 inches
Interior rear Hip room
46.8 / 45.2 inches
Interior rear Leg room
Passenger volume cubic feet
83.3 / 81.0 cubic feet
Luggage capacity cubic feet
13.4 / 9.6 cubic feet
Total interior volume cubic feet
96.7 / 90.6 cubic feet
Fuel capacity - gallons
Below we have included 0-60 mph times, 0-100 mph times as well as quarter mile times and top speed where available for the 2011 Mustang model range. It is clear the straight-line performance across the entire Mustang range took a big leap in 2011 with 0-60 times coming down across the board. In some ways the performance improvements in terms of handling and steering were even more exciting than even the numbers suggest, with all the Mustangs being much better overall sports cars for enthusiasts.