Is Ford’s very first electric vehicle getting the credit it deserves? Charlie Atkinson puts it through its paces to see how it compares to its rivals.
The Mustang is, without doubt, Ford’s most iconic car and so when the manufacturer decided to give its very first electric vehicle the same name, it had some big shoes to fill.
Whilst the original Mustang was instantly recognized as one of the best cars on the market, the Mach-E finds itself having to compete with a whole host of prestigious electric cars, such as the Polestar 2 and the Volkswagen ID.4.
From the outside
Unlike the traditional Mustang’s, the Mach E is an SUV-crossover, but Ford has disguised the size and bulkiness of the EV with some clever bits of design. From afar, the colour of the body gives it that sleek, sporty coupé look, but under closer inspection, the extra height and size is hidden, thanks to a contrasting black finish at the rear of the car.
Ford has clearly tried to incorporate the core DNA of a Mustang into the Mach-E, and that can be seen on certain details, like the extremely mean-looking front end, with the colour-coded grille design, and it also has the classic Mustang light design at the rear end, too.
There are some new bits, however. Firstly, there are no door handles on the outside. These have been replaced by buttons on the door pillars, as well as a pin-coded entry option (which isn’t legal in the UK). As with most new EVs, there is also the option to unlock the car with your phone.
From the outside, the Ford Mustang Mach-E is certainly one of the best looking EVs available, and whilst it may have the upper hand on its closest rivals in terms of looks, how does it compare on price and range?
Price and Range
The Ford Mustang Mach-E really sets the standard for electric cars when it comes to range. This model can travel up to 379 miles on a single charge, and it also set a Guinness World Record for efficiency earlier this year for the lowest energy consumption in an electric car on a journey from Lands’ End to John O’Groats.
Even the cheaper models of this car offer a range of over 300 miles, which is way ahead of other cars in this class, including the Polestar 2 and the ID.4.
It’s also competitive on price. It still might not be cheap, starting at just over £42,500, but compared to the Polestar 2, which starts from £49,900, then it feels like you’re getting a good deal. Even compared to a premium electric SUV like the Audi e-tron, the Mustang Mach-E is significantly cheaper and beats it on range, so it really does justify its price tag.
On the inside
The Mustang Mach-E has everything you want on the inside of an electric car, including a massive, Tesla-style infotainment screen that dominates the dash. Whilst the Tesla system may be slightly more advanced than the Mach-E’s, it still works well and is easy to use.
You also have a crisp and clear drivers display, but other than that, Ford has taken a minimalistic approach to the interior. There is ample storage and wireless charging bays for your phone, but other than that, there’s not a lot going on, which is how I like the inside of my cars.
The heated seats are lovely and comfortable, with beautiful red stitching giving the otherwise black interior a helpful dash of colour. There is also a panoramic sunroof that bleeds lots of natural light into the car, which stops the inside from feeling overly dark and gloomy.
In the back, there is more than enough headroom and legroom, and the boot is also massive, with a whopping 402L of space at your disposal. The frunk is also spacious, with four separate bins for storage, including two wet storage spaces. For a car that looks as cool as it does, it has also ensured it is as practical as any other SUV out there.
On the road
When you think of a Mustang, you think of power, and the Mach-E certainly packs a punch. Its 351bhp and 580NM torque helps the Mach-E accelerate from 0-60mph in just 5.1 seconds, which is a decent pace for any car.
However, it doesn’t feel as sharp as something like the Polestar 2 for example, and that’s mainly due to its weight. In order to achieve its massive range, the Mach-E needs a massive battery, making it weigh in at over 500kg heavier than the Polestar 2. It might not feel as light and nippy as other electric SUVs, but you can still have quite a lot of fun behind the wheel.
There are a few driving modes to choose from with the Mach-E. You can have ‘Whisper’ which is Ford’s eco-mode equivalent, ‘Active’, which is the comfort mode alternative, and then you have the brilliantly named ‘Untamed’ mode, which turns the Mach-E into a beast. Combine that with the ‘Propulsion sound’ setting, which artificially creates the sound of a traditional Mustang inside the car, then you really can have a blast, in every sense of the word.
Of course, you won’t be thrashing this car around all the time, and when you settle down into a normal drive, it’s really pleasant and easy to drive. The regenerative braking is predictable and grinds you to a stop quite quickly when lifting your foot off the accelerator, making one pedal driving as easy as it has ever been in an electric car.
On the whole
I have to admit that I’ve fallen completely in love with this car. It’s got absolutely everything you want from an electric car. From an amazing range, to being really fun to drive but sensible and practical in the same breath, It has blown all its rivals out of the water in terms of range, looks and price, and, in my mind, the Mach-E hasn’t got the attention it deserves.
Overall, the Ford Mustang Mach-E has easily established itself as one of the best cars in the electric vehicle market.