The New Ford Mustang Reveal Attracted Car Lovers From Across America

Car Culture / 11 Comments

We've never attended anything quite like it.

This year's Detroit Auto Show is somewhat underwhelming - given the state of the car industry we're not overly surprised. But Ford injected life into the Motor City last night with its Mustang Stampede spectacle, a special reveal event for the all-new 2024 Ford Mustang. The company invited hundreds of Mustang owners from all six previous generations to cruise from its headquarters in Dearborn to Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit.

Seeing so many Mustang fans in one place reminded us of how much passion exists in the world for cars like this. There were people of all ages and backgrounds in attendance, with many dressing up in-period based on their car. This seventh-generation Mustang has the potential to be the final one ever with a V8 engine, and that made the Stampede feel like an end-of-era celebration.

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The Stampede

Before the 2024 Mustang reveal, Ford invited a few of its most dedicated Mustang owners on stage to talk about their experience with the car. These stories included a young man who basically lived in the back of his dad's classic Mustang and created a Millennial Mustang Registry, and another who worked his way up from an EcoBoost Mustang (which was all he could afford at the time) to a V8-powered GT model.

Many owners got to display their cars at the event, including some interesting examples. We spotted multiple Mustang II King Cobras, a few SVT Cobras (also known as the Terminator), and even a few Mach-E EVs that made the trek. While some of these owners were local to Detroit, many drove from across the country to come and see the new Mustang. That's dedication.

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A Dark Surprise

We knew it was coming so we weren't surprised to see the seventh-generation Mustang drive onto the stage. But then Ford announced that it had one final surprise left. And the company wasn't kidding when it showed off the new Mustang Dark Horse. Essentially a replacement for the Mach 1, it features a more powerful version of the 5.0-liter Coyote V8 producing 500 hp, the Tremec manual transmission from the Mach 1, MagneRide shocks, carbon fiber wheels, and other performance upgrades. Ford shocked everyone in attendance with this reveal, including us. Hopefully, this generation of Mustang also includes some Shelby models in the near future.

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How Do People Like The Car?

Car reveals tend to act as an echo chamber for automotive media; we either love the car and the energy radiates at the event, or we dislike the car and the tension in the air feels palpable. Since Ford made this event open to the public, we were able to witness the instant reaction from fans who saw the car for the first time. Overall, the reception felt overwhelmingly positive. A few owners seemed skeptical about the boxy front end, but many told us they like it in-person.

Though the engines aren't all-new, nobody was complaining that Ford has decided to keep the V8 alive for one more generation, unlike some competitors in this segment like Dodge. We thought some Mustang diehards would object to the all-digital dashboard, but the inclusion of retro gauges from the Fox Body seemed to have the audience ecstatic.

The future may be all-electric, but events like the Mustang Stampede prove that there is still a massive audience for gas-powered sports cars, one that will not fade quietly into the night.

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