Well, if you thought reimagining the Puma as an SUV was bold, you ain't seen nothing yet... Unfortunately not a cruel misunderstanding, Ford really has reinvented the Mustang - albeit as a range addition, rather than entire replacement - as this, the all-electric Mach-E. Best sit yourself down for this one...
Said to embody the core Mustang characteristics of "freedom, progress, fast performance and a touch of rebellion", the Mach-E is a purely electric SUV; according to its maker, this is a "sleek, beautiful SUV" no less, though they're sort of obliged to say that. While there are some Mustang cues in the badges, light details and bonnet design, the initial impression is much more of generic SUV-coupe-thing along the X4, Cayenne Coupe and Urus line, with a sloping rear screen and narrow glasshouse. The powertrain does at least keep the bonnet line low, however. Exact dimensions and weights haven't yet been released.
Due for launch next year, the Mustang Mach-E will be offered as either a rear- or four-wheel drive car with a standard (75.7kWh) or long-range (98.8kWh) battery. The batteries themselves are comprised of 288 lithium-ion cells for the standard car and 376 for the extended range model, sited low in the car for the benefit of handling. Charging capacity is up to 150kW, meaning a DC fast charge station can add up to 57 miles of range in 10 minutes (depending on Mustang spec). Ford believes the majority of customers will charge at home; as such it will be offering a Connected Wallbox to Mach-E buyers. With five times the charge power of a conventional socket, it will add around 38 miles of range an hour.
Beyond that, the connected nav will update charging locations, and drivers of the Mach-E will have access to the FordPass Charging Network and the Ionity group of fast chargers. There should be little range anxiety, put simply, given Ford's effort with a charging infrastructure with the Mustang. You make your own jokes now about walking being the preferred option.
Back to the car. Ford reckons at its most efficient (2WD and extended range), the Mustang Mach-E will be capable of more than 370 miles on WLTP, which is certainly laudable. The car is said to be "targeting" 337hp and 417lb ft, though a GT version - yep, that nameplate is coming along for the ride as well - will offer an estimated 465hp and 612lb ft, with 62mph arriving in less than five seconds. Just imagine that on the strip...
To harness that power, the Mustang Mach-E 4 will use an all-wheel drive system that independently applies torque to either axle, though there isn't any mention yet of individual torque vectoring. Interestingly, too, the Mach-E will be available with a set of Brembo's new 'Flexira' calipers, purported to offer the performance of a fixed caliper with the dimensions of a floating one. Magneride dampers are standard on the GT and presumably optional on other models.
The Mach-E driver will interact with this technology via three drive modes: Whisper, Engage and Unbridled (yes, really). Each will alter the steering, augmented sound and lighting for "a distinct sensory experience." They'll be doing that from an interior unlike anything we've seen from a Mustang - or indeed from a Ford - at any point before. Dominated by a 15.5-inchtouchscreen display - can't think where that came from - with a new iteration of SYNC that uses machine learning, the cabin is said to be a "fusion of sleek, modern design and smart functionality." It's been explicitly designed, in fact, with family use in mind, space for people and luggage prioritised, and so there's up to 1,420 litres of boot space as well as various storage spots dotted around inside.
And breathe. For now at least, that's about it for the Mach-E, though we can probably all agree that that's a fair bit to take in. This is just the start, too, the Mustang one of 14 electrified Ford coming before 2020 is out. So best get used to this. It's Thunderbird MPV after the Mach-E, right?