The 2010 Ford Mustang debuted at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2008 showing off a new, sleek exterior, and Ford unveiled the 2010 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 at the Detroit Auto Show a few months later. The 2010 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 received similar changes in styling as the Mustang GT, but Ford’s Special Vehicle Team (SVT) took the refresh a step further but inside and out. The 2010 Mustang GT is expected to have an MSRP around $33,000 and the Shelby GT500 will likely cost around $45,000, so what differences account for that price gap?
The Mustang faithful hoped for a big jump in power from the 2010 Mustang GT to accompany the aggressive new look, but with only 315 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque the 4.6L V8 received only a minor improvement. The 2010 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, like the previous GT500 models, boasts of being the most powerful production Mustang ever made. That claim is backed up by the 540 horsepower supercharged 5.4L V8, using tuning improvements from the 2008 Ford Mustang GT500 King of the Road. The 2010 Mustang GT offers a five-speed manual or automatic transmission, while the Mustang Shelby GT500 returns an improved 6-speed manual transmission. Although there are optional differential choices, a 3.31 rear-end is standard in the Mustang GT. The 2007 Mustang GT500 offered the same 3.31 ratio, but thanks to the improved transmission, the 2010 Mustang GT500 now has a 3.55 gear, giving the car better low end acceleration without hurting fuel economy.
The two Mustangs feature similar 4-wheel disc brakes, although the 2010 Ford Mustang GT has a far more basic setup than the 2010 Mustang Shelby GT500. The Mustang GT features dual-piston calipers in the front and single piston calipers in the rear, however, it is far surpassed by the Shelby GT500’s Brembo high performance 4-piston calipers system. The suspension systems also share a basic coil-over design with a solid rear axle, and while the 2010 Mustang GT is getting rave reviews for its improved handling, the 2010 Shelby GT500 includes upgrades from the GT500 King of the Road. These upgrades to the 2010 Mustang GT500 give the car track-ready capabilities, but Ford stressed that this was also a comfortable setup for daily driving. Each of these 2010 Mustangs are improved from their previous generation, but with the high performance Tokico suspension, the 2010 Mustang Shelby GT500 has a clear advantage.