10 Reasons Why The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Will Be The Best Muscle Car

It’s difficult to imagine what the automotive landscape would look like without the segment-defining Ford Mustang. An American automotive royalty with one of the most loyal cult followings, Ford has done well to reinvent and redefine its legendary pony car over the last six decades – no wonder it’s one of the best-selling muscle cars ever.

But just as we thought the standard 2024 Ford Mustang GT was the most exhilarating yet, Ford unveiled an even more sinister top-of-the-range iteration from its stables. The all-new seventh-generation Mustang Dark Horse is a street-legal, track-ready menace equipped with all the bells and whistles to tickle the fancy of any performance car enthusiast. Per multiple reports, the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse will be available this summer with a starting price of $57,970, approximately $1,400 more than the range-topping Ford Mustang Mach 1.

From what we now know about the upcoming 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse, here’s why it will be the best muscle car.

Related: 10 Best Ford Mustangs For Modders

10 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Stands Out With Menacing Styling

Ford Mustang Dark Horse Rendering

Considering the all-new 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse is the first performance Mustang series since the Mustang Bullitt 21 years ago, the menacing styling indicates that the Blue Oval means business. The new sophisticated design language makes the Mustang Dark Horse stand out with arguably the most striking visual cues of any modern Mustang.

The front features darkened LED headlamps, a gloss black grille with trapezoidal nostrils, and a unique Dark Horse-specific lower front bumper with high gloss upward-pointing ‘fangs.’ Lower side skirts dominate down the side and, to the rear, a race-inspired diffuser, darkened quad-exhaust tips, and a fixed rear wing. Ford also placed an anodized version of the famous pony on the front and new forward-facing Mustang Dark Horse badges on the fenders, trunk, and door sills.

9 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Has Color-Shifting Paint

Ford Mustang Dark Horse

According to Joel Piaskowski, global director of Ford Design, the refined exterior design conveys the dual purpose of the Dark Horse’s street and track performance. Part of this message stems from the signature color-shifting Blue Ember, a complex metallic paint that reinforces the sinister and shadowy nature of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse.

The Blue Ember metallic paint comprises a cool, deep blue special effect pigment infused with a warm complementary amber hue. The unique Mustang Dark Horse paint emits a warm glow when it catches the light, giving a dramatic color shift in different angles and lights.

Related: Ford Debuts All-New Carbon Fiber Wheels For S650 Ford Mustang Dark Horse

8 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Boasts Exclusive Design Configurations

Ford Mustang Dark Horse Design Configuration
via Ford Performance

Besides color-shifting paint, Ford will offer the 2024 Mustang Dark Horse with two exclusive stripe options to underscore the muscular physique. These design configurations include vinyl and hand-printed graphics for the hood’s raised center and low gloss Tarnished Dark and gloss black finishes.

The optional Appearance Package adds a specialized hood vinyl graphic over the base Dark Horse graphic to match the black-painted roof, while a third low gloss black vinyl accent color completes the aggressive look. Additionally, premium-painted stripe graphics framed with Tarnished Dark elements carry the gloss black finish from the grille, over the roof, and to the rear spoiler.

7 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Has An Immersive Cockpit

2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Interior

Within the well-chiseled exterior silhouette of the all-new 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse lies the most technologically advanced driver-centric cockpit of any Mustang. Sitting atop the steering column is a 12.4-inch digital instrument cluster attached to a 13.2-inch SYNC 4 center stack elegantly angled towards the driver.

Together, these flowing and curved displays emulate a fighter jet cockpit, creating a fully immersive digital experience designed to break away from Mustang tradition. Interestingly, Ford based the customizable screens on the same Unreal Engine 3D creation tool used in modern video games as a strategy to reel in a younger demographic of enthusiasts. ​​​

6 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse’s Interior Design Exudes Athleticism

Dark Horse Manual Shift Knob

The highlight of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse interior is the all-new standard manual shift knob, made of anodized blue, lightweight titanium. Ford engineers made the six-speed TREMEC knob with a hollow 3D-printed structure to improve its ability to remain cool even in warmer weather conditions.

On the other hand, choosing the advanced ten-speed SelectShift automatic transmission comes with anodized silver paddle shifters for fast and precise shifting. The Mustang Dark Horse also features a thicker, flat-bottomed steering wheel, uniquely enveloped in performance suede for an improved grip.

Related: 10 Things We Love About The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse’s Interior

5 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Features Advanced Interior Materials

2024 Mustang Dark Horse Interior Side View
via Ford

To further enhance the modern aesthetic of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse, the interior textures evolved from aggressive animal skin patterns to more tech-inspired white noise and carbon fiber-inspired grains. The carbon fiber grain covers the door and instrument panel trims, while all the leather and vinyl-wrapped interior parts feature a luxury grain texture.

The Ford design team developed all-new color and trim surface selections, with the vents and bezels, finished in dark metallic Black Alley gloss instead of the familiar bright silver shades.

4 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Offers Signature Appointments

Dark horse interior

The Mustang Dark Horse Appearance Package offers specially bolstered RECARO performance seats with Deep Indigo Blue bolsters and Bright Indigo Blue accent stitching for an even more sporty interior. The package also includes black Dinamica suede in the seat’s center, distinctive seat perforations with blue accents underneath, and Deep Indigo Blue seatbelts to match.

The contrasting blue stitching theme spreads across the door panels, center console, and gear shift gaiter to lift the ambiance of the Mustang Dark Horse cabin. As a final touch, each 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse features an instrument panel badge with the vehicle’s chassis number.

3 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Houses A High-Power Coyote V-8

Specially Engineered Coyote V8 Engine Of The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse
Via: Ford

The heart of the 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse is a heavily updated 5.0-liter Coyote V-8 engine, touted to deliver a projected 500 hp and 418lb-ft of torque, the highest performance level in the all-new seventh-generation Mustang family. Ford modified the high-power Coyote V-8 with piston connecting rods from the Shelby GT500 program and a dual throttle-body intake designed to improve engine breathing.

Other track-oriented powertrain enhancements include an auxiliary engine oil cooler, a lighter-weight radiator, more powerful cooling fans, brake cooling NACA ducts, and a rear axle cooler.

Related: Why The Mid-Engined Ford Mustang Would Be More Than A Match For The C8 Chevrolet Corvette

2 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse’s Performance Features Will Boost Your Adrenaline

2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Drifting
via Ford 

The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse features unique chassis tuning, heavy-duty MagneRide shocks, larger rear sway bars, lightweight performance-oriented strut tower brace and K-brace, 19-inch Brembo front brakes, a Torsen rear differential, and standard Pirelli P ZERO tires. The most adrenaline-boosting performance feature is the first-in-class electronic drift brake, intended for closed-track use only.

The available Handling Package improves the Mustang Dark Horse’s aerodynamics thanks to a unique rear wing fitted with an integrated Gurney Flap. The package also includes larger front/rear sway bars, stiffer springs, wider Pirelli Trofeo tires, 19″x10.5″ front wheels, and 19″x11″ rear wheels.

1 The 2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse Is Track-Ready

2024 Ford Mustang Dark Horse With Track-Only Mustangs
via Ford

Ford introduced the 2024 Mustang Dark Horse as part of a broader launch of six racing Mustangs to compete in GT3, GT4, NASCAR, and NHRA Factory X racing. Two dedicated, track-only Mustang Dark Horse variants will be available; Mustang Dark Horse S for the weekend enthusiast and Mustang Dark Horse R for competition racing.

The Mustang Dark Horse S is a stripped-down version of the street-legal model, equipped with an upgraded brake system, multimatic DSSV dampers, adjustable rear wing, rear tow hooks, safety nets, a full FIA-certified safety cage, a race steering wheel with quick connect, a race seat with safety belts, a single optional passenger seat, electrical safety disconnects, and a fire suppression system.

In addition to all Mustang Dark Horse S content, the Mustang Dark Horse R boasts unique serialization for racing eligibility, a fuel cell for increased range, strategic seam welding, and Ford Performance Parts wheels.