2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302 and the 10 Greatest Mustangs Ever

2012 Mustang GT Boss 302

1984-86 Mustang SVO
The Mustang may be an all-American muscle machine, but Ford's Special Vehicle Operations team gave the pony car a European twist for 1984. Electing to improve handling instead of simply adding power, the group made a number of modifications to help the Fox-body Mustang dance, including stiffer springs and bushings, four-wheel disc brakes, and adjustable Koni dampers at each corner. To keep weight balanced, SVO ditched the traditional V-8 in favor of-believe it or not-a 175-hp, 2.3-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, which was paired with a five-speed manual gearbox. Die-hard autocrossers could also spring for the Competition Prep package, which stripped the car of air-conditioning, power windows and locks, and a stereo to shave weight. Car magazines declared the SVO to be the best-handling Mustang ever built, but consumers barely budged, no doubt due to the lack of eight cylinders under the SVO's hood. Ford dropped the price in 1985 and bumped power to 205 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque-nearly equaling the output of the 4.9-liter V-8-but the $6000 premium over a GT still stifled SVO sales. Only 9844 examples were built over three years, far short of the 10,000-unit annual sales rate Ford initially planned.

Base price: $15,585 (1984)
Engine: 2.3L turbocharged SOHC I-4
175-205 hp @ 4000-5000 rpm
210-240 lb-ft @ 3000-3200 rpm
0-60 mph: 7.2 sec
Total built: 9844

1987-93 Mustang LX 5.0
The 302-cubic-inch V-8 made famous by the 1969-70 Mustang Boss 302 lingered through most of the dark years of the 1970s and early '80s, but the powerplant had been severely stifled by emissions controls. For the 1987 model year, however, Ford dutifully reawakened both the Mustang and the 302 (a.k.a. "five-oh") with an aerodynamic face-lift and a 25-hp bump, respectively. The result was the LX 5.0 that countless Mustang fans covet to this day.

Like the purest muscle cars of the '60s, the 5.0 LX had a big engine in a compact, relatively affordable, bare-bones package. It lacked the fancier trim and bodywork of its upmarket GT brother, but it was also quite a bit lighter. True weight watchers, though, ordered their LX 5.0 as a notchback, which was about sixty pounds trimmer than a similar hatchback and a couple hundred pounds lighter than a convertible LX 5.0.

The highest-volume car on our list-and still the king of many a high-school parking lot-is highly modifiable, too. Stock or modified, then or now, the LX 5.0's budget-minded straight-line speed harks back to the Mustang's earliest days.

Base price: $10,156 (1987)
Engine: 4.9L OHV V-8
225 hp @ 4200 rpm
300 lb-ft @ 3200 rpm
0-60 MPH: 6.4 sec
total built: 196,185

daregooch
How in the hell did you guys include the bullitt and forget about the 03-04 Cobra? Next time do your homework a little better.
Felice1965
I am drooling all over my keyboard. I can not stop looking. This must be a dream. I know I will wake up in the morning and it will be a Ford Escort or something lame like that....
tumbleweed2
The paint job on the 2010 is godawful, butt ugly. Looks like a 3 year old was turned loose with a pine bough and a bucket of red and black $h!t.

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