America’s favorite sports car gets even more style and technology for 2019 thanks to the revival of the legendary Mustang GT California Special, new features including rev-matching on 5.0-liter 6-speed manual-equipped models, the first-ever custom-tuned B&O PLAY premium audio system for Mustang, three new vintage-inspired colors and over-the-top stripes.
When Mustang first hit the streets in 1964, owners clubs sprang up around the country, with many regional dealers creating their own personalized pony car designs. One – inspired by the 1967 Shelby GT notchback coupe prototype – came to be called the California Special.
That original version featured blacked-out grille, fog lamps and a side racing stripe that ended ahead of a new rear fender scoop. It wore a Shelby-inspired spoiler, custom taillamps and twist-lock hood fasteners. Impressed, Ford put a limited number of California Special cars into production for 1968. Before long, the California Special had joined the ranks of Shelby, Boss and Mach 1 special-edition Mustangs.
Today, the 2019 California Special for Mustang GT is a visual standout, featuring a trademark fading stripe that traces from the 5.0 side badge to the rear fender scoop. A signature Ebony Black and Race Red script California Special badge adorns the trunk lid. At the front, the car follows the blacked-out open grille and picks up the Mustang Performance Pack 1 splitter. The California Special wears unique five-spoke painted machined wheels.
Inside are rich black Miko® suede-trimmed seats with embossed GT/CS insignia and contrast red accent stitching, along with custom embroidered GT/CS floor mats. Signature California Special script badging appears on the passenger-side dash panel.
Rev-Matching to Level the Field
Mustang GT’s powerful 5.0-liter V8 engine packs 460 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque and tops out at 155 mph.* When that torque gets delivered to the pavement via 6-speed manual and available Performance Package, you better hold on, because that’s where rev-matching gives Mustang drivers a leg – or a heel and a toe – up.
Advanced rev-matching helps smooth out shifts by first predicting shifts then quickly matching engine rpm – similar to the heel-and-toe methods the pros use. On downshifts, engine rpm instantly kicks up to smooth out the transition between gears.
Sensational B&O Play Audio
Like Ford Mustang, Bang & Olufsen is an innovator in both iconic design and heart-racing performance across its line of audio products. And now, for the first time, the B&O PLAY audio system comes to Mustang with a stunning 10-channel amplifier producing 1,000 watts across 12 high-performance speakers.
Customized to the car’s interior environment, sound engineers tuned the B&O PLAY audio system to take both the static and dynamic states of Mustang into account to elevate the senses regardless of driving conditions. B&O PLAY audio connects to the optional SYNC® 3 system, which allows Apple CarPlay compatibility.
Active Valve Performance Exhaust Now Available on EcoBoost Models
When the class-exclusive quad-tip fully variable active valve performance exhaust hit the streets for Mustang GT for 2018, critics and customers alike raved over the deep throaty sound of the 5.0-liter V8 engine. What took everyone by surprise was its driver-controlled, fully active exhaust mode and quiet start mode, also known as good neighbor mode.
Now, a fully variable active valve performance exhaust brings an aggressive snarl to 2019 Mustang equipped with EcoBoost. This class-exclusive quad-tip exhaust system can be controlled by the drive mode system or via personalized MyMode settings with the 12-inch all-digital LCD instrument panel, as well as through the standard 4.2-inch cluster.