Best of the Best 2012: Coupes & GTs: Ford Mustang Boss 302 Laguna Seca

In an age of paddle-shift automatics, button-controlled suspension modes, shift-mapping software, and driver-tuned exhausts, the Ford Mustang Boss 302 Laguna Seca (www.ford.com) is a welcome throwback to the get-in-and-drive days of its progenitor.

 

The original 1969 Mustang Boss 302 was a race-bred machine developed by Ford for the hotly contested Trans-Am series. Today’s Boss is a bare-bones GT built for performance-minded drivers who appreciate American muscle. At the heart of the car is a 302 cu in V-8 engine that develops 444 hp and spools up to 7,500 rpm. Shifts are performed by that rare species of transmission known as a 6-speed manual. With the cue ball–shaped shift knob in hand, you can engage a real clutch pedal, stir the gearbox, and experience a satisfaction unknown to practitioners of fingertip shifting. The center pedal operates the Boss’s capable Brembo brakes.

 

The Laguna Seca edition, priced at about $48,000, delivers less content (no rear seats) than the standard version but more performance. The track-oriented package includes a front splitter, sport seats, and other features that make this car the best-handling Mustang in the pony car’s nearly 50-year history.

Read Next Article >>
This race-adapted hybrid generates 86 more hp than its road-going counterpart…
Porsche 918 Spyder
See the winner and rankings, as well as exclusive photos and videos of all the cars...
The Stingray is the seventh generation of the Corvette, a model that has been in production since...
Caterham Bikes Carbon E-Bike, a brawny carbon-fiber-and-aluminum electric bicycle that looks like a...
Photo by Mathieu Heurtault/Gooding & Company
The annual Gooding & Company Amelia Island Auction...
Chevrolet brought its Corvette Stingray convertible to Palm Springs, a popular location for...
Photo by Scott Williamson/www.photodesignstudios.com
Stutz Motor Car of America, produced the Blackhawk from 1971 through 1987...
Photo by Max Earey
The new sedan generates 552 hp and 465 ft lbs of torque…
Photo by Yakima Products Inc
The company claims its rack is the most aerodynamic on the market…
acme/rm auction
A guided tour through some of rock ’n’ roll’s best garages...