Used Ford Mustang Mach-E long-term test: report 1

The Mustang Mach-E is an electric family SUV with a high-tech interior, but what's it like to live with and is it a good car? We're finding out...

Ford Mustang Mach-E front

The car Ford Mustang Mach-E Standard Range RWD Run by Jim Holder, editorial director

Why it's here Ford’s first mainstream electric car needs to prove it can compete with the very best electric SUVs

Needs to Offer something more than its rivals – Ford is late to the electric party, so it's overdue a landmark EV

Miles covered 10,436 Price when new £42,530 Price when new with all options £42,530 Value on arrival £33,537 Value now £33,537 Options fitted None Official range 273 miles Test range 201 miles

16 May 2022 – What's in a name?

When is a Ford Mustang not a Ford Mustang? Generations of 'Stang owners will have had a fit at the thought of the iconic name – used on muscle cars since 1964 – being attached to an SUV that runs on volts. But here it is: Ford’s first mainstream electric car, the Ford Mustang Mach-E.

Not to pour oil on the fire (or water on the electrics), but I quite like Ford's decision to get extra mileage out of the Mustang moniker in this way. After all, like the Mach-E, the original Ford Mustang broke boundaries.

Ford Mustang Mach-E and GT

I also subscribe to the argument that electric cars could do with a dash of emotional appeal. The name achieves that at a stroke.

Meanwhile, the Pony badging that largely replaces Ford’s traditional blue ovals sets this electric SUV apart as something a little bit special.

I certainly can’t remember the last time so many people have stopped me to ask about a Ford. And the main talking point has been that our test Mach-E is in our favoured Standard Range form.

Why, they ask, do we not recommend the Extended Range? After all, that version went farther on a full battery than all the other cars we put through their paces in our summer Real Range test (it also came a creditable second in our winter Real Range test).

Ford Mustang Mach-E fast charge

The answer is that, in our estimation, the added cost of the Extended Range, with its bigger battery, isn’t worth the extra distance it'll take you on a full charge.

Depending on the conditions (basically, the warmer the weather is, the better) I’ve seen 200 to 235 indicated miles, and would estimate about 180 to 210 real ones. That's more than enough for 90% of my journeys without ever having to stop, and enough for almost all trips with an increasingly easy-to-find rapid charge.

You’ll notice, too, that at more than 10,000 miles, my car's overall mileage is already pretty high. That’s partly because I’m the second owner, having collected it with almost 8700 miles on the clock. However, I’ve also used my Mach-E for a few longer trips already.

Ford Mustang Mach-E brake corrosion

In the main, you wouldn’t notice it's not fresh off the forecourt, but there are a few tell-tale signs of wear and tear worth highlighting. Visually, the most disappointing are the unsightly corrosion on the brake discs, and some snapped fairings on the rear parcel shelf, which gave way the first time I opened the boot.

There’s also an array of random dashboard warnings telling me about failed sensors. They have a habit of pinging relentlessly, although sometimes they don’t appear at all. I'm planning to do some detective work to see what's going on (this sort of behaviour does crop up on online forums as a trait of some early examples of the Mach-E).

And then there’s the issue of ride comfort. While it’s probably fair to say that most family SUV buyers won’t be too focused on the finer nuances of suspension tuning, sometimes it feels to me that Ford’s engineers got too hung up on pleasing enthusiasts. Still, I’ve found it is at least manageable if I select the mildest of the three accelerator and steering settings options, which seems to dull the knock-on effects of the impacts.

LT Ford Mustang Mach-E header

It’s a shame, because that aside, the Mustang Mach-E shows signs of being an extremely good electric car.

But then it needs to be, given that rivals now range from the Kia Niro EV and Skoda Enyaq iV through to the Audi Q4 e-tron and Tesla Model Y, with our reigning Car of the Year, the Kia EV6, falling somewhere in between. So, will I ultimately be happy with my choice? I guess I’ll find out over the coming months.

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