Giugiaro Ford Mustang Concept

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 6, 2015

When the Mustang by Giugiaro was unveiled at the 2006 Los Angeles Auto Show, it marked a milestone in the history of coachbuilding. As soon as Italdesign – Giugiaro caught sight of the 2005 Ford Mustang, there was only one thing that could happen.

The styling director of the Italian coachbuilder, Fabrizio Giugiaro, felt that he just had to get his hands on the new model and do a reinterpretation of it. He was adamant in his belief that there was value in demonstrating “pure exercises in style” that reflect the image and history of the major auto brands.

Sometime in 2005, Giugiaro presented his idea to J Mays, Ford Motor Company's group vice president of Design and chief creative officer. Ford Racing technologies fully supported this unique concept until it was built.

After Giugiaro presented the Chevrolet Corvette Moray in early 2003, he sensed there was a need to work on U.S. cars. It only took four months for Fabrizio Giugiaro to lead the design work on Mustang by Giugiaro concept and get it completed by the family’s studios in Turin, Italy.

Exterior Design

With some revisions such as a smaller rear overhang and Giugiaro’s trademark move of tapering the car’s angles to the bounds of its mechanical outlines, the Mustang by Giugiaro has taken on a more compact look compared to the production car.

Nevertheless, this Italian version of the Mustang still has its swagger. Its style was upgraded with changes that include it being wider than the production car. The front is wider by 30mm, increasingly widening the car by a full 80 mm toward the rear – a characteristic that’s typical of the Italian coachbuilder.

It has a longer hood and since the trunk is nearly hidden, it appears as a fastback when looking at it from the side. Giugiaro is really all about the details, which only serve to emphasize its message of independence and freedom.

Giugiaro revised the bespoke taillights to have a more prominent arrow outline that connects to the louver panels that have been put there instead of the rear side windows.

This represents a difference from the 1964 Mustang, which uses three different elements. In addition, it uses a set of sporty but still classy 20-inch rims that come with 275/40 tires on the front and 315/35 tires on the rear.

It becomes more obvious (especially when considering its tires and wheels) that Giugiaro meant to give a tribute to Mustang design as well as its famed performance.

Interior Design

Among the highlights in its interior are a bold instrument panel that spans the car’s width, round gauges that appear from the back of the steering wheel as well as headrests that are covered with horsehide in a dark brown color and with horse logos.

Moreover, the interior feature dark brown upholstery on seat cushions and the backrests that are made of mottled horse hides.

The roof of this concept is made of a single curved glass panel that connects the windshield and rear window. This panel, which is made by Solutia of Detroit, was built using a special type of crystal that blocks 100% of UVA rays while giving vista views.

Opening its doors is easy with just one press of a button. They open vertically and their hinges are located at the base of the upright A-pillar.


Ford Racing, which overlooks Ford’s motorsports development and operations, helped to enhance the chassis and powertrain used in the concept.

In addition, Ford Racing developed and sold a race-ready Mustang version named the FR500C for the Grand-Am KONI Challenge Series. Five victories were achieved by the FR500C in the 2005 GS Class – its very first season.

Included in its wins is the manufacturers' championship where Mustang was recognized as the best among other production-based sports cars such as the BMW M3 and Porsche 911. Giugiaro made sure that his concept had at least the same level of performance and handling as the original Mustang race car.

The production Mustang GT already had an impressive all-aluminum 4.6-liter 3-valve V-8 engine that has an output of 300hp but Ford Racing improved on it by giving the concept an intercooled twin-screw supercharger. Other additional elements are engine calibration and fuel injectors from the Ford GT.

Because of its bigger 95 mm mass air meter as well as a conical air filter, it was able to boost its engine air intake. The performance of the exhaust also improved as it benefited from new Ford Racing mufflers and an X-pipe.

With these powertrain modifications, as well as an increase of 11 psi due to the supercharging, the concept can now produce about 500hp. Complementing the additional 200hp output is a high-efficiency Ford Racing aluminum radiator that enhances cooling even more.

Ford Racing also created a Handling Pack to tune its chassis, taking inspiration from the FR500C. Included in this package are new Dynamic-tuned dampers, anti-sway bars, and lowering springs. As a result of these modifications, the car gets a lower stance (about 1.5 inches lower than the production model) and it handles much better.

Fabrizio Giugiaro said that he and his team spent 30,000 hours of “blood, sweat, and tears” to make this modern performance classic car a possibility. He claims that the Mustang by Giugiaro has been driven to its limits and that he can proudly say that its performance is a match to how it looks.

If that doesn’t convince you that this car is indeed iconic, know that this concept car is the creation of the father-and-son design tandem with Giorgetto Giugairo working beside his son.

Just last year, Giorgetto celebrated his golden anniversary in the industry by unveiling the GG50 – a custom-built Ferrari. But what gave him his stature today is his work on the 1965 Bertone Mustang, which was the first European-styled car to have its global debut in the U.S. after World War II ended.

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