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While the first of the 600 Kiwi orders of the Ford Mustang have already landed in New Zealand, the company has officially launched the iconic car at an Australasian event in Hunter Valley this week.
Priced from $57,880, the Mustang has a 5-litre V8 or a 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol engine and comes as a GT coupe or convertible.
Not surprising, 90 per cent of those first 600 orders are for the V8 with just 60 buyers opting for a manual transmission, while 15 per cent of the first orders are for the convertible version.
Just before Christmas the first 35 orders of the Mustang arrived in Auckland from Detroit, with a New Plymouth customer being the first Kiwi owner of the now right-hand-drive muscle car.
The remainder of those first pre-orders will be arriving in New Zealand from now until May but demand is increasing for the vehicle since a few demonstrator models arrived in local dealerships.
“If someone went into a dealership this weekend and ordered a Mustang, they’d have to wait until at least June for it to arrive here,” Ford NZ’s communications manager Tom Clancy told Driven.
But Kiwi buyers are luckier than Aussie fans of the Mustang as there is now a 12-month wait for the vehicle across the Ditch.
The Mustangs are built in Flat Rock, Michigan, trained to Baltimore then shipped via the Panama Canal to New Zealand, then on to Australia.
The 5-litre V8 engine in the GT produces 306kW of power and 530Nm of torque, while the 3.2-litre EcoBoost model has 233Kw of power and 432Nm of torque.
While the first Mustang enthusiasts preferred the V8 GT, Clancy reckoned New Zealand would follow the trend with Mustang purchases in Europe, with the EcoBoost picking up volume through the year.
Those buyers would be favouring the more economical Mustang for their everyday drive, reckoned Clancy.
* Driven heads on the roads around Hunter Valley, then onto a private track before driving into Sydney today, with driving impressions to come.