Going back to an S197 a bad idea?

IrishStallion

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In the end it is soley up to individual. Do you really think anyone on here gives two Llama farts on what model mustang you should drive...?? Lol...





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K-Roll302

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To give you some perspective, I have a 79 Firebird 400 that I can't seem to want to let go of. That said, I'd take a nice 12-14 GT any day. It's not an S550, but they have the Mustang character in spades and may be preferential in some aspects of driving.
That's a very good point. The S197 to me the the final evolution of the original Mustang lineage in body and ethos, and there's something charming and endearing about those cars that I can't turn my eye away from. It might even be "Mustang character" that the S550 is lacking because of how dramatic of a departure it is.

I've only driven a Supercharged '90 LX Hatch and a Procharged '13 V6 besides my own and the other two definitely have a character about them. I really need to find one close enough to test drive.
 

IPOGT

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That's a very good point. The S197 to me the the final evolution of the original Mustang lineage in body and ethos, and there's something charming and endearing about those cars that I can't turn my eye away from. It might even be "Mustang character" that the S550 is lacking because of how dramatic of a departure it is.

I've only driven a Supercharged '90 LX Hatch and a Procharged '13 V6 besides my own and the other two definitely have a character about them. I really need to find one close enough to test drive.
I wouldn't say the S550 lacks Mustang character....just look down the side of the car. It exudes a modern interpretation of a '69 fastback. :-)
 

K-Roll302

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I wouldn't say the S550 lacks Mustang character....just look down the side of the car. It exudes a modern interpretation of a '69 fastback. :-)
I don't mean to say that it lacks character either. I was sold on S550 by the fastback profile alone. It's very much a Mustang. That's why I bought one, and it's the best car I've ever had. There's just a aspect of character that the S197 has that the S550 hasn't, for better or worse. I think that's what I was trying to say.
 

13GetThere

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Not that I would trade my 2019 S550 for my 2013 S197, but I do miss my 2013. The 13 and 14s just have a very interesting and aggressive look that reminds me of the 1969 and 70 Mach1.
 

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I think I know what you mean. When I bought my 17 GT 6M I was looking at the Focus ST, Fiesta ST, even Focus RS. Rougher edged, less refined and maybe more pure fun than an S550. More raw essence of driving. I got the GT because It was 435hp for not as much as I thought it would be. Much faster and fun in that way (and better looking) than the sport compacts I was looking at. But you get used to it and there’s a bit of detachment in a 3700+ lb, refined car.

A few months ago I looked for a change. Test drove a 19 GT 6M (personal preference is a manual). The way some people talk here I expected it to be a major power upgrade, but I was a little disappointed because it felt like a just slightly torquier version of my 17 (PP3 at that point) and man those gears are TALL. So the choice was go that way and mod to an NA e85 car with a new shorter pumpkin, or go to a FiST and mod the hell out of it (1000 lb of added lightness makes a big difference in feel) or go FI which the gen2 coyote was already very well suited to. Went that way.

Supercharge a gen2 or gen3 coyote and when the warp drive kicks in the last thing in your mind will be “this thing is too refined”. It’s just a different level of experience.
 

Rinzler

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I'm trying to answer this question for myself. My S550 is my first Mustang and I've had it four years now. Mine is no slouch, but I finally want a V8 in my life. Unfortunately, Covid seems to have screwed up the used car market and the only GT's in my price range within relative driving distance are S197s (11-14).

I've no idea if it's worth "reverting" to a live axle, an objectively worse interior (but not that bad tbh), and less tech (even though I have a base model now) just to have a V8...Or whether or not it's worth trading one corroding hood for another.
I as person who JUST upgrade from a 12 GT to a 18 GT, I'd say wait. The S650 is coming out in two years, the price of 15 GTs will plummet. People have this performance nostalgia about the S197, that is just unfounded, imho. Amazing cars? Yes. But if we're talking which one is objectively better, it's no contest. A 15GT PP1 out tracked a 13 BOSS 302 when they first reviewed the platform. Don't get me wrong, like any car, you can spend a bunch of money to make it more than it is from factory. However, if that were you, I don't think you'd be on these forums asking us our opinions about it.

Now if you're in the market for a special version of a S197 like a GT500 or a BOSS, then it's a different conversation. But going to an inferior platform for the sake of a V8 in a daily driver is a bad move, bud.
 
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Norm Peterson

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People have this performance nostalgia about the S197, that is just unfounded, imho. Amazing cars? Yes. But if we're talking which one is objectively better, it's no contest.
I don't think feelings for the S197 are about "performance nostalgia" and objective measurements at all. It's more about the subjectives, where less refinement can be a good thing and too much refinement starts taking away from the overall experience on the one hand in exchange for a bit more performance or luxury on the other. This isn't a one-size-fits-all kind of concept.


A 15GT PP1 out tracked a 13 BOSS 302 when they first reviewed the platform. Don't get me wrong, like any car, you can spend a bunch of money to make it more than it is from factory, if that were you, I don't think you'd be on these forums asking about it though.
I remember that being the case, and it certainly would have been Ford's intent to at least match the performance of the Boss 302.

As far as the Boss 302/Laguna Seca is concerned, perhaps not matched at S550 introduction but then again the Boss/LS wasn't available right away either.


Now if you're in the market for a special version of a S197 like a GT500 or a BOSS, then it's a different conversation. But going to an inferior platform for the sake of a V8 in a daily driver is a bad move, bud.
Part of the appeal in owning something that is less refined - maybe it has a few flaws or technical shortcomings, or has features that reach back to times past instead of coming from the digital present - is specifically because of those things. It's where you simply enjoy a thing for what it is and don't worry about what it isn't. It's not like going to an S197 puts you all the way back to drum brakes, leaf springs, a flexi-flyer chassis, and an AM-only radio, either.


Norm
 

Meatball

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In a couple of years we’ll be talking about how raw and honest it was to have a non electric-assisted, easily modified traditional gas engine with rwd and the option of a stick & clutch, like in the S550.
 

Balr14

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Going back to an S197 is a good idea if you think it is. Everyone has different tastes, especially where cars are concerned. Spend an hour looking at the cars for sale on BAT. You won't believe what cars appeal to some people! Lot stranger things than S197 Mustangs. Here's a link in case you need it: https://bringatrailer.com/
 

IPOGT

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I don't think feelings for the S197 are about "performance nostalgia" and objective measurements at all. It's more about the subjectives, where less refinement can be a good thing and too much refinement starts taking away from the overall experience on the one hand in exchange for a bit more performance or luxury on the other. This isn't a one-size-fits-all kind of concept.



I remember that being the case, and it certainly would have been Ford's intent to at least match the performance of the Boss 302.

As far as the Boss 302/Laguna Seca is concerned, perhaps not matched at S550 introduction but then again the Boss/LS wasn't available right away either.



Part of the appeal in owning something that is less refined - maybe it has a few flaws or technical shortcomings, or has features that reach back to times past instead of coming from the digital present - is specifically because of those things. It's where you simply enjoy a thing for what it is and don't worry about what it isn't. It's not like going to an S197 puts you all the way back to drum brakes, leaf springs, a flexi-flyer chassis, and an AM-only radio, either.


Norm
My '79 Firebird formula does pretty well with leaf springs...In fact, at the time, the WS6 package wasn't bad at all and was somewhat responsible for introducing the American car makers to the importance of handling.
 

Norm Peterson

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My '79 Firebird formula does pretty well with leaf springs...In fact, at the time, the WS6 package wasn't bad at all and was somewhat responsible for introducing the American car makers to the importance of handling.
You can make leaf springs work, though by the time you've added devices to eliminate spring windup and done anything to improve lateral location of the axle for really hard running you've basically turned the suspension into some sort of link type.


Norm
 

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Having missed two generations of the mustang(4th&5th), in the fall of 2014 I was wanting to buy one more new mustang and I turned my sights on the 2014 base gt track pack and recaros.. Thought it was perfect timing and it would be the most "bang for buck" car..it was a hard car to find at the time optioned like that...even drove to a big city one weekend to glance over one..got there too late to test drive..but i was coming back and determined to buy it..and thinking maybe someday I would pick up the '13-'14 gt500 as the "be all end all" car for me..but gosh every where in the news and on the magazine racks was the 6th gen..so i was tormented somewhat about what to do...but in the end I held out in hopes for the same "bang for buck" offering in the 6th gen...and of course it was worth the wait..but was it really?..everytime I see a '14 gt I wonder..but I do regret not test driving one..especially being a solid axle fox body guy..I still to this day feel like I missed out on something worthwhile...and I have on occasion checked out used pricing on the '13-'14 gt500's.
 

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Plus, 700+ horses is too much to partially daily in my area (DMV) with all the stop lights so I save my current Shelby for road trips with the wife and the road course. I'm looking at picking up a Boss 302 for myself.

Will I regret it?

Very late reply...but I wanted to point out that boosted 700 WHP car is not a problem to daily. One of the nice things about forced induction is that it is only there when you want it. I dailied a 700WHP Termi for several years. If you stay out of the boost, it is just as docile as any other smallish V8.
 

doroyce05

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I'm coming from an 06Gt to 17GT and all I can say is that the 6th gen feels more comfortable car than the s197. I do understand the whole different feel of the car like how the older mustang makes you feel that you are muscling the car. For me, when I test drove the s550, I drove it home to get my s197 so that I can really compare them. In the end, I found the s550 being more of a complete car than the s197.

I don't know if it is just me but the 3v felt like it had more torque at the lower half of the rpm the 5.0 but I do love the power on the higher rpm range.
 

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