The Ambassador: Ford Mustang GT
America's most beloved muscle car just turned 50. So what did the Mustang get as a gift? An independent rear suspension to bring it in line with the best of the sports car universe. Historically, Mustangs have relied on a rear suspension with a solid rear axle — great for laying down power on the drag strip, less so for handling the contours of real roads. This year that axle's been swapped with a setup that permits the rear wheels to move independently. This is crucial, because when it's paired with the velvety awesomeness of the GT's 5-liter V-8 engine, it helps the 'Stang hold tight to imperfect streets, letting you use more of its 435 horsepower more of the time. On both California's Angeles Crest Highway and Brooklyn's pockmarked Belt Parkway, the Mustang cruised over road seams and wounded asphalt unperturbed. Otherwise, the Mustang GT's highs (that baritone roar) and lows (an interior with plastic to rival the Lego store's) remain. But Ford has given the pony handling it's never seen before — it makes sense that, after 50 years, this will be the first Mustang sold in markets across the globe.
From $32,300; 19 mpg combined