The Mustang is possibly the best rounded of the current crop of muscle cars. The introduction of a fuel-efficient yet still powerful base 4-cylinder motor and independent rear suspension to the latest generation showed that Ford is firmly focused on keeping it relevant for modern day driving. The advanced flat-plane crank 526-hp 5.2-liter V8 fitted to the top Shelby GT350 is the most advanced engine ever to power a Mustang, its handling is right up there with the best in class too.
Traditionalists will still gravitate towards the mid-range 5.0-liter model. This car produces 460 hp (25-hp more than in 2017) and can be fitted with either a 6-speed manual or new 10-speed automatic transmission. It's arguably the pick of the range if you intend to use it as a daily driver. Equipped with the 6-speed manual the 5.0-liter Mustang GT can race to 60 mph in 4.5-seconds. That is quick but if you want more then you will have to get the Performance Package and that 10-speed automatic. Equipped like that, the Mustang GT should be able to break 4-seconds to 60 mph. That is about what the more powerful 6-speed manual GT350 can achieve as well.
Even the 2.3-liter EcoBoost turbocharged four is no slouch, the automatic model gets to 60 mph in 5.0-seconds. Those times are as fast as some very expensive exotic machinery but are they quick enough to take on the latest crop of overpowered SUVs? We took a look at some very quick alternatives to the Mustang that are also capable of carrying the entire family and a week’s worth of groceries to see how they matched up.Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT
Let’s start with the Grand Cherokee SRT. Its 6.4-liter V8 makes 475-hp which is not much more than the V8 Mustang GT but its all-wheel-drive grip advantage and huge torque levels allow the SRT to slingshot to 60 mph in a mere 4.3 seconds. That’s quicker than all but the Performance Pack equipped GT or the Shelby GT350.Mercedes-Benz GLE63 S AMG
The AMG GLE63 S has a lot of letters in its name and the little S at the very end means that it is the quickest SUV Mercedes sells. 577-hp is provided courtesy of a 5.5-liter twin-turbo V8 and despite a curb weight of over 5,200 pounds, this huge beast will get to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds.BMW X5 M
The Germans have been making a good living out of producing overpowered SUV monsters for a while now and the BMW X5 M is the sort of head-scratcher that has you wondering who actually needs a 567-hp family vehicle that can blast through the 60 mph barrier in 4.0 seconds. You better be alert at the lights if you don’t want to become familiar with the tailgate design of this BMW.Bentley Bentayga
The Bentley may be British but underneath all of that leather and luxury is a thoroughly German drivetrain. 600 hp, 12-cylinders and a 0-60 mph time of 4 seconds is as fast as the fastest Mustang and it will keep going to 187 mph which is the fastest official speed for any current production SUV.Porsche Cayenne Turbo S
When it comes to indecently quick German cars, Porsche is bound to come up with something that trumps just about everything else out there. The Cayenne Turbo is a massively powerful SUV and just as in the Mercedes AMG, that little S at the end means that it is the top dog in the range. This means 570-hp and a 0-60 mph time of 3.8 seconds. But wait, those stats are for the old model. The recently launched new generation 550-hp Turbo does it in 3.9-seconds, we can’t wait to see what the S version will be capable of.Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio
The Stelvio is not quite the same size as the rest of the SUVs on here but it sure does punch above its weight category. The Ferrari derived 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6 sends 505-hp to all four wheels and thanks to the slightly lower curb weight gets to 60 mph in a Mustang beating 3.9-seconds.Lamborghini Urus
The Urus is the first SUV ever made by Lamborghini. Not a company known for producing slow cars, it decided that its first attempt should be powered by a 650-hp twin-turbo V8. That gives it a claimed 0-62 mph time of 3.6 seconds. The 0-60 mph time should be about a tenth quicker and once it actually goes into production its claimed 190 mph top speed will make it the fastest SUV on the planet.Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
Big engines, big bodies and way too much power are surely what the American automotive dream is made of so you may be pleased to hear that the biggest and baddest of the lot is home grown. The Grand Cherokee Trackhawk definitely didn’t need to be made, but sometimes the balance of power needs to be reasserted and what better way to do it than stick the 707-hp 6.2-liter supercharged V8 from the Dodge Charger Hellcat into an SUV? The result is a Porsche 911 beating 0-60 mph time of 3.5 seconds and enough torque to wrinkle the very road itself.Tesla Model X
The Model X is Tesla’s take on the SUV. Available in three trims, the P100D is the one most people are familiar with thanks to its 2.9-second 0-60 mph time. That is fast enough to see off the 647-hp Ford GT, despite it weighing in at a very hefty 5,500 pounds. The somewhat more affordable 75D is still pretty rapid and will just about match the EcoSport powered Mustang to 60 mph.
We may live in a world where an SUV can take on a sports car away from the lights but there is more to performance than pure straight-line speed. The latest Mustang is a far more rounded product than ever before and when it comes to cornering ability and driving enjoyment few SUVs can hope to compete.