The 2019 Mustang Bullitt gets a slightly retuned version of the standard Mustang GT's 5.0-L V-8 (images: Ford).

2018 NAIAS: Ford unveils 2019 Mustang Bullitt, promises performance EV

Ford bet heavily on its heritage cards at the 2018 Detroit auto show. After unveiling a new-age midsize pickup coming in 2019 that revives the Ranger name, the company went on to announce another iteration of the storied Bullitt Mustang that’s coming this year and finished by saying it is reserving the revered “Mach 1” designation for a performance-oriented battery-electric vehicle scheduled for 2019.

Despite being based on an existing non-U.S. architecture, the new U.S. Ranger ( is rather inexplicably still a year from American showrooms, so the summer 2018 arrival of the 2019 Bullitt Mustang makes it the first of the heritage-inspired trio to reach consumers.

At the Detroit show, Ford said the Bullitt’s 5.0-L V-8 will generate “at least” 475 hp (354 kW) and 420 lb·ft (569 N·m), an increase of 15 hp (11 kW) compared with the standard Mustang GT’s 5.0-L V-8, which generates the same SAE-certified 420 lb·ft. The Bullitt’s engine makes its extra power by borrowing the unique intake manifold and 87-mm throttle body used for the Mustang Shelby GT 350. Also fitted to the Bullitt’s V8 is a revised Open Air Induction system and recalibrated engine-management software. The active-valve performance exhaust also is retuned, Ford said.

The 2019 Mustang Bullitt is fitted with a Tremec 6-speed manual transmission and includes the equipment from the standard Mustang GT’s optional GT Premium and Performance packages. And no Bullitt-inspired Mustang would be faithful to the 1968 film’s original without Torque Thrust-style alloy wheels. Optionally available for the new Bullitt model is MagneRide magnetorheological adaptive dampers, supplied by BWI.

Following in 2020 will be the resurrection of the Mach 1 nameplate for a performance-oriented EV in 2020, several Ford executives said at the Detroit auto show. Ford appears to be drawing on the Mustang Mach 1 nameplate because the performance-oriented EV may be based on the Mustang’s architecture—although the vehicle itself may be a crossover rather than a car.

The Mach 1 will be part of an expanded EV-development initiative Ford also announced during the Detroit auto show. Chairman Bill Ford said the company will increase its EV-development investment to a total of $11 billion by 2022—more than double the $4.5 billion Ford previously said it would spend on electrification efforts by 2020. Ford said the expanded electrification initiative will by 2022 produce 40 vehicles with some type of powertrain electrification.

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