DEARBORN – Ford Mustang Mach-E GT and Mustang Mach-E GT Performance Edition are set to accentuate the thrill of the GT name with the responsiveness of an all-electric powertrain this fall – and it doesn’t hurt that it will look great while doing so.
So what went into the styling choices of the first electric pony carrying the GT badge? @FordOnline spoke with Ford Color and Materials Manager Janet Seymour about the considerations the team made for Mustang Mach-E GT.
How has your previous work on Mustang and other performance vehicles influenced your color and materials work on Mustang Mach-E GT?
Seymour: I’ve previously worked on performance vehicles throughout my career in color and materials. Most recently, that includes the Mustang Mach 1 that was just released, as well as our ST line of performance products. Over the years, I’ve been ingrained with an understanding of these products, the brand and performance aspects that contribute to their becoming iconic and enduring. Having had that experience and learning those lessons contributed to the choices our team made for Mustang Mach-E GT.
What does that mean for material choices?
Seymour: We were looking at implementing designs that resonate with the Mustang customer. The Mustang is such an iconic vehicle that there’s a certain expectation from customers when they look at it from a materials point of view. It has to look like a performance product, and aluminum is a key attribute that we made sure was incorporated in the Mustang Mach-E GT and GT Performance Edition. We have two levels of color and materials execution that are differentiated between the two products. The aluminum designs with technical patterns and textures are a focal point on the instrument panel that customers can relate to as a key Mustang component.
We also incorporated Miko suede to tie into that expectation of performance materials that provide visual texture, as well as grip for functionality. This type of material is typically seen on our performance products and competitor products.
How do these material considerations for Mustang compare with the expectations of the BEV customer?
While we strived to capture the essence of Mustang that resonates with the traditional base customer, the challenge was creating materials in a more progressive design direction. The BEV customer is very conscious of the impact their vehicle purchase has on the environment. In that sense, it was important to push for as much sustainable recycled material content as possible and make it affordable. We also determined to create an animal-free “vegan” vehicle by not offering leather seats, which is traditionally offered on an ICE Mustang. Yet at the same time, we wanted to create interior material designs with visual impact that customers are excited about and proud to own.
In the interior, the seat materials on the Performance Edition are a unique custom registered perforation design with laser-etched patterns and a metallic reflective scrim backing on Miko Suede. The patterns belie a sense of dynamic movement which befits the speed and performance of the Mach-E GT Performance. It is also custom designed to fit the contours of the uniquely designed performance seat. The patterns on the aluminum and the seat materials are all coordinated and intentionally designed with a controlled visual energy that’s relevant to the vehicle’s design language.
What future trends are you trying to bring to life on Mustang Mach-E GT?
Seymour: One of the key color trends we’re introducing to Mustang Mach-E GT is Copper, which is part of our BEV color strategy. There are fine lines of the Copper accent on the instrument panel and doors, and accent stitching throughout the interior on the seats, wrapped panels on IP, doors and steering wheel. We see Copper as a trend that is relevant to BEV – copper is a sustainable material; it’s durable, highly conductive and efficient; it’s essential to electric vehicle technology and it’s 100% recyclable. Currently, copper is being applied as a paint color, but we are in process of developing a technology that incorporates real copper metal flakes to adorn surfaces with a genuine material that upholds the integrity of the story.
What’s your favorite design aspect of Mustang Mach-E GT?
Seymour: My favorite design aspect is the seat and seat material in the Performance Edition’s interior. I love the execution of the seat design: the dynamic form language, performance contours, and the material and patterning custom designed to fit – I think it’s stunning.
My other favorite design aspect is the exterior front grille. It’s a truly innovative design that has not been seen on any other vehicle. It’s a formed, aero-dynamic, clear polycarbonate lens with back-painted textured B-surface. It’s such a uniquely styled element and one of intrigue as you look closely at how it’s executed.
Overall, I think both the Mach-E GT and GT Performance Edition are stunning designs, inside and out. It has boldness and a resonating character that states it’s confident, it’s energetic, just as a performance vehicle should be – it feels and looks like it’s part of the Mustang family and heritage, but part of its future. Once they get into the vehicle and drive it, I think customers are going to be blown away by how dynamic the whole vehicle experience is. Design and performance, to me it’s one of the best vehicles that’s going to hit the market this year. I’m grateful to have been part of the amazing team that created it!