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Summary
  • The Ford Mustang is generally reliable, getting a 3.5 out of 5.0 from RepairPal and 85/100 from J.D. Power.
  • The Mustang is known to have issues with its radio display, driveshaft, paint, and camshaft position sensor, among other problems.
  • Ford Mustangs built from 2016 to 2018 are generally reliable. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued three recalls for this model.

When you’re in the market for a reliable car, you can’t go wrong with a Ford Mustang. Both new and older model years have something great to offer. From high safety ratings to excellent performance, it’s no wonder the Mustang continues to sell well in this day and age. Even its resale value is good, only depreciating by 24% in five years according to CarEdge.com.

Are Ford Mustangs Reliable?

The Ford Mustang enjoys above-average reliability, with some of its model years scoring better than others. RepairPal gave it a rating of 3.5 out of 5.0, ranking it 20th out of 24 for midsize cars in its category. Meanwhile, J.D. Power rated the Mustang an 85/100. Additionally, US News & World Report ranked the 2021 Ford Mustang first out of eight vehicles in the sports car market. With these figures, it’s apparent that with careful handling and regular maintenance, the Ford Mustang can easily enjoy a long service life.

Top Ford Mustang Problems

Although the Ford Mustang is one dependable muscle car, it still has its fair share of problems. Here are the most commonly reported issues for different model years:

Interior Accessory Problems

Interior accessory problems are among the most reported 2017 Ford Mustang issues. Some owners have reported troubles with the vehicle’s radio/sync display. According to one owner, when the sync is paired with a phone or when the radio is turned on, the display will fail to display any useful information other than the current time and temperature. The radio unit did not receive any radio or music data.

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Other problems involve the rearview camera, steering assist light, and steering wheel. No recalls have been issued to resolve these issues.

Vibration While Driving

Another common problem experienced by some owners of the 2016 Ford Mustang is vibration while driving. According to reports on CarComplaints.com, most Mustangs started vibrating at around 60 mph.

2016 Ford Mustang EcoBoost
One problem experienced by some owners of the 2016 Ford Mustang is vibration while driving.

For some owners, the problem was caused by an imbalanced driveshaft. For others, it was the rear-end assembly. Another owner discovered trouble with his tires.

Although no recalls have been issued to address this problem, it is serviceable by local dealerships.

Hood Corrosion

A longstanding problem Ford Mustang has with its older model years is corrosion on the hood. This issue is also related to the paint blistering exhibited by some units of the 2007 and 2010 Ford Mustang.

This problem arose because Ford used aluminum hoods but failed to properly insulate them from iron-based connecting and supporting parts used in the prior model year. Despite being a known problem across Ford Mustang models, the automaker has not issued a recall to resolve this problem.

Body Paint Problems

Body paint problems are one of the most common issues reported by many 2007 Ford Mustang owners. They have observed how paint blisters around their bumpers. Others noted severe peeling and chipping off the front edge of the hood.

Although some owners took action and brought their cars to the repair shop, most of them were advised that the issue couldn’t be fixed because the oxidation would keep coming back.

Camshaft Position Sensor Issues

Loud squeaking or chirping noises are among the most reported 2004 Ford Mustang problems. According to a complaint posted on RepairPal, the car produced chirping noises when it was cold. The noise reportedly went away or turned faint when the vehicle turned warm. Another owner shares that the car chirps when driven in the winter.

The synchronizer shaft for the camshaft position sensor can cause a loud squeaking or chirping noise because of a bad upper bushing. The noise may be erratic and may go away as the engine warms up. Reports show that these problems also affected model years 1999, 2000, and 2002 to 2010.

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Worn Tie Rod Ends

According to reports from owners of the 2000 Ford Mustang, problems with the tie rod ends are typical for many units belonging to the model year. The vehicle squeaks when turning and going over bumps. The steering wheel may also squeak while being turned while the vehicle runs below 15 mph. Many owners of 1996 to 2010 model years have also complained about this problem.

The squeaking noise may be because of a worn tie rod end. To make the odd noise go away, the worn tie rod end should be replaced immediately. Although quite a number of Ford Mustang owners complained about this issue, no official recalls have been issued to address this.

Intake Manifold/Valve Cover Gasket Oil Leaks

Some Ford Mustang owners of the 1994 to 2001 model years also complained about their intake manifold or valve cover gasket leaking oil. According to one user on RepairPal, they observed oil in their coolant. When the vehicle was brought to an expert, they were told that it was because of a cracked engine block or a blown head gasket. Another owner shares that their Mustang’s valve cover gaskets were leaking oil.

Ford Mustang Coupe Fourth generation 1994–2004
Some 1994 Ford Mustang owners have complained about the intake manifold or valve cover gasket leaking oil.

It is not unusual for problems with the intake manifold or valve cover gaskets to result in a coolant or oil leak. Leaks from the intake manifold may contaminate the engine oil with coolant. Engine issues may arise if the leak is not resolved immediately.

Ford Mustang Reliability By Year

If you’re in the market for a Ford Mustang, be prepared to embrace the good and the potential bad. As long as you’re aware of the issues that the model year you’re planning to get may develop, buying it should come with little risk. This will also help you avoid costly repairs and stay on top of preventive maintenance to maximize the service life of your car.

2016 Ford Mustang GT Reliability

With three recalls from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the 2016 Mustang GT is an average midsize sports car.

However, users on Edmunds gave the 2016 Mustang GT a score of 4.8 out of 5. J.D. Power also scored the model 83 out of 100. Despite its recalls, the 2016 Ford Mustang GT is a car recommended by many owners.

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2017 Ford Mustang Ecoboost Reliability

The 2017 Ford Mustang Ecoboost came with a new engine that replaced the 3.7L Cyclone V6. The EcoBoost engine offers more horsepower with better fuel efficiency. While the model doesn’t rate as high as newer models, few owners reported 2017 Mustang EcoBoost problems. On average, it scored 83 out of 100 on J.D. Power, making it a great car.

2018 Ford Mustang GT Reliability

The 2018 Ford Mustang GT is a great car with a 5.0L Coyote V8 engine. However, it isn’t without its problems. The engine makes a ticking sound and uses a plastic oil pan. While both issues don’t pose a problem for most owners, some might find them annoying. Overall, the 2018 Mustang GT is a reliable car with a powerful engine that many owners love.

Are Mustang Parts Expensive?

The price of a Ford Mustang part will depend on several factors. This includes the model year, the part you wish to buy, and the product brand.

Where to Get Auto Parts and Accessories for Your Ford Mustang

The Ford Mustang never fails to turn heads wherever it goes. Unfortunately, yours can turn heads for the wrong reasons if it has any of the issues mentioned above. To avoid that and keep your daily driver in top condition, don’t put off replacing faulty, damaged, or worn-out parts.

Finding the perfect replacement parts only takes a few minutes when you shop at CarParts.com. To get started, all you need to do is use your mobile phone or computer to visit our website. Then, use our vehicle selector and search filters to narrow down our catalog to compatible parts with the brand, price, and features you need.

We source our auto parts from the most trusted manufacturers in the industry, each carefully selected by a team of professionals. They also come with a low-price guarantee, so you’re sure to get parts that are built to last without breaking the bank.

Take advantage of our fast and reliable shipping. Shop now and get your Ford Mustang looking and performing like it’s fresh off the lot!

About The Authors
Written By Automotive and Tech Writers

The CarParts.com Research Team is composed of experienced automotive and tech writers working with (ASE)-certified automobile technicians and automotive journalists to bring up-to-date, helpful information to car owners in the US. Guided by CarParts.com's thorough editorial process, our team strives to produce guides and resources DIYers and casual car owners can trust.

Reviewed By Automotive Features Reviewer at CarParts.com

Lisa Conant grew up in Canada around a solid contingency of gear heads and DIY motor enthusiasts. She is an eclectic writer with a varied repertoire in the automotive industry, including research pieces with a focus on daily drivers and recreational vehicles. Lisa has written for Car Bibles and The Drive.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic. The accuracy and timeliness of the information may change from the time of publication.

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