The public is Mustang rich and, we assume, power hungry. For that reason, Ford Performance has long offered upgrades and go-faster parts for practically every Mustang model. Most recently, Ford’s Performance arm released a trio of power packs for V-8-powered current-generation Mustang GTs, and it is following up that act with a new “performance calibration” for 2015 and newer four-cylinder EcoBoost Mustangs.
Just as the Mustang GT’s power packs include hardware in addition to an engine computer software change, the EcoBoost’s power upgrade comes from a computer reflash and a cold-air intake. The combination unlocks an extra 70 lb-ft of torque and 25 horsepower from the EcoBoost four, bringing the turbo Mustang’s total output to 335 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of torque.
The bump should add some much-needed pep to the turbo Stang’s step while, perhaps not coincidentally, bringing the EcoBoost’s horsepower peak to parity with the Chevrolet Camaro’s optional V-6. Why does this matter? Because Ford positions the EcoBoost Mustang engine as an optional step-up between the base V-6 and the GT’s 5.0-liter V-8, whereas Chevrolet’s far weaker turbo four stands as the Camaro’s base engine while its sweet V-6 is an upgrade option. This pits the stock 310-hp EcoBoost Mustang against the 335-hp V-6 Camaro-a losing position for the Mustang, as we found in a recent comparison test, despite the EcoBoost’s edge in torque.
While it would be nice if Ford could imbue the EcoBoost Mustang with the performance calibration from the factory, the kit costs just $699 and is 50-state emissions compliant (and warranted by Ford), making it a compellingly cost-effective way for Ford guys to catch up to their rivals driving V-6 Camaros. It’s also worth noting that, even factoring in the cost of the performance calibration, a 2017 Mustang EcoBoost still runs nearly $2000 less than the least expensive Camaro V-6.