Think the 2011 Ford Mustang V6 has impressive fuel economy at 30mpg on the highway? Well, think again because the impressive just got better. The 2011 Mustang has set a new record by running 1,457 laps at Bristol Motor Speedway while averaging 48.5 mpg with an average speed of 43.9 mph. The main idea for the Mustang 1,000 Lap Challenge was to prove that the 2011 Mustang’s V6 can run 1,000 laps and 533 miles on a single tank of fuel.

"When we hit 1,000 laps we still had a quarter of a tank of gas left," said David Ragan, driver of the No. 6 UPS Ford Fusion for Roush Fenway Racing, and the man who drove the 2011 V-6 Mustang past the 1,000 lap mark. "The last driving stint before I passed 1,000 laps I was averaging 43.7 miles a gallon and that is unbelievable. These guys have run the distance of more than two Sprint Cup races at Bristol and they still have fuel left. Congratulations to everyone behind the Mustang and to everyone at Ford, because this 2011 Mustang V-6 is really something special."

So anyone who placed their bets on whether or not the Mustang had it in him, either start collecting or start paying. The Mustang proves to be a killer muscle car that wipes the floor with the 29mpg highway of the 2011 Chevrolet Camaro and the 26mpg of the 2010 Dodge Charger.

Press release after the jump.

Press release

The 2011 Ford Mustang, which made history when it became the first car ever to deliver more than 30 mpg and 305 horsepower, has set a new record by running 1,457 laps at Bristol Motor Speedway while averaging 48.5 mpg.

The Mustang 1,000 Lap Challenge was designed to demonstrate that a stock production Mustang V-6 could run 1,000 laps and 533 miles on a single of tank of fuel. With the aid of fuel efficient driving techniques by Ford engineers, the Mustang far surpassed its goal of 1,000 laps.

The 2011 Ford Mustang V6 sets a new record of 48.5 mpg on a track High Resolution Exterior
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“To see a Mustang post average fuel economy of 48.5 mpg while running at Bristol is impressive,” said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. “The new V-6 engine along with the advanced six-speed transmission in the car is a key element in delivering both fuel economy and performance for Mustang.”

Ford is committed to being a fuel economy leader in every segment it competes in and Mustang’s leads in its class along with other Ford fuel economy leaders like the Ford Fiesta, Fusion Hybrid and new Lincoln MKZ Hybrid, America’s most fuel efficient luxury sedan.

The Challenge team, which included NASCAR star David Ragan and four Ford Mustang engineers, completed the challenge in 17 hours and 40 minutes, showing off the 2011 Mustang V-6’s class-leading fuel economy by averaging 48.5 mpg over the course of the 776.5 miles logged during the Challenge. That distance is more than the two complete NASCAR Sprint Cup events that take place in Bristol every year.

The 2011 Ford Mustang V6 sets a new record of 48.5 mpg on a track High Resolution Exterior
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Ragan pushed the Mustang past the 1,000-lap mark at 7:26 p.m., 12 hours and 26 minutes into the Challenge, but the car wasn’t close to being out of fuel. Mustang engineer Seong Park was behind the wheel when it finally came to a halt (on the backstretch) of the famed NASCAR track at 12:41 a.m. local time.

Other Mustang Challenge team drivers included Tom Barnes, Jonathan Mehl and Carl Ek, who along with Park, rotated through one-hour driving stints during the event, which took place at the world’s fastest half-mile track.

“When we hit 1,000 laps we still had a quarter of a tank of gas left,” said David Ragan, driver of the No. 6 UPS Ford Fusion for Roush Fenway Racing, and the man who drove the 2011 V-6 Mustang past the 1,000 lap mark. “The last driving stint before I passed 1,000 laps I was averaging 43.7 miles a gallon and that is unbelievable. These guys have run the distance of more than two Sprint Cup races at Bristol and they still have fuel left. Congratulations to everyone behind the Mustang and to everyone at Ford, because this 2011 Mustang V-6 is really something special.”

A team of Ford engineers prepared for the challenge by implementing fuel efficient driving tips like minimizing the use of air conditioning, steady and consistent driving, avoiding sudden stops/starts and by keeping the RPMs low. The engine in the Mustang is powered by a lightweight, all-aluminum 3.7-liter dual-overhead-cam (DOHC) V-6 engine that uses advanced engineering to deliver its combination of power and economy. Twin independent variable camshaft timing (Ti-VCT) adjusts the valve train in microseconds depending on driver inputs, further contributing to the engine’s overall efficiency. The Mustang used in the challenge is a stock production vehicle that can be purchased through a Ford dealer.

The 2011 Ford Mustang V6 sets a new record of 48.5 mpg on a track High Resolution Exterior
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“This is beyond our wildest dreams,” said Tom Barnes, the lead engineer for the Ford Mustang 1,000 Lap Challenge. “There have been a lot of people who have done a lot of things in preparing this 2011 Mustang V-6 to run the Mustang 1,000 Lap Challenge and have the success we have had today. It was great when we went past the 1,000 lap mark with David, but nobody could ever imagine that we still had five hours ahead of us. This is a fantastic feeling and it shows again what a great car the 2011 Mustang V-6 is.”

What do you think?
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11 comments:

  (309) posted on 09.21.2010

There must be a formula for that. Er, it averaged 48.5mpg and travelled 776.5 miles, so smash those numbers together and see what happens.

  (745) posted on 08.30.2010

That’s an awesome record. Kudos to Ford Mustang!

  (221) posted on 08.1.2010

I was really excited when the Camaro arrived. I even rented a SS for I was really thinking of buying on. After staring at the cheap interior for a day I could not stare for years at the cheap interior so Chevy lost a sale. It is also bad how Chevy floods the rental fleets which further evaluates their vehicles

  (216) posted on 08.1.2010

The way they did it is as testifying as it gets, we know the conditions almost exactly: the most mileage-friendly one can have.Any other way we would know very little about how each driver drove, how much hill-climbing they did, how much city-driving they went through, etc.

  (765) posted on 06.30.2010

A stunt like this is so unrealistic they might as well drive the car from the top of pikes peak downhill to Colorado Springs and say that it gets 300miles per gallon.

  (205) posted on 06.27.2010

Totally awesome! Well, the 16 gallon tank had been depleted at the rate of 48.5 miles per gallon. That’s not bad for a 305-hp sport coupe.

  (507) posted on 06.27.2010

Impressive, mileage! I also can’t imagine that the mustang can achieve this kind of mileage.

Uncia  (868) posted on 06.26.2010

That’s no huge accomplishment; this is a test of maximum efficiency rather than a reflection of actual efficiency. Toyota conducted a similar test with the Prius and got 120 mpg... holding a constant, ideal speed like that is no indication of actual mileage.

Uncia  (17) posted on 06.26.2010

Congrats to the engine/trans engineers. Having said that, my first car was a ’72 Mustang and what sold me on it was its styling. Yes, I’m older and wiser now, but the retro muscle cars leave the Ford behind in the looks department - how about a body design upgrade to match the innards?

Uncia  (859) posted on 06.25.2010

that was an impressive run! i can’t imagine ford reach that 48.5MPG record.

Uncia  (1023) posted on 06.24.2010

impressive.. this is a new set of engine. imagine a v6 straight engine that has out perform a v4 and has more mileage and can run for 48.5MPH.

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