2012 WRX vs. 2012 Mustang GT (Handling)
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This is a discussion on 2012 WRX vs. 2012 Mustang GT (Handling) within the Comparison: WRX vs World forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; The title says it all. I know there's the debate about rwd vs awd handling wise...but can't tell which is ...

  1. #1
    Registered User ihavefat's Avatar
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    2012 WRX vs. 2012 Mustang GT (Handling)

    The title says it all. I know there's the debate about rwd vs awd handling wise...but can't tell which is better.


    I know muscle cars are known for straightlines but everybody says the handling on the new mustang is decent.

    Heck, they are comparing the 5.0 to the M3. (Obviously M3 is still better)


    Super Coupes Track Attack! - 2011 Ford Mustang GT vs 2011 BMW M3 Coupe - YouTube

    Super Coupes Drag Race!: 2011 Ford Mustang GT vs 2011 BMW M3 Coupe - YouTube



    I know many people get the WRX or the STI not just for its performance, but for it's practicality and versatility. But I want to know from the performance aspect only.

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    Moderator rage-wrx's Avatar
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    But didn't you get a Mustang already?A little too late for comparisons.
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    Ooh,hang on. That is the throb of a turbocharged flat four engine. A sound which,all over the world,heralds the imminent arrival of a moron - JC.

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    Registered User ihavefat's Avatar
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    Oh yes. But I'm just curious. :/

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    Registered User GarrettKoonsman's Avatar
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    It very much depends on conditions, type of track, track surface, average speed etc etc. I would still put the STI in front though in the majority of handling categories....hell in the majority of all categories
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    Registered User SRTSamb's Avatar
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    I'm going to go out on a limb and say although it's fast, the mustang is not a great handling car
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    Administrator RayfieldsWRX's Avatar
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    Actually, the new 5.0 has gotten surprisingly good marks in the handling department.

    "Which is better" with handling is tricky territory. You can empirically determine that a Mini Cooper S may get around a highly technical track faster than a 911, but I may enjoy the dynamics and driving experience more in the 911. Which "handles" better? The one that posted the lower time, or the one that I enjoyed more, and felt more at home in?

    The Mustangs that I've rented (only V6's) felt large and heavy to me in transition. My wagon isn't a prima ballerina, but it SEEMS more nimble to me, and enjoyable through tight corners. Other people will want different characteristics, or may be hung up on the numbers/magazine ratings game.
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    Registered User jd92677's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GarrettKoonsman View Post
    It very much depends on conditions, type of track, track surface, average speed etc etc. I would still put the STI in front though in the majority of handling categories....hell in the majority of all categories
    I would second this. In perfect or near perfect conditions, the Mustang is faster in just about every way. As conditions become less than perfect, the AWD starts to gain an advantage
    Last edited by jd92677; 02-01-2012 at 06:10 AM.
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    Registered User gunz4me's Avatar
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    I went from a 2006 Mustang GT to a 2012 WRX, and I couldn't be happier with the transition. I test drove a 2011 5.0 Mustang GT and the live axle is still an albatross around the proverbial neck of the S197 platform when it comes to handling on craptastic, typical, Louisiana roads.

    Also, be careful when believing the hype in those magazines. A professional driver on a pristine track with a ringer car sent by Ford will make the car look like a miracle. Let's take an off the lot GT, put it on a normal road with lots of bumps and uneven surfaces, with your average driver, then see how it performs in a real world test.

    All I know is that my WRX stays planted under all conditions whereas my former Mustang always felt like it was going to lose control every time I romped on the throttle. Keep in mind, my Mustang had a COMPLETE suspension upgrade, and I believe it made the rear end bump steer even WORSE instead of better. If the road was slightly moist and I hit a bump in the curve, the back end would kick out. Ever been on a Louisiana interstate? That makes for an even scarier trip if you have been.

    So to sum it up, if you have pristine highways that are super smooth, the S197 platform will suit you fine. If you travel highways with loads of imperfections and get a lot of rain, get the WRX because that S197 based vehicle will only be good in a straight line.
    Last edited by gunz4me; 02-01-2012 at 07:19 AM. Reason: autocorrect fail

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    Administrator RayfieldsWRX's Avatar
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    You make an interesting point...I wonder how often the cars that magazines test have been "optimized" or otherwise tampered with to make just the right impression.
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    Registered User Briceandy4's Avatar
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    My name is Austin, I'm on my buddies profile just poking around on the site. I figured I might give my input here.

    I bought a 2012 Mustang GT 5.0 just a couple months ago. I have around 5,000 miles on it and I have to say I am impressed. I have driven the old s197 platform as well as the "new edge" setup that was pre-05 and I couldn't even begin to compare the two. The new 5.0 is really a special engine, it makes good power literally anywhere and a ton up top, coupled with the 6 speed transmission I feel it really is a good package and when pushed, it is too much for the street.

    After driving this car for a while I honestly don't see how you would need a better handling car. We have horrible roads out here in Colorado and I think the car does just fine. I took a 45 MPH suggested turn at a little over 105 (fast enough to make my fearless girlfriend scream) and the car seriously felt like it would have done it at 125 MPH. They handle better than the street should ever see.

    I haven't driven an STI, but a heavily modded 04 WRX, that car was the same way. You can push them so much harder than you really should on the street and you feel confident about it the whole time.

    Obviously I am biased, but the 5.0 is my pick. Between the engine and the car itself I couldn't justify a more expensive STI based off of performance in imperfect conditions. Obviously the two are apples to oranges when placed side by side on a dirt road or a snowy road. But I have my truck for that and I throw a fit if I have to drive my Mustang over anything but dry pavement. I bought it for the drag strip and to do a rolling burnout every once in a while.

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    Registered User ihavefat's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input everyone!

    Quote Originally Posted by Briceandy4 View Post
    My name is Austin, I'm on my buddies profile just poking around on the site. I figured I might give my input here.

    I bought a 2012 Mustang GT 5.0 just a couple months ago. I have around 5,000 miles on it and I have to say I am impressed. I have driven the old s197 platform as well as the "new edge" setup that was pre-05 and I couldn't even begin to compare the two. The new 5.0 is really a special engine, it makes good power literally anywhere and a ton up top, coupled with the 6 speed transmission I feel it really is a good package and when pushed, it is too much for the street.

    After driving this car for a while I honestly don't see how you would need a better handling car. We have horrible roads out here in Colorado and I think the car does just fine. I took a 45 MPH suggested turn at a little over 105 (fast enough to make my fearless girlfriend scream) and the car seriously felt like it would have done it at 125 MPH. They handle better than the street should ever see.

    I haven't driven an STI, but a heavily modded 04 WRX, that car was the same way. You can push them so much harder than you really should on the street and you feel confident about it the whole time.

    Obviously I am biased, but the 5.0 is my pick. Between the engine and the car itself I couldn't justify a more expensive STI based off of performance in imperfect conditions. Obviously the two are apples to oranges when placed side by side on a dirt road or a snowy road. But I have my truck for that and I throw a fit if I have to drive my Mustang over anything but dry pavement. I bought it for the drag strip and to do a rolling burnout every once in a while.
    I totally agree! They are apples to oranges. Hopefully I will get a chance to purchase a subaru while keeping my stang Lol. I remember riding in my friend's WRX and man it felt fast. But stangs get decent power at any gear right out of the box and it's good knowing you can really transform the car by getting tune/gear ratio cange/exhausts for reasonable amount of money.

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    Registered User gunz4me's Avatar
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    I think my hate for the Mustang came from two different directions. First off, I was 34 when I purchased it and still all about the power and going fast in a straight line. By the time I reached 38, I no longer cared about going fast in a straight line and the only thing my car had going for it was that I liked the look of it. Then there was the practical aspect of the car. While it had more useful space than my wife's 2011 Genesis Coupe, it was still a challenge to load the car up for a weekend getaway or a trip the to great outdoors.

    Problem 2 stemmed from the fact that I am not a "mustang guy" and was not willing to put up with the minor issues the car has because I love the Mustang itself. I know Jeep and VW guys who love their cars, despite the electrical issues that plague them, but I couldn't love the Mustang with miscellaneous stuff always breaking. I also could not grasp why I had to replace rear lower control arms due to a bushing going bad or why the strut mounts went bad on a car with less than 40,000 miles on it. Oh, and I can't leave out the fact that my 2006 GT left me completely stranded in 2008 when I was 300 miles away from home due to the smart junction box getting wet and shorting out. Sure there was a TSB on that particular issue and sure it was covered under warranty. It didn't make me feel any better that I had to wait while the car was repaired which took additional time and proved to be a major inconvenience.

    Most of my other complaints about the car were minor, like the never ending squeak and rattle trap it had become, but all of those issues added up and worked my last nerve. It reached the point where I absolutely hated driving the car and it just had to go. For example, I purchased the car used in October 2007 with 28,000 miles on the odometer and it had 39,800 miles on the odometer when I traded it in this past December (2011).

    As a result, I am now in a WRX. If I ever reach the point where I feel the need for speed again, I'll just buy a Z06 or a GT-R.

  14. #13
    Registered User ihavefat's Avatar
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    A lot of people recommended I get a Gen coupe but I thought it was a bit too small and the performance was....inadequate Lol. Well the '13 models are getting some decent bump up in horsepower.

    :/ I'm sorry about your bad experience with the mustang. I do agree that people who love mustangs are willing to put up with the minor issues. But then again, I feel like that's like for "best bang for the buck" cars. I mean they have to cut the cost somewhere right?


    Just wondering everyone, how good is GT-R in the snow?I know it is AWD but no one ever talks about its performance in snowy weather.

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    Registered User John M's Avatar
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    Briceandy4 nailed my position exactly. I quit caring about the ultimate handling ability of a car because all of the ones I'm interested in are capable of far more than I am willing to wring out of them on public roads. Since I don't auto-x or do road courses, that leaves me free to choose a car on its other abilities. None of today's "sporty" cars have real deficiencies in handling or braking. I had no complaints about my Legacy GT's handling but I do admit it could have used more brakes after I doubled the horsepower

    The new Genesis coupe is going to be a true contender with 274hp and a starting price of around $22k. Rumors are that they're testing a supercharged version of the v6 which would make things very interesting.
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    The deal breaker: Women negatively stereotype men who drive Mustangs. I admit I was initially attracted to the excellent performance of the new GT, but my girlfriend, and every other girl I talked to about it, made it very clear, women tend to think poorly of men who drive flashy muscle cars. My gf's friend said it best, something to the extent of: men who drive such impractical, flashy muscle cars do so because they're trying to compensate for something. Obviously this isnt a factor for those of us who already with girlfriends/wives, but bachelors out there may want to think twice about the image they'll portray.
    I bought a WRX because it's a practical, reliable, affordable, fun to drive car, and is also apparently unlike the mustang, a chick magnet.

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