Is Ford Going to Shut Off Your Mustang’s Engine?

Ford is going to be adding an engine shut-off feature to every single future vehicle produced, including the Mustang. What does this mean for performance enthusiasts? There’s still not enough details, but we do know that when your Mustang comes to a stop, the engine’s going off! The article below says this is an effort to promote fuel economy. When you apply pressure to the gas pedal, the engine will restart and all is well.

What does this mean for the weekend track guy who launches off idle? When you’re staged and waiting for that green light, your engine is going to be stalled. This sounds to me like a potential problem for you guys who are working on your 60ft. times! I have a feeling this will be able to be bypassed, either in tuning or mechanically.

What are your thoughts on this new technology? Should it be kept out of particular models like the Mustang? Comment below or join our thread on The Mustang Source forums.

All Ford Vehicles Soon To Have Automatic Engine Shut-off

Ford just announced that they are going to be adding an engine shut-off option to every single vehicle produced which is referred to as start-stop technology. When the vehicle comes to a complete stop, the engine will automatically shut off and as the driver applies pressure to the accelerator, it automatically restarts again.

Ford says that this will reduce gas by 4% and almost 10% for city vehicles that have frequent stop-go traffic.

Ford will most likely be setting the bar for automakers when it comes to gas efficiency for the future. Stricter laws for gas-economy are well on the way for 2016 which may require this become standard on all vehicles. It is another way to save gas just like the hybrid and electric cars.

Some vehicles are already using the smart-stop technology. The Ford Fusion hybrid and Ford Escape hybrids utilize it, as well as Ford cars sold in Europe.

“For the driver, Ford Auto Start-Stop provides extra fuel efficiency without inconvenience, as it works completely automatically,” said Barb Samardzich, Ford vice president of powertrain engineering. “And, just like in our hybrid vehicles, the heater and air conditioner work as normal so drivers will not sacrifice comfort.”

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  • Dillyn

    I think it’s a horrible idea.

    • Harry

      Agree – terrible idea. We already sit too long at a green light waiting for the string of traffic to get going – this idea would extand the wait. INSTANT on and go – I doubt it.
      What would this do to the life-cycle of the starter and battery?

    • JerkyBoy

      What a waste!

    • Dirk

      That should be interesting after 40-50k miles of urban driving when the starter finally takes a dump & you’re in traffic at rush hour. (Wonder how many “Green Hours of labor, raw materials, and energy to produce” all the starters & batteries will add to the envirnmental impact?) Should be a good service item replacng the starter more frquently. Why not just have the engine go to a safe leaner fuel setting after 3 minutes of no throttle activity?
      Just another Mfg gimmick that certain people will fall for.

    • Steven

      I think this a really horrible idea. If I was worried about saving fuel I would purchase a hybrid vehicle. It will be a cold day in hell when that happens.

  • Baz

    Chances are this is going to be focused on mostly passenger models, the article I readon on MSN stated the engines need both direct injection and an electric assist water pump. As we know Mustangs have neither on either the 3.7 or 5.0 although they can be upgraded to have them. If anything it’ll probably be an option like keyless start and offer a bypass. What would be even better make Auto start/stop standard but include a TracKey with every Mustang with a track tune and bypass :)

    • Bryan

      I actually like the TracKey idea, like they’re doing for the Boss. This could help alleviate the negativity towards the Start-Stop technology. For those who just want their car as a DD and want to save gas, the normal key would suffice, but for those (most likely many of the enthusiasts) who do not want to use this technology could simply use the TracKey instead. This way, Ford can get the higher required MPG that the government is enforcing over the next decade, while still adding the ability to circumvent it for the enthusiasts if they so choose.

      • Sikk98gt

        i think in away its a good idea when you wana save gas. i dont wanna waste gas sitting at a railroad crossing when fuel might jump back up to 4bucks a gal. then again this also could be a bad thing everytime i stop my car is shut off what if it shuts off and never turns on again? what if im in a traffic jam wall to wall and now i get rear ended because of this shut off to my car???

  • offbeatmammal

    I like the idea for making my day to day driver a little greener (assuming the embedded cost of this technology is worth the fuel saving over the life of the car, and it doesn’t impact the reliability of the Mustang powerplant)… but I would like a bypass option for those days when you need to get away from the lights without waiting for the green police to say you can pull away :)

    • AMChrisRose

      This is what we’re hoping is an option. We are thinking that this will be easily bypassable in an aftermarket custom tune. If not, maybe it can easily be bypassed mechanically. Time will tell!

  • pony4.6

    It’s a good idea. I say put it……but leave it out of the mustang. At least out of the v8

  • Nick

    That is the most retarded thing I have ever heard of in a long time. I’m so sick and tired of this economy crap. If they really want to do this so badly, they should at least show some signs of intelligence and leave it off of the performance vehicles.

  • Nick C.

    that is stupid
    so if u r running ur car hard the car will realize it and shut itself down
    this is just another thing that will be modded so people can take them out of the car
    this is just another way for the government controlling what we do well Blank You government BLANK YOU!

  • Ryan

    That idling exhaust will sound so good. :(

  • stu

    leave it off the mustangs period. good system but not for this type of car. of course the bypass would be found and used to overide.

  • Stu Piddasses

    That is just retarded! Why not shut it down while your going down hill too. All the technology they could develop and this is the best they can do?

  • Paul

    So what about when ur bumper to bumper in traffic moving slow and stoppin over and over, ur car is gunna get started 150 times in an hour, doesnt sound too good for the engine to me.

  • Joseph A Girdley

    I don’t like it at all & it’s just silly. Who’s going to pay for that starter motor that goes out every five or so thousand miles of city driving from all those starts & stops? Save four percent of fuel & cost untold millions making new starter motors? Guess what…making those starters expendins of a lot of energy. Another example of only moving the problem, not solving it.

    • Dave Tindall

      A very good point. Yes, we don’t even hear the resulting problems from those vehicles that are now on the road with this technolgy.

      And how many didn’t start on the green in heavy traffic? Beep, beep, beep !! Just as others said, is this the only thing they can come up with to improve fuel economy. Don’t think for a minute that they will only introduce fuel saving carburation/engine technology that is on the back shelf in drips and drabs for the next 20 years. Do you want to think that they want to put the oil refineries out out business yet? That will also rebound back into the economy won’t it?.

  • Joseph A Girdley

    make that “expends” a lot of energy…

  • David Lemoine

    How are you supposed to thaw out a vehicle in winter weather? Remote starters a VERY popular around here because it can take 10 minutes to defrost a vehicle in Maine winters. Let’s also remember all the people that have been stranded on the roadways in snowstorms across the country this winter. Are they supposed to freeze because they can’t let the vehicle idle to run the heater?

  • Adam Begas

    Well, this’ll make driving stick interesting… Or lemme guess – they’ll do away with those?

  • Roush

    This I think is a bad idea if they were going to do anything to the mustang they should go the eco boost route like on the F 150 and the SHO. This would also give the performance guys the opportunity to upgrade the turbo and everyone would be happy

  • render farm

    Informative, great to read all the responses and input, thanks for your contributions and opinions

  • Shane

    It reduces gas usage by onle 4% and 10% on city vehicles? Sorry but those percentages are too small to make any significant improvement, at least in my eyes. What’s this going to mean on the Mustang’s idle sound? I’m sure there will be some sort of bypass but the numbers are just so insignificant to spend on the new cars. They should spend more time developing it first to get better numbers then put it in the cars. Doing so now would just be a waste to the consumer.

  • Brian

    Hold onto your current cars boys!! If we don’t buy they’ll quit making them.

    • Dom

      Great comment! I’m riding my 94 Mustang GT into the sunset! American Muscle and my ’94 is all I need!

    • Matt

      Thats the best comment ive seen so far. My 06 is gonna be with me for a long time

  • Dom

    Why not leave it up to the driver? Either a switch it on or off feature, for all car drivers of all cars moving forward, or leave it as a factory option when you buy a car off the lot brand new. I remember when freedom included the right to think as individuals.

  • Brian

    Just something else to go wrong. This almost makes the drive by wire look like a good idea. Keep up the good work.

  • Marcello

    this is a bad idea really bad idea!, its like ford comes out with a new powerful engine for the mustang and wants to shut off the fuel when you want to feel and hear the power of the car. i think they are just taking the fun out of a hot rod. fuel economy is all about family vehicles,hybrids, and smart cars… not sports cars or what us guys call ” our hot rods”. i know on my mustang i want to open it up when i want wihtout getting disrupted by the fuel being cutoff. if you really look at reality, people will always buy fuel no matter how expensive it gets, and if they bought an expensive new 5.0 mustang or have a high end older mustang than they can afford to maintain it, pay for fuel etc.
    if this does take effect people will find a way around it, and they always will no matter what. To me it kinda sounds like OBD 3 is around the corner and if its true from what i already know about it i’ll stay with newer OBD 2 vehicles.

  • vistastang

    leave it out that is golf cart tech

  • Jason

    Exactly, works well on golf carts, but to quote the great Garfield the Cat, “whoever thought of that should be drug out into the street and shot” (applying it to the Mustang). Last time I knew fuel mileage regs were applied to the vehicle fleet as a whole, meaning that as long as the fleet average mpg met the reg than everything was good. So if needed put it in all the vehicles except the Mustang and I’m thinking the fleet average mpg will be well within regs. I’d rant about the numerous other reasons I think this is a terrible idea, but they’ve been well-covered in the replies above.

  • john

    I doubt that that technology will save a drop of gas. This is just to appease the EPA and the enviro-nazi’s.

  • William

    I think it is a great idea. But it must NEVER be introduced to the Mustang, no matter what the circumstances are. All of us Mustang enthusiasts are out for more performance from our vehicles, not more gas mileage. Yeah, as we all know most basic bolt-ons and a tune will improve your gas mileage, but thats not what we’re truly after. With the improvements in technology in todays time Ford is already increasing the gas mileage that is possible in our Mustangs, even with the increase in peformance gains that they have made over the past five years. However, what we truly want from Ford is more power. If they can increase gas mileage without reducing the amount of power we put down on the pavement then by all means that is great. But why give us so much power to play with, only to tell us that every single time our vehicle comes to a stop, that it will shut off. I mean honestly, isn’t it true for the most part that each time we start our Stangs that we burn as much gas as we do when we let the sit at idle for seven minutes? So all they would truly be doing is causing us to spend more at the pumps, even though it would make us feel like we are saving gas. But like I said, we are Mustang driving peformance enthusiasts, not rice rocket gas savers.

  • Condor

    Will this save enough to offset the cost in starters?

  • erik

    Imagine at a 4 way stop… you know when all four people are there confused ‘Oh is it me now?’. Stop, it turns off, go, OH WAIT not my turn! Turns off, urgh!! That would suck. And yeah someone like me that lives up here in Canada that has to warm it up before going to work… would you have to sit in there and rev it up or something? Geez. I hope they realize that we own a mustang for looks and/or performance… this dont help with performance one bit. It’s called Mustang for a reason it wants to gallop!

  • Wayland

    I wanna see a Mustang with EcoBoost.

  • Daniel

    I think this is a terrible idea, if youre buying a mustang, chances are you are buying it to have fun not save the environment. Plus its not exactly a great idea cause starting your car up over and over and over and over and over again isn’t exactly great for it.

  • Matt

    this is what you call “fixing a nonexistant problem, with a bigger problem.” true gear heads dont mind getting crappy mpg as long as we have a smile on our face… and if they do put this on the new high performance mustangs, someone will be getting rich by making a bypass code.

    • Bob

      Bad idea … I bought a Mustang to have fun AND save gas, that’s why I bought a V6 that gets 30mpg!! (Ok, 29, I’ve got a manual and it does get about 30 mpg, until I stick my foot in it!). If Ford got 30 mpg out of a Mustang now, what could the other manufacturers do in 5 years if they really put their minds to it?

      What if you’re stuck in a dangerous situation and you need to get the hell out of the way of something barrelling down on you but it doesn’t go back on because, Oh, I don’t know, you’ve toasted your starter turning it back on everytime some idiot in front of you stops at a yellow light???

      Get the engineers out there thinking instead of bowing down (or bending over)to the bureaucrats and stop trying to take away our choices!

      • cory

        Look at the chevy impala as this is likely where the tecnology is coming from. The car faces no starter problems and has no eletrical issues. Ford will be the same way

  • cory

    Well let’s not forget that the chevy impala has been usijgbthis for years… this isn’t new technology by any stretch of the imagination. I think its a great idea for saving but should probably be kept out of the mustangs, or just be sure its an easy feature to bypass. And it is instant, I’ve personally felt it. Most people may not know that vehicle is equipped with it. Go ford!

  • nick

    Its a great idea… just not on our mustangs! lets face it, when you buy a mustang (or any kind of muscle car) you know gas millage is going to suck and you are willing to pay for it. whats next the car will shut off when you burn out?
    They want to put this into the mustang it should come with directions on how to take it off.

  • steve

    Whatever cash you don’t use for gas can go toward a new battery because you are going to be buying those pretty frequently.

  • Craig

    I hope the SCT tuners can tune this crap out.

  • Javier

    A Mustang with (Eco Boost) that’s a joke, I like the smell of raw gasoline and the sound of an old muscle fashion engine.

  • Bobby

    An Eco Boost mustang would be a cool idea. That engine is pretty beastly.

    • Cody

      The eco boost is pretty much what they have on the new 2011 mustangs so theyve already done that.

      • Mware

        The Eco Boost is a 3.5 liter TWIN TURBO engine with direct injection technology. The 3.7 liter, 305 hp engine in the ’11 V6 Mustangs is nothing like the Eco Boost. They have put it in the Taurus SHO, which is cranking out 365 hp, but not in the Mustang yet.

  • Cody

    How are they going to be able to do that for straight drive mustangs??? It doesnt seem like the engine is going to know when to turn back on with the clutch.

  • Wayne

    They already utilize this technology in that new 4-door Porsche… It seemed to instantly start up after the tested it out on a track… Almost like going from Park to Drive… haha

  • Matt hicks

    how are you going to warm up your car on those cold winter mornings???

    • Cody


    • dillon

      rev the engine..

      • Cody

        That kind of defeats the purpose of warming the car up before you get in it……

  • Javier

    Pure crap.

  • dillon

    just dont buy a new car for racing the.. or get a crate engine..

  • Matt

    This should strictly be an option for all ford vehicles and not mandatory. This feature would be good for someone who does not want a performace vehicle and just drives because it is convenient, not because they enjoy driving. An everyday commuter who drives to work in heavy traffic would utilize this feature. I also see the benefits of this because it saves our environment. But for us performace mustang owners this option would be terrible. I love hearing that v8 idle. It seems like the throttle response would be tremendously slower off the line also. I would never have this in any car I own. This is a good OPTION, but definitely does not need to be MANDITORY.

  • Dave

    Haha, this is classic. They are going to this tech for the same reason they are going to keyless/push button start. Electric cars. Think about it, push button start is because there is no starter for an elec motor. This start stop tech is because an elec car is silent when you stop for a light. It is all “conditioning” of the american consumer to get us used to electric cars. It’s their way of smoothing the transition, to make the elec cars more similar to what we already have so people arent scared or intimidated by them. I read somewhere a few years ago the mustang will get a new body style in 2014. That info has vanished lately. I believe it will get a new body, to make room in the chassis for elec motor drives on the front hubs and rear axle. Buy that new 5.0 while you can, it will be investment grade in a few years when people will pay more for a used 5.0 then a new elec mustang.

    oh and the comment above about not working with a stick shift? Bingo! It’s called “autostick”, better get used to the idea.

  • Jeff

    The amount you save in gas will be negated by the extra starter you buy over the life of the vehicle compared to one without this ridiculous feature. Dumb.

  • Rockford Hall


  • Devin

    Lets not forget the fact that starting your engine uses just as much gas as idling for ten minutes

    • Cory

      really? (no sarcasm)

  • bill

    There will be a way to leave engine on. On ford escape hybrid when ac on full engine stays on. Same as defrost on full engine stays on. Only will be on mustang if goverment requires it. On hybrid engine turns off in parking lot as vechile is parking. at least with a hybrid the electric motor starts to move car before engine turns on. If ford etc make all engines turn off at light etc then are we all suppose to wait for engine to start at every light? That would make hybrid sound better

  • Cory

    if your driving a mustang it better be a V8… add this crap in the v6, if your worried about fuel economy buy a smart cart or a toyota, i think i would rather waste gas at the light hearing my baby purr and not have to worry if the engine will start back up again