Chevy Camaro vs Ford Mustang Horsepower Battle Heats Up

When GM stopped producing the Chevy Camaro and Pontiac Firebird, the Ford Mustang reined as the only low priced muscle car available. Notice the word ‘low price’, so as not to be confused with the pricey Chevy Corvette.

Well that has changed as the Chevy Camaro has been reintroduced as well as the Dodge Challenger, Dodge Charger both with 5.7L Hemi’s and the retro styled Mustang saddled with a small V-8. Ford dropped their big block back in 1986 but now must revive it in order to compete with the Camaro. Seems that the new Camaro has outsold the Mustang every month since June and Ford is feeling the hit on sales.

The new 2010 Mustang will come with a V-8 that has 412 HP which is still less than the beefy 426 HP that the V-8 Camaro produces. What about gas mileage? Surely you jest. You don’t buy one of these bad boys if gas mileage is a concern. Though Ford states that their new 305 HP Mustang will get 30 mpg on the highway. That mileage is figured going downhill with a tailwind! LOL

But there is one other thing that Ford needs to change to compete with the Camaro. The Camro styling is new and refreshing while the Mustang looks old school. Just my two cents.

Comments welcome.


For those who are not familiar with either car, this is what the models look like:

2010 Chevy Camaro

2010 Ford Mustang

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I have been writing for Lockergnome for eight years.

  • MPGomatic

    I’ve spent a good bit of time in the 2010 V6 Camaro, V8 Camaro SS, and V6 Mustang over the past six months.

    The V6 Camaro will deliver 30 MPG highway when driven conservatively. The 2011 V6 Mustang will have no problem hitting those numbers and will likely be faster than the Camaro, due to its lighter weight.

    The 2010 Camaro SS can deliver 25 MPG highway when driven with a light foot … with the cruise control set at 68 MPH, it burbles like a speedboat idling through a wake zone. :)

    I’m looking forward to testing the 2011 Mustangs … Ford’s upped the ante.

  • gypkap

    Camaros are pretty, but I prefer my Toyota Tacoma. I can actually afford to drive it (28 MPG highway), and can use it to haul stuff around.

  • the oracle

    Though I doubt many will be on the drag race bandwagon with these cars, because anyone who cares will search out a real muscle car, the small differences in horsepower with any of these will make little difference in a quarter mile.

    Though I don’t know much about the weight of the new Camaro, unless the difference is greater than about 100 pounds, the 14 HP difference between the Camaro and the Mustang will mean less than .05 seconds in the quarter. That is less than a fender length.

    Should the Horsepower Wars start up again, all Ford has to do is drop on a Paxton supercharger, as gets offered in the GT cars. Should Chevy answer with more factory juice, in the form of hotter cams or its own forced intake system, the Ford gets ratcheted up with the change of a pulley on the blower snout, overdriving it by 10-20%.

    Still, I doubt that Chevy will be doing much to promote racing, with the government as its major shareholder. Same for Chrysler. On the other hand, should Ford want to indulge, it has that capability, without any government types looking askance. It also has the technology to answer anything from the others.

    Though I will not be looking to buy one of these, I certainly plan to test drive them – at 6’3″ and a 52T jacket size, I’ve found most of this last few year’s worth of small American cars are designed as though the market was in Japan, and the average buyer’s height at about 5’7″.

  • NovavoN

    Ha, those are gaming Rigs that really fly…
    from someone who’s experience the parallels between increasing speed on the a super highway and cyber highway are uncanny!

    Grateful ’67 Vette Owner/Rebuilder

  • the oracle

    One more thing, the Mustang is classic. The Camaro was never that great in the looks dept, borrowing from others and never being really swoopy until dolled up with chin- and rear- spoilers.

    Looking at the pic you give, the Camaro looks like it could just as well be another Dodge product, as it looks more like the current Challenger than a Chevy product – the only thing that says Chevy is the (probably fake) cowl induction hood.

    I never owned a Camaro, but I owned a ’69 Firebird 400 HO, and a ’69 Cougar Eliminator with 428 CJ, Both cars were judged by most as better looking than their less distinctive cousins, the Camaro and the Mustang.

  • Ron Schenone

    Thanks for the comments everyone.

    Marc – I have owned ’72, ’76 and ’88 Camaro’s and have enjoyed the experience. But I took a new Camaro out for a ride and I personally found the quarters cramped. The rake on the windshield to me is extreme. The roof is low. If you are 6-3 you may have to sit in the back seat to drive it.

    Let me know what you think.

  • Ron Schenone

    I owned an ’86 Vette. Nothing turns heads more or gets more compliments than a Vette. But the bone jarring ride leaves much to be desired. LOL

    Regards, Ron

  • It’s Really A Second Car

    I rented a Mustang some years back, and remember the original models from all three manufacturers. (I had a buddy in high school with a Camaro, who named it his ‘Come-where-o’ because it was a lousy makeout car!)

    But new or old, they’re not good cars to drive year-round unless you live in a perfect climate. They’re rough and tend to be noisy; and depending on your choice of tires can actually cause you to SLOW DOWN on rain-slick roads, which seems counter-intuitive for a “sports” car. And when it snows, just leave them in the garage – they’re all over the road. Not to mention insurance rates.

    As a second car, one might be fun, though. They look great going down the road, and remain an inexpensive way to get the dry-road acceleration those guys in the $60,000+ cars enjoy. What the Hell! If I had the money, I might buy one.

  • Mark Devens

    I personally don’t like the new Camaro, just because it’s new and it looks more like something that belongs in the future. I like the classic look of the Mustang.
    And these opinions have nothing to do with me liking one car maker more than the other. I really like both.

  • onlymustangfords

    First, I’m glad the horsepower wars are moving to the V6 engines as well as the V8’s. There’s other competition too, such as the Hyundai Genesis with over 300 horsepower in its V6.

    The other thing to remember is that The GT is not the only Mustang for 2010 and beyond. You’ve got the 540 horsepower GT500KR, and we haven’t yet seen if there’s going to be a street version of the Boss.

    Also I agree with Mark, the Mustang has the modern-retro look down, as does the new Challenger, but I really was looking forward to the same thing from the Camaro, but its yet another of the “see, it looks just like we said the future Camaro would back in ’75.” Oh well, maybe next round….

  • Pat Mecartea

    The 2010 Camaro looks like a plastic blob! I wouldn’t own one!

  • Lori

    It’s interesting to me how as a Camaro owner, I don’t feel the need to “dis” the Mustang, however, the same unfortunately cannot be said the other way around. Hmmm…funny, isn’t it?

  • Pre Owned Cars

    I like both the cars in terms of speed power and styling. I would like to own both of them.