2018 Ford Mustang GT’s New Quiet Exhaust Mode Won’t Wake the Neighbors


Stealth-starting ‘Stang

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Ford’s former head of vehicle engineering, Steve von Foerster, simply started his Mustang and left home one day, but the ruckus the V-8’s exhaust made upon startup rankled his neighbor enough to inspire a 9-1-1 call. Of course the offending noisemaker was gone when the cops arrived, so no ticket was issued. Rather than getting mad or getting even, von Foerster set his team about the task of preventing such calls in the future without fully emasculating the car.

Lots of cars have buttons or menus from which to change the exhaust setting, but who remembers to press it when folks are sleeping? Ford’s better idea is Quiet Exhaust mode, which will make its debut on the new 2018 Mustang GT arriving this fall. Just as you can program your car to alert you when it leaves a geo-fenced area, or limit vehicle speed or radio volume via the MyKey parental control settings, now you can also program the car to automatically start with its active valve performance exhaust system set to its sotto voce mode during the hours of day when folks may be trying to sleep, and to stir your soul with its full-throated fourth-order burble the rest of the day. Oh, and I checked: There’s no forcing it back on again during those hours via the MyKey parental controls settings if you’re hoping the loud exhaust will wake you up to thwart your heirs from post-curfew cruising. If you own a 2018 Shelby GT350, you’re unfortunately out of luck. The feature is currently only available on the GT, despite the GT350 having the necessary active exhaust valves.

The exhaust mode can be set by navigating to the general settings menu on the standard 4-inch instrument cluster display, or to the Pony menu on cars equipped with the fancier 12-inch all-digital cluster. Once activated, the peak exhaust sound at startup is said to register at about 72 decibels—or as Ford describes it “about the level of a household dishwasher.” Set it properly, and with the 2018 Mustang GT your biggest threat of Waking Up the Neighbours might be starting your car with your Bryan Adams CD cranked up too loud.

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