The 2018 Mustang is truly a well-rounded car, from the engine, to the interior, to the chassis, the new Mustang is set up quite well. One of the advanced options available is the MagneRide Adaptive Suspension system. Justin Dugan, one of the hosts for American Muscle’s YouTube channel, takes some time to go over the brief history of the magnetic ride option, how it works, and then take us on a test drive, demonstrating the various modes.
Magnetically-tuned suspensions have been around for over a 15-years now, but it’s hardly old technology—it’s had over 15 years of development into it, making it the best-developed system as of yet. For the Mustang, the MagneRide suspension option first became available on the 2015 Shelby GT350 and GT350R to extremely positive reviews, and now, with this being the first major revamp of the S550 platform, is now available for the Ford Mustang GT and EcoBoost as well.
So, how does MangneRide work? Well, as far as suspension setup goes, it’s pretty much like any other suspension, with the only difference being the shocks/struts (dampers). In a MagneRide setup, the dampers contain an electromagnetic coil, and are filled with what’s known as Magnetorheological (MR) fluid. When a current is applied, the MR fluid changes viscosity, making the damper either stiff or soft, depending on the current.
This makes for a system that is extremely adaptive, as it takes input from all over the car, and can make up to 1000 adjustments per second—but can also be tailored by you, the driver with three settings: Normal, Sport+, and Track. There’s also “Drag Mode,” which softens the front and stiffens the rear for weight transfer, but it won’t help you on a road course.
Justin takes the S550 out on a familiar stretch of road to test all three modes, which turns out that they’re significantly different, as each mode increased cornering and car control as you increased the stages. If you’re the kind of driver that doesn’t want to be stuck with a one-dimensional driving mode, and wants some sort of option, then this package might be just what you’re looking for!
Living in Richmond, Texas, PJ Rentie has been in the automotive industry for more than 30 years. This former Assistant Editor at Vette Magazine also spent time with companies like NOS, Edelbrock, Hillbank Motorsports, Classic Industries, and was an automotive instructor for Cypress College for ten years. In his spare time, PJ hopes to one day bring his Fox Body Mustang out of the back yard and back onto the street!