The 2015 Ford Mustang Gets Unbelievable Industry First - Factory Line Lock
Last year, I did a piece speculating on the rumors that the 2015 Ford Mustang would feature a new “burnout control” system that would make it easier for drivers to do monster burnouts in their high performance pony car. At that time, I received all sorts of comments and emails, telling me that something like this was nothing but a litigation nightmare and that – as cool as it would be – something like this would never be included as a factory option. I disagreed and evidently, Ford did too, as the 2015 Ford Mustang GT does indeed come with a new system to help the driver do the best burnouts possible. While it doesn’t have a fun name like “burnout control”, the new line lock system will help the most novice drivers get their tires good and sticky for a hard drag strip launch.
“We’re using advanced controls technology for the all-new Mustang to provide some of our most dedicated fans with an industry-first feature they can use when they go to the track,” said Dave Pericak, Mustang chief engineer. “With electronic line-lock, customers who drive their Mustangs to work all week and then compete on the weekends will appreciate not having to modify their brake systems to be able to do effective tire prep at the drag strip.”
There is no mention of the other 2015 Ford Mustang models (V6, EcoBoost), but the S550 Mustang GT will come with the new factory line lock system standard with both manual and automatic transmissions. It is called line lock because the electronic system literally locks the fluid into the front brake lines. This keeps the front brakes locked and keeps the car in place, freeing up your left and right foot to handle the clutch and throttle for the best burnout possible.
The new line lock system for the 2015 Mustang GT works through the driver’s information system and is controlled through the buttons mounted on the left side spoke of the steering wheel. After selecting the line lock system from the menu, the driver’s information display prompts when the system is ready with the front wheels locked. From there, it is just a matter of the driver adding enough throttle (and letting out the clutch at the proper RPM in manual models) to get the back tires spinning. Based on the Ford video below, this system works remarkably well as the 2015 Mustang GT makes very short work of those factory tires.
“Whether a customer wants to take weekend road trips, go road racing or compete in grassroots drag racing, we aim to maximize the driving experience for everyone,” said Pericak. “Mustang offers selectable drive modes for those who prefer to compete on road courses or in autocross events, so when we realized we could provide a really cool feature like electronic line-lock that no one else offers, the decision was easy – ‘Let’s do it!’”
When combined with the new Launch Control system, the standard line lock setup on the 2015 Ford Mustang GT should go a very long way in helping to both get new racers to the track and help those folks to compete quickly – removing some of the basic learning curves of first time racers. It should be noted that in some new vehicles with a drag strip launch control system, very good, very experienced drivers have been able to lay down better track times without the launch control setup but for the novice racer, these two features will play a big part in help inexperienced drivers gain the experience that they need without making themselves look silly. After spending time working with the launch control system, these 2015 Mustang GT drivers may be able to gain the experience needed to become one of the drivers who can turn better times with the helpers turned off.
Interestingly, Ford Motor Company ends the press release announcing the incredible new factory line lock system for the 2015 Mustang GT by pointing out that the system is only for use on the race track- and that racing on the track voids your warranty. It seems a little odd that Ford would introduce a handful of features to encourage track use…only to proclaim that racing will void your warranty. Over time, it will be interesting to see if Ford eventually follows the lead taken by General Motors with the new Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, which comes with a warranty that includes track time.
In any case, the 2015 Mustang GT continues to prove the doubters wrong, coming with standard features that were once reserved for aftermarket outfitters.