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Consumer Reports: Ford's Mustang Mach-E Tops Tesla Model Y In This Key Area

Consumer Reports is a big fan of Tesla products. Here’s one critical area that they find the new Mustang Mach-E is “definitely better” than the Tesla Model Y.

Consumer Reports is a big fan of the Tesla product line in general, and they are EV advocates. Who better to pass judgment on the new Mustang Mach-E? In a recent episode of Talking Cars on Youtube, Consumer Reports’ three experts, including an engineer and vehicle technician, all were in agreement that the Mustang Mach-E is superior to the Tesla Model Y in terms of ride comfort and handling.

Related Story: Consumer Reports Suggests Toyota RAV4 Prime As Alternative to the Tesla Model Y

The discussion comes at around timestamp 14 minutes, though we would recommend that any Tesla fan or EV fan watch this entire episode. Jake Fisher, Consumer Reports’ Director of Auto Testing, compliments the Tesla Model Y, saying it feels, “almost like a Porsche 911....” However, he finds that the Mustang Mach-E “feels more refined.” Fisher says that by comparison, the Model Y can feel “a little darty.” Mike Monticello agreed, saying, “You can feel (the Mach-E’s) rear-drive roots.” Fisher also took the Mustang Mach-E to a test track and disabled all the electronic nannies. What he found out about the Mach-E during the track test will interest any performance enthusiast considering a Mustang Mach-E.

Related Story: Three Surprises Ford's Mustang Mach-E Has For Tesla Shoppers With a $50K Budget

When discussing the ride comfort of these two sporty vehicles, the group was in firm agreement that the Mustang Mach-E was “Definitely better.” This is repeated twice by the group for emphasis. That comment string comes at timestamp 15:40.

Another area that the group finds the Ford Mustang Mach-E is a standout is in regard to infotainment technology. Paraphrasing the group, they say that the Mach-E makes great use of its very large screen area.

So, where did the group point out strengths of the Tesla Model Y by comparison to the Mustang Mach-E? Each member felt that the Model Y has a stronger initial “throttle” response. However, bear in mind that the group has only tested one Mach-E, and it was two steps down from the highest-performing trim. Also, Consumer Reports feels that Tesla has an edge over Ford with regard to range.

The comments by Consumer Reports mirror our own Torque News observations from two weeks ago when we drove the Mustang Mach-E ER AWD Premium back to back with a Tesla Model Y LR AWD. See how closely our own conclusions aligned with Consumer Reports’ by checking out our own deep dive on the Model Y vs. the Mustang Mach-E.

This episode also has a good overview of the Tesla Model S and X steering wheel changes. The group finds them so intriguing that Jake committed Consumer Reports to “Buying another Model S.”

What is your take on the Mustang Mach-E compared to the Tesla Model Y? Has Ford topped the segment’s best-selling electric crossover, or is it too soon to tell?

John Goreham is a long-time New England Motor Press Association member and recovering engineer. Following his engineering program, John also completed a marketing program at Northeastern University and worked with automotive component manufacturers. In addition to Torque News, John's work has appeared in print in dozens of American newspapers and he provides reviews to many vehicle shopping sites. You can follow John on Twitter, and view his credentials at Linkedin


DeanMcManis (not verified)    February 8, 2021 - 9:34PM

As usual, your anti-Tesla take on these guy's review shows up your consistent bias. You are always looking for things that you perceive as Tesla's flaws. I watched this same interview, and came away with a wholly different view on their opinions of these two electric crossovers. What I heard them say was that the Mach-E was very much like a regular Ford. Nice comfortable ride, conventional controls and interior design, decent but a bit underwhelming power, and a practical, useful, overall design. They liked the Mach-E, but they all agreed that the Model Y was quicker, had a much better range, and superior infotainment and automotive software, as well as having the better Tesla Supercharger network. One of the reviewers was pretty clueless about EVs in the fact that he said that even though the $57K Mach-E that they tested was rated at 270 miles of range, with him, in the cold, he only managed 200 miles, which he said was unacceptable. But he also mentioned that he did not plug the Mach-E in even once! His defense was that the charge capability at 120V was not worth doing, but the Mach-E does charge at 3 miles an hour (as opposed to 7MPH for the Tesla) on 120V, so overnight you can add 30 miles of charge easily, which may be what you use to drive in a given daily commute. Still, the Model Y's heat pump does offer better resistance to EV mileage loss due to driving in the cold. Despite the Mach-E having a hard battle to match the Model Y, I am still happy that Ford is building the Mach-E. Legacy automaker Ford has done a great job with their first real BEV. Having good competition between EVs is vital to their success, because their real competition is the gas powered Toyota RAV4 and the Honda CR-V that dominate this crossover market today.

John Goreham    February 9, 2021 - 8:40AM

In reply to by DeanMcManis (not verified)

Let's step back a bit. The story here is not about Tesla or the Model Y. Rather, it is a story about an upstart new model that is challenging an entrenched segment leader. The story points out that in the view of CR, the upstart has an area in which it outshines the segment leader. Is that true, or did the group not say that? Next, How many times is the story did we mention that CR is a fan of Tesla? The intro line of the entire story is "Consumer Reports is a big fan of the Tesla product line in general, and they are EV advocates." The second to last paragraph highlights that the group is also planning to buy another Tesla for testing because some new tech is intriguing to them. The story also points out that the group found the Tesla to be superior in two important ways. The same ones you mention in your comment above. Your critique is that the heat pump isn't a part of this story? Finally, the group makes abundantly clear that this is not a comprehensive test of the Mach-E. It was a first drive impressions overview. The reason the CR person you mention didn't plug in the Mach-E is that each member had a limited time with it. That is made obvious in the video. The vehicle was delivered to that person full and the range was around 200 miles. My experience was the same after numerous charges. (I believe I tested the same vehicle that CR did).

DeanMcManis (not verified)    February 9, 2021 - 8:58PM

The consensus of the group was that they liked much about the Mach-E. I did not see a consensus about the handling or ride being entirely better than the Tesla. Just different. And since there were 3 differing opinions, the only agreement was that the Mach-E was different from the Tesla, traditional feeling, and comfortable. Not "outshining" as you added yourself. It is good that Ford is building a solid, traditional EV crossover with the Mach-E. Just as it's good that Toyota offers the RAV4 Prime as another competitive, alternative crossover. I have no beef about people's personal preferences to find a vehicle that best matches what they want, need, and expect. Variety is great! The problem happens when you come out with an article implying that the Mach-E is better than the Model Y, when this is not what they reported, and even if all 3 of them liked the ride in the Mach-E more, it does not follow that other buyers wouldn't value features like EV range, software or performance more, to make the Model Y their favorite. Their reporting was flawed, and your take on it was skewed.