New 2018/2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt S550 Leaked?

Images of what seem to show a new 2018 or 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt appeared on a board placed in a behind-the-scenes video featuring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson while he was shooting a commercial at FoMoCo’s Dearborn facility.

The sketchboards that come into focus just after the three-minute mark and which contain renderings and drawings of future Mustangs were noticed by a member of the Mustang6G forums.

Clues that point to the Mustang being a Bullitt edition include the dark green shade or as Ford calls it, ‘Dark Highland Green’, the two-tone thrust-style wheels, the de-badged grilled and the faux gas cap.

The general consensus over at the forums is that, if not an outright confirmation of Ford’s intentions, at the bare minimum, it could be a proposal for a new generation of the Mustang Bullitt.

It wouldn’t be completely out of character for Ford to tease it, as the brand concealed several Easter eggs in the press pictures of the facelifted 2018 Mustang’s digital dash.

Made famous by the most effortlessly cool person to grace Hollywood screens, Steve McQueen in the 1968 movie Bullitt, which included what many gearheads consider as the best car chase scene ever, Ford turned that Mustang into a limited production model twice. The first time was in 2001 with a lesser known and appreciated special edition, and the last in 2008-2009 with the retro-modern, fifth gen Mustang.

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  • Cameron

    Highly doubt they are going to keep that front end change after the public outcry.

    • donald seymour

      It’s actually really attractive, but it really does take some time to digest the visuals of it.

      • Tumbi Mtika

        Nice to see you’ve stopped sending death threats to Ford designers. I am seeing it in person tomorrow.

        • Tumbi Mtika

          UPDATE I really like how it looks. Overall, I think we need new photographers for the automakers. Because a lot of the cars I thought I hated from the press photos are actually really gorgeous.

    • Six Thousand Times

      Public outcry?

    • Matt

      Has an automaker EVER reacted to online criticism of a design by re-designing the car before launch? For Ford to do that, it like telling the world ‘we didn’t do our homework and we got it wrong’. That won’t happen.

      • Carmaker1

        It is even not feasible to do that, as the turn around time to such criticism isn’t so immediate on the public side of things. Even if they responded to this, it would take another 2 years to fully execute it. At least 4-6 weeks could be spent at the bare minimum to refine the design and then to even sign-off on such changes (when presented to management) would require 3-4 months at the tightest minimum.

        Another 12-18 months would be needed to make the necessary adjustments to factory tooling and that of thoroughly testing the changes. By the time you add all of that together, it is pretty much 2 years already.

        The S550 team started working on this refresh in early 2014 and finalized the changes at the end of 2015. If they started working on “fixing” this facelift in late January (after hearing 7-10 days worth of criticism), they wouldn’t be able to deliver it until at least late 2018/early 2019, which starts encroaching on the next generation S650 due in mid-2020. Styling for the next generation Mustang (S650) will be frozen by the end of this year, barring any possible delays.

        • Matt

          Precisely.

          Redesigning a model, even if it’s just a facelift – is a long process. Honda performed an ’emergency update’ on the last USDM Civic after poor reviews, but even that took about 18 months from the time management pushed the green light for the engineers to address the NVH and quality criticisms to the car actually hitting dealerships.

          Of course being in the industry you already know that..

          • Carmaker1

            Thank you, as it seems not many people are aware of this. You are very correct about that, as Honda’s response seemed like quickest reaction ever to criticism. The reality about that Civic refresh, was that Honda apparently started work on it around mid-2010 out of insecurity regarding their revisions to the incoming 2012 model.

            The “2011 Civic” design had been decided on in 2008 when the 8th generation Civic (2005-11) was facelifted for the ’09 model year, only for Ito to order revisions and decontenting of it in the spring of 2009 as the design freeze almost concluded. Thus, it was pushed back from late 2010 launch as a MY2011 to April 2011 as a MY2012.

            By the time the press and public saw the 2012 model in January 2011, Honda was inching towards finishing design work on the emergency facelift (later frozen by August 2011). They did benefit significantly from feedback regarding NVH and quality criticism during the first half of 2011 as you said, as early work during 2010 was pretty much working in the dark for them.

            In contrast, the current (16MY+) Civic’s design was approved parallel to the refreshed model making its L.A. debut in November 2012, mostly because the new modular platform necessitated nearly “36 months” before Job #1 in 2015 for certain aspects of development. Final design was frozen in mid-2013, which was much earlier than the previous Civic timeline.

            Even in these days of shorter lead time for prototyping and the use of digital models, quality concerns limit turnaround times. It still is much better than in the past, where designs were set 4-5 years before launch.

    • Carmaker1

      How so? It is WAY TOO late to do anything (even if I don’t like it), as all of Ford’s Mustang styling efforts are on the S650, due in May 2020. The S550 is now old news at Ford Design, other than giving public statements and highlighting PAST efforts in developing the facelift from early 2014 to 2016.

      Styling for the initial 2015MY S550 Mustang was nearly done by 2011, judging by this Ford rendering from 2011 https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/62b2b5593c0b2de59bb917a6bbcda3ab64ab82c11be653b7af7eab554d1a54b6.jpg

      Plus, these clay models from early 2012 tell more of the same. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/24143c1c466535c6f24f96b5116548c8c5374cf04716ee8998f904fc9d1b60be.jpg S550 Final Design Freeze was delayed several months in 2012, barely getting fully locked-in by December 7, 2012 (design freeze).

      The 2018MY S550 design changes were finalized in late 2015, to be ready in time for June 2017 SOP. The problem is, only Ford personnel with full access to the S550 MCA programme had advance knowledge of the changes and were the only people that could voice approval or disapproval back in 2015 or early 2016 to anyone with veto power.

      Ford cannot and will not make any changes, unless management delays the S650 redesign and extends the S550 generation for an additional 2 years back to 2022. The tooling changes are already paid for since early 2016 and next autumn Ford will order production tooling for the S650 Mustang (2021 model year), which is undergoing styling decision making at this point.

  • Honda NSX-R

    It’s looking good from what I’m seeing.

  • Dennis Scipio

    I thought i read Bullitt (Bullet) as Builtt (Built) but nope.

  • Six Thousand Times

    John, you might give your article a quick proofread.

  • Tumbi Mtika

    I think you can already (technically?) make a Bullit Mustang from the current options sheet.

  • nauticalone

    This isn’t a colour I’d usually take to…but on the Mustang Bullit and on Jaguar…Yes!

  • Valkyrie

    I still can’t https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bb04a62234da2994b66565b69d5bca9e72b1e49650a4cdbe1e2c0db515be761d.jpg believe my car is going to be 50 years old next year!

  • Sally Dehlinger

    seems lately the new Mustangs look like the current Ford FOCUS cars. Why not make the 50th anniversary car be built just like the 1968 GT model ??? 1968 body style with today technology inside. If I was FORD, this is what I would do.
    Don, Wisconsin