The Mustang is the archetypal sports car. It's sleek, powerful, and speedy. If you want to bring the Mustang's excitement along with you on your next RV adventure, you may be tempted to flat tow it. But can you? We've done the research, and here's the answer:
You should not flat tow your Mustang. Doing so can damage your transmission, drivetrain, and other components. You can flat tow your Mustang in emergency situations following specific protocols and restrictions. Ford recommends towing the Mustang on a flatbed for all model years. Certain model years can also be dolly towed when necessary.
Just because you can't flat tow the Mustang doesn't mean you can't bring it with you. In this article, we'll cover how to tow Mustangs from different model years. We'll also look at towing other great vehicles from Ford's lineup and more. Keep reading to get the full story.
How to tow a Ford Mustang
The Ford Mustang dates back to 1964 and has been part of American culture and consciousness ever since. As Ford's longest-produced vehicle, it will come as no surprise that the Mustang has undergone some changes, and not all towing methods apply to all model years.
There is only one exception to this. All model years of the Mustang can be towed on a flatbed trailer, with all wheels off the ground. This is Ford's recommended towing method, as it keeps your Mustang safest.
Because flatbed car trailers can be quite heavy and expensive, this towing method might not appeal to many drivers. However, for certain model years, this is the only Ford-approved towing method. These include Mustangs from 2021 and 2022 as well as the 2003 and 2004 models.
For other model years, Ford has approved the use of wheel-lift towing with the use of dollies. In this method, either the front or rear wheels will be lifted by the towing vehicle.
Ford recommends putting the wheels that aren't lifted on a dolly. This is especially important when lifting the front wheels. The Mustang is a rear-wheel-drive vehicle, so leaving the rear wheels in contact with the road can damage the transmission and drivetrain.
It is also a good idea to put the front wheels on a dolly when lifting the rear wheels. Lifting the rear wheels will reduce the ground clearance at the front of the vehicle. Because of this, the front bumper of your Mustang is susceptible to damage. A dolly increases that clearance.
While you should not flat tow your Mustang for recreational towing, emergencies can happen. If you need emergency towing and there are no other options, you can flat tow your Mustang following a careful procedure.
This procedure can vary somewhat between model years. We will outline the procedure for the 2022 Mustang, but consult your owner's manual for your specific year. Ford has owner's manuals available on its support site for the years 1996-2022.
First, your Mustang must face forward in the direction it will be towed. Connect it to the tow vehicle securely. You can connect them by attaching mini J-hooks to oblong holes in the rails behind the front wheels. These are the same connections for winching your Mustang.
Set the transmission to neutral (N). You may need to override your gear shifter to do this, which can be done following instructions in the owner's manual. Place your ignition in Accessory or On to prevent the steering wheel from locking.
You can flat tow your 2022 Mustang in this configuration. Do not exceed speeds of 35 mph or distances of 50 miles.
Can you flat tow a manual Mustang?
Manual transmission vehicles in general tend to be more amenable to flat towing. However, Ford does not approve of flat towing the Mustang regardless of the transmission type. Flat towing is the preferred method for both automatic and manual Mustangs.
Can you flat tow a Mustang after disconnecting the driveshaft?
When emergency flat towing your Mustang, you must stay under 35 mph and distances of 50 miles. However, the owner's manuals for some model years do suggest that you can exceed those limits by disconnecting the driveshaft.
While this is true, Ford also specifies that the driveshaft should only be removed and installed by a qualified technician. Even if you have such a technician on both sides of your flat tow haul, this would be impractical for recreational towing.
What RVs can tow a Ford Mustang?
When recreational towing your Mustang, you'll need an RV that can tow the weight of the Mustang as well as a flatbed car trailer.
Mustangs come in a variety of configurations and weights. The 2021 Mustang has curb weights from 3,511 to 4,182 lbs. A car trailer can weigh anywhere from 1,500 lbs. to 2,800 lbs. before being loaded, with a typical weight of 1,900 lbs.
This means you could need to tow between 5,011 and 6,982 lbs. For safety, many recommend that your towing load stay at or below 80% of your towing capacity. Depending on your specific setup, you will want between 6,500 and 9,000 lbs. minimum for your towing capacity.
Many RVs can meet those demands. Class A and Class C motorhomes tend to offer the most towing power. Most of these will be able to handle the Mustang handily.
For example, the Phaeton from Tiffin is a Class A motorhome with a 10,000-lb. towing capacity, more than enough for the Mustang and a car trailer. You can find many with more power as well, such as the Magnitude Super C, a Class C motorhome with a 20,500-lb. towing capacity.
What Ford Cars can be flat towed?
Just because the Mustang can't be flat towed doesn't mean Ford isn't producing a host of great, flat-towable vehicles. We'll look at which of Ford's vehicles can be flat towed in the 2022 lineup.
First, we'll look at Ford's trucks. The 2022 Ranger can be flat towed. The F-150 and Super Duty lineups can also be flat towed as long as they have the 4x4 drivetrain. The Ford Bronco can be flat towed, but the Bronco Sport cannot.
You can also flat tow the Ford Maverick Hybrid, but not the gas-only versions. You can learn more about this and the proper flat towing technique for the Maverick in this article: Can You Flat Tow a Ford Maverick?
Ford also produces SUVs and crossovers that can be flat towed. These include the hybrid Escape and Expedition. However, you cannot flat tow their gas-only counterparts.
While this covers the 2022 lineup, Ford has produced other vehicles ready for flat towing in previous model years. This includes the 2020 Ford Fusion with the 2.7-liter engine. To learn more on this topic, check out this article: Can You Flat Tow A Ford Fusion?
Is Flat towing bad for the transmission?
Flat towing can be very bad for your vehicle's transmission if done incorrectly. This includes flat towing vehicles that are not designed for it, such as the Mustang. However, it also includes flat towing vehicles that can be flat towed without following the necessary procedure to do so.
When you flat tow a vehicle, the wheels spin on the road. This can damage the drivetrain and transmission as well as other moving parts when done incorrectly. This can lead to expensive repairs and replacements for your vehicle.
This is why it is essential that you verify that your vehicle can be flat towed and familiarize yourself with the correct procedure before attempting it.
How much can a 2004 Mustang tow?
We've talked a lot about towing your Mustang, but what about the other way around? The Mustang is not designed to tow a trailer and should not be used to do so. This includes the 2004 Mustang as well as other model years.
Of course, Ford makes a host of other wonderful towing vehicles. These include their pickup trucks—the Super Duty lineup in particular. These are Ford's vehicles that can help you maximize your towing power.
Ford SUVs can also be potent towing vehicles. In fact, the Ford Expedition offers the best-in-class maximum towing capacity. You can learn more about this topic in this article: What’s The Best SUV for Towing A Travel Trailer? [Including Six Recommendations]
The Mustang may have been built for speed, but it wasn't built for flat towing. That doesn't mean you don't have options when it comes to bringing it behind your RV.
Now you know more about how to properly tow your Mustang and some RVs that can handle it. You also know which of Ford's lineup can be flat towed as well as which are best for towing.
All that's left to do is hitch up and hit the road. Safe driving and happy hauling!