We all knew this was coming. Ford brings back the 5.0 moniker, bumps the horsepower on its modular motor up by 100 horsepower, and lets the pony loose on unsuspecting magazine editors and bloggers across the media. What other cars really compare to an American muscle car? Just other muscle cars, of course.

Motor Trend is the first out of the stable with a Mustang, Camaro, Challenger comparison story. Dare to guess which sport coupe won?

Pictures: Motor Trend

Long story short, the Mustang took home the honors, though this comparison was interesting for other reasons. The first test for example…was a burnout. Not exactly an objective rating of a vehicles performance, it is none-the-less important. In this challenge, the Mustang finished third to the Camaro and the winner, the Challenger. But when it came to sheer performance, the Mustang was dialed in to win.

In makes it from 0-60 mph in 4.4 seconds, and down the quarter mile in just 12.7 seconds, which is four tenths of a second faster than the Camaro, and six tenths faster than the Challenger. In handling too, the Mustang took home top honors, achieving a maximum lateral grip of .97g, while the Camaro and Challenger managed just .92g. The Mustang also had the shortest stopping distance (when equipped with optional Brembo brakes) at just 104 feet from 60 mph. Motor Trend even liked the interior of the Mustang, which in past years has been derided as feeling cheap.

So 2011 is the year of the Mustang. Is it any surprise?

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