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Ford Mustang 2024 brings sliders

Image for article titled Ford Mustang 2024 brings back the slider

image: Ford

Back in 2018, Ford introduced a magic lever that turns you into Ken Block. It is called Drift Stickand it’s basically a Electronically controlled hydraulic handbrake for Focus RS. But The focus is dead, and the Drift Stick is now merely an indelible warm memory in the minds of ski enthusiasts. At least, it to be – until Ford brings it back to the 2024 Mustang.

The Drift Stick, the baton of electric magic, is a complex work. It had to play with the Focus’s ECU, tricking its ABS system into sending thousands of pounds of hydraulic pressure to the rear brake calipers without allowing it when the wheels were locked and the tires slipped. It also had to disconnect the RS’s center differential, allowing the rear to rotate freely to prevent stalling. But the Mustang is only rear wheel – Its Drift brake could be a bit simpler.

Maybe it's because I don't wear glasses, but my front head is a bit longer

Maybe it’s because I don’t wear glasses, but my front head is a bit longer
image: Ford

mustang, like many modern cars, separate the parking brake every second, the rear brake caliper is electronically controlled. But it looks like Ford performance engineers looked at that split rear setup and said, “Wait. Formula Drift cars have dual rear brake calipers. We can do something here.”

“Something” has brought Vaughn Gittin Jr. onboard, to help develop the drift brake, which Ford claims is a “competition-ready system”. That’s a lot to live for, especially when the dual rear brake calipers on FD cars are much more powerful than a small single-piston electronic brakebut maybe Blue Oval means competitions at your local grassroots event.

Turn the car into Track Mode and that brake arm becomes a non-latching lever that is strapped straight to the rear secondary pistons – a lever that won’t lock itself in the mid-slide engaged position. You may still need to stay in the clutch, but the electronic setup means you won’t have to go out and buy a drift button.

Ford has been deeply invested in drifting for years now, but it’s exciting to see the technology finally start to show up on the Mustang. Just be warned – Drift Brake is not intended for street use. Find an empty parking lot before you run out of Ken Block.

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