Ford Revives California Special for 2019 Mustang GT

Classic looks from 1968 paired with rev-match manual shifting for 2019 combine to make up the new Mustang GT.

The California Special option package is returning to the Ford Mustang for 2019.

The idea harkens back to bygone days of California Ford dealerships building custom packages for Mustangs. In one case in 1968, the appearance package was dubbed the California Special. That car caught the attention of Ford's corporate office, and quickly became a factory option.

Fast forward to 2019, and the California Special rejoins the Mustang GT after being absent since the 'Stang's 2018 refresh. Included in the limited edition option package are a blacked-out grille, fog lights, and racing stripes that run across the doors. Last but not least, a faux air duct is added just ahead of the rear wheels, which on the original 1968 California Special, recalled the 1967 Shelby GT notchback coupe prototype.

The 2019 Mustang GT California Special also has some unique bits, too. A black-on-red badge on the trunk identifies the California Special in scripted lettering. The front chin splitter is borrowed from the Mustang's Performance Pack 1, giving it a more aggressive appearance. The five-spoke wheels are also unique to the car, including the black painted pockets and machined faces.

Inside the car, the California Special adds black Miko suede-trimmed seats that feature an embossed "GT/CS" logo signifying the trim and special edition. Red contrast stitching and more GT/CS badges finish off the look.

The new California Special package also enjoys the updates Ford gave every Mustang GT for 2019. This includes engine rev matching with the six-speed manual transmission, a new optional B&O PLAY audio system paired with the latest version of Ford's SYNC 3 system, and a couple retro color options called Velocity Blue and Need for Green.

Of course, being a GT model, the 2019 Mustang GT California Special packs a 5.0-liter V-8, churning out an impressive 460 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. Ford says the car will hit 60 mph in just under four seconds and hit a top speed of 155 mph.

The 2019 Ford Mustang GT California Special comes in both Coupe and Convertible form. Dealerships should start receiving examples come the fall of 2018.

At this point, Ford has not released pricing, but expect the California Special package to add a few thousand to the GT's base price of around $35,000. Opting for the convertible will cost more, since its base price starts around $45,000.