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Mustang 32 carries the hopes of an iconic brand

by Mark Rothfield on 22 Jun 2011
The all-new hull is good for 38 knots with a petrol sterndrive Sandman PR
The Mustang 32 shows the brand is back building family sports cruisers at an affordable price, albeit in new ownership.

‘We have taken the brand back to its roots. Mustang again stands for great family sports cruisers at a competitive price.’ With those few well-chosen words, Mustang boss Bill Barry-Cotter has not only defined the character and purpose of the new 32 but explained the logic behind the gamble of resurrecting an iconic boat-building brand.

After years of foreign and private equity ownership, Barry-Cotter brought Mustang back into Australian ownership in April 2010 to run as a separate entity to his Maritimo label. As first boat off the rank, the new two-cabin 32-footer carries big expectations.


‘The Mustangs are a great challenge,’ Barry-Cotter said. ‘The technologies we use are leading edge and there is a constant challenge to make a quality boat, save weight and keep the price down.

‘We don’t have the same constraints in a larger boat.’

It would’ve been easier to use some of the existing moulds but Barry-Cotter decided they weren’t up to scratch. He and his design team developed the 32 from the ground up.

The stern drive-powered 32 sports a single 380hp Mercruiser 8.2 Mag DTS petrol engine as standard, though a 330hp Volvo Penta D6 diesel and 350hp Mercruiser QSD diesel are optional.

They’re worth considering, if only for resale value.

Club Marine magazine editor Chris Beattie recorded impressive performance figures in his test of the petrol V8.

'It slides onto the plane almost imperceptibly at around 10 knots at 2500 rpm, with negligible bow rise,’ he writes in the latest issue. ‘A comfortable cruise speed worked out to be 17 knots at 3500 rpm.’

The boat achieved 30 knots at 4000 rpm and maxed out at 38 knots.


Stepping on board from the integrated swim platform, a transom door on the starboard side leads to the cockpit, most of which is covered by the hardtop and overhang.


The swim platform includes a lounge across the transom for soaking up the sun or watching swimmers when the boat is at rest. A stainless steel swim ladder is tucked under the starboard side of the platform.

The cockpit features a large L-shape lounge that curves around the transom and a fold-out dinette table.

The entire aft section of the cockpit including the lounge seat opens on an electric actuator to reveal the engine space. A lazarette hatch forward, beside the helm, opens to reveal more storage as access to the water tank and waste water tank.


The three-side enclosed cockpit and entertaining area has a forward helm with a twin seat, and galley comprising a recessed two-burner gas cook top, a sink with mixer tap and a fridge.


The helm includes a sports steering wheel with wood accent, a digital throttle and shift with a trim switch, trim tab controls as well as engine instrumentation. Electronics options include Lowrance HDS7, HDS8 or HDS10 fishfinder/GPS chartplotters.


Down below there’s a master cabin forward with an island double bed. A second cabin is on the starboard side with upper and lower bunks, a hanging locker and opening porthole.

The bathroom to port includes a sink and vanity, Vacuflush toilet and a shower.

The new Mustang 32 Sports Cruiser is competitively priced at a base of $215,000 and includes a five-year structural warranty, one-year general warranty and all applicable third-party equipment warranties.

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