Ford Mustang leads tight 2017 muscle car sales race

The American muscle car sales race is a nail-biter this year.

Through July, the Ford Mustang remains out front with 50,814 units sold, but that’s down nearly 30 percent from last year as customers await an updated Mustang this fall. Just 6,206 were sold in July.

Meanwhile, sales of the Dodge Challenger, which traces its roots back nearly a decade, are up slightly this year. It actually beat the Mustang in June, but fell back into second place in July with 5,333 sold for a year-to-date total of 41,243. The burly retro coupe has been riding a wave of renewed interest thanks to the attention the upcoming 840 hp Challenger SRT Demon has bringing to the brand, while a new all-wheel-drive Challenger GT has expanded its appeal in the snowbelt states.

The Chevy Camaro’s results are a mixed bag. It came in third last month with 4,713 units sold, but is still edging the Challenger out for 2017 at 41,280. A new top of the line 650 hp ZL1 1LE should help build excitement around the Camaro, but isn’t quite the headline-grabber the Demon has proved to be.