Mathews Mustang Review

Mathews Mustang

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  • Lightweight
  • Single cam offers easy cam rotation, brace height, and axle-to-axle setup
  • Speed (given the specs)


  • Cam change is needed to modify draw length
  • Limited draw length and draw weight ranges


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Editors' review

The Mathews Mustang was introduced in 2004 and, at the time, was one of a kind. Before that time, short draw archers had few options and usually had to settle for bows that were too long and not efficient at their draw length. Mathews changed that with the introduction of the Mustang and gave short draw archers an efficient bow at draw lengths from 19" to 26" without a loss of performance. The Mustang is offered in draw weights from 20 - 50 lbs and gives enough energy for hunting and enough speed for 3D.

Riser, Limbs & Features

The Mustang has a very short riser and this is one of the main reasons why it is such a lightweight bow. At just 3.2 lbs, the Mustang weighs in at a great weight for smaller archers. You will find a durable camo dipped finish on the machined riser as well as the limbs. The Mustang uses the older style Mathews limbs that have withstood the test of time and provided amazing results since their inception. The roller guard helps keep the string and cable separated after the shot and provides a smooth guide for them to roll through during the draw, creating a smoother draw cycle than cable rods. As with most Mathews bows, the grips are loved by some and hated by others. Before buying the Mustang you should shoot one to be sure that you will be able to have consistent hand placement with every shot. The silencing system on the Mustang is composed of string suppressors at the limb tips and harmonic dampers in the riser. The string suppressors work to dampen out string vibrations while the harmonic dampers in the riser help keep down riser vibration after the shot. Used on later models of the Mustang, the Zebra Hybrid string is a well constructed string that will require some break-in period before tuning is completed.

Eccentric System

One of the major drawbacks to the Mustang is the fact that a draw length specific cam is used. This is a problem since the Mustang was designed mainly for youth shooters who are still growing and would need to change cams frequently to accommodate growth. The draw length range is 19"-26" with half sizes available from 22.5"-25.5". A slight setback of the cam system is the fact that it is 70% let-off which is a little bit less than the popular 80% let-off bows that are popular today.

Draw Cycle / Shootability

The draw cycle of the Mathews Mustang is smooth with no noticeable hump in the cycle. With one fluid motion, this bow can be drawn and ready to shoot by young archers and women. It's amazing that Mathews was able to get 295 fps out of this bow when the ease of the draw cycle is considered. Before the Mustang, bows were designed to be efficient at longer draw lengths and draw weights but Mathews' research proved that efficiency can be achieved at lower weights and shorter lengths, and this is seen in the Mustang. To help produce its speed, the brace is 5.75", a little shorter than longer draw archers request. The shootability of the Mustang is impressive for the brace height and this can be attributed to the fact that this small package was designed for efficiency at shorter lengths and lower weights. With a solid backwall and smooth shot, the Mustang is fun to shoot.

Comparison: Mustang vs Ignition

The most comparable bow to the Mustang is the Mathews Ignition. If you are looking for a new bow, then you will most likely not find a new Mustang on the shelf as it is no longer manufactured. To gain shootability and attract more target shooters, the Ignition has a longer brace height, but it is slower than the Mustang. The Mustang weighs in .3 lbs heavier than the Ignition, a difference that will be hard to distinguish. Both bows were designed for shorter draw length and lower draw weight archers, so its hard to go wrong with either one if it fits you. The biggest deciding factor between the two boils down to usage since their speeds and brace heights are different. Target shooters will probably prefer the Ignition while hunters will probably prefer the Mustang.
Bow Mathews Mustang Mathews Ignition
Version 2009 2011
Picture Mathews Mustang Mathews Ignition
Brace Height 5.75 " 6.5 "
AtA Length 31 " 31.375 "
Draw Length 19 " - 26 " 19 " - 26 "
Draw Weight 20 lbs - 50 lbs 20 lbs - 50 lbs
IBO Speed 280 fps - fps 278 fps
Weight 3.2 lbs 2.9 lbs
Let-Off 70% 65%
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Usage Scenarios

The Mustang was built with women and youth hunters in mind. At such a light weight (3.2 lbs) and a short axle-to-axle (31.75"), the Mustang is easy to shoot out of a tree stand and easy to maneuver through the woods during a spot and stalk hunt. The Mustang also makes a good 3D bow and can help provide you with practice for hunting.

Price considerations

The value on this bow may be hard to see when comparing it to other brands. At an MSRP of $549, it is definitely not the cheapest bow, but it is packed full of features to help warrant the price. The resale value on Mathews bows has always been great so it should not be a problem to get rid of without taking too much of a hit.


All in all, the Mustang is a good choice for youth and women hunters of all skill levels. The speed gives plenty of energy for hunting and the easy of shooting will make it fun to shoot out on the 3D course. Draw length specific cams hurt the value of this bow since changing cams frequently may begin to add up. Anyone that fits into the draw length range should try the smooth drawing Mustang out before making another purchase.

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