- Ford said the new Mustang Shelby GT500 is the “most powerful street-legal Ford ever.”
- The FordMustang Shelby GT500 has a handmade 5.2-litre V8, making 700 horsepower.
- It can be configured to be a drag strip or a racetrack weapon, Ford said.
DETROIT – At the 2019 Detroit Auto Show on Monday, Ford pulled the cover off what it called the “most powerful street-legal Ford ever,” a beastly Mustang Shelby GT500.
With a 5.2-litre supercharged V8 roaring away under a louvered hood scoop, the monster makes 700 horsepower. And according to Ford, it can hurtle from 0 to 60 mph in the mid-three-seconds range.
It’s a muscle car. But it redefines muscle.
The GT500 ups the game on the already staggeringly powerful GT350 and joins Ford’s growing Performance division lineup, which also features the $US400,000-plus GT supercar that captured victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2016.
The Shelbys are, of course, named for Carroll Shelby, the racing legend who led Ford to its historic win over Ferrari at Le Mans in 1966.
“Carroll was always working on the next faster Shelby. I think he would love this Mustang more than any other,” Jim Farley, Ford’s president of global markets, said in a statement. “The new Shelby GT500 will surprise supercar owners with its Ford Performance racing tech, supercharged engine and visceral swagger.”
A seven-speed, dual-clutch transmission was derived from the Ford GT. It’s a Tremec unit, “capable of shifts in under 100 milliseconds – markedly faster than any manual gearbox,” the carmaker said.
The newest Shelby is set to arrive later in 2019 for the 2020 model year with a pair of special handling packages on offer.
The more ferocious of the two is the “Carbon Fibre Track Package,” including 20-inch carbon-fibre wheels, custom Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, and an adjustable, exposed carbon-fibre track wing.
“The rear seat is deleted to reduce weight,” Ford said. As if you needed a rear seat!
The real showstopper might not be the carbon-fibre wing but the “massive,” “louvered hood vent” with “a removable aluminium rain tray for better air extraction and increased downforce,” Ford said.
Yes, this all sounds wildly over-the-top, but the GT500 is meant to challenge the beyond-bonkers specs of the Chevy Camaro ZL1 and the Dodge Challenger Hellcat. If you want more HP, you’ll need to step up to the 755 ponies of the Chevy Corvette ZR1.
Ford didn’t detail pricing but said the Mustang Shelby 500GT would go on sale later this year.
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