The New Ford GT Built to Battle Ferrari
At the Detroit Auto Show, Ford unveiled its first new GT in a decade, and my-oh-my that is one gorgeous hunk of blue metal.
Some quick details:
The all-new GT supercar features rear-wheel drive, a mid-mounted engine, and a sleek, aerodynamic, two-door coupe body shell. It is propelled by the most powerful EcoBoost production engine ever – a next-generation twin-turbocharged EcoBoost V6 producing more than 600 horsepower.
Now, you may not think of Ford as the sexiest of car brands, but the new GT scoffs at your ignorance. The GT (short for Grand Touring) has quite a history, actually, one that involves regular-Joe car company Ford going toe-to-toe with the dominant European sportscar of the 20th Century, Ferrari -- and winning.
You can read the whole fascinating tale here, but here's a quick summary: In the early 1960s, Henry Ford II wanted to buy Ferrari, but Ferrari backed out, costing Ford millions. So Ford set his mind to creating a brand-new supercar to challenge Ferrari in the world's most prestigious car race: the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The man was determined. "We'll beat his ass," Ford said. "We're going to race him."
Things started rough, but by 1966 Ford was ready. That year the original Ford GT40 won Le Mans -- finishing first, second and third. Then in 1967, the GT won again. And again in 1968. And in 1969. Ford had won. Ferrari was defeated.
New GT models don't come out very often, either (the last one was in 2005). This latest edition is set to go on sale sometime next year, to coincide with the 50th anniversary of that memorable 1966 Le Mans victory. But while we wait, at least we can admire its looks. Seriously. Look at that beauty. Almost makes us forget about that Ferr-something or other we saw last month.