The Ford GT is designed as a race car first and foremost, but does this compromise it as a road car?
It’s been an agonisingly long wait for the new road-going Ford GT after the last model was discontinued in 2006. By now you’ve probably already seen Matt LeBlanc’s glowing review of the GT which aired on Top Gear a few weeks ago, but now the embargo has lifted and the press reviews have been pouring in. Like the original car in the 1960s, the Ford GT was primarily built as a race car first and foremost. To find out if this compromises it as a road car, Autocar’s Matt Prior tested the hotly-anticipated supercar on twisty mountain roads to see how it stacks up.
As a track car, the Ford GT doesn’t disappoint. But then, this shouldn’t be surprising considering the GT’s established racing heritage. We all know the story of how the original GT debuted at Le Mans in 1966 and humiliated Ferrari, finishing in first, second and third place, before winnig the championship three-years running.
50 years later, history repeated itself as Ford built a new GT to dominate Le Mans, which won the series last year. With a top speed of 216 mph, the new GT is the fastest production car Ford has ever built, thanks to its twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 that produces 647 hp, helping the supercar go from 0-60 mph in 2.8 seconds. Advanced active aerodynamics also help keep the supercar stable at speed: the rear wing automatically deploys at certain speeds to create more downforce and acts as an air brake, extending under heavy braking. Activate track mode, and the active dynamics system keeps it planted, lowering the ride height and increasing the spring rate.
It’s clear, then, that the Ford GT is designed as an uncompromising race car for the road – the carbon fiber tub even has an integrated rollcage. But does this compromise it as a road car compared to the 2005 Ford GT before it? We’ll let you watch Autocar’s verdict to find out.