GT: Ford's fastest production car ever
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Ford outperforms McLaren and Ferrari
After many months of waiting, fans of the blue oval can now rejoice — as performance numbers stemming from Ford’s new GT supercar look set to live up to the hype and challenge its key international rivals.
From the outset of their GT project, Ford has claimed the final product would feature a design optimised for track performance. Naturally then one of the Ford GT’s first official track tests took place at Colabogie Motorsports Park in Canada late last year. And the newly released results have put the biggest supercar names in the world on notice.
Over the five kilometre Calabogie Motorsports Park circuit the Ford GT registered a lap time of 2:09.8, one-second faster than a McLaren 675 LT (2:10.8) and over three-seconds faster than a Ferrari 458 Speciale (2:12.9).
Power comes from an all-new EcoBoost 3.5-litre, twin-turbo charged V6 engine, which helped it record a top speed of 216mph (347.6kph) during testing. This officially makes the GT the fastest car Ford have ever put into production.
The engine has a verified output of 647hp and 550lb.ft of torque in US specification. Ford are also claiming that the power plant will produce 90 per cent of peak torque from 3,500rpm.
“Our expectation has always been that the EcoBoost V6 would perform exceptionally well in the Ford GT – both in terms of power as well as aerodynamic efficiency,” said Dave Pericak, Global Director of Ford Performance.
“We tested and developed this power train through the Daytona Prototype race car that ran in IMSA for two seasons; last season racing with Ford GT. We are extremely pleased with how it performs, both on the track and on the road.”
As the car’s sculpted appearance may suggest to you, the GT’s performance isn’t limited to straight-line speed.
The car features active-dynamic systems for both suspension and aerodynamics components, which will adapt, flex and move whilst driving. Ford say the partnership of new technology will help the whole package perform with optimum downforce, drag and balance at any speed, delivering a ‘faster set-up regardless of driver skill.’
The GT weighs in at less than 1,400kg dry, achieving a power-to-weight ratio of 2.14kg per horsepower. This places it right between two of its biggest competitors; the McLaren 675 LT, and Ferrari 488.
“The Ford GT is all about performance,” said Raj Nair, Ford Executive Vice President, Global Product Development and Chief Technical Officer.
“We achieved considerable weight savings with the carbon-fibre architecture. We then reinvested some of that savings into where it counts most — performance. Specifically; the active dynamics. The result is an even faster car.”
Ford state all cars involved in this test were track prepared with ‘new fluids, fresh tyres and optimal suspension settings, in identical conditions and with the same driver behind the wheel.’
However, it’s also worth noting that the Ferrari and McLarens tested are both older platforms — the 675 debuted in 2015 and 458 Speciale in 2013.
Ford customers had to register for the opportunity to own one of the 500 planned GT units. The production run is now fully allocated, and customers are awaiting deliveries.
There’s no word yet on if any GTs will be heading to our shores, but if these numbers are anything to go by, approved owners should no doubt be satisfied with the performance of the finished product.