Tag - GT500

2011 LA Auto Show – Ford Reveals 2013 Mustang Lineup

Ford pulled the wraps off its 2013 Mustang lineup today ahead of the debut at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.  Ford has restyled the entire lineup for 2013, added a plethora of technology upgrades and of course have made significant performance upgrades with some jaw dropping numbers as a result.   The Mustang has always been a Speed:Sport:Life favorite and Ford has once again made us drool uncontrollably with the 2013 Mustang lineup.   Read on to see how Ford plans to steal the thunder from Chevy and their new 550-horsepower Camaro ZL1.

Read More

2011 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Coupe: Supercharged torque makes for one snakey ‘Stang.

2011 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 Coupe

When I was about 12 years old I had a couple of neighborly brothers who used to tinker with the most ludicrous little contraptions. From their shed placed in the back yard of their home I witnessed many marvelous inventions come to life, including a 600cc ATV-engine powered go-kart, a backwoods tree-destorying Ford LTD with full bush bars, and a three-wheeled ATV that had seen more abuse than Whitney Houston. Sure, these toys were interesting, hillbilly gas burners meant to either get you in a lot of trouble or a lot of hurt, but it was what was in their driveway that mesmerized me for years. Read More

2010 Mustang Shelby GT500 First Drive: Even faster, but not as furio… angry.


Click for Larger Image

Story by Jack Baruth, photographs by Jack Baruth and Ford

Highway 1 is Northern California’s “Shoreline Highway”. Green hills to the right, blue water to the left, blue sky above, blue Mustang surrounding me. Second gear in the 2010 Shelby Mustang GT500 reaches above the speed limit on pretty every road in the United States, and it gets there quickly. Traffic ahead but the road doubles back along the coast and I can see the gap. So… See the gap, apply the throttle, make the pass. With a muted supercharger whine, the big blue snake lights both rear tires and transports me to redline in the space of thought. Time for third, I think. It’s good for One. Oh. Eight. Or thereabouts. And it, too, arrives with a tire-spinning fanfare. Across the crown of the road and the “Botts dots” send the rear end wagging. Left. Right. Left. Power is still on. The oscillation is violent but it’s as regular as a grandfather clock. The shift light flashes: a bright red “SVT” logo. Let’s settle it down. Let’s reach for fourth. And that, dear reader, is where we must draw the curtain. For now, anway.

We know the GT500 is fast. In its previous incarnation, we pedaled one around MSR Houston just as quickly as a Lotus Elise. It takes a lot to get a two-ton, iron-block, traditional ponycar around a road course at Lotus velocities, and Ford’s SVT division knows the secret formula to make it happen. But this time, the Blue Oval boys are promising more than just raw speed for the revised GT500. By applying a series of incremental improvements and changes to the platform, many of which were previewed in the mega-buck GT500KR, Ford believes that it has created a pony which is both powerful and refined. “You’ll get some track time,” we were told, “but it’s on the road that you’ll see the real difference in the new car.”

Oh, there’s that phrase. “New car.” Exactly how “new” is the 2010? We covered many of the differences in our 2010 Mustang GT test, but the Shelby is, in fact, more heavily revamped than the normally aspirated models. Not only does it benefit from all of the “regular” changes, there’s far more differentiation between it and the cooking GT than there was in the previous model. Ahead of the A-pillar, only the fenders are shared with regular Mustangs. A new bonnet design addresses the problem of “hood shake”, while Shelby-specific bodywork can be found from the unique nose to the faux-diffuser surrounding the four-inch exhaust tips. The rear badge is applied with wide letter spacing in true Sixties style, a minor touch which required a fair amount of production-line engineering to accomplish. Ford’s worked very hard on the Shelby’s detailing. The overall effect is a visual home run: cohesive, trim, and unbelievably aggressive, all at once. And there’s more to see once you open the door.

Read More

The secret vehicle team: a trip to Ford’s SVT division.


Click for Larger Image

Story and photography by Jack Baruth

What if you built a five-hundred-horsepower ponycar… and nobody noticed? Worse yet, what if you built a five-hundred-and-forty-horsepower limited-edition ponycar that is really closer to a six-hundred-horsepower limited-edition ponycar… and nobody gave you any credit? Well, today we’re going to give credit where credit was due. Three months ago, we had the pleasure of meeting some of the people behind Ford’s SVT division, learning about some of the cars which have figured prominently in the recent history of fast Fords, and experiencing a GT500KR development mule around a top-secret test track. Due to technical difficulties (in other words, the race-related breakage of our crummy old DV camera) it’s taken a while to bring you this stuff, but we’re hoping it will be worth your wait.
Read More

Speed:Sport:Life Imaginary Internet Millionaire Track Test: Ferrari F430 v Lotus Elise v Dodge Caliber SRT-4 v Ford Mustang GT500


Click for Larger Image

Story by Jack Baruth – In-car video by Jack Baruth and Carl Modesette – Photography by Zerin Dube and Matt Chow

Admit it: you’ve told the Internet a fib or two in the past few years. It’s okay, really; there’s nobody around but you and me. The past decade has seen the ol’ triple-W take center stage in the automotive enthusiast community, and whether you’re a fan of a all-purpose auto site like the one run by our friends at Jalopnik, a perennial bargain-hunter logging hundreds of hours on the Edmunds car-purchase forums, or even one of those miserable mouth-breathers over at Rennlist trying like hell to turn a perfectly decent and lovely ’85 Porsche 944 into a dub-wheeled, nitrous-fed, maintenance-deferred scrapheap, chances are that you’re spending a nontrivial amount of time out there on the IntarWeb’s car spots. Chances are, too, that at some point you’ve maybe stretched the truth a bit when arguing a point with some clueless noob who desperately deserves a hammer to the forehead, right? Maybe you’ve temporarily forgotten that “your” Porsche 997 GT3 actually belongs to your wife’s uncle, or perhaps you’ve retold a rather boring HPDE 1 session somewhere as a daring battle at the very limits of adhesion, slip angle, and late braking. Don’t sweat it. We’ve all done it. Even your humble author once told a USENET group many years ago that he found the E46 M3 “really, really boring.” Well, I did find it boring, primarily because my test drive was limited to a thirty-five-mile-per-hour tour of the dealership’s parking lot. It’s just that I may have let that rather relevant fact slip my mind in my eagerness to prove a point to whatever sorry doofus I was totally e-dominating at the time. When I finally got around to driving the car harder, I actually rather liked it, but do you really think that I was going to go back and admit it? Oh, hell no. I had my imaginary electronic reputation to protect!

Those imaginary electronic reputations, or IERs for short, can lead people to tell some pretty crazy lies, with one of the most common being the “Sure, I Drive A ’93 Corolla, But I Could Totally Pay Cash For Any Car I Wanted” story. Totally believable, right? The next time you’re on the road and you see some hapless sucker clutching the shaking steering wheel of some tired old Stanza XE, why not at least briefly consider the possibility that he’s an Internet millionaire, just like all the guys over at FerrariChat, and that he just drives that crapwagon because he’s heavily invested in short-term complex financial derivatives? He’s just waiting for the right moment to stroke that check for a brand-new Gallardo Superleggera, and then he’ll be the one laughing at you! On the World Wide Web, we’re all rich, we all pay cash, and we can all drive anything we want.

Imagine, for a moment, that the above scenario was really true, and not just the fevered imagination of a bitter loser who still iives with his parents. Imagine that you really could buy anything you wanted, and that because of your awesome cash-holding and mega-investing powers, you weren’t totally convinced that you needed to spend all the money you had available to you. In other words, imagine that you’re completely unlike everybody in the real world. What would you buy? Would you do the obvious Internet zillionaire thing and buy a Ferrari? Maybe you’re a so-called purist and you’d prefer the simplicity of a Lotus Elise. It could be that you want to strut down the boulevard in the baddest Mustang to ever escape the factory – or you might be more interested in an affordable yet high-power commuter like the weapons-grade Dodge Caliber SRT-4. Who knows? You’re rich and crazy! It’s a ridiculous scenario – one completely unrelated to the real world – but here at S:S:L, we’re not big fans of the real world, so we’ve created a track test just for you, Mr. Imaginary Internet Baller. We’ve got a Ferrari F430 Spyder, a Lotus Elise, a Shelby GT500, and a Caliber SRT-4. We’re going to run ‘em head to head around MSR Houston’s road course, gather full data from our Traqmate timing system, and show you on-track video complete with a Best Motoring-style view of the driver’s pedal box. Last but not least, because this is Speed:Sport:Life and not some timid advertising-supported blog, we’re going to declare a clear winner. You may find it harder to believe that a nineteen-year-old’s claim to be street-racing his own brand-new Murcielago, but there really is one car that stands out from the pack here, and I can’t wait to tell you about it.

Read More