I think it must be Ford Day. First, you have the Gymkhana 7 video tearing up the Internet with 845 horses. And now? The specs of Ford’s Shelby Mustang GT350. No need for extras to crack the 500 HP ceiling. The GT350 hits over 500 HP without the aid of a supercharger or turbo.
The Shelby Mustang is the end cap of a year of 50th anniversary Ford celebrations. I can’t think of a better vehicle to unveil ahead of the Los Angeles Auto Show, also known as Christmas for car enthusiasts.
The horsepower number for the Shelby isn’t surprising. There has been months of speculation that the GT350 would hit it. It’s under the 600 HP predicted, but Ford is proud to have the most powerful naturally-aspirated engine it has ever built – a 5.2 liter V8.
If you are looking for more power, the 2014 GT500 has 662 hp on a 5.8 liter supercharged V8. Ford is quick to point out that the torque curve (400 pound-feet) in the GT350 and the free-revving makes it more usable. It’s not how big the horsepower number, but how you use it. According to Ford.
With the GT350, the engine isn’t the only new feature. This will be the first Ford product to have magnetic dampers. The system uses fluid filled with iron particles to control stiffness. The feature has been in Corvettes and Ferraris for years, and is finally making its way into Ford’s lineup of supercars.
The system works by sending an electrical current through the fluid, changing it from soft to firm instantly.
Shelby Mustang GT350 Styling
From the images, you can tell it skews modern, but still keeps some of the design cues from its predecessors. Some of the changes include a new front fascia, wider fenders to accommodate the 19-inch wheels, a rear diffuser and a lip spoiler. For the hood, Ford sticks with aluminum to keep the engine cool.
In the interior, the G350 will have model-specific Recaro seats and plenty of tech. For all the power, the driver will have access to a control system with five modes with a variety of parameters. Everything from traction control thresholds to throttle mapping will be adjustable.
If you need access to your Spotify playlist, the Tech Package adds the MyFord center and a Shaker audio system. You have to be rocking when you’re violating every traffic law on the books.
So, that leaves the question of when? Expect the Shelby Mustang GT350 at dealers next year. Pricing is still unknown, but if you have to ask, you know the rest.
After watching Gymkhana 7, why can’t we have an AWD version of this?