The Shelby Mustang GT500 resonates with heritage and performance. It is the most powerful production Ford Mustang by far. The car is as sought out today as it was when it debuted in 1967. In the years coming, Ford will shift production to just trucks, SUVs, and Mustangs. This will clear the path for the Shelby Mustang GT500 to become Ford’s last performance car. More details will be revealed about the car as 2020 nears.
Looking back at the first Shelby Mustang GT500
The Shelby Mustang GT500 was introduced in 1967 after the success of the Shelby Mustang GT350 two years before. The ’67 Mustang GT500 was fitted with the same 427 cubic inch V8 engine used on the Ford GT40. It boasted a power output of over 500 horsepower and could reach a top speed of 170 mph. The car became even more popular when it was featured in the 2000 remake of the movie “Gone in 60 Seconds.”
The 2020 Shelby Mustang GT500
A new video came out in June showcasing a test car and its prototype at the 2019 Ford Nationals in Pennsylvania building even greater anticipation to its 2020 release. The plaque beside the display described a 5.2-liter supercharged V8 with “700++ Horsepower” under the hood. The body is improved with a more aerodynamic bumper and hood. As of today, Ford engineers are still developing the car.
The 2020 Shelby Mustang GT500 will be slotted above the Shelby Mustang GT350. The latter is a track-ready Ford Mustang equipped with a 5.2-liter V8 engine capable of 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque. It can go from 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds and reach a top speed of 180 mph.
What’s the reason behind Ford’s production shift?
Ford currently focuses 70% of its production on trucks and SUVs. The automaker plans on shifting it up to 86% next year. This follows the 4.1% and 5% increase in Ford trucks and SUVs respectively, and 23.7% decrease in car sales during the first quarter of 2019. The Ford F-150 and Ford Super Duty combined are ahead of their competitors by 94,585 units sold. The company is heavily banking on the Ford F-150 to fund its future.
According to Ford’s Marketing VP Mark LaNeve, “First quarter 2019 sales were solid for Ford. Our winning portfolio continues to deliver. F-Series expanded our leadership position while others slugged it out for second place. We have a close connection with our customers, allowing us to deliver what they need in their trucks. It can also be seen in our record sales of Ford SUVs as well as Lincoln’s significant growth.”
The Ford Fusion is Ford’s top selling car in 2018, staying ahead of the Ford Mustang by an estimated 24,000 units in the first quarter. However, Ford suffered losses in 2018 when it recalled 1.4 million Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ sedans due to problematic steering wheels.
Once Ford eliminates other car models, the Ford Mustang will be the only car sold along with trucks and SUVs. There are ten Ford Mustang variants being offered today, excluding the Shelby Mustang GT500.