What’s the most powerful street-legal Ford ever? You might be tempted to say the GT, but you’d be wrong, because that title goes to the new Mustang Shelby GT500.
This muscle car has the right curves in the right places and massive levels of power: 760 hp (771 PS / 567 kW) and 625 lb-ft (847 Nm) of torque. The 5.2-liter, supercharged V8 engine rockets it to 60 mph (96 km/h) in the mid-3-sec, with the 1/4-mile taking under 11 seconds.
Directing torque to the rear wheels is a smooth-shifting 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Built by Tremec, it takes care of the gear shifts in just 80 milliseconds – quicker than a blink of an eye. The gearbox manages to find itself in the right gear at the right time on the track, and won’t jerk you around out on public roads. It works great, but the only major concern in this department is that the car cannot be had with a good ol’ stick shift.
Select the Normal driving mode and the Mustang Shelby GT500 becomes reasonably calm, except for that noisy exhaust. However, getting rid of the pops and crackles is easy if you choose so, as all you have to do is switch it into Quiet mode.
Okay, okay, so it’s neck-snapping fast, calm when needed and has good stopping power provided by the Brembo brakes, but what about overall handling? Well, while you might be tempted to question the chassis’ ability to control all that power, as long as you don’t abuse the throttle too much and do not disengage the traction control, you’ll be fine. In Normal mode, the steering feels a bit heavy, so for the occasional track driving, you may want to switch it to Sport to get the most out of the car.
How do we know that? Ford hosted the media drive, so the first video reviews are in, and they include road- and track-testing, as well drag-racing. You can scroll down to the videos in a bit, but until then, let’s talk about the biggest drawback: the price.
At $70,300 before the $2,600 gas guzzler tax and $1,095 destination charge, this is one expensive toy. Then come the numerous options that will bump it even more, with the most costly one being the Carbon Fiber Track Package – $18,500. The Tech Package is another $3,000 and the Handling Pack will cost you $1,500. Choose them all and you will have to pay more than $100,000.