How is the Ford GT heir of those wonderful Sport Prototype street of yesteryear?

The Ford GT has returned to triumph in the 24 Hours of Le Mans (see chronicle of the 24 Hours of Le Mans 2016) 50 years after that epic victory, marking a 1-2-3 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans 1966. The script for the race this weekend was almost perfect for Ford. The Ford GT won with authority, but with the opposition sound of the Ferrari. As happened in the mid-sixties, with a project, the Ford GT40, which was called precisely to unseat Ferrari. But the question today for us is the following: what is the Ford GT heir of those wonderful Sport Prototype street of yesteryear?

it Is difficult to recognize if a sport was born for the competition, or to the street. It is normal that a sport is born for both roles. That is to say, a sport is born with a commercial vocation, the sell a lot of cars with license street. But at the same time should have a willingness to be present in the competition. The competition is vital for a sport, to win image, or even to develop improvements that will ultimately land on the model street.

There are few these days have wanted to make a distinction between the Ford GT and its competitors, in the same category as the Ferrari 488 GTE, Aston Martin Vantage V8, Corvette C7.R or the successful Porsche 911 RSR, which face an end-of-cycle, preparing for a new generation. Unlike its rivals, in that it would be difficult to recognize if children have been born as a sporting street, or as a sports racing, we all have very clear that the Ford GT was born with a unique mission, the defeat in the circuits, and, more specifically, in The Sarthè, in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

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The ACO lastró the Ford GT and the Ferrari 488 GTE because their superiority was insulting, in pursuit of the Balance of Performance that calls for conditions that are more equalized between all the contenders.

From the first moment that we learned about the technique of the Ford GT, and we look at it in direct, when it had not yet announced his program of resistance, because we were very clear that the Ford GT was born as a sporty racing, and that their task would be to be present, and win, in the edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year. There was No more to see their design, their architecture, or their aerodynamics.

The process is similar to that followed at the end of the nineties for some Sport Prototype flagship. The approval of FIA of the time required manufacturers to launch at least a limited circulation to a minimum of 25 units. In this way were born authentic prototypes of racing, that could well be the missing link between a LMP1 modern, and a street sports car. Prototype racing licensed street, as the Mercedes CLK GTR or the Porsche 911 GT1.

Even so, the Ford GT has been approved to comply with legislation which is more strict. The superiority of the Ford GT and its top rival in the race this weekend, the Ferrari 488 GTE, was such that the Automobile Club de l’ouest had to limit its performance (with a ballast) by appealing to the Balance of Performance, the balance between performance of the contenders to advocate for a race more matched.

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Ferrari produces thousands of 488 GTB each year, and in 2015 sold more than 32,000 units of the Porsche 911, when the Ford GT has its production limited to 250 units each year, even though their demand may well be sold thousands of Ford GT every year.

it Is true that the Ford GT has been approved under regulations more strict than the those Sport Prototype of old, that enjoyed limited editions of street. It is also true that the production of the Ford GT for the street, yet still very limited, it will be more loose than those of Mercedes and Porsche.

But note that the production of the Ford GT is ridiculous, even if we compare it with that of a manufacturer as exclusive as Ferrari. Only produce 250 units of the Ford GT a year, so they are being awarded 500 units for the next two years, for a sport that has already closed 6.506 “reservations”. The Ferrari 488 GTB – the road version of the Ferrari 488 GTE – it is marketed in the order of thousands of units each year. If we compare it with the Porsche 911, the case is even more striking. In 2015 we delivered more than 32,000 units of the Porsche 911 in all over the world.

having Said that, and saving the distances, it is likely that the Ford GT is, certainly, something more than a Ferrari 488 GTB, something more than a Porsche 911. it Is likely that we are at the sport of street racing and more like those Sport Prototype that produced manufacturers such as Mercedes or Porsche in the late nineties. Which, far from removing merits to Ford, should make us appreciate much more the value that has to get done with a Ford GT modern street. Don’t you think?


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