When the words “Shelby” and “Mustang” are used together, it always means something special. The first such combo was released upon the unsuspecting public in the 1960’s, and collectors, racers and plain old car enthusiasts have jumped at the bit to be able to afford and own one.
In 2007 Ford re-introduced the GT500 model of the Mustang, now a modern car with a 4-valve per cylinder V8 engine, 2 camshafts per head, and a supercharger sitting on top, offering an awesome (for the time) 500 horsepower and 480 ft-lbs of torque.
Tuner companies quickly jumped on it and got more power, easily eclipsing the 600-horsepower mark, and then 700 horsepower, and even more, without ever opening up the engine for a stronger-internal re-build.
In 2013, Ford made some big changes to the car, switching to a bigger 5.8-liter version of the engine, a carbon fiber driveshaft, upgraded transmission, and many added comfort features, making the 2013-2014 model an even more highly sought-after model.
2015 saw the dawn of a whole new body style for the Mustang, now with a fully independent suspension, hugely-updated interior, a new turbocharged 4-cylinder engine making it much more attractive in the European markets (where buyers are taxed on engine size), and of course a sleek new exterior design.
But the GT500 model had disappeared. Rumors about its return were plentiful. Enthusiasts everywhere kept hoping, praying, and asking for its return. In 2018 Ford finally made the official announcement: the GT500 was coming back, expected in 2019 as a 2020 model, and due to offer stunning performance with an aggressive new look and 700+ horsepower from a new supercharged V8.
Well, that time has come, and we finally have pictures of the new top-dog Mustang. We’re still waiting to see just how much over 700 hp that new engine will produce, and there’s no word on pricing yet.
It’s real, it’s the talk of every Mustang club/forum/social media group, and it’s awesome. A highly controversial item being the new 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission, this is a certain sign of Ford aiming the car at an elite group of supercars on the market. The list of cars offering 700+ horsepower and an advanced dual-clutch transmission is small, and usually includes names like Ferrari and McLaren. Those cars are $200,000+ cars which many of us dream of owning but only a few can actually afford.
At a projected/estimated $80k price point, even with the inevitable price mark-up from the profit-hungry dealers, the new 2020 Shaleby Mustang GT500 will be a force to be reckoned with, and a much more affordable entry into the 700+ horsepower club.
I, for one, am super excited it’s back, I can’t wait to see one in real life, and I’m certainly hoping that the stars will line up just right for me to be able to drive one and maybe even own one some day.
Bring on the supercharger whine!