At the 2018 Fabulous Fords Forever event the standard collection of vintage Fords was supplemented by multiple new Ford GTs as well as the oldest Ford GT. Of course the oldest Ford GT isn’t even a Ford. It’s a Lola Mk6 GT, the car that formed the basis of Ford’s effort to win Le Mans after Enzo Ferrari snubbed Henry Ford II’s bid to buy his company. At the Ford booth one of the three original Lola Mk6 GT’s was parked next to a new Ford GT, and seeing the two next to each other was pretty amazing.
The Lola Mk6 GT used a mid-mounted 289 Ford V8 in a British aluminum monocoque chassis. This was an advanced design in 1962 and it laid the groundwork for Ford’s GT40 MkI design. Seeing a Lola Mk6 GT next to a new Ford GT provided an excellent perspective on the new car’s lineage.
When the new Ford GT press launch was over I had almost everything I needed to understand the GT’s capabilities and purpose. I say “almost” because there was an additional dimension to the GT’s engineering brilliance I had yet to explore, but I didn’t know this at the time…
Sure, I’d driven it on the street pretty aggressively, and I’d driven it on the track even more aggressively. But it was my first experience in Ford’s half-million dollar supercar on a track I’d never driven. To say I left plenty of reserve in my approach as I piloted the new Ford GT in both locations is an understatement.
After driving 700 miles to Salt Lake city (through rain, snow flurries and hail) in my 2005 Ford GT I checked into my hotel and went to bed. The next day I hit the car wash before meeting Doug DeMuro and shooting a video of my car. This was part of a 2005 Ford GT versus 2017 Ford GT comparison Doug was creating for his YouTube channel. After spending a few hours shooting with Doug we traveled to the Utah Motorsports Campus in Tooele, Utah for the new Ford GT’s press launch opening dinner. A few feet from our table an original GT40 was parked next to a new Ford GT, setting the stage for a celebration of Ford’s multi-generational supercar.
As promised, here are some images of the new 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition in Gulf Livery. This color combination, paying homage to the famous Gulf Livery worn by the 1968 and 1969 Ford GT40s that won Le Mans, will be available for the 2020 model year GT, too. Only a limited number of new Ford GT buyers will be allowed to purchase this Gulf Livery Heritage Edition, and I’m not one of them.
If you’re a new Ford GT fan you already know the company has been making a “heritage” edition of the Ford GT every year since it was introduced. The first year new Ford GT Heritage model paid homage to Bruce McLaren’s GT40 win at Le Man in 1966. I reported on the debut of this black-and-silver new Ford GT 2 years ago during Monterey Car Week.
You can see all the color and trim options for the new Ford GT at the Ford GT configurator, but for buyers looking to take the easy way out back in 2017 there was the Ford GT ’66 Heritage Edition. This one is designed to pay homage to the original GT40 that won the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mens race. It debuted at the 2016 Pebble Beach Concours in Monterey. Read more
2016 marked the 50th anniversary of Ford’s first Le Mans win in 1966, and as you might expect there were plenty of celebrations going on that year to mark the occasion. The 2016 Pebble Beach Concours got into the action by inviting every original Ford GT40 to the show. A surprising number of GT40s showed up, too. I’m pretty sure this was the biggest collection of Ford GT40s to ever appear in one place.
I’m not an expert on the Ford GT40, but I do idolize their race history and I find them beautiful in pretty much every color and race livery. Rather than trying to list all the interesting historical facts related to the cars I saw at Pebble Beach I’ll just post the Ford GT40 photos I took and let you enjoy them for the visual feast they offer. Read more
In September of 2016 I was fortunate enough to attend the Goodwood Revival in Chichester, England (about an hour south of London). This event takes place on Lord March’s sprawling estate, and if the words “Lord” and “sprawling” paint images of wealth and decadence in your brain, good. You’re getting an idea of what the Goodwood Revival is all about. Read more
Ford’s GT40 swept the podium at Le Mans in 1966, taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd place while making it the first American car company to win the prestigious 24-hour endurance race. The 50th anniversary of that win is being celebrated this weekend in Monterey, and I’ll be attending an event that will include all of the winning Ford GT40s of that era.
Years ago I spotted a brochure for the 1966 Ford GT40 on eBay at a reasonable price. I’ve scanned the brochure and posted it here for your reading enjoyment. I’m not sure if this is an original brochure of a reprint, but it’s a fun read either way.