Karl on Cars

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Category: New Ford GT Ownership Page 1 of 3

First Drive of My New Ford GT: Palomar Mountain

It took awhile to get my 2019 Ford GT Carbon Series fully wrapped in paint-protection film, but when it was done I had an easy first drive target: Palomar Mountain.

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Palomar Front

The sun was still shining when I first got to the top of Palomar Mountain

Palomar Mountain is about 80 miles from my house, and depending on the time of day and the day of the week it can be a pain to get there. But the new Ford GT is a very capable track car, which means the only way to really enjoy it on public roads is to find that magic combination of twisty asphalt and minimal traffic. I’ve taken other highly capable cars on this route, making Palomar Mountain an obvious choice on my first free weekend with my new Ford GT.

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Palomar Clouds

The images I captured on Palomar Mountain might be the best I’ll ever get of my Ford GT

The route includes a stretch on Ortega Highway in south Orange County, another potentially worthy road for a Ford GT. But traffic is almost always an issue on Ortega Highway, creating a difficult (though not impossible…) opportunity to exercise the GT. After Ortega highway it’s down through Lake Elsinore, onto the southbound 15 freeway and then exiting at California route 76 going east. Most of this drive has great scenery, but the real fun doesn’t happen until arriving at the base of Palomar Mountain.

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2019 Ford GT: Fully Wrapped with Paint Protection Film

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Fully Wrapped

My 2019 Ford GT Carbon Series after being fully wrapped by Envious Detailing

I’ve discovered the beauty of Paint Protection Film, or PPF, over the past 2 years. As a means to protect paint on specialized cars, like my 2019 Ford GT Carbon Series, paint protection film can eliminate damage from small rocks or flying debris, and even greatly lessen damage from larger items that may impact your vehicle.

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Paint Protection Film Door

Properly adding paint protection film to any car requires care and precision.

Paint protection film also helps avoid the inevitable dings and scratches that occur on every vehicle, even if it sits in a supposedly safe area and isn’t driven regularly. How many times has a belt buckle or a button on a pair of jeans rubbed against a parked car in a garage or at a show?

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series Paint Protection Film Wheel Well

Paint protection film wraps around body panels to ensure complete coverage

I try to be very careful with my Ford GT Carbon Series, but I know it’s going to be subjected to everything from excited cars fans at the local Cars & Coffee to my family members walking past it in our cramped 3-car garage. Knowing it has PPF helps me relax, a little, when I consider these circumstances. And while a Ford GT is an obvious candidate for this kind of protection, it makes sense for any specialized vehicle with potential long-term value or appreciation.

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Ford GT Beauty Shots Series 1

2019 Ford GT Palomar Mountain
A drive up Mount Palomar and lucky timing resulted in this

If the image above looks familiar, it’s also the (current) header on my website. This shot came at the end of a drive up Mount Palomar in San Diego County, which was actually my first serious drive in my 2019 Ford GT Carbon Series. I’ll chronicle that experience soon, but it was a gloomy day to be in Ford’s supercar…until I reached the summit and broke through the clouds. Then it was epic.

2019 Ford GT Carbon Series
My Ford GT on Ortega Highway, with some saturated color thrown in

Anyway, when you have a car with stunning design at the level of the new Ford GT it’s impossible to publish too many photographs. So like a super-sized version of Instagram, I’m going to start doing a regular series of posts that simply show off the New Ford GT’s amazing body lines. The photo above shows my Ford GT in Track Mode with the rear wing deployed. Also a bit of color saturation to emphasize its Liquid Blue.

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The New Ford GT: How to Fully Appreciate Its Capabilities

New Ford GT Black Orange Comparison Shoot

The new Ford GT is more capable than most drivers will ever know

I’ve driven a new Ford GT on multiple occasions, including its press introduction in April of 2017 and during the Kelley Blue Book Ford GT comparison test in May of 2018. During that comparison test we took all three generations of Ford GT to Lake Elsinore on Ortega Highway in South Orange County.

New Ford GT Overlook Roadhouse Comparison Shoot

Our shooting location took us out along Ortega Highway for 2 days in a row

Ortega Highway, also known as State Route 74, is like many roadways in Southern California. It’s a twisting two-lane ribbon of pavement that could, theoretically, offer an amazing sports car (or motorcycle) experience. I say theoretically because Ortega Highway, like most California roads, is overrun with traffic congestion most of the day. And night. But after the final day of shooting the Ford GT comparison I drove the new Ford GT back to Irvine on Ortega Highway, and the roadway was uncharacteristically useful…

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Ford GT: It Looks Good in So Many Shades of Blue

New-Ford-GT-Liquid-Blue-European-Shoot

You simply can’t go wrong with a Ford GT in blue, any shade of blue

Blue is one of my favorite colors for cars. Just about any shade of blue on just about any car is okay by me, and from the looks of how many Ford GT buyers are picking this shade I’m not alone in my preference.

2017 Porsche 911 Turbo S Front Miami Blue

A Porsche 911 Turbo S in Miami Blue further proves my point about blue cars

After much consternation I chose Liquid Blue for my Ford GT. I almost went with a custom color, Petty Blue, but with so many other people picking custom blue colors from the medium, non-metallic Porsche blue family (Mexico, Miami, Riviera) I figured everyone would assume I’d also picked one of those. Paying for a custom color only to have it confused with other customer colors didn’t appeal to me.

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Ford GT in Liquid Red: A Study in Dramatic Color

New Ford GT Liquid Red VMAX Mode

The glowing shimmer of Liquid Red on a Ford GT is not a Photo Shop filter

As I’ve stated many times, the Ford GT’s design is dramatic, making it capable of looking great in just about any color. With that said, I’ve decided Liquid Red is the Ford GT’s most dramatic color. If you go on the Ford GT Configurator you can see the car in all eight factory-offered colors. And not surprisingly, the Ford GT looks dramatic in every one of those colors — on the configurator.

New Ford GT Liquid Red Rear End

The Ford GT’s dramatic styling perfectly syncs with the the drama of Liquid Red

But I’ve seen multiple Ford GT’s in every factory color, and several non-factory colors, in person over the past 3 years. I can now say with full confidence that Liquid Red translates from the configurator to real life better than any other standard color. There’s a “shimmer” in the paint that almost doesn’t seem real.

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Driving the New Ford GT at the Press Launch

New Ford GT Red and Silver Press Launch

Driving the new Ford GT on the track confirmed its rumored capabilities…

After arriving at Utah Motorsports Campus in my 2005 Ford GT, and shooting some photos of it with a new Frozen White Ford GT, it was time to drive. The morning weather was still being typical Springtime in the Rockies, which meant bright sunlight one minute and overcast skies with light snow flurries the next. Both generations of Ford GT liked the cool temperatures, but it made things a bit nerve-wracking when driving the cars on the track.

The weather during the afternoon street drive was mercifully sunny and stable. The deserted roads east of Tooele provided the perfect driving conditions to explore our Liquid Red Ford GT press car. The GT lived up to its billing as a lightweight, barely-street-legal race car. The most compelling aspect was the immediate throttle response provided by the pre-boosted 3.5-liter V6 when placing the GT in “Sport” mode. Feedback through the Ford GT’s steering wheel and seat-of-pants was also pretty amazing, providing a level of confidence few cars offer at any price.

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Sparco Race Accessories for Your New Ford GT

The new Ford GT is closely tied to a successful race car that’s already won the 24 Hours of Le Mans. And like most high-performance street cars with a racing pedigree, Ford is encouraging buyers of the new Ford GT to exercise it at closed course race facilities. Among these encouraging factors is a complete set of race accessories designed and engineered by Sparco.

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New Ford GT at 2017 Detroit Auto Show

New Ford GT Detroit Auto Show Liquid Red Front

The New Ford GT debuted in Liquid Red at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show

At the 2015 Detroit Auto Show the new Ford GT debuted in Liquid Blue (still one of my favorite colors for the car). A year later the new Ford GT showed up for the first time in Frozen White in Detroit, and looked stunning yet again. For its third appearance at the Detroit Auto Show the new Ford GT debuted in Liquid Red.

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2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition in Gulf Livery

2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition Front

The 2019 Ford GT Heritage Edition features optional exposed carbon fiber roundels

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.

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