While I personally find the Ford GT based GTR1 that Galpin Auto Sports will be selling for a million dollars rather inoffensive, a number of the Best and Brightest expressed some distaste for styling of the 1,000+ horsepower, twin turbo 225 MPH (estimated) supercar. Even some of those that didn’t necessarily dislike the GTR1 said they still preferred the looks of the GT. I happen to agree. As a matter of fact, this is going to sound like heresy to some folks, but I think the Ford GT is even a better looking car than the original Ford GT40.
Remember, the original was designed to win races, not for aesthetics. Camilo Pardo’s design of the GT improves on the GT40, at least to my eyes. YMMV. Fortunately for those of you who like the way the Ford GT looks the Mustang Owners Club of Southeast Michigan (MOCSEM) held its Mustang Memories show in the parking lot of Ford’s world headquarters in Dearborn a couple of weeks ago. While it’s possibly the biggest one day Mustang show in the world, with about 800 pony cars of every stripe (wouldn’t that make it zebra car?), Mustang Memories is open to any Ford powered vehicle and the show was host to a Ford GT reunion. I was told that at least 40 GTs were present, but in addition to the ones parked in a row, I also spotted a handful of others at vendor displays.
When you go to a car show with hundreds of cars, you have to decide which cars you’re going to shoot pictures of, and which cars don’t hold your or your readers’ interest. I joke that my rule is “no ’57 Chevys or ’69 Camaros”. With close to a thousand Mustangs, do I really need to get pics of another factory built late model Shelby GT500, albeit customized and personalized… just like almost every other Mustang at the show?
I’m no fool, at least some of the time, so I know when to bend my rules. I have lots of photos I’ve taken of a couple of real-baby-seal 1969 Camaro ZL-1 cars that were on display at local shows, and at Mustang Memories I likewise took shots of Henry Ford II’s personal K-code preproduction Mustang with a one-off leather interior.
While I took photos of only some of the Mustangs at the show, I made sure to get my *usual sequence of photos for each and every one of those Ford GTs at the show. Interestingly, a lot like the Ford Mustangs in the show, many of the Ford GTs were also tuned, customized or otherwise made personal by their owners. A number of the cars in the show, GTs included, had vanity license plates. One plate was TWIN61S, which I assume is a reference to the use of two 61mm turbos. Another read 123IN66, which was hard to decipher at first. The owner wasn’t around and none of the folks sitting nearby had any idea what it meant. Then I saw how Carroll Shelby had signed the engine compartment (right next to Jack Roush’s autograph). Carroll signed it “1-2-3 in 66″ Carroll Shelby and I realized it was a reference to the original Ford GT40 sweeping the podium at the 1966 LeMans. Shelby managed that team for Ford.
If you like the GTR1, think of these cars as its inspiration. If you find the Galpin supercar hideous, though, think of this post as an optical palate cleanser (there I go mixing metaphors again).
*My esteemed colleague Murilee Martin has spoken of the regular sequence of photos that he takes of his junkyard finds. My own sequence includes 3/4 shots from all four corners, side, front and rear views, a shot or two of the interior, and anything else that I think is a distinguishing feature on the car or will make a nice 3D photo. Speaking of 3D, if you want to, you can check out the Ford GTs in stereo here.
Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can dig deeper at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS