By on January 16, 2018

Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, Image: Ford/YouTube

Ford Mustang fans won’t have to settle for 526 horsepower for much longer. That’s currently the model’s headiest output, churned out by the 5.2-liter V8 found under the hood of the Shelby GT350.

In 2019, however, a new snake slithers into Dearborn. Rumored endlessly, the Shelby GT500 will return as “the most powerful street-legal production Ford ever,” the automaker claims.

The previous GT500, which disappeared from the lineup after 2014, made 662 horsepower and 631 lb-ft from its supercharged 5.8-liter V8. Since then, Ford fans without the cash for a GT could only console themselves with the GT350, since eclipsed by the 707-horsepower Dodge Challenger Hellcat and 650-hp Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.


Well, expect a potential Hellcat killer when the new Shelby arrives. Ford projects “more than 700 horsepower” from the reborn model’s supercharged V8. Sadly, there’s no confirmation of what engine we’ll find under this beast’s hood, though documents leaked to the internet a couple of weeks ago suggest it’s a modified version of the GT350’s 5.2-liter V8.

An accompanying video shows close-ups of fire-breathing quad tailpipes, an aggressive front air dam and splitter, a black-surfaced wheel hiding a massive red brake caliper, and a sky-high rear wing. Sadly, the camera’s focus goes soft once the car peels away from the shooter.

Basides this, there’s precious few official words about the model. The automaker claims the “new Mustang is engineered to stand apart on roadways and race tracks, thanks to its new innovative track technologies, performance hardware, plus aggressive and functional track-tuned styling.” As for when we’ll see this model, Ford just says it’s “arriving in 2019.”

Hopefully it’s an early-in-the-year launch.

(Note: a previous version of this story identified the Shelby GT350’s 5.2-liter V8 as supercharged, when it is in fact not. The copy has since been updated to reflect this.)

[Images: Ford Motor Company/YouTube]

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16 Comments on “Ford Turns Up the Heat on the Mustang, Confirms New Shelby GT500...”

  • avatar

    “the most powerful street-legal production Ford ever,”

    Hey now, don’t discount the Edge ST so quickly.

    Seriously though, that’ll be topping the power of the GT by over 50 horsepowers.

    • 0 avatar

      It’ll have more horsepower than a Ford GT, but still be slower.

      • 0 avatar

        Oh yeah, no way it can put all that power down anyway, with that sort of rear-drive front engine setup.

        • 0 avatar

          At speed you can. 200+HP on the tiny contact patch and light weight of a bike’s rear tire, is no issue for modern rubber once you’re into triple digits. 0-60 is kind of a silly testing regimen for any modern hi-power car.

      • 0 avatar

        @ Ferrari – I think that goes without saying given the Mustang’s weight and mostly likely inferior aero and gearing.

        It always amazes me how horsepower is treated in a vacuum as if it is the only arbiter in a car’s performance.

        In any event the car needs 700+ horsepower for its mission which is to run head on against its lighter GM rival against which Ford is handicapped since they cannot affordably remove the sort of meaningful weight (well I mean they could but I doubt many people would be interested in a 2.3 T4 making 700 horsepower and requiring race gas to unlock that potential with sketchy reliability) that would allow it to run less horsepower.

        and on that point with these cars the game is about upmanship anyways so either way it doesn’t matter.

  • avatar

    The GT350 is not supercharged. You mention it twice in this article. The current 5.2L is naturally aspirated- the supercharger is new for the GT500

    • 0 avatar

      It’s a sad state when car enthusiasts know more about minivans than popular sports/pony cars. The 526 hp should’ve been a dead giveaway it’s not a supercharged V8.

      Now it’s my contention this upcoming blown V8 will be a future option for luxo F-150s, including the Raptor and Expeditions, and the complete line of Super Dutys, base XL to F-450 Limited, maybe detuned with towing in mind, especially since big-blocks and V10s are longer socially acceptable.

      I figure something’s gotta give, with a healthy alternative to diesels. Besides it’s the cubic liters the masses recognize. Superchargers and turbos go largely unnoticed and can actually game EPA tests.

  • avatar

    “The most powerful street-legal production Ford ever.” And it’ll still be looking at the tail end of a Dodge, some things will never change. The new ‘Stang should provide some great YouTube vids when these guys exit Cars & Coffee events though. Fore!

    • 0 avatar

      Right up until the first bend in the road where the Demon will leave a pair of skid marks.

      This car isn’t a Demon competitor. It’s mission is to take on the ZL1 besting that car in acceleration and top speed and probably running somewhere in between the ZL1 and ZL1-1LE when it comes to lap times.

      Nobody is bothering to go after the Demon’s market since they have more capable cars.

      Dodge on the other hand is stuck in thier niche since even the standard Hellcat poses no threat to even the run of the mill Mustang GT and Camaro SS when the road does anything more than a straight line.

      Ergo the Hellcat and Demon are king in the flat lands of the lower East coast and mid west but anywhere else and it’s YouTube fodder.

      • 0 avatar

        Straight lines are all that have mattered since the ‘40s, lol. If you want to run road courses then you’ll be trying to keep up with a Viper. Either way, it’s Mopar or no car.

        • 0 avatar

          Yes, the Ford GT will surely have a great deal of trouble keeping up with the Viper on a track.

          • 0 avatar
            Jack Baruth

            I know you’re being sarcastic but a new Ford GT would have to yield to a Viper ACR around most road courses.

          • 0 avatar

            On the Viper ACR, the aero/downforce stuff works great…but it is an add-on and inflicts a lot of drag.

            On the new GT, the whole body is an airfoil – the suspension lowers the ride height at high speeds – the rear spoiler can raise and lower…and also tilt forward to act as an air brake. There is way more in the area of active aero in the GT than in the ACR. The ACR’s top speed goes from a bit over 200 mph to around 180 in ACR form…the aero doodads are pretty stone-axe…the GT still has a top speed of 216 mph, even with its aero package.

            That is nothing against the ACR – it’s great – but it’s a different class of car than the GT.

  • avatar

    So wait, is the GT500 going to continue to be based on the Mustang? Or do you think they’re considering putting it on the Explorer? Pictures suggest Mustang but I want to be sure.

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