Undoubtedly one of the greatest stories ever told in the history of cars is Ford’s LeMans victory in the 60s. After failing to purchase cash-strapped Ferrari, Henry Ford II ordered his engineers to build a car that would destroy the Italians at La Sarthe. With Carroll Shelby helming the team and with Ken Miles behind the wheel of the incredible GT40, Ford took the trophy with a 1-2-3 finish in 1966. The car that did it was the GT40, which remains one of the greatest race cars of all time to this day.
in 2005, ford released the GT, a retro-styled mid-engine supercar that was a tribute to the original GT40. In 2015, Ford did it again, but instead of another retro tribute band, the new GT is a completely different, track-focused animal. There are plenty of reasons why the new GT is awesome, but in some areas, the old one simply excels.
10 The New One Looks Fantastic
When the current Ford GT was revealed in full in Detroit back in 2015, it wowed everyone. Retro styling was nowhere to be found, and what we got instead was a thoroughly modern, dramatic and insane supercar.
The aggressive front end, the flying buttresses, the air intakes integrated into the taillights, and everything else in between. The new Ford GT leaves you in no doubt that it will destroy just about any race track you ask it to take on. It’s a thing of beauty in its own way.
9 The Old One Is A Perfect Example Of Retro Styling
While the new car is more dramatic and focused, the old one is more classically beautiful. It’s unanimously agreed that the GT40 is one of the most beautiful race cars of all time, and Ford did a perfect job translating the design of the original into the 21st century. It looks good even when modified.
The Chrysler PT Cruiser, the Chevy HHR and even Ford’s very own Thunderbird are just a few examples of how retro styling can be misused. But, with the original GT, they did it just right. It’s a beautiful car. The only possible demerit are the obnoxious doors with a roof.
8th The New One Is An Incredible Track Car
Although you can technically use the new Ford GT on the road, just about every GT owner and everyone who has driven one will tell you the same thing; you’d need a lot of patience. The Ford GT is primarily designed as a track day car, with only the most essential items for occasional road use.
Once you take the GT out on the race track and put it in track mode, you’re in for the time of your life. The way the GT slips through the air and takes corners without breaking a sweat is quite the experience.
7 The Old One Is More Lighthearted
Whereas the new Ford GT is all about race tracks, the old car works pretty well on the road too. Obviously, it’s not a commuter car, and it too requires some patience to be used on the road, but it’s easier.
Make no mistake, the old Ford GT is a fantastic track day car, too. The major difference between the two generations is that the new one aims to make track days as fast as possible, whereas the old one focuses more on the fun. It’s lighter on its feet, overall more lighthearted.
6 The New GT’s V6 Is A Monster
When the new GT was first shown off, everyone expressed their dismay at the fact that it’s only powered by a V6 engine, instead of the old car’s V8. But, this wasn’t just any old V6. The Ford GT uses a 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6, with two turbochargers strapped on for good measure. While some basic components of the robust engine are shared with other Ford vehicles, most of the engine has been completely retooled for use in this car.
The results are pretty dramatic. The engine puts out 647 hp and 550 lb/ft of torque. With the right mode selected and launch control enabled, 0-60 happens in no more than 2.8 seconds, with a claimed top speed of 216 mph.
5 The Old One’s V8 Was More Characterful
The new GT’s V6 engine may tear your face off, but the fact remains, the old car’s V8 was simply more characterful. Everyone joked about the new GT using the engine from an F-150, but most of the components in the old GT’s engine came from the F-150 Lightning, and no one batted an eye.
In the old GT, behind the passenger compartment lay a 5.4-liter supercharged V8 with 550 hp and 500 lb/ft of torque. This allowed the GT to reach 60 mph in 3.8 seconds, with a top speed of 205 mph. While it’s slightly off the pace of the latest one, it’s not exactly slow by any means.
4 The New One Has Some Crazy Aerodynamics
This is arguably the most impressive thing about the new Ford GT. Having a big, powerful engine means nothing if the car can’t harness the power by slipping through the wind. Ford seems to be well aware of this, which is why the new Ford GT has some truly incredible aerodynamic components.
Aside from the massive rear wing and the flat underbody, the sharpest knife in the aerodynamics drawer are the flying buttresses. These allow air to pass through to the rear cleanly, and they look like big holes in the bodywork. They extend past the surprisingly narrow passenger and engine compartments, which is the reason why the new GT uses a V6 engine. According to Ford, it can achieve up to 1.1G under hard cornering.
3 The Old One Was More Visceral And Simple
While the old Ford GT didn’t disregard aerodynamics completely, it was altogether more simple. There was no huge rear wing, no flying buttresses, or anything like that. Most of the aerodynamics in this one came from the rear decklid and the fact that it was so low (only 43″ tall).
But the simplicity of the old one extended beyond that. Most of the components were simple and found in other Ford vehicles, meaning that servicing and repairs were cheaper than comparable supercars. The old car didn’t have adjustable drive modes or pushrod suspension, and it used a simple, glorious 6-speed manual transmission rather than the new car’s DCT.
2 The New One Really Is Special
The fact remains, the new Ford GT is a very special car. It’s unlikely that Ford will ever do something like this again, and if they do, it’ll probably be powered by electricity. The production run is very small, and every GT is built to order for each customer.
With the new car, Ford definitely proved to everyone that they still know how to make a supercar. Just like the old one, even though there was quite a bit of parts bin rummaging, it was not a detriment to the GT’s capabilities at all.
1 The Old One Is Cheaper And Offers More Freedom
No, not that kind of freedom. The new GT is a special car, but it’s so special that buying one is very complicated. Aside from the allocations, there are tons of forms you need to sign, only specialized mechanics can work on it, you have to take it to events with Ford, and one that was famously disrespected by some celebrities, you can’t resell it for two years.
What’s more, new Ford GT models that are old enough to be resold are going for millions of dollars. None of these things are true of the original Ford GT. You can find one for around $300,000, which is not exactly cheap, but way cheaper than the new one. You also don’t have to sign any forms or respect any orders from Ford, meaning you can do what you want with it.