A shocking new motorsport hero might assist save the petrol-powered Ford Mustang from extinction.
The newest racing model of the Mustang, referred to as the GT3, is being readied to race throughout the globe in a program that might be focussed on the Le Mans 24-Hour race in 2024.
The Mustang GT3 may also compete in Australia from 2025, in a program completely separate from the Blue Oval model’s involvement in Supercars racing.
The important thing to the GT3 program is that, as an alternative of costing Ford cash from its advertising finances, it would turn into a revenue centre.
Lots of of Mustang GT3 racers might be constructed over the lifetime of the mannequin, all of them offered to personal groups, and the halo impact may very well be much like the racing connection that has saved the Porsche 911 alive and thriving.
Porsche is among the most profitable manufacturers in GT3 racing, however the road-based racers additionally embrace vehicles from Audi, BMW, Ferrari, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, Lamborghini and McLaren.
“This actually does take Mustang international. It’s telling the world our dedication, as we’re pursuing all these cool electrical automobiles that are essential for us as an organization and for the world, there’s nonetheless additionally a spot for inner combustion engines and sports activities coupes,” the worldwide head of Ford Efficiency, Mark Rushbrook, instructed CarExpert.
“Having the seventh-generation Mustang in racing provides us a pleasant lengthy runway on the highway automotive. It provides us that very same lengthy runway with race vehicles as properly.
“GT3 (racing) is a worldwide class. It’s in Europe and South-East Asia and the ’states.”
Mr Rushbrook attracts a direct connection between racing the Mustang and retaining the mannequin alive, even because the Mustang Mach-E begins the push for a variety of battery-electric fashions that may very well be offered below the Mustang sub-brand.
“It is necessary, as we provide a full ladder of Mustang highway vehicles, to supply the identical full ladder of Mustang race vehicles,” he mentioned.
“And to have that chance to inform the story of highway coupes that race.
“So individuals will nonetheless have Mustangs on the highway they usually’ll have the ability to go to the racetrack and see them race, or race themselves. There’s lots of people that wish to do this.”
The primary Ford Mustang to compete with the seventh-generation bodywork, coming to Australian showrooms quickly, was the Supercars racer that now goes head-to-head with the competitors model of the Chevrolet Camaro.
However these are custom-built race vehicles with silhouette bodywork to reflect the Ford and Chevrolet highway vehicles.
The Mustang GT3 has a way more radical look, however is constructed from the fundamentals of the highway automotive with its Coyote V8 engine.
The identical might be true of the Mustang GT4 – which can have fewer modifications – that can comply with the GT3 racer.
“The race automotive begins as a body-in-white just like the manufacturing automotive. There are clearly modifications … with a view to get the precise construction and optimised suspension,” he mentioned.
Mr Rushbrook mentioned the Mustang GT3 is way extra radical than the Supercars contender, and describes it because the most-advanced Mustang but.
“Completely. By an element. I’m simply it, in comparison with a Supercar, and it’s from a special planet,” he mentioned.
Mr Rushbrook can’t get into the monetary particulars of the Mustang GT3, both the worth or the variety of vehicles that might be inbuilt a partnership with British firms Multimatic (our bodies) or M-Sport (engines), however he’s bullish about this system.
“Now we have a number of curiosity. There are individuals in Australia. And likewise for the Mustang GT4,” he mentioned.
“There’s a number of curiosity all over the world for these vehicles. Once we first mentioned we had been going to do that, which was January of 2022 – and likewise with the Darkish Horse (mannequin) thrown in – there may be a number of curiosity.”
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