Why does the world need a $300,000 track Mustang?

Tim
By Tim Suddard
Aug 21, 2023 | Ford, Mustang, Ford Mustang, GTD, Mustang GTD, Ford Mustang GTD | Posted in Columns | Never miss an article

Photograph Courtesy Ford

Does the world need a $300,000 Mustang track monster? Yes, and I’ll explain why.

In case you missed it, at Monterey Car Week, Ford CEO and friend of the magazine Jim Farley publicly announced the new Mustang GTD, a supercharged, 800-horsepower, V8-powered, petrol-fed, street-legal track machine.

[ICYMI: Ford unveils “engineered to go like hell” Mustang GTD]

The front-engine, rear-transaxle, eight-speed car will have a carbon body, active aero, 20-inch magnesium wheels and every other trick from today’s catalog. Think Porsche GT2 or GT3 RS on steroids and straight out of Detroit.

What this new Mustang represents is an all-out war against the street-legal track cars from the likes of Porsche, McLaren and Ferrari.

This Mustang isn’t for a race series. It’s not aimed at drag racing. It’s not for stock car racing and, while it could be very fun, it’s not just for cruising to the local cars and coffee.

This is a car for the sports car enthusiast–admittedly a well-heeled one–to take to track day events. Why should you care that another rich person gets to play with yet another incredible $300,000 track day car?

Because a major automobile manufacturing company that recently announced it was going to stop producing cars except for one particular model as it transitions to an all-EV fleet has introduced the most badass, gas-powered track day car ever. And it’s doing so in America.

This bodes very well for the hobby we all love. Why? Chevrolet will not let this stand and will have to come out with something to compete. So will others.

And there will be a top-down effect as well. Sure, you might not have $300,000. Ford has to know there’s an even bigger market for a version priced for a larger audience. Could the Mustang GTD usher in a new wave of track-ready Mustangs?

If you’ve been worrying that the sun might be setting on gas-powered performance cars, I would argue that our friend Jim Farley’s move states rather definitively, “Not so fast.”

Join Free Join our community to easily find more Ford, Mustang, Ford Mustang, GTD, Mustang GTD and Ford Mustang GTD articles.
Comments
Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
8/21/23 11:20 a.m.

Here's how I picture the perfect scenario:

A "club sport" package for both 8- and 4-cylinder Mustangs that pulls out the rear seats while adding some extra bracing, track-friendly shocks and beefier brakes.

Pretty much like an upgraded version of the Boss 302 Laguna Seca.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/21/23 11:29 a.m.
Colin Wood said:

Here's how I picture the perfect scenario:

A "club sport" package for both 8- and 4-cylinder Mustangs that pulls out the rear seats while adding some extra bracing, track-friendly shocks and beefier brakes.

Pretty much like an upgraded version of the Boss 302 Laguna Seca.

Let's call the the V8 an "L1T" and the 4 cylinder a "1LE".

tyronejk
tyronejk New Reader
8/21/23 11:41 a.m.

Call me a cynic but I disagree. I don't think this is a car made for driving enthusiasts to take to the track. I think this is a car made for the wealthy to park in their garages for 3-6 months and then resell on BAT for 2x MSRP.  

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
8/21/23 11:59 a.m.

At one time, didn’t you have to show some kind of “proof of racing intent” to purchase a new Cobra R? 

Javelin
Javelin GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/21/23 12:05 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

At one time, didn’t you have to show some kind of “proof of racing intent” to purchase a new Cobra R? 

And how many Cobra R's have you ever seen on track?

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/21/23 12:05 p.m.
David S. Wallens said:

At one time, didn’t you have to show some kind of “proof of racing intent” to purchase a new Cobra R? 

IIRC you had to have a current SCCA competition license

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
8/21/23 12:09 p.m.

In reply to AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) :

Or IMSA, IIRC. 

QuikMcshifterson
QuikMcshifterson New Reader
8/21/23 12:15 p.m.

This bodes very well for the hobby we all love. Why? Chevrolet will not let this stand and will have to come out with something to compete. So will others.

Hm.. not sure that this bodes well for our segment of the hobby. This is aimed at the McLaren / Ferarri / Lambo crowd, not most GRM readers (unless I'm just really poor compared to all of you). This was won't ever depreciate down to what a used E46 costs. 

Don't get me wrong, I think it's awesome that they're making it but I actually think that the Honda HPD Si for $55K (and even $90K Global Spec Miata) are closer to the mark for continuing our sport.

I'd very much like to see more ~$50K production race cars from manufacturers. Maybe if everything from the Golf GTI to the GR86 or even a Local Spec Miata was made without fancy sequential boxes and race electronics but just basic racing upgrades while keeping costs down for club / regional racing. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/21/23 12:23 p.m.

In reply to QuikMcshifterson :

The Global Cup MX5 was only $53k when introduced. They built about 100 at that price which was way too good a deal. The cost is up to $82k now, and it looks like the sequential box is an option if you're not going to race in the pro series.
Price list

Driven5
Driven5 UberDork
8/21/23 1:03 p.m.

In reply to tyronejk :

Just because a product is specifically "made for" one market segment, does not preclude it from being bought by other segments of the market too... And that's (falsely) assuming the market segments are mutually exclusive, rather than overlapping significantly.

Much like trucks, it's far too easy for outsiders to make judgy assumptions about how high dollar limited production track cars are or aren't being used based purely on their extremely limited and heavily (confirmation) biased observations.

The continued support for enthusiast targeted offerings across manufacturers and price ranges is certainly good for all enthusiasts, and that certainly includes Corporate Mcstuffypants seeing the value in opening the budget for these types of 'engineers gone wild' kinds of halo endeavors. The top of the market tends to lead the trends.

You'll need to log in to post.

Our Preferred Partners
nuUVyMCvO4ok5RuqoYMspYuXxnt4Yk3ftE3JR6hJU5kfpNEwArzYn8HnMcqkMgq7