A 50/50 split for the Camaro and Eclipse – I guess my prom date will have to pick. This week, Talk Me Out Of It gets a spin-off, or a special edition, or whatever. You see, Ford just announced a new Mustang (yawn). It has a supercharged 5.2-liter V-8 with 800 horses (grunts). Active aero (excited). And at $300,000, might be a bargain (confused face). Did the Ford Mustang GTD just show BMW M how to make a “super street car”?
What’s a Super Street Car?
Have you noticed that sports cars are dying? Yea sure, Corvette, 718 – those guys are still around. But there are fewer examples than ever. What is alive and well is the sports coupe. Mustang. M4. C63. Yes, even 911. Things that have two doors, a back seat, and still go fast.
And we love our flavors, don’t we? How many variants of each can we name? M4. Competition. CSL. You get it.
But sitting at the top is an answer to the question “What if we took a coupe, and gave it a night out on the town with a super car?” Here come cars like the 911 GT3 RS, the 3.0 CSL, every AMG Black Series, and now the Mustang GTD.
What is the Mustang GTD?
I’ve never really met a Mustang that I love, aside from the GT500 and its wonderful V-8. But I dig the Mustang GTD:
- A 5.2 liter supercharged V-8 with a dry sump and 7,500 RPM redline
- Eight-speed dual-clutch transaxle with separate cooler
- 50/50 weight split, something a Mustang isn’t known for
- A body of carbon fiber
- A titanium Akrapovic exhaust
- Michelin Sport Cup 2 tires
- An adaptive suspension with forged magnesium wheels and carbon ceramic brakes
- Looks the part, with gigantic wings, sloots, slats and slits all over
- Around 2,000 will be built
- Price: $300,000
Now, that’s Porsche 911 GT3 RS money, along with every one super street car. If you’re a Mustang fan, then no doubt you’re excited. It might be a lot of money for a Mustang, but it’s not really a Mustang any more is it?
The Ford Mustang GTD stole BMW M’s lunch money
The CSL won’t be sold here, only 50 examples will be made, and you can buy two Mustang GTDs with enough left over for your kid’s college education before purchasing even one CSL.
Remember that the Mustang will actually go fast. The CSL reconstitutes an M4, adds some carbon fiber bodywork, and reduces the nose, making it look possibly worse?
Whatever, it shines a light on the cash grab that the CSL is, because I’m willing to bet it feels the same as a base M4 with a manual.
Super size me
Back to these super street cars. I don’t quite understand using them as a basis for a track-eating monster.
Because BMW doesn’t really make a true sports car (unless you count the Z4 as one), it must use M8s and M4s as a basis for all their race cars. 911s too. Even Corvettes, which do become actual race cars like the C8.R, start life as gigantic, wide things. The Ford Mustang GTD is just the latest example.
My favorite example might just be F1 – watch a modern F1 car try and navigate around Monaco. It’s twice the size of cars from 20 years ago, and it looks ridiculous.
Naturally, some size comes from safety reasons, some from needing room for all that tech, but what ever happened to “adding lightness” as a virtue for a performance car?
I think that only one “super street car” is truly successful – the Porsche.
It takes a car that is already capable and adds to it personality in the form of an engine you cannot get in any other version, along with a manual. It doesn’t take the same bits and magic a supercharger, or whatever, on top like the other cars do.
I applaud all of these top examples, but companies only make them because they are a huge profit machine. You’d need to be a pro driver to really take advantage of the difference between a regular Mustang GT500 and the GTD. This is for the Sunday crowd, and the peacocking of feathers.
And the issue remains – I can find a Mustang for $30,000. A Mercedes C Class for $50,000. Do they change enough to make these cars worth the price of admission? Because that’s what cars that aren’t based on rental spec ones cost.
Nope, sorry. For my $300,000, I’m heading to the Ferrari store, where they make things that don’t share platforms (or back seats) with lower forms of life.
Looks like you won’t need to talk me out of this one.
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