Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday Car Pr0n #22

Looking back at the Shelby 500 post earlier this week gave me the inspiration for today's picture.


Yes, that is the Ford GT-40, the supercar built by Ford to take on Ferarri at LeMans. Henry Ford II had always wanted to compete, so in the early 1960s he teamed up with a former Austin Martin manager to bring the GT-40 to life.

The first two showings were disappointing, with the GT-40 not only failing to win but even finish in 1964 and 1965. 1966, though, saw a 427 ci V8 shoved into the car and a GT-40 took first, second, and third place.

Why? BECAUSE MURICA.

That is all.

7 comments:

Brad_in_MA said...

Jay,
I remember reading about the GT-40 and Le Mans in Lee Iacocca's autobiography. He talks about the GT and Ferrari being neck-and-neck for a while, with Ferrari 'toying' with the Ford. The Ford driver then gets the order from the pit . . DROP THE HAMMER . . and the 427 ROARED to life. At the end of the race, Ferrari was more than SIXTY MILES in the GT's dust. Bottom line -- there's no replacement for displacement !!

Ted said...

The origins go back to "the Duce" attempting to buy Ferrari. When The Commenditori turned him down, Ford decided to get even by winning Le Mans which had been dominated by Ferrari.

The win by the Dan Gurney / AJ Foyt car was epic and also the start of the tradition of spraying champaign instead of drinking it from the trophy . Dan doesn't drink., so when handed the traditional magnum he improvised and the rest is history

TotC said...

There's a great book "Go Like Hell" by A.J. Baime. that does a wonderful job of chronicling this. And yes, John Weir, of Aston Martin fame, was the tema manager's name.

As an aside, that bump in the roof on the cars, was called the "Gurney bump" due to the fact that Dan is 6 ft 12 inches tall and needed the room for his helmet.

What a great period in the history of racing.

Wally said...

Saw a newer generation GT last summer. Was left with a very happy feeling :-)

Old NFO said...

Truly SUPER cars!!! And Carroll Shelby had a hand in it too...

Gene in NC said...

Definitely one of the first 5 cars that would go into my lottery stable...should I ever win.

Will said...

Some of those 427 versions ran with a two speed auto trans, IIRC.