In creating the all-new high-performance Ford GT, the pioneers behind the supercar designed it not only to win races but also to serve as a test bed for new technologies and ideas for future vehicles across the Ford lineup.
While the GT looks fast standing still, the team optimised every shape to make it as aerodynamic as possible. A key goal was to reduce drag and optimise downforce – which helps give the supercar stability and grip on the track while accelerating, cornering and braking.
The GT’s aerodynamics change on demand to meet varying driving conditions, thanks to moveable elements around the body, including special ducts in the front, and a large deployable wing. The flaps open and close depending on whether GT’s wing is up or down, so the car remains aerodynamically balanced from front to back at all speeds. When the wing is up, the ducts close to increase downforce; when the wing is down, the ducts open to decrease downforce.
The supercar’s wing includes all-new Ford technology – a patent-pending design that changes the shape of the aerofoil for maximum efficiency when fully deployed. The unique design also includes a small gurney flap which, when combined with the shape change, results in a 14 percent improvement in overall efficiency.
Even the engine helps the GT’s aerodynamics. The compact 6-cylinder design of the car’s EcoBoost motor allowed the team to taper its fuselage to more efficient dimensions than a larger V8 configuration engine would have allowed. In addition, the low placement of the engine’s turbochargers and outboard placement of the turbo intercoolers ahead of the rear wheels help to taper the fuselage around the engine.
The GT’s aerodynamics produce positive downforce in all conditions. At high ride height, the downforce has a balance of 30 percent front. In low ride height, the downforce balance is maintained at 29 percent front.
Carbon fibre is an important new element that helps GT deliver both weight savings and sleek body shapes in ways not possible with steel or aluminium. Working with partners, Ford is developing new ways to enable faster, high-volume production of carbon fibre parts in the near future.
For example, GT’s iconic flying buttresses that extend from the roof to the rear fenders wouldn’t be possible in steel or aluminium because of the limitations of conventional metal stamping. Yet, carbon fibre can be shaped into complex geometric designs because it’s cut to a specific shape as a cloth and strengthened by curing at a high temperature.
The Ford GT’s 3.5-litre EcoBoost V6 is the company’s most powerful EcoBoost engine ever, delivering 647 horsepower. It was developed alongside the GT race engine and the 3.5-litre EcoBoost engine used in the F-150 Raptor high-performance off-road pickup, which shares almost 60 percent of its parts with the GT’s engine.
The team also created innovative anti-lag turbo technology that can help maximise the GT’s ability to power out of corners. This technology works by keeping the throttle open when the driver is not pressing the accelerator pedal. The fuel injectors are off, but turbo speed and boost are maintained for faster engine response and acceleration as soon as the driver hits the accelerator pedal.
To further improve engine performance, GT features an all-new port and direct dual fuel-injection setup to enhance engine response. The powerplant is paired with a responsive 7-speed dual-clutch transaxle for nearly instantaneous gearchanges and exceptional driver control.
The GT’s role as a Ford technology test bed is evident throughout the supercar, with some innovations, such as carbon fibre light-weighting, serving as longer-term possibilities, while others are hitting showrooms soon.
Additionally, the company’s push into customised Drive Modes that help customers fit a vehicle’s performance to specific conditions is expanding rapidly. The GT’s Track mode, also offered in the award-winning Focus RS and to feature next year for the first time in the all-new Fiesta ST, helps enthusiasts maximise racing performance.
As new GTs continue to roll into owners’ driveways, other Ford customers can expect to find a little bit of the supercar in their future vehicles as well.
Check out the fantastic order kit for the Ford GT.