Few cars in the world can get true automotive fanatics geared up the way the Ford Mustang can. For decades, it has stood at the forefront of the American muscle car scene. It has a storied past, full of innovation, rivalry, and cultural influence that few vehicles anywhere in the world can claim. The Shelby Mustang, a variant in production off and on since 1965, has an even more legendary status. It is among the most revered cars in American history, due to its high-performance and history of racing. If you thought the Shelby Mustangs of the past were a sight to behold, wait until you get a load of the 2020 Shelby GT500.
The Shelby was a staple of the 1960s but was retired by the early 1970s. This retirement was due in part to poor sales and business differences inside Ford, between Carroll Shelby himself and the executives. Shelby left Ford due to these creative differences, but would later reunite with Lee Iacocca (formerly of Ford) at Dodge. He would also work with Oldsmobile and other automaking ventures. He was active in the automotive world until his death in 2012.
In true Ford fashion, though, the Shelby Mustang was revived in the mid-2000s. It was a concept car that flirted with the 500 horsepower range. That was good for the time, but the 2020 Shelby GT500 has left the mid-2000s in the dust. Check out what the 2020 Shelby GT500 can do.
The 2020 Shelby GT500 comes with a 5.2L supercharged V8 that gets a monstrous 760 horsepower and 625 lb-ft of torque. It is paired with a TREMEC seven speed dual clutch transmission, which is vital to reining in all that muscle. It can go from 0-60 in around 3.5 seconds, and tops out at a cool 180 miles per hour.
With all that go power, you need some very strong stopping power, too. The 2020 Shelby GT500 provides that with 16.5” Brembo front brakes and 14.5” Brembo rear brakes. Not only are Brembo brakes the top of the line brakes around the world, these are among the largest brakes ever designed by Brembo for a car this size. The 16.5” brakes apply more surface area braking pressure, helping one of the fastest cars in the world to slow down and stop with precision and safety.
One of the more interesting mechanical aspects of the 2020 Shelby GT500 is its exhaust system. Now, we know that one of the perks of having a car like this is that it can be seen AND heard. Muscle cars are the lions of the automotive world. Their fearsome roars can be heard for miles. Ford knows this too, and gives you the option to roar in four different modes.
These four modes are quiet, normal, sport, and track. Quiet and normal are pretty self-explanatory, although they are very subjective in what one deems “quiet” and “normal.” Even these modes have noticeable growls. Sport mode amps it up to uncomfortably loud levels, but Track mode really blows out the eardrums. If you want to make sure you are heard before you are seen in the 2020 Shelby GT500, go with sport or track modes. We are guessing you will get an equal amount of jealous stares to spiteful glares.
This is obviously the most powerful Mustang ever put out by Ford, besting the previous generation by almost 100 horsepower. Most car designers don’t have to worry about how a car can accommodate this type of muscle, but the Ford Performance Team are not most designers.
The body style of the 2020 Shelby GT500 is largely the same of the previous GT350, with a few changes. These changes may look aesthetic, but they are also functional. Most of these functions come in the effort of keeping the massive engine cooled off.
The front fascia has been revised somewhat and now has a menacing look. This is appropriate for a car that identifies as a Cobra, but it also serves to house a cooling pack that helps to keep the hard-working engine from overheating. It allows air flow to enter and cool down the engine, as does the huge hood vent on top. These additions will reportedly increase air flow by up to 50% fro the GT350. These additions are just a couple of the reasons that Ford felt confident to pack a 760-horsepower engine, a supercharger, and a dual clutch transmission under the hood.
The rear has also been revised, with a new rear fascia and rear spoiler. These also help air to flow over, around and even through the 2020 Shelby GT500, which helps on fuel efficiency and engine cooling. It also helps to move the surprisingly heavy Mustang, which is weighing in at over 4,200 pounds. That is several hundred pounds more than previous Shelby Mustangs, but still not quite as hefty as the Dodge Challenger Hellcat, long considered the literal heavyweight of the division.
The 2020 Shelby GT500 is about as sleek and modern looking as you can ask for on the outside, but it is just as sleek and modern on the inside, as well.
The interior of the 2020 Shelby GT500 is not quite as impressive as the outside, but that is an awful lot to live up to. The only problem with that is that not nearly as many people will get to see the inside as the exterior. It can seat up to four, but the rear seat delete is also an option. So, it may just be you and one very special friend at a time.
The seats are Recaro leather, which are top of the line in the automotive seating world. The rest of the interior lives up, as well, with high end carbon fiber instrument panels and alcantara surfaces.
As far as instrumentation and tech features go, you get a 12” LCD digital instrument cluster, an 8” LCD touchscreen infotainment system, a nine speaker stereo system and USB ports. If you choose so, you can upgrade the sound system to a 12-speaker B&O system with a subwoofer installed in the trunk. That will make your music that you play through Apple CarPlay or Android Auto as impressive inside as that exhaust is outside.
The 2020 Shelby GT500 is a unique blend of respect for its own history and modern technological imagination. The engineers behind this beast of American muscle really outdid themselves in so many ways. Not only do you have the most powerful supercharged V8 available in a car, you have the brilliant functional, not to mention beautiful, aerodynamic design to properly contain it. You get all the trappings of modern technology, both inside and out.
It isn’t all sunshine and daisies, though. The 2020 Shelby GT500 will come at a steep price. It starts out at $72,900. There are three optional packages that, when all added on and accounting for taxes, tags, title and delivery, will push it over the dreaded $100,000 plateau. That is a first for Ford, but it will certainly not be the last. If you can afford one, the 2020 Shelby GT500 fully loaded is one hell of a ride.