The 2017 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R continues with its reputation of providing huge power output and backing up the output with a menacing body. Unlike modern supercars most of which use turbochargers and superchargers, Ford has maintained a naturally aspirated engine for the GT 350R and its sibling the GT350. By doing this, Ford has helped the Mustang establish its own fan base and a legendary history as a true American muscle car. Read along to find out more:
2017 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R Exterior
The GT350R body is very intimidating unlike most of the sports cars we see today with elegant looking bodies. The GT350 retains the true definition of an American muscle car. The whole profile is optimized for performance purposes. Its nose has been modified to improve its aerodynamics just as the standard model. Its
Its grille, on the other hand, features angled ducts which pass more air to cool the huge engine. Ford has replaced its fog lights with air vents that channel air to cool its red-painted brake calipers. Ford has placed a Shelby badge at the center of the grille to show that this is not your regular Ford Mustang.
Still at the front, the automaker has added a huge air vent on the hood which enhances air flow thus improve the vehicle’s aerodynamics. At the back, you will find a lip spoiler and a diffuser which also adds to its excellent aerodynamics. Other features include a modified front splitter and a gigantic carbon fiber rear wing which helps establish the balance between lift and down-force.
The new Mustang Shelby GT350R 2017 rides on 19-inch carbon-fiber wheels. The wheels are wrapped in Michelin Sport tires.
The vehicle comes standard with features such as adaptive dampers which the automaker has named “MagneRide’, differential coolers, front suspension springs, an aluminum strut-tower brace and a rear spoiler. Most of these features were offered as options in the standard model. However, for 2017, even the base model will feature these pieces of equipment as standard making it more performance-focused like its performance brother.
2017 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R Interior
Sliding inside, you will notice a very big difference compared to the outgoing model. To start with, there are no rear seats. In this model, you won’t find niceties like an a/c unit or even a stereo inside.
The vehicle only features the minimum equipments needed. Others have been discarded to reduce its weight in order to improve its speed. Its two front seats are wrapped in leather with a red contrast stitching. The steering wheel and shifter are also wrapped in leather with red stripes. Unlike the standard model, the GT350R does not even feature a rear camera meaning you have to use your eyes to reverse the old school way.
There is an option to have all the discarded features back by choosing the Electronics Package which adds auxiliary gauges, floor mats, a tire inflator and a sealant kit in addition to the discarded pieces of equipment. All this comes at an extra $3,000.
Engine Specs and performance
Now, this vehicle is one of the best American-made muscle cars if not the best. The fact that it does not use turbochargers or superchargers makes it more appealing to the “old school racing” enthusiasts.
Both the GT350 and GT350R share a similar engine. It is a 5.2 L, V-8 that pumps out 526 horses and 429 lb-ft of torque. Mind you, this is a naturally aspirated engine. The mill is paired to a 6-speed manual transmission that features a Ford-tuned 3.73:1 torsion limited slip differential.
Ford did not release performance figures but we expect the model to be faster than the outgoing one. The standard GT350 is estimated to accelerate from 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds. The GT350R being lighter and having more performance features will certainly better that figure as well as have a better fuel economy. At these numbers, no other naturally aspirated vehicle can rival the two Ford models in the world.
The engine also features engine oil coolers and 4 exhaust tips that produce a Ferrari-like sound that you can’t miss when it zooms past you on the streets when the owner decides to pass by the city to do some shopping before heading to the tracks.
Price and release date
Ford had not disclosed official prices of both the GT350 and GT350R as of this writing. However, rumor has it that prices will largely remain similar to those of the outgoing models. The 2016 GT350 starts at $48,695 before options.
The 2017 Ford Mustang Shelby GT350R is more expensive and starts at $62,195, $13,500 more than the standard GT350. Since the previous Track Package features are now standard, the starting price of the GT350 is expected to jump to over $ 56,000 but that of the GT350R will not change significantly. Adding extra options such as a special car cover, ‘over the top” racing stripes and a special black or yellow paintwork among others take the price to over $ 68,000.
Both models will be released in June this year. Unlike the standard model, the GT350R will be produced in limited numbers. Ford has not confirmed the number of units it will produce but they will be less than 50 given that last year the automaker produced only 37 units.