Written by independent automotive journalist Steve Statham
The 2017-22 Ford GT was built with a singular purpose in mind: to go fast. Scratch that. It actually had a dual purpose — to go fast and look great while doing so. The fact that it won races and established itself as Ford’s halo car were the direct results of that uncompromising corporate vision.
As a road-going supercar, it was hard to improve on the GT. Granted, the model is not known for plush accommodations, but in the performance characteristics that count, it was engineered right to the redline. The exterior was an aerodynamic tour de force, while the carbon-fiber passenger shell and body panels, as well as the carbon-fiber Sparco seats, kept its weight in check. An integrated tubular steel roll cage was an appropriate structural element for such a track-oriented sports car.
The GT’s mid-mounted 3.5-liter EcoBoost twin-turbo V6 puts out 647 horsepower and 550 ft/lbs of torque. It is mated to a 7-speed Getrag dual clutch automatic transmission. The combination was capable of sub-11-second quarter-mile times and a reported top speed of 216 mph. Aerodynamic aids such as a speed activated splitter and underbody aero shields, along with Ford’s AdvanceTrac with electronic stability control system, contributed to the shocking performance numbers. Brembo carbon-ceramic brakes brought the GT back down to earth following any high-speed runs.
The Shadow Black 2019 Ford GT featured here, Chassis No. 42, offered with No Reserve at the 2023 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction, January 21-29 at WestWorld, has all those built-in talents and more. Or, in this case, the more is less. Ford engineers on the GT program were constantly motivated to shave another fraction of a second off acceleration times or find an extra mph of top speed. One way they accomplished this was by weighing everything essential and then taking a scalpel to cut away every last unnecessary ounce. This GT is the beneficiary of that focused attention, in the form of an optional package of lightweight equipment.
This option didn’t have a fancy name on the Window Sticker, just Equipment Group 600A, a $70,000 upgrade. Listed in this group were titanium lug nuts, a titanium exhaust and a lightweight Alcantara steering wheel. Gloss exposed carbon-fiber 20-inch wheels, a polycarbonate rear hatch and a carbon graphics package with dual stripes were also included.
A standard 2019 GT weighed about one well-fed bulldog over 3,000 pounds. By the time that lightweight equipment group was incorporated, the bulldog had been banished back to the yard and the GT was that much quicker on its feet. By comparison, a 2005 Ford GT, no slouch in its own right with 550 horsepower, weighed about 3,350 pounds.
Ford introduced the lightweight equipment package for the GT as the Carbon Series in a press release dated October 30, 2018. These lightweight GTs were said by Ford to be approximately 40 pounds lighter than a standard GT, and the lightest option available that wasn’t an outright competition model.
The carbon-fiber parts are apparent from the exterior, but the carbon-fiber theme extends into the interior as well. This GT has carbon-fiber accents on the door sills, center console and air register pods. The F1-inspired steering wheel has a flat top and bottom, as well as an integrated LED rev indicator. The paddle shifters behind the steering wheel fall readily to hand.
In addition to the lightweight equipment, this GT has the optional red brake calipers and the Ford GT indoor car cover. It is also exceedingly light on miles traveled, with 10 actual miles. It comes with the Window Sticker and factory build photos.
It is too early to call this 2019 GT a museum piece, but Ford no longer makes these cars, and a 10-mile example is about as untouched as they come. That’s the factor that transforms this lightweight GT into a heavyweight collectible. Register to bid for your chance to secure this GT for yourself at the 2023 Scottsdale Auction, January 21-29 at WestWorld.