Last week my wife Natasha and I had the opportunity to spend some time in the car, in the classroom and on the track driving a range of Ford Motor Company and Ford Performance products — notably the Ford GT, Ford Shelby GT350, and the race prepped Ford BOSS302FRS. All I can say in hindsight, is ‘wow.’
Reflecting back on the experience, I now wonder, quite seriously whether Ford Performance just might be today the only American automotive manufacturers brand that could rival high end sports car and supercar manufacturers in Europe. What a question, but Ford has now made it a serious one to ponder.
From where I sit, Ford Motor Company through the lens of Ford Performance is a completely different company today — than where and what it was say 20 years ago. Or even 10 years ago. They have become,’reborn’ as a new globally competitive automotive and motorsports company. But enough with generalities. Let me be specific, with regard to ‘the Ford opportunity.’ Let’s look at the Ford line up, in comparison to some of Europe’s most amazing supercar and sports car manufacturers.
The new and beautiful Ford GT, inspired by the historic Ford GT40, will continue to be seen as a strong global compoetitor to the likes of the Ferrari 488.
The race version of the Ford GT350R has also been making impressive marks on the track across the country, and last week I had a chance to drive the track prepared version of the Ford Shelby GT350.
On the track, it was breathtakingly – good: stable, grounded, sure footed, throaty, full of life and growl, balanced — and doing all of this revving to 8,000 RPM plus! Did I say the car can HANDLE? It really can. The new GT350 will give healthy competition to both the Porsche 911 and specifically the much talked about Porsche Cayman GT4.
I must be a new fan — I recently ordered a new 2017, Ford Shelby GT350R.
A special thank you to, and commendations for both the Ford Performance team and my new friend Henry Ford III, who are re-introducing a great company to the motorsports performance world. This just might be the only American company that can rival our European brothers on the world stage.
John Hope Bryant and Bryant Group Motorsports