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New Shelby Mustang Will Be 1st 200 MPH Pony Car

Updated Mustang debuting at LA Auto Show.

by on Nov.15, 2011

The 2013 Ford Shelby GT500 will break the 200 mph barrier normally reserved for high-performance exotics.

Ford will break the 200 mph barrier with the 2013 Ford Shelby GT500, the first time a Detroit muscle car has ever reached that limit – a speed normally reserved for the most exotic and expensive sports cars.

The GT500 will be one of several versions of the updated 2013 Ford Mustang making their debut this week at the L.A. Auto Show.  The debut is critical for the number two U.S. maker which has seen its long-dominant pony car slip behind its arch-rival, since the return of the Chevrolet Camaro in 2010.

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The changes cover a range of features, from sports seats to performance packages, as well as modest tweaks to the basic Mustang styling.   But the star of the automaker’s L.A. Show will undoubtedly be the Shelby GT500, the package now putting out an awe-inspiring 650-horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque.

The Shelby GT500's big V-8 has been heavily modified for 2013.

Ford is completely upgrading the 5.8-liter V-8 in the 2013 Shelby GT500, the aluminum-block engine getting a more efficient supercharger, cross-drilled block and heads, even a carbon fiber driveshaft.  The transmission has meanwhile been upgraded to handle the top-of-the-heap Mustang’s massive torque, Ford opting for a new 6-speed manual transmission for 2013.  Ford has also enhanced the cooling system to handle the added demands of the redesigned V-8.

“We encapsulated every aspect of performance in this car – whether it’s 0-60, top speed, racetrack or quarter-mile times. Beyond that, the daily driver also will find this car perfectly fits his or her needs,” said Jost Capito, director of Global Performance Vehicles and Motorsport Business Development.

Introduced just last year the Ford Mustang Boss 302 still gets some modest updates for 2013.

Virtually every detail of the Shelby GT500 has been changed or at least tweaked, according to Capito, including suspension and aerodynamics.  The front grille and a new splitter are both designed to enhance downforce.  The GT500 also gets a new quad exhaust and a choice of two alloy wheels.

For those who might want to test the car’s upper performance limits there’s an optional Performance Package featuring SVT-designed Bilstein electronic adjustable dampers.  They can be accessed with a simple push of a dashboard-mounted button.  Additional options include special oil, transmission and differential coolers for the 2013 Ford Shelby GT500.

“Before, we had to tune the car with street implications in mind. Now we can go as extreme as we want on the track setting and still offer the customer a comfortable ride on the road,” said Capito.

As for the rest of the Mustang line-up, Ford’s pony car gets the biggest update since an all-new line-up of engines debuted in the 2011 model-year.

The  pony car starts off for the new year with new front fascia, including HID headlamps shared across the board, while the GT lands in showrooms with a new hood including functional air extractors.  The Mustang GT also gets HID foglamps.

The 5.0-liter model will now make 420 horsepower for 2013, Ford making use of what it has learned from the development of the Mustang Boss 302.

The new Mustang now can be ordered with the 6-speed SelectShift automatic gearbox.  And 17-, 18- and 19-inch wheels are now on the option list.  And a Performance Pack option is now available for V-6 Mustangs with automatic transmissions.  Both the V-6 and GT models can be ordered with optional Recaro sports seats.

Meanwhile, the Boss 302, which was only introduced for 2012, gets several minor revisions – notably including the new Mustang front fascia.

 

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