By installing lighter glass and removing interior luxuries, Ford lets buyers spec a meaner version of its supercar.
After a very brief bout of speculation, Ford is unleashing official details about the lightweight GT Competition Series. If buyers somehow think the standard supercar is too soft, this optional collection of parts should make it even more hardcore machine.
“The Competition Series was developed with the most hardcore track enthusiasts in mind, providing a tailored set of lightweight features and unique livery to match,” Ford Chief Technical Officer Raj Nair said about the vehicle.
In addition to reducing the overall weight, Ford’s goal with this package is to shift the GT’s center of gravity closer to the road. The pounds come off thanks to a Perspex acrylic engine cover with a manual latch. Rather than a hydraulic strut, a carbon fiber prop holds it in place when up. The bulkhead behind the driver also uses Gorilla Glass that’s half as thick as the standard model.
You can identify the Competition Series on the outside from the gloss-finished carbon fiber on the hood stripe, mirror caps, A-pillar, and lower body trim. The package comes standard with parts that are usually optional on the GT, such as the carbon fibre wheels and titanium components for the lug nuts and exhaust.
Inside, Ford strips out the interior down to the bare minimum. The air conditioning, infotainment display, speakers, storage bins, and cupholders are gone. Ebony-colored Alcantara decorates the seats, instrument panel, and headliner. Carbon fibre trim continues the lightweight look be decorating the cabin. For a bit of colour, anodized red parts adorn the paddle shifters and a badge on the instrument panel.
The cars have no more power, though: the 3.5-litre biturbo V6 continues to produce 647 horsepower on these models.
The Blue Oval is still keeping some details about the Competition Series a secret, such as the important detail of how much weight the package shaves off. The members of Ford Performance “hope to have that in the near future,” spokesperson Matt Leaver told Motor1. “I also do not have the price of the package but I can tell you it commands a premium as it makes a number of optional items standard.”
According to Leaver, the Competition Series has been available to GT customers since Ford began taking order. “The Ford GT Competition Series is a limited edition variant, but we do not have a specific number on how many will be offered,” he said.
If you want to get a better look at the Competition Series’ special parts, one is on display in the Ford stand during this weekend’s Daytona 500.
Gallery: Ford GT Competition Series
FORD GT COMPETITION SERIES OFFERS MORE WEIGHT-SAVING INNOVATIONS FOR HARDCORE TRACK ENTHUSIASTS
Ford GT Competition Series, shown in Daytona for first time weeks after winning Rolex 24, offers weight-saving innovations, such as lightweight, race-inspired Perspex® acrylic engine hatch cover and bulkhead Gorilla Glass®
Limited-edition Ford GT model features lightweight carbon fiber racing stripes, A-Pillars, andside mirrors;, unique engine hatch with integrated venting distinguishes rear view
Interior of lightest Ford GT features Alcantara® suede with red accents and exposed carbon trim
DAYTONA, Fla., Feb. 23, 2017 – Ford is showing the ultra-lightweight Ford GT Competition Series for North America in Daytona, the site of its win at the Rolex 24 in January.
The Ford GT Competition Series was engineered to build on the car’s innovative lightweight and aerodynamic design. The track fans’ ultimate production car removes weight higher in the vehicle and shifts the center of gravity closer to the track for even better road-holding, and to maximize its 647 horsepower engine.
“The Ford GT has racing in its blood,” said Raj Nair, Ford executive vice president, global product development, and chief technical officer. “The Competition Series was developed with the most hardcore track enthusiasts in mind, providing a tailored set of lightweight features and unique livery to match.”
For example, the innovative lightweight, race-inspired Perspex® acrylic engine hatch cover with manual latch and carbon fiber prop rod reduces weight near the roof and shifts the balance of weight lower in the car.
Similarly, the bulkhead Gorilla Glass® behind the driver is about half as thick – and lighter – as on other models.
All performance features from the standard production car remain, including the FIA-certified steel roll cage and active aerodynamic system. Items not essential to performance – including air conditioning, radio and speakers, stowage bins and cupholders – are eliminated.
Weight-reducing optional equipment – such as performance-enhancing carbon fiber wheels, and titanium lug nuts and exhaust – are standard on the Competition Series.
The Competition Series also looks the part with unique gloss carbon fiber stripe, mirror caps and A-pillars, as well as exposed carbon fiber lower body trim in matching gloss finish.
Inside, the Competition Series maintains the lightweight interior and keeps the same driver-centric elements of other models, including the F1-styled steering wheel with key functional controls. Ebony Alcantara® suede is used on the seats, instrument panel and headliner.
Exposed carbon fiber accentuates the console, registers and door sills. Anodized red paddle shifters and instrument panel badge bring accent color to the cabin, while a unique center console plate and steering wheel fascia account for the deleted infotainment controls and screen.
The Competition Series is offered in six Ford GT colors – Shadow Black, Frozen White, Ingot Silver, Liquid Blue, Liquid Grey and Triple Yellow – and is available in North America for all announced production years.
The car will headline Ford’s large display – alongside its broader lineup – outside Turn One at the Daytona 500 this weekend.
Visit FordGT.com to view exterior and interior options or to configure your own Ford GT supercar.