With a new Ford Mustang GT heading to US showrooms, fans are patiently awaiting one or more Shelby front-runners. This is what they might look like.
The next generation Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 could be just around the corner, rumors suggest – as new computer illustrations give a hint of what to expect from Ford’s flagship muscle car.
Unveiled last week, the standard GT and new track-focused Dark Horse V8 models will sit at the top of the Mustang lineup for now – but it’s the high-performance Shelby variants that many Ford fans are waiting for.
Launched in 2014 for the MY 2015 model year, the Mustang was available in two Shelby-badged variants: the naturally aspirated GT350, which was sold between MY2015 and 2020, followed by the supercharged GT500, which was limited to the 2020 to 2022 model years was.
But Ford may be preparing to flip the previous timeline, insiders are quoted as saying by the US Ford Enthusiast website Ford authority Let’s say a new Shelby GT500 is due in 2025 – two years into the new Mustang’s model cycle instead of five like the previous model.
The report doesn’t comment on a new GT350 or its track-focused two-seat GT350R derivative – although it’s possible its place in the lineup has been taken by the new Dark Horse, which offers similar output (373kW plus). on the Dark Horse versus 392 kW on the GT350) and track-oriented improvements (semi-slick tyres, Brembo performance brakes, carbon fiber wheels).
Ford authority claims the new GT500 will launch in 2025 for the 2026 model year in the US – after the regular Mustang, which goes on sale in the US in mid-2023 for the 2024 model year, with deliveries in Australia following later next year must.
No further details of the next GT500 are given, including whether it will retain or build on the current model’s engine: Ford’s 5.2-liter supercharged V8 (known as the “Predator”) producing 567 kW (760 hp) and 847 Nm developed.
Other highlights of the current GT500 include a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, larger brakes, adaptive suspension, six heat exchangers and an optional track pack with carbon fiber rear wing, carbon fiber wheels, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 track tires and more.
Many of these features – including the carbon fiber wheels made in Victoria by Australian company Carbon Revolution – are already available on the Dark Horse, giving Ford room to further raise the bar for the next Shelby model.
While there’s no firm indication that a new Mustang Shelby GT350 is on the way to join the next GT500, journey commissioned resident digital artist Theophilus Chin to envision what one might look like – by drawing parts of the outgoing GT350 and GT500 duo.
Highlights include a larger front grille resembling the outgoing GT500, wider wheel arches, a one-piece rear wing from the old GT350R, and a distinctive blue and white exterior color scheme.
Our imaginary GT350 has an evolution of the previous model’s 5.2-litre “Voodoo” V8 engine – the naturally aspirated version of the GT500’s supercharged “Predator” engine – under its hood, with a Tremec-built six-speed manual and rear end – wheel drive.
To make room for the 373+kW Dark Horse below, the Voodoo V8 would need to be boosted from the 392kW/583Nm of the 2015-2020 GT350 to over 400kW or 410kW.
At the moment we can only dream. With a new Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 in development, expect to hear more in the coming months – while the new GT500 is rumored to go on sale in the US in 2025.
An Australian launch has yet to be confirmed. None of the previous generation Shelby Mustangs were sold locally.
- 2023 Ford Mustang Dark Horse with Australian carbon fiber wheels
- 2024 Ford Mustang GT may not get performance upgrade in US – report
- Ford ships V8 with epic “Megazilla” engine
- The 2022 Ford GT supercar starts with a Le Mans-derived special edition
- 2023 Alpine A110 R unveiled as track-focused farewell – but not for Australia